Dev Blog- Colonial Sea Trader- World Trade in the 1500s, missions functional!

Missions are now fully functional! I’ve updated the dialogs to process the new missions, highlighted the cities, accepted delivery of the cargo, and overall it’s just working well! I haven’t yet added passenger missions, but I’m quite happy overall with how the missions are working!

To help me out with some research, I’ve been reading a few books. The most interesting is A Spendid Exchange , which covers the history of world global trade. I’ve learned that, for instance, trade between China and Rome happened, although neither nation knew about the other.

The era that Colonial Sea Trader takes place happened between the discovery of the Cape of Good Hope by the Portuguese around 1488, and the discovery of the Americans by the Spanish in 1492. The period ends by the formation of the Dutch East India Company, done in 1602. The time period between these two events allowed for world trade, had goods that were distinct throughout the world, but was largely in the realm of individual traders, or possibly small fleets.

So how did the state of the world differ then? The key items transported in those days were rare goods, spices, silver, gold, silk, and other such items, largely intended for the elites, the royalty and such. There was some bulk goods that were transported, largely as ballast, but they were never the primary goods.

Okay, so how does that match the state of Colonial Sea Trader. Well, it doesn’t. I only have a few of the goods that were transported, and I really need to do quite a bit of changing to get things to work.

I’m still trying to decide exactly how to solve this problem, but the current thought is that I will have some traits that a given city will have, possibly with multiple levels. For instance, a city might have a “Desires Rare Good” trait, which will increase the price for rare goods of any kind. I’m not really sure how I’m going to make all of this work yet, but it is a thought.

The last thing that I’ve been considering is the quality of the goods. I’m thinking of adding some kind of a quality of the goods, and adding some traits related to the quality. For instance, there might be a trait where the people don’t care about quality at all. There might be another where the people will only accept goods of a certain quality, otherwise they will offer almost nothing.

For the next week, I’m planning on addressing a few remaining issues with missions, mostly to get the missions you have accepted listed, and possibly adding a confirmation dialog of some kind. I’m also going to add back in passenger missions, which should give a bit more variety. I won’t include the bring cargo here missions, those will need to be rethought after I’ve done my economy updates. I might add in a timed mission, where the goods will spoil after some time.

Going on further, I’m thinking of reevalutating the way that I do the economy overall. I think I’m going to do some kind of offline models, possibly even in a different language entirely. I expect that by next week I’ll at least have a bit more of a plan.

If you haven’t yet, feel free to like me on Facebook, join my Google Group, subscribe to my Sub Reddit, or follow me on Twitter, where you are likely to get frequent updates! You can also subscribe to the Old Ham Media YouTube Channel, where I post frequent videos showing the progress of gameplay and more! Finally, follow me on Twitch, and help me develop games!

Dev Blog- Colonial Sea Trader- Improving the distribution of mountains, temperature.

I started a project this week that I’ve been wanting to do for a while. I’ve wanted to visualize how my world appears in terms of the key parameters I generate, namely the Altitude, Temperature, and Moisture, and to a lesser extend Wind. In so doing, I set a system to save an image of the world, which I likely will use in other places, likely for doing pre-generated worlds. Such an image looks like the following:

A typical world looks somewhat like this:

Basically I made the distribution of mountain peaks follow more of an exponential decay, such that the highest peaks are quite rare, leaving most of the land quite flat. Before the terrain was much more uniform, only slightly tapering off at the higher elevations. In other words, I tried to make it look something like this (For the above sea levels, at least)

 

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The temperature mostly follows the latitude, but I have a parameter to tweak it by a number of degrees per km of altitude. Currently I have that set to 7, and I basically tweak it to preference.

Currently I do not have all of these parameters available for edit to the outside world, but I should be able to have them soon. Expect that coming soon!

Among other things, while do doing I fixed the bug that sometimes happened where there would be a very plain looking world, with little coastal features. While I might do a bit more tweaking of the world generation system, as a whole I am much happier with it now then I was last week!

The item of most concern with the world generation remaining is the fact that the moisture is still too high. I’m planning on working on that during the coming week, hopefully something will come out of it that looks much better!

I also did a bit of tweaking of the cost of goods, which should reduce some of the strange issues I’ve seen. Haven’t fully tested it out yet, but I’m happy overall with the way things are going!

I’m likely going to give away a copy of a class on Unreal Multiplayer development in one of my streams. Follow me on Twitch to find when I stream, and maybe you can win this course!

If you haven’t yet, feel free to like me on Facebook, join my Google Group, subscribe to my Sub Reddit, or follow me on Twitter, where you are likely to get frequent updates! You can also subscribe to the Old Ham Media YouTube Channel, where I post frequent videos showing the progress of gameplay and more! Finally, follow me on Twitch, and help me develop games!

Dev Blog- Colonial Sea Trader- Improved table layout, debugging low food

This week I did a lot of bug fixing from my last video, including ensuring that food can be directly purchased. I added the ability to use a number of interesting emojis, and have started using them. I made the goods table scaleable to all sizes, improving the look at full screen. I improved dialog to purchase goods as well.

One of the biggest things that I discovered when I added the good tables was that I have a pretty severe lack of resources available. Despite the roughly 30 goods available, I was only using maybe a third of them. Why might that be, I wondered? To solve that, I did some diagnosis of the number of tiles produced of what types, and what the cities that were produced were. By so doing, I found that I had almost no grassland produced, where many of my plants are programmed to start, and lots of jungle and rainforest type land. In a word, my land is too moist! Also, many of my cities are made on islands, and I currently consider islands to be a different type of biome, which I haven’t done a lot with. Bottom line is, I have a lot of things to improve in regard to the world generation. This will be high on my list in the coming weeks.

There was one bug I fixed in regard to the world generation. I had discovered that the poles were no longer showing as covered in ice, as had been done previously. To figure out what happened, I looked at images from this very blog over the course of the last month to determine when the bug was introduced. Knowing when it was introduced, I could more easily track down the exact problem, and had it fixed within 10 minutes. Keeping a blog can have many benefits!

The biggest improvement was to my price dialog introduced last week. I added some darker columns to improve readability, allow for it to be scaled, and removed items that aren’t actually available for sale anywhere. The bottom line, it looks like this now:

 

One thing the eagle eyed might notice is there is one icon that looks quite a bit different than the others. The sheep icon is new. I used the fonts from the Noto color emoji to the mix, and in so doing find a few nice icons for use elsewhere in my game. The sheep was one of the ones added. I haven’t decided on a final style for these, but more that I am looking for a temporary icon to give me something to think about in terms of the final style.

I did another video. I’m going to work on improving these videos overall, but these early videos are teaching me a whole lot, including what to include, how to make the video production work, and last but not least, showing me bugs in my game that I might otherwise miss.

All in all, it was a productive week! This week I’m going to start a new dialog, namely an activity journal to show what you have been doing, and what is going on in the world. I’m also going to give the procedural world generation a bit more thought, and possible start using that!

If you haven’t yet, feel free to like me on Facebook, join my Google Group, subscribe to my Sub Reddit, or follow me on Twitter, where you are likely to get frequent updates! You can also subscribe to the Old Ham Media YouTube Channel, where I post frequent videos showing the progress of gameplay and more!