Development Log Week 31

While Martin dug deeper into the simulation aspects of Prosperous Universe, Michi started work on another integral part of the game: The chat system! And because it is so important, we'd like to hear your feedback: Tell us about your experience with chats in games! What are the functions you use a lot, which do you think can be left out and which are a absolute must-have? Looking forward to hear your answers!

Martin

In Prosperous Universe, we strive to simulate a closed-loop economy. So any value that is created in the game, for example when a new player joins the game or when resources are mined, this value has to be destroyed again at some point. In other games, this function is usually fulfilled by a strong military component: War is an enormous waste of resources and therefore serves this purpose very well. But in PU, military conflict is a late-game feature and far less important then civil activities. As such, we need another value sink.

This is were populations come in: On a planet that provides the required infrastructure, a simulated population will start to grow. This population serves as the workforce in higher-level production processes and it purchases various materials for its consumption on the player-driven market. These range from food over clothing to a broad selection of luxury products. Once these materials are consumed, they are essentially removed from the game world, which is just the value sink we need.

This week I digged deeper into the AI and formulas behind all this, coming up with a simple model that will suffice to run early tests. I haven't gotten far on the implementation yet, but the model is looking good and I hope to be able to see first "simulated market activity" next week.

Michi

Wow, another week that was over way too fast. The week started with some clean up tasks that I didn't do at the end of last week and a bit of research on a new piece of software technology we are going to use soon.

Martin and I had a quick discussion what should be tackled next since the FTL flight is in a working state now. We decided that the chat system is a nice feature that I can develop rather easily while Martin is doing some refactoring work at the same time.

As with every start of a new thing in Prosperous Universe we started by brainstorming what features are necessary, nice-to-have and over-the-top. Turns out a proper chat system needs quite a few features. I'll just randomly name a few we thought of: channels, message history, direct messages, notifications, read indicators, metadata, markup, presence indicators, bans, mutes, invites, etc. pp.

I started to implement a simple channel with message and client lists. Seems there will be enough work left in the next week(s).

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