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In the past weeks, InfinityAdmin has been focusing his efforts on the server side. A lot of things are going on, especially on the cluster architecture. But one particular area of interest is the procedural galaxy generator.

Posted by Betelgeuze on May 22nd, 2009

In the past weeks, InfinityAdmin has been focusing his efforts on the server side. A lot of things are going on, especially on the cluster architecture. But one particular area of interest is the procedural galaxy generator.

Our galaxy, the Milky Way, contains an estimated 100 to 400 billion stars. In Infinity you will be able to explore our galaxy and hopefully find Earth. A jumpdrive system will allow a player to select any star and attempt to jump to it. The range doesn't matter. What's important is the mass of the target and the distance to it. 

Galaxy generation


Furthermore we've followed with interest suggestions of players in the galactic map thread, and how the galactic map should look like. After testing the galaxy generator, InfinityAdmin arrived to the conclusion that everybody severely under-estimates the amount of stars there can be in a volume close to you. For example, in a radius of 100 LY, in the spiral arms with an average density, it's not uncommon to find 5000 stars.

Remember that the jump-drive is not limited exclusively by range. Or more exactly, while distance is a factor, there's no "maximal range". This means that it's perfectly possible to try to jump at a red dwarf that is 5000 LY away. The probability to succeed is ridiculously small ( more than winning at the lottery ), but non-zero. Of course, for the galactic map, this means that even stars that are far away should be displayed ( provided that you don't filter them out ). That's an insane number of dots that may appear on your map...One of the more effective filters, I think, will be the jump-probability filter. That one is a given: only display stars with a minimum of 50% jump success.

In the following screenshots, you can see a blue sphere in wireframe. This defines the range in which stars are displayed. It's just an experiment to make people realize how many stars there are at certain ranges: by no means it shows how the galactic map will work

Galactic map .galactic map


In the coming weeks, InfinityAdmin will probably move the galaxy algorithm to the client and start to add some volumetric/particle effects on the stars/dust to "beautify" it. 

We've produced a demonstration video:

 



For more Information about the galaxy generator please check out the latest dev journal update on our website!

Post comment Comments
NullSoldier
NullSoldier May 22 2009, 5:56pm says:

Oh dear Infinity where have you been my love? I have waited for your letters but you have not written me in many months. The last game update you sent me was many months ago and my hope that you would soon come home to my hard drive slowly faded over the long spaceless days. However, would I be able to stay mad at you with your beautiful engine and well designed gameplay? I have longed to read your letters of feature-release and progress and I feel that you have not let me down even now. To this, I must profess my undying love for you. We shall elope to the most romantic get-away together in the valleys of the information super highway. You, and me my love ,together forever. All you have to do nod. If you are concerned about my hardware capabilities, fear not for I know my 8 core i7 with 4 cores and hyperthreading along with my gtx-280 will be able to run through your ellegent lines of code as flawlessly and quickly as the solar wind through your randomly generated galaxies. <3

+8 votes     reply to comment
Betelgeuze
Betelgeuze May 23 2009, 4:41am replied:

I just had to quote your loveletter on our forum :D

oh and its been less than a month since our previous dev update ;)

+1 vote     reply to comment
DOLBYdigital
DOLBYdigital May 24 2009, 2:37am replied:

Hilarious love letter :)

I somehow just found out about this game. Nice smack in the face at 2 in the morning. Great update and can't wait to watch the progress and eventually play!

+1 vote     reply to comment
andros120
andros120 Jun 4 2009, 8:52pm replied:

I wish I were you. Its been so hard waiting 2 or so years! I dont know how much longer I can take this pain! Atleast they keep us updated :).

+2 votes     reply to comment
Bluedrake42
Bluedrake42 May 24 2009, 10:14am replied:

damn... i7 and 280 GTX... I fail...

0 votes     reply to comment
Foodstuff
Foodstuff Jul 7 2009, 3:47am replied:

They're not randomly generated, they're *procedurally* generated.

+1 vote     reply to comment
doublethink
doublethink May 22 2009, 5:58pm says:

0_0

so many....dots....

+2 votes     reply to comment
bogie
bogie May 22 2009, 6:02pm replied:

Square stars! Is this a picasso mod??

Awesome work btw. I cannot comprehend however, if this mod will ever come together as the scope of it beggars belief.

IA who is Infinity Admin is a very clever guy, been reading some of his threads and it just baffles me!

+1 vote     reply to comment
moci
moci May 23 2009, 4:37am replied:

mod?

+3 votes     reply to comment
SinKing
SinKing May 22 2009, 6:10pm says:

It doesn't seem like you could actually memorise constellations with so many stars around. Is it possible to later highlight them, or outline them briefly, so you remember which part of the galaxy map your looking at?

Nothin' spectacular to look at this time, though when you realise what this means ingame it surely becomes spectacular. There are a lot of stars out there.

+2 votes     reply to comment
xgxe
xgxe May 22 2009, 6:22pm says:

this game keep getting better and better! but i got a question, what happens when a jump to a dwarf star 5000 LY away doesn't succeed? will you get bumped out of the jump along the way or will you just get trown into nowere 100 LY away from everything? just not jumping at all doesn't seem exciting enough (imagines a boring sign popping up: ''unable to jump, attempt to jump failed'').

+1 vote     reply to comment
DukeNico
DukeNico May 22 2009, 7:30pm says:

Woah, nice. I hope you guys are not seeing it too big though, and you can implement it efficiently.

+1 vote     reply to comment
Terminal58
Terminal58 May 22 2009, 8:05pm says:

Not sure how players are going to find each other but none the less I'm amazed with this project so far and I'm a huge space fanatic.

+2 votes     reply to comment
Betelgeuze
Betelgeuze May 23 2009, 4:39am replied:

The Universe will have core regions; civilized parts of the galaxy. This is where new players will start their game, where you can interact with NPC ,where quests can be found, where you can buy your hardware,... Players will have to return to those core regions from time to time to buy fuel. In other words there will be enough reasons for players to return to the core regions, where interaction with other players will be more frequent. If you stay outside of those regions you’ll miss a great part of the gameplay Infinity has to offer.

It’s not because our game world is huge that you will be easy to go everywhere. Going on an adventure to the unexplored parts of the galaxy is just an option, you’ll perfectly be able to play and enjoy Infinity for years without ever leaving the core regions. The biggest difference with other games is that we just don’t have borders, no ‘end of level’.
You will probably be able to start colonies and who knows, after some time new player-made core regions might form far from the main core regions.

+2 votes     reply to comment
JoffL
JoffL May 22 2009, 8:29pm says:

Keanu Reeves - "Whoa..."

That is some crazy awesome stuff. Though even with WoW's player count I can't really see how players are going to interact with each other without each player trying to control several hundred systems at a time. But regardless of that players would probably localize themselves into little pockets through out the galaxy and intentionally cause conflict with other pockets. Looking forward to it.

+1 vote     reply to comment
INtense!
INtense! May 22 2009, 10:53pm says:

amazing as always. an entirely procedurally generated milkyway... get the video up on moddb too plz!

+1 vote     reply to comment
The_Builder
The_Builder May 22 2009, 10:59pm says:

Looks easy to get lost in XD

+1 vote     reply to comment
Kylegar
Kylegar May 23 2009, 2:22am says:

Sexy

+1 vote     reply to comment
ManSh00ter
ManSh00ter May 23 2009, 2:53am says:

I envision players congregating for trade (and pirating? Please let there be an option to rob honest traders!), socializing, etc. in major hubs, much like what you've got in EvE with certain systems. In MMO's with open worlds you always invariably end up with such social and economic hubs by default, all the devs need to do is provide a place and the means.

But the ability to literally get lost in the huge galaxy and never see another player again if you do not wish... now that's awesome. That's true exploration.

Of course, be prepared to take some flak from the generic MMO crowd for "empty and repetitive worlds"... ah who cares, they don't know what its all about anyway. ;)

+1 vote     reply to comment
gregfriis
gregfriis May 23 2009, 4:15am says:

My life will not be complete until I have played Infinity.

+1 vote     reply to comment
SinKing
SinKing May 23 2009, 5:00am says:

What I never asked - will there actually be alien races? And can you tell by their ships, or do they have avatars and character art?

Even if someone "owns" 300 Galaxies in Infinity, it doesn't mean the same like someone owning property in other MMOs. Infinity is the only one using procedural techniques, so there is really no sense in making claims to large chunks of property. I'd rather see that type of high influence display itself in structures and ships you can build and upgrade.
Among with Black Mesa, Infinity is one of the longest running projects I know and one of the most beautiful.

+1 vote     reply to comment
Betelgeuze
Betelgeuze May 23 2009, 5:11am replied:

from the FAQ:
Will there be alien civilizations or lifeforms ?
No. You may find traces of ancient civilizations on some planets, ruins and other artefacts, but there will be no intelligent alien civilization that you can meet or interact with. We think that evil aliens are cliché and have been overdone in games, and that focusing on the political aspects of an expanding human civilization would lead to a richer game.
Also, keep in mind that as indy developers, we can produce a limited amount of content due to our limited resources.
It may be possible to find non-intelligent alien lifeforms, such as vegetation or animal life, though. We are not sure yet if those aspects of the game will be included in the first release, or later as an expansion.


Also, Infinity hasn’t been that long in development compared to other games of this size. We've just been very open to the public early in development.

+1 vote     reply to comment
dealman
dealman May 23 2009, 5:19am says:

This is so sick, I've never seen anything like it.

The concept of it all, it's HUGE...! I'm really looking forward to this game, whenever it'll be released I'll be sure to try it, no matter what the cost. It's to damn beautiful to be left behind!

Keep up the good work!

+1 vote     reply to comment
timothebeafy
timothebeafy May 23 2009, 5:46am says:

This video actually made say holy crap, that swoop out just is gob smacking, the scale of it! it just boggles the mind!!

honest to god one of the best games ive seen in such a long time, i will be playing this no matter the cost, awesome work

+1 vote     reply to comment
bogie
bogie May 23 2009, 6:01am says:

As in the title Infinity: Quest for Earth.

Is there going to be planet earth hidden somewhere in this huge galaxy and we have to find it somehow?

+1 vote     reply to comment
Ralok
Ralok May 23 2009, 6:32am replied:

that seems to be the objective

and not that i dont appreciate the effort these guys are putting into this but

they can go to hell, especially if they are not going to leave a trail of breadcrums for the players to follow.

seriously these guys can suck it

that isnt fair under any circumstance

here is a billion stars
find earth before you die

i am going to have to pass the damn game onto my grandchildren

-1 votes     reply to comment
Betelgeuze
Betelgeuze May 23 2009, 8:20am replied:

what gave you the idea it would be easy and fair?

+1 vote     reply to comment
z33ky
z33ky May 23 2009, 9:07am replied:

That's life. Kinda. In the virtual world. Err... you get the point.. I hope.

+1 vote     reply to comment
jacksonj04
jacksonj04 May 23 2009, 7:43am replied:

I think if there is an earth its presence will be more of a bonus than an actual objective. It may be out there 'somewhere', but finding it isn't the purpose.

+1 vote     reply to comment
Betelgeuze
Betelgeuze May 23 2009, 7:59am replied:

The beta will end when Earth has been found. So yes finding Earth is the objective and only the beginning of the quest for Earth.

+1 vote     reply to comment
Brightgalrs
Brightgalrs May 23 2009, 8:23pm replied:

-Orion Arm of the Galaxy
-24,000 to 26,000 light-years from the galactic core
-Yellow dwarf Star
-Eight planets (4 terrestrial, 4 gas)

How hard could it be? ;)

+1 vote     reply to comment
Betelgeuze
Betelgeuze May 24 2009, 6:17am replied:

What arm on the picture is the orion arm ;)... get my point?

+1 vote     reply to comment
grandw0lf
grandw0lf May 26 2009, 12:59am replied:

Shouldn't of lost Earth in the first place D:<

+1 vote     reply to comment
Mavis130
Mavis130 Jun 4 2009, 6:15pm replied:

<hit somethin, sorry>

+1 vote     reply to comment
BoundlessApathy
BoundlessApathy May 23 2009, 10:01am says:

this game looks like, well the dream for anyone who like sci fi, mmorpgs, hell it looks far better than eve online and thats the only other game of this type i know, just got to say its too damn good there is no way i'm gonna be able to play this

+1 vote     reply to comment
MXMach
MXMach May 23 2009, 1:51pm replied:

Theres still sometime until the beta (and the V1.0 of the game) will get to our hardrives so until that we all can get better CPUs for this amazing game... (Planning to expand my computer... lets say... like an I7 is ok ^^)

+1 vote     reply to comment
Mavis130
Mavis130 Jun 4 2009, 6:12pm says:

my god, in that video... to move so the stars moved back like that is way more than the speed of light (The Milky Way Galaxy is about 10 thousand light years long). I do hope we can travel with that efficiency in the game, moving from a realistic standpoint would require our childrens childrens children to do the stuff we came to the freakin planet to do...

(if I sound like I hate this, I dont, I cant wait for this game...)

+1 vote     reply to comment
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