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KSP procedural star systems confirmed?


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No, I think a lot of folks took the comment that you can see a specific star and then go to that star to mean they could go to any star you can see, but that doesn’t follow. We’ll probably have a few to a handful of nearby stars we can visit at launch, and I personally prefer it that way. Id rather a dozen or two carefully designed planets than thousands of half-baked ones. 

Edited by Pthigrivi
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Ya there definitely won't be procedural generation. What is the point of visiting a new star when everything is basically the same after your first 3 or 4 stars?

Edited by MechBFP
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6 hours ago, Pthigrivi said:

took the comment that you can see a specific star and then go to that star to mean they could go to any star you can see, but that doesn’t follow

Exactly, it was likely meant as "the ones that are in the game are visible in the sky, and they are simulated throughout your whole journey towards them"

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13 hours ago, avalancha said:

Exactly, it was likely meant as "the ones that are in the game are visible in the sky, and they are simulated throughout your whole journey towards them"

Not arguing with everyone's completely reasonable (and most likely correct) statements, but if "the ones that are in the game are visible in the sky" then KSP2's cosmic background is going to look really empty! The comment made in the video was probably an exaggeration then  : (

19 hours ago, MechBFP said:

Ya there definitely won't be procedural generation. What is the point of visiting a new star when everything is basically the same after your first 3 or 4 stars?

You'd be surprised to see how diverse and robust random generation systems can be! Space Engine is, in my opinion, the single best planetary-procedural generation system because of its adherence to physics and unbelievable simulation diversity (check it out if you haven't yet, it has a free and a paid STEAM download).

Given any large enough sample size, of course things will repeat, but that doesn't mean a good procedural generation system couldn't be introduced to KSP. It's literally the only way to allow you to "visit any star in the sky". Plus, what percentage of all celestial planetary bodies in our universe are really *that* unique from each other? 

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6 hours ago, Dantheollie said:

Not arguing with everyone's completely reasonable (and most likely correct) statements, but if "the ones that are in the game are visible in the sky" then KSP2's cosmic background is going to look really empty! The comment made in the video was probably an exaggeration then  : (

You'd be surprised to see how diverse and robust random generation systems can be! Space Engine is, in my opinion, the single best planetary-procedural generation system because of its adherence to physics and unbelievable simulation diversity (check it out if you haven't yet, it has a free and a paid STEAM download).

Given any large enough sample size, of course things will repeat, but that doesn't mean a good procedural generation system couldn't be introduced to KSP. It's literally the only way to allow you to "visit any star in the sky". Plus, what percentage of all celestial planetary bodies in our universe are really *that* unique from each other? 

I think there's a case to be made, but the thing about procedural generation is that it's essentially random. You can arrive at some really unique and unexpected results, but most of whats generated is likely to be unremarkable. At the very least you need curation, someone actively sifting through hundreds of randomized planets to pull out the cool ones. But I don’t even think that would really get you there. 

The thing it can't do is really thoughtfully design. A procedural system isn't going to say "Okay this is young system, let's be creative about all the things that could happen in a system like that and assemble them in a way that tells a story." It's not going to deliberately gather and mold a series of worlds that are designed to challenge players, or communicate some idea to players about what space can be like. It doesn't know whats fun, or beautiful, or scary or interesting. It doesn't think outside the box. It just generates thousands of permutations inside the box, none of which are necessarily organized in a meaningful way. Im looking for worlds that deliberately stretch the imagination and create clever puzzles for exploration and harvesting and employing resources. Thats the kind of thoughtful design that it looks like Intercept is investing in for this game and Im happy for that to be the threshold for quality. 

Edited by Pthigrivi
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Would be cool if they could somehow get some permutation of Elite: Dangerous' Stellar Forge generation system and have an entire galaxy

though no one's ever gonna get more than a few hundred LY out

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I really don't think procedural star systems fit in KSP2's mindset.

They focus a lot on the immensity of space and that is not compatible with sci-fi star-hopping.

Just like humanity,  Kerbals will probably be extremely lucky to reach the nearest star in some generations' time (if you think 'lucky' means leaving everything behind and spend your whole life in a tin  can so your grandchildren may see a new -probably inhospitable - world).

Besides, the planets we already know of previous videos don't point in procedural generation's way: KSP1 had each planet and moon designed as a different challenge, and KSP2 seems to go the same way (fortunately).

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It would be nice if it were procedural, having played a lot of "No Man's Sky" it is very interesting and nice to discover always different planets, however these planets often have the same characteristics or are absolutely anonymous. Instead I prefer a few planets but of quality, I happened to see flying rocks and large environmental glitches in NMS due to procedurality.

 

It is also not excluded that more systems will be included in future DLCs

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14 hours ago, Dantheollie said:
On 4/11/2022 at 4:30 AM, MechBFP said:

Ya there definitely won't be procedural generation. What is the point of visiting a new star when everything is basically the same after your first 3 or 4 stars?

You'd be surprised to see how diverse and robust random generation systems can be! Space Engine

Space Engine, No Man's Sky, Elite Dangerous, it doesn't matter. Procedural systems don't come even close to the character that the Kerbolar system has, or the diverse situations you can find yourself in while playing Outer Wilds.

Since you brought up Space Engine, it's worth mentioning that it is getting functional wormholes and accurate Alcubierre and Kerr metric shaders soon. KSP could have these as well, even if just for mod developers.

Proc Gen < Hand Crafted

11 hours ago, Pthigrivi said:

The thing it can't do is really thoughtfully design. A procedural system isn't going to say "Okay this is young system, let's be creative about all the things that could happen in a system like that and assemble them in a way that tells a story." It's not going to deliberately gather and mold a series of worlds that are designed to challenge players, or communicate some idea to players about what space can be like. It doesn't know whats fun, or beautiful, or scary or interesting. It doesn't think outside the box. It just generates thousands of permutations inside the box, none of which are necessarily organized in a meaningful way. Im looking for worlds that deliberately stretch the imagination and create clever puzzles for exploration and harvesting and employing resources. Thats the kind of thoughtful design that it looks like Intercept is investing in for this game and Im happy for that to be the threshold for quality. 

Another reason to check out Outer Wilds. Unlike NMS and Elite Dangerous that boil down to a hastily made sandpit of generic stars, the developers here spent nearly a decade assembling a small (50km) miniature solar system full of unique puzzles and challenges that directly relate to how the environment changes over the course of a 22 minute time loop. I hope KSP 2 features dynamic (even if limited) environments.

Edited by Bej Kerman
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1 hour ago, Bej Kerman said:

I hope KSP 2 features dynamic (even if limited) environments.

I hope so too, but only certain events. If a star goes supernova at some point, that would be cool but it is a one time event and leaves permanent changes in the world, bad for a long term save where a player was hoping to have stable colonies everywhere. Instead, there’s lots of really cool events that repeat for a long time before changing state, long enough to just infinitely repeat within a game. Stuff like the fluctuations of variable stars, especially Lyrae variables, which can fluctuate within a real-life day, or recurrent novae  or even pulsar or magnetar surges are all extremely dramatic events which don’t permanently change the world, so players can continue enjoying these events. Of course in real life, variables stars are on the “Instability strip” for a reason and novae virtually always end up accreting enough matter over time to go supernova, but for the sake of the game they can repeat infinitely.  

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1 hour ago, Pthigrivi said:

I've been looking forward to checking out Outer Worlds but I've just been to busy lately. I loved Myst and Riven back in the day and its got a lot of those vibes. 

Not "The Outer Worlds",  "Outer Wilds"

They're entirely different games. The Outer Worlds and Outer Wilds Logo Flip is Incredibly Confusing

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19 minutes ago, EnderKid2 said:

Not "The Outer Worlds",  "Outer Wilds"

They're entirely different games. The Outer Worlds and Outer Wilds Logo Flip is Incredibly Confusing

Oh right right. Outer Wilds is what I meant. Ive seen some great reviews but haven’t cracked into it yet. I love me a good puzzle game. 

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4 minutes ago, Pthigrivi said:

Oh right right. Outer Wilds is what I meant. Ive seen some great reviews but haven’t cracked into it yet. I love me a good puzzle game. 

Go into it as blind as possible, but if you get stuck, ask for hints on the subreddit. They're good at nudging you without spoiling.

 

Back on-topic, I can see how procedural design is not ideal but our sample size (of one star system) is low. Perhaps Elite:Dangerous is right and 90% of what we find are bland balls of ice or rock or gas giants.

Edited by EnderKid2
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6 hours ago, Pthigrivi said:

but I've just been to busy lately.

I should preface, by this I mean I've been meticulously crossbreeding blue roses and terraforming my wife's island in ACNH. Right though back on topic...

Edited by Pthigrivi
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19 hours ago, Bej Kerman said:

Another reason to check out Outer Wilds.

There's more gameplay in a single planet of Outer Wilds than in Elite and NMS put together.

That's all that needs to be said about procedural generation.

Edited by Master39
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7 hours ago, Master39 said:

There's more gameplay in a single planet of Outer Wilds than in Elite and NMS put together.

That's all that needs to be said about procedural generation.

Admittedly, we are talking about planets for players to land on, and not story or puzzle-based content. 

What challenges do planets pose to players? Gravity, atmospheric conditions, terrain, distance from Kerbin, (and maybe in KSP2 with the inclusion of planetary rings) other objects in and around planets. I am sure there are many others, and with the addition of features like colony-building, many many more. Most (not saying that all) of these things are very easily incorporated into a procedural generation system. What if the procedural generation system uses static random sampling of a given set of very strict quality-checked variables to ensure that its planets aren't just bland floating rocks? [Realistically, most stuff out there is probably that]

I understand the majority sentiment around procedural generation. It is negative because the procedural generation systems we have gotten have been bad. But proc-gen systems are everywhere in game design. Devs aren't going to meticulously place every single stone, mold every single mountain of every single planet. There are systems for that- strict systems- that ensure the end result is just as great (and for all intents and purposes as meaningful) as something hand-placed. It's simultaneously a roll of dice, and a thought-out, tested, designed process. Regardless, KSP2 wont have any procedural planetary generation systems, and I can't wait to see what wonderful things the devs will come up with in the planets we get.

But, I do believe some form of procedural planet generation system in KSP2 could be, good.

 

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2 hours ago, Dantheollie said:

Admittedly, we are talking about planets for players to land on, and not story or puzzle-based content. 

What challenges do planets pose to players? Gravity, atmospheric conditions, terrain, distance from Kerbin, (and maybe in KSP2 with the inclusion of planetary rings) other objects in and around planets. I am sure there are many others, and with the addition of features like colony-building, many many more. Most (not saying that all) of these things are very easily incorporated into a procedural generation system. What if the procedural generation system uses static random sampling of a given set of very strict quality-checked variables to ensure that its planets aren't just bland floating rocks? [Realistically, most stuff out there is probably that]

I understand the majority sentiment around procedural generation. It is negative because the procedural generation systems we have gotten have been bad. But proc-gen systems are everywhere in game design. Devs aren't going to meticulously place every single stone, mold every single mountain of every single planet. There are systems for that- strict systems- that ensure the end result is just as great (and for all intents and purposes as meaningful) as something hand-placed. It's simultaneously a roll of dice, and a thought-out, tested, designed process. Regardless, KSP2 wont have any procedural planetary generation systems, and I can't wait to see what wonderful things the devs will come up with in the planets we get.

But, I do believe some form of procedural planet generation system in KSP2 could be, good.

 

I'm not talking against procedural generation as a tool, I'm talking specifically about procedural galaxies like Elite or NMS.

In KSP exploration is slow, a handcraftet planet designed with a specific set of challenges in mind is going to provide way more gameplay than a hundred systems that are going to take you years to reach.

As I said, most player haven't explored the full Kerbolar system yet and, even if you have, the new terrain generation means that you basically have a whole new system to explore, and this time around the terrain variability seems to be way more granular and better, making multiple missions to the same body way more interesting.

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And even the gravity and terrain aren't as interesting to me as the mix and locations of various resources and how they might make some sites more enticing than others and create different trade offs and exploitation strategies. 

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