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Eliminate/Combine grid sizes

Discussion in 'Suggestions and Feedback' started by Tonkah, Jan 12, 2016.

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This last post in this thread was made more than 31 days old.
  1. Tonkah

    Tonkah Trainee Engineer

    Messages:
    38
    I have a suggestion that has also been voiced by members of my gaming community regarding grid sizes:

    Combine them.

    Instead of having small/large grids, use the scroll-wheel when building to select the size of the item you want to make. Being able to combine large and small blocks would greatly expand the things that people are able to make, and the detail available for larger ships.

    People are already doing this, in a way, with mods that support "small ships gone large".

    I recommend for standard light/heavy block sizes: 1/4 (currently small-grid), 1/2, 1 (currently large ship size). Those sizes would add a HUGE amount of flexibility and variation in what builds are available.

    For all items that have different size options already, I would recommend the same scroll-wheel changing approach:
    • Wheels
    • Thrusters
    • Landing gear
    • Antenna/Ore detectors
    • Reactors
    • etc.
    Smaller items can also be be modified to not require a full large-block buffer area:
    • Interior lights (currently require a full large-ship block size of buffer space :p)
    • Catwalks
    • LCDs
    • Control Panels
    • Seats
    • etc.
    The freedom and flexibility this would afford to players would be huge! The build variety and complexity would be great. Since the builders would be able to use larger blocks where appropriate, these would be more performant than small-ships-gone-large.

    I'd love to see Keen implement this soon™.
     
    • Disagree Disagree x 4
    • Agree Agree x 2
    • Like Like x 1
  2. Aetrion

    Aetrion Apprentice Engineer

    Messages:
    202
    It would be great to be able to build with both block sizes on the same grid, but I feel like it'd cause immense lag when, for example, you want the walls inside of your large ship to be reasonably sized, so you make them from small blocks, but then every single wall section suddenly went from being one block to 25 of them.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  3. Aracus

    Aracus Senior Engineer

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    1,931
    So, half- 1/5th thickness large blocks anyone?
     
    • Agree Agree x 3
  4. Gentry

    Gentry Senior Engineer

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    2,167
    • Disagree Disagree x 3
    • Funny Funny x 1
  5. Aetrion

    Aetrion Apprentice Engineer

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    202
    If the plates were nicer looking and you could put doors in them they would make decent walls for rooms in your ship.
     
  6. Tonkah

    Tonkah Trainee Engineer

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    38
    Yup, that's what would happen. They'd be less performant, but not nearly as bad as "small ships gone large". Either way, performance is something that they'll always be working on and improving. I don't think it'd be a big enough inhibitor to stop the feature from moving forward.
     
  7. Aracus

    Aracus Senior Engineer

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    1,931
    Yes Gentry I know about the catwalk. It has several issues, doesn't line up well with armor, doesn't provide the same protection the suggested thinner ARMOR would. And a few others. I think that witty mind of yours can figure out a few reasons without further help.
     
  8. Mysterious_RSA

    Mysterious_RSA Trainee Engineer

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    2
    I think it would be really usefull because the possible combonations are endless you could build absolutley everything and with great detail
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  9. Krutchen

    Krutchen Apprentice Engineer

    Messages:
    159
    Would the numbers really be a problem? If the large hull blocks are still just one huge block, there wouldn't really be much impact, it would just count as x amount of spaces. Hell, we already have multi-spaced occupying blocks, like medbays and cockpits, so there wouldn't be much of an issue when it comes to offsetting and ensuring the blocks snap into position. What could be done to create more reasonably sized hallways, is having Medieval Engineer style "panel" walls, and bam, no more huge block for a single grid space.
    Large and small ships both could become drastically more detailed and stable, because we wouldn't need to rely on rotor tricks to make compact assemblies inside of large ships any more, as well. I could finally make fighter construction bays without worrying about rotors snapping and destroying everything i've worked for the moment I get in motion :)
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  10. Arcturus

    Arcturus Senior Engineer

    Messages:
    1,649
    Should this "one true grid" be:
    a) something you can walk on without kicking it away (like current large grids), OR
    b) something that you can push/will stop if it hits a character rather than pushing that character (like current small grids)?

    You may only choose one of the above physics settings.
     
  11. Malware

    Malware Master Engineer

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    9,867
    That can and should depend on grid mass. They don't have to choose one.
     
    • Agree Agree x 5
  12. Aracus

    Aracus Senior Engineer

    Messages:
    1,931
    c) Depends on the mass of said grid.

    Edit: Ack! Devious beat me to it!
     
  13. Malware

    Malware Master Engineer

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    9,867
    Things like medbays cannot be considered in this case. They're different kinds of models as compared to armor blocks. Armor blocks are closer to real voxels and can be optimized runtime because of their predictability. Entity blocks, like the medbay and afaik all mods out there including armor block mods, cannot be optimized this way. They're just models stuck on a voxel grid.

    I'm not against the idea of being able to place small blocks on the large grid BTW.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  14. Maegil

    Maegil Senior Engineer

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    1,633
    You're not alone.
     
  15. Grit Breather

    Grit Breather Junior Engineer

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    874
    I've been kicking this very idea around in my thoughts for some time now.
    I mostly didn't propose it because of:
    1. Lag this was produce in the current game state.
    2. Fear of being torn apart by the community.
    It is surprising to see people responding positively to this.

    As for performance, that's still the greatest concern for this idea.
     
  16. Malware

    Malware Master Engineer

    Messages:
    9,867
    It is an old suggestion that keeps popping up now and again, but has only now actually become a real possibility since the change to the landing gear made it possible to securely lock two grids together as a single physics entity.

    In case someone wonders: The current problems of the landing gear does not come from the actual locked state, but the transition between locked and unlocked states. A system that never transitions between those states should be perfectly fine.

    At least it would outperform Small Ships Gone Large. By far.
     
    • Like Like x 2
  17. Xene

    Xene Trainee Engineer

    Messages:
    10
    I agree wholeheartedly.
    This way you could have one ion, atmo, and hydrogen thruster on your hotbar yet swap between any size you need. This could eliminate 20+ blocks from the G menu. (Just counted, 28 could be removed instantly)

    Also, with only one grid to work on and optimize, Keen could make faster headway on game performance.

    Open a poll? Lets see what everyone thinks.
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2016
    • Disagree Disagree x 1
    • Informative Informative x 1
  18. Malware

    Malware Master Engineer

    Messages:
    9,867
    It is already the same grid technically, it's just a scale difference.
     
  19. YtramX

    YtramX Apprentice Engineer

    Messages:
    238
    Yes, and my understanding is that if you were to place even one small block on a large grid, it would necessitate changing the scale of the whole grid to the small version. If that is accurate, then the performance implications are significant.
     
  20. Malware

    Malware Master Engineer

    Messages:
    9,867
    Not anymore, not if you utilize the new techniques made available when they fixed the landing gear. Read this previous post.

    It does however still mean having several grids, so it'll obviously never be as fast as a single one.
     
  21. Grit Breather

    Grit Breather Junior Engineer

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    874
    Can you elaborate on that?
    I skimmed over it earlier but as you've brought it up again, I'm curious about the fix and change.
     
  22. Malware

    Malware Master Engineer

    Messages:
    9,867
    The problem before was that if one were to combine two types of grids, either you needed to subdivide the large grid, or you needed to synchronize the two grid types. The first idea has severe performance implications because we'll get a whole lot more polygons to render, as @YtramX correctly states. As we have seen with rotors and pistons, this last idea is... hehe... not very good, if not dangerous.

    However, when they fixed the landing gear, they made a new method where they can actually merge the physics instance of the two grids, so they are simulated as a single whole. This adds a third option, where you "stick" several small grids directly onto the large grid, as if they were locked with the landing gear. They are still separate grids, but they don't have their own physics instance, which means they will be moved correctly along with the large ship without causing any problems. As you probably know, there are still some problems with the landing gear, but those problems are related to the actual locking and unlocking of the gear. This new grid type would never change state, so this problem shouldn't affect it.

    Imagine them as small-grid station blocks which always stay relative to the large grid however that moves, but without the need to manually synchronize them.
     
    • Like Like x 2
  23. Sad_Brother

    Sad_Brother Apprentice Engineer

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    198
    Is it for landing gear only? What about connectors? Would it break or stick?
     
  24. Grit Breather

    Grit Breather Junior Engineer

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    874
    /me rejoices.

    I'm guessing this is similar to how ME allows sticking small grids to large grids. (I may be wrong about that feature even existing though)
     
  25. Malware

    Malware Master Engineer

    Messages:
    9,867
    Connectors don't use this locking method yet, it seems.
     
  26. Malware

    Malware Master Engineer

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    9,867
    I don't play ME so I can't answer that one :)
     
  27. Grit Breather

    Grit Breather Junior Engineer

    Messages:
    874
    I played ME for a total of about 2-3 hours and left it because no SPACESHIPS.
     
    • Funny Funny x 3
  28. Sad_Brother

    Sad_Brother Apprentice Engineer

    Messages:
    198
    Why did not they put spaceships in it?
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  29. Grit Breather

    Grit Breather Junior Engineer

    Messages:
    874
    Stone spaceships with wooden/cloth propellers were attempted but were deemed impractical.
    But the real problem was that ME takes place before the invention of glass so there were no cockpits. Chickens in a hole in the ground just weren't the same thing...
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2016
    • Funny Funny x 1
  30. Tonkah

    Tonkah Trainee Engineer

    Messages:
    38
    I agree 100%. :) I have thought of an entire game based around this concept. (Hint: it doesn't involve being able to make wooden space-ships)

    This. I think the gameplay quality would jump quite a bit having to deal with a few dozen less sizes of blocks and just use the scroll wheel to change the size while building. This is similar to how Landmark handles resizing the voxel tool you are using. That's one of the few things about that game that I felt was natural and intuitive.
     
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