Roadwolf's Game of Life: Concept
This game will initially start out in a similar manner as SimLife. You are the engineer of a brand new world. What type of world is generally up to you. You are presented with various starting options, all ranging in difficulty. The options vary the initial temperature, vegitation, terrain, and moisture of the planet.
The planet generates in a similar manner as SimLife and DwarfFortress in the following order:
- Generate Mountains
- Generate Airflow / Wind
- Fill Oceans
- Calculate Initial Temperature
- Calculate Initial Rainfall and Weather
- Generate Initial Lakes and Rivers
- Calculate Initial Soil Density
- Fertilize Soil
- Generate Minerals (Iron, Silver, Gold, Copper, Nickle, Coal, Oil, etc...)
Initially Lakes and Rivers will not effect Temperature or Rainfall and Local Weather, however in the first few days of the games progression, they will begin to develop local ecosystems, and even possibly create new lakes, streams or fertile areas. Deserts will also be dynamic, and soil quality will reduce in areas which get little rain.
Initially you are challenged with attempting to create a stable ecosystem. The plants you start with may not be applicable to populate every corner of the world. A variety of plants and animals should be established in order to create a balance. Plants will vary with how they reproduce, where they grow, and what type and size of plant they are. Every plant also has an impact on its local environment. An area could not support many large trees for example unless the rainfall is that of a rainforest. Likewise you would need rich soil to support that environment. Much of the world will be barren, and thus need its soil quality improved before forests could take over. Tweaks in a plants Phenotype will adjust the plant to new conditions. This sometimes happens naturally as the plant naturally finds niches that it can adapt to - in which case a new sub species is created, but often will have to be manually implemented in order to speed up the game.
The animals will start off basic. The brain levels will grow as they develop, and they will be capable of higher level thought and social structures. But for now, they have basic survival, food, and reproductive traits. Often small, these animals will seek out plants to feed off of. Some will feed on the seeds, while others will feed on the plant itself. The animals which feed on the seeds can carry the seeds a distance and redeposit them elsewhere to spread the range of the plant. While the ones which feed on the plants will destroy the plant completely, making way for new plants which may learn to become more resistant to the plant eaters. Meanwhile other small animals will be carnivores which hunt on the plant eaters to keep them in check.
As the ecosystem stabilizes, the animals begin to develop.
As animals begin to develop more complex social structures, they can begin to form packs, and families. The Engineer may observe the packs and select the various pack members to read their thoughts and status. The Engineer may have the option to direct the packs attention towards something, but otherwise can not interact with the pack other then observing the social structure.
Large game may herd together in packs and roam grasslands, moving from pasture to pasture as they consume the plants. predator animals will follow. The predator animals will define their own territorys and ranges, and in most cases have a home. How well they do depends on the lushness of their region.
As intelligence increases, the ability to adapt becomes easier for more advanced animals. Some may build or seek basic shelters, and some basic tool manipulation may occur.
Intelligence advances again, and allows for more formal communication, tool making, and the discovery of fire. Tribes may spring up, and socialized cultures will rule over their territories. Huts may be built for shelter, food prep, and tool making. The Engineer has no control over this, but can place incentives to influence where things are built.
The Sentiant beings begin to discover metals, and can mine for minerals. More advanced structures and items can be crafted. At this point the Engineer may take over control temporarily of a tribe and play the game as a city builder. But at any time he can zoom back out to world view and allow the tribe to carry on, on its own.
Modern cities may span the globe, and balancing the ecosystem becomes challenging. Micro management of the civilizations and their urban sprawl is important. The game can end if the ecosystem collapses, or if one civilization sends a spaceship out to populate another planet.
The game is similar in concept to Spore, however vastly more detailed, and allows the user access to all the tools and abilities in previous phases. The game type also does not change. The ability to build cities as the Engineer is the only direct non-god interaction you have with the beings you create. Unlike Spore where you play the beings you create as the game progresses. - and the game focuses on one single lifeform. In this game, you can elect to focus your city building on one lifeform, or can construct a global network of rods and towns spanning many life forms. Likewise you can weigh the survival favor towards a single sentient life form, or balance it and allow many sentient life forms at any point in the game by toying with their DNA and populating or depopulating them.
Manually adjusting DNA requires you to make a new breedable version of the previous species DNA. i.e. you can't just take a Human being, for example, and make them half shark, and then expect the clone to be able to breed with other humans to create hybrids. You have to make minor changes so that the animals breed the changes into the general population. This game takes time!
Starting off will be a challenge, but also fairly easy. You can't loose the game in phase 1 for loosing control of your eco-system. There is no eco-system. So you can learn how to balance it properly at your own pace and once you have some herbavores, and carnavores and a decent amount of the world covered in vegitation, you advance to phase 2. As the game advances the eco-system becomes more complex. While it will mostly self regulate, to many changes, too fast will often cause issues. Towards the end, with massive cities and industrialization, it will become even more unstable and a collapse causing the death of sentient life, will end the game.