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Astrology


Stroam
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Astrology  

12 members have voted

  1. 1. Would you like to see some version of Astrology in the vanilla game?

    • Yes, most definitely!
      8
    • No. I'm not convinced it's a good idea.
      4


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What was your first experience like on that first night in Vintage Story? I know I was amazed at how absolutely gorgeous it was. First, the moon came out and it was big and bright, lighting up the landscape.Then the stars came out. There was so many of them and such variety that stretched beyond your field of view in the vastness of the sky. After I managed to pull my eyes off of the sky I noticed fireflies dancing all around me and my experience just felt complete and magical. Several of you felt the same way too I'm sure. After that night it got darker and then monsters came out on the 4th night. At a certain point, I had forgotten what that first night was like as I was worn down by monster after monster. Night had become something to avoid and eventually, I acquired a bed so I could skip portions of the night. If you have ever felt the same way there is a way to spice things up and give you a reason to go out at night.

There are currently a few issues with the current gameplay. One such issue is there's no reason to go out at night and a couple good reasons not to. It's difficult to see because it's dark, so you have to carry a torch in your one hand or light up the area. There are also numerous creatures out there actively seeking you out to try and kill you. Another issue is the lack of variability. Variability makes things more complex and interesting. It keeps you on your toes. For instance, chickens flee in a straight line away from you. So if you make a pit trap and then positioning yourself so that you, a chicken, and the pit form a straight line, the chicken will always flee from you into the trap. By adding some variability to make the chicken flee in not such a predictable manner adds fun and challenge by making you dance around to try and get the chicken to go the way you want it to go.

Astrology would be a great addition to Vintage Story. This is how it'd work. There would be different heavenly bodies moving around at different rates through the night sky. The positions and speeds of these heavenly bodies would be based on the world seed. Some of these heavenly bodies can only seen on the darkest of nights. When all the heavenly bodies align in the right way it influences terrestrial events. For instance, crop yields may increase if harvested that day. Swords crafted of a certain metal at that hour may deal increased damage. Later after the domestication of animals, it could change the size of a litter or the strength of the babies born. Conversely, bad things could happen. A swarm of insects could eat any crops you have planted. Mobs could do more damage. All babies could become sick and die. Some of these events would be common such as those tied to the phases of the moon while others could last for seconds up to days depending on how large the tolerance is for a given alignment. Also, these alignments can happen day or night. 

The first and obvious benefit of such a system is it gives you a reason to go out at night, even if it's just to the roof, to look at that beautiful night sky. Second, it adds variation to the game in a way that can surprise you if you aren't monitoring that sky closely and know what to look for. A maybe not so obvious benefit is it encourages the crafting and building of several devices. For instance, an astrolabe which is used to triangulate heavenly bodies, a planisphere for recording observations, and an Armillary sphere for doing celestial calculations. Players could build megaliths the equivalent of Stone Henge or the observatory of Kokino to make rough calculations before being able to obtain the more complex instruments. Since the alignments of celestial bodies could also happen during the day, daytime timepieces would be needed. Sundials and other ancient timepieces would be necessary to ensure correct timing. Due to the timing based nature, it also ties in nicely to seasons and it would enhance lore by adding pages to ruins telling of such events and what alignment is needed for them to happen. 

One of the criticisms of this idea is that it feels like magic. I'd argue it's more of a pseudo-science that is still appropriate for the game because it doesn't grant the player any magical abilities. Another criticism could be that it's not realistic or believable. To that, I say while not realistic it most certainly is believable. Many cultures throughout history believed in this so much so that lots of time, energy, and materials were used to construct complex structures for this very reason. [source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Astrology]

In summary, Astrology would be a great way to enhance Vintage Story by giving players a reason to look forward to the night and adding variability in interesting and not easy to predict ways. It connects to other systems in Vintage Story very nicely and adds that depth that players love. If you would like to see this in some form added to the game please vote to show your support! It doesn't guarantee that the idea will make it into the game but it certainly lets the developers know there's interest. Let's make the night feel magical again!

 

 

Edited by Stroam
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As a general concept, I like it.  I think there's a lot of devil in the details, especially if it's being sold as a nighttime activity.  If it's genuinely supposed to be a thing that occupies the player at night, I think it needs to be based more on observation, less on calculation.    If the player can just calculate it, then the nighttime activity purpose is defeated, unless the time windows are at night and extremely short.   And maybe I'm misunderstanding what you mean by 'calculations', but just saying, the system should require a good amount of observation.  

I do like the idea of it being seed-based, so that the player actually has to do some observation and note-taking in the world, rather than just going off a wiki or LP they saw. 

I think it would be good if the system had tiers of observation possible.  So that in the stone age the player is just able to see the stars, and maybe some stars wax and wane in intensity or color.  But they get a telescope and maybe now they can see other, dimmer stars.  And these provide a new level of prediction, or layer of events.  Then maybe there's a third tier, that allows them even more detail of some kind.  A specific instance might be allowing them to observe sunspots to predict drought, though that is a specifically daytime activity.  Maybe it allows them to see certain stars flickering.  Perhaps they can observe shooting stars and, in conjunction with some kind of calculating tool, get a coordinate for where the meteorite hit, and go retrieve it for special metals. 

As for the events, I think that in most cases the time window would need to be somewhat long, to allow for the player who maybe doesn't spend every hour of every night star gazing to see it.  And there should be not only event alignments, but warnings.  So as The Warrior and The Beast approach each other, you know that the day is approaching when all your animals will become aggressive.  I actually occurs as the point star crosses the beast's head, for half a day or whatever, but the player can observe them coming closer and be prepared.   Or another example: the player knows that when the point star of The Cornucopia shines a bright green, all crops planted that night will receive great yield bonuses.  But in the stone age this basically happens without warning.  So you probably already have a ton of crops planted, and it's not really sensible to rip them all up just for that event.  With a tier 1 telescope, you can observe that a fainter cluster of stars (not visible with the naked eye) needs to generally align within the horn of the cornucopia.  That still gives you maybe a 5-7 day window, which is a large-ish range.   But with a tier 2 telescope you can observe the point star flickering with gathering intensity a day or two before the event, which allows you to more accurately predict the correct night.  Events like this that are kind of seasonable would need to not be entirely random, but within maybe like a 1 or 2 month window corresponding with general planting times.

Then of course there's solar eclipses.  Which is when the monsters come to the surface to wreak havoc!  Predicting that would be very useful indeed.

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By calculations I mean being able to predict  when certain alignments will occur based on your observations. It is not like they move randomly. Heavenly bodies can obviously only be  observed at night.

Telescopes were invented a little too late for vanilla game play. 

Events happen wether or not you observe the signs in the sky so the window doesn't need to be large. The heavenly bodies shouldn't be moving fast so players will have plenty of time. 

The warning thing is good. Have an event happen randomly in the week after an alignment adds more variation.

Instead of a telescope discerning higher details, because it isn't period appropriate you make observations to improve your models that help predict when alignments would happen which is necessary since alignments could happen during the day when you can't observe it for an event with a really small windows.

There totally needs to be eclipses once every few in game years.

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3 hours ago, Stroam said:

Telescopes were invented a little too late for vanilla game play.

So was the steam engine.  But I'm guessing it'll be in the game nonetheless.  I think telescopes are believable in the context of the game. 

I think the window needs to be somewhat large because if it's too precise, I think it's going to end up like the taste system in TFC.  The hassle won't be worth the benefits.  Everyone will just ignore it because it's too time-consuming to time correctly. 

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Now I am divided between Medieval Time or Fantasy Time. Even though the Teles. Although I do believe that there were ancient telescopes, as old as the Romans and Greeks: Read Here:

Spoiler

The most powerful ancient lens yet discovered was found in Crete dating back to the 5th century BC and had the ability to magnify clearly up to seven times and even as much as twenty times, albeit with considerable distortion.

It has even been suggested that a piece of Greek pottery discovered dating back to 4th century BC depicts a man using an early telescope and that ancient people were able to connect two lenses inside a simple tube to make an early, crude telescope. However, making lenses and a telescope useful for astronomy purposes requires a level of expertise and precision probably undiscovered by the ancients, although it is good to keep an open mind on the subject.

Telescopes are generally accepted to have been invented in the 16th century by Dutch spectacle-makers, although there is evidence of the instrument being conceived of much earlier. English philosopher Roger Bacon, (1214–1294), for instance, gave a proposal for a telescope in his masterpiece Opus Majus:

“For we can so shape transparent bodies, and arrange them in such a way with respect to our sight and objects of vision, that the rays will be reflected and bent in any direction we desire, and under any angle we wish, we may see the object near or at a distance … So we might also cause the sun, moon and starsin appearance to descend here below.”

Bacon was subsequently imprisoned for his heretical views and indulging in magical practices. Hence, it was only towards the end of the Renaissance era in 17th century Europe and the Scientific Revolution which ensued that modern telescopes started being used to study the night sky. ISTORY

Another argument in favour is that we always see telescopes in fantasy movies. Is just like the torches on the castle walls.

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