Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Procedural generation, node, couch reading list - ongoing updates

Just saw this article at tinyMMO while trying to load crafty.js correctly and it goes over some of the stuff in "on demand systems" like the Wayfar object $ods, when procedurally generating and destroying similiar bits (like rooms in the same biome), but for javascript games.  Anyway, here's the article at tinyMMO - Tile Maps of Unusual Size.  Great breakdown!

Node.JS Requires reference
Node & Couch on IrisCouch Cloud reference

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Updates 11/27/13

It's been over a month since the last post, most of the work done since then has been mostly behind-the-scenes but there have been a few things that may be of note to players:

- Factories now have an industrial catalog terminal that allows you to purchase packages of materials and components to save you time and effort in exchange for cold hard cash.
- The pre-assembled models of modular chassis starships are almost all done (the five dreadnought variants have yet to be fitted) and are available for purchase.
- Life support modules are now mandatory for space travel without an EVA suit, non-chassis starships are fitted with one by default.
- Changes to the 'gear' command; all uncovered body parts are now displayed, weapon attacks show what damage type they do and weapon attacks show the duration of the attack.
- Improvising with a material now shows only one of each type of material and chooses the highest quality piece of a material available.
- Various vehicles got a speed increase.
- Battlegrounds got some attention- they now clean the battlefields properly, store people's equipment properly, last longer, had the loadouts changed, no longer trap you in the battleground forever and now no longer mysteriously eat people's equipment. They also got a helpfile too.
- Sector centers got a helpfile and some commands to help you round up and manage your civilians.
- Purchases made at NPC-constructed randomly stocked buildings will now pass half of the price of any items purchased there to the owner of the sector center on each daily income tick.
- Robots had some adjustments and new commands to allow players to make them perform actions which didn't work with robots.
- Wildlife (including robots) now have an 'attack' command to make the play as wildlife feature easier, no more having to wait for that muta-chicken to attack randomly.
- Large pirate bases got some new goodies inside them (including large cred-vaults and lockboxes which drop more and rarer gear) to make up for them being so large and awkward to travel through.
- The algorithm behind applying the 'superior' bonuses to weapons (the (!) suffix on weapon's name) has been fixed, it would previously only allow bonuses up to 'level' 4 and now allows bonuses up to 'level'6.
- Putting all of our armor, weapons or gadgets into a container now ignores the items you are currently wearing or wielding for sanity's sake.
- Starship parts and various other components were assigned relatively sane weights and values (in most cases the value is increased significantly, they have all mostly been described too.
- Dismantling buildings will now return the components to you, but will only return around 50% of components if you lack the Crude Planning skill.
- Bleeding is now also caused by bullet/slug shell damage.
- Crafting tools will now check for materials and components lying in the room the user is standing in, this makes the now quite hefty starship parts much easier to use when crafting and can save effort in some cases.

And for new content:

- Black Markets with randomised shops, the shop types are determine upon placement and can be one of six types: Implant, Munitions, Superior Equipment, Starships, Medical or Robots. All of these shop types provide at least some items, objects or vehicles which cannot be found elsewhere.
- Warp-class modular-chassis destroyers, frigates and dreadnoughts, which come pre-equipped with a warp drive as well as the standard weaponry, power, scanners and engines loadout for similar vessels.
- Burns, which are caused by thermal, laser or plasma damage. They will persist for five minutes and are slow to decay, they have a stacking stamina and aggression dice max detriment as well as a stacking reduction to dodge and defense rolls, they can be treated with fungal salve, burn salve or burn patches (in increasing order of effectiveness).
- Implants which provide either static bonuses, damage resistances, actions or the capacity to release a drug are now available from the black market, some require reroll points to install and most will be damaged every time you die and are likely to be left on your corpse when you die. Examples of implants are the Hack-pro implant which increases hacking rolls, the Subdermal impact dissipators which provide damage resistance to impacts and explosions, and the Hemostatsis coordinator implant which can be activate to release a drug that reduces bleeding quickly.
- Various new ammunition packages to be bought from black markets.
- A few new robots to be bought from black markets, a few new control pad commands for robots ('clear' to cancel actions as an example).
- A few new wildlife types to get eaten by.
- A few new artifacts.
- New food and drink items, all older food and drink items have been described and given values.
- New containers in large pirate bases which can drop some interesting equipment.
- Several new fish (some of which are pretty high-value).
- Some new jobs for achieving milestone goals (such as building a sector center or making your first warp jump).
- Food pills and donuts, both with random flavors.
- Throwing wild eggs at people splatters them with egg and reduces their clarity and to-hit.
- Some new modular-chassis starship components.

And one the side:

The player helpfiles available in-game can now be accessed via the website in the guides section, it includes all subjects currently written (and some unwritten).

No pictures so far this month, but if any good shots turn up then they'll be posted here.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Updates 10/22/13

* several bug fixes
* blueprint items now display valid module install targets and other detailed information when viewed from a crafting tool
* official mascot of the central complex mr jingles has been retired.  Replacement: Catbug
* Official HellMOO crossover extravaganza!:

* Midnight CST:

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Bio-Engineering Preview


Life among the stars is strange & different, but most lifeforms are the kind with skin.  Skin or hide color determines the genetic sequence color you receive from a dead lifeform.  Different colors correspond to dice pools, health points, limbs, and general appearance of the creature created with bio-engineering.

Red strands: Increase the aggression dice pool of the engineered creature.
Green strands: Increase the maximum health of the engineered creature.

You can also recover rare strands of genetic material that come with a bonus and a drawback.

Mutagen-13 strand: Increase maximum health points by 10, decrease stamina dice pool by 1.
Radiated red strand: Increase aggression dice pool by 3, decrease maximum health points by 25.
Unlinked Q-Strand:  Dice pools are shuffled every 3 hours.


* Bio-Organic Synthesis Tool *

This advanced tool can blend, shred, analyze, and sequence genetic material.  It is used to craft advanced reagents, complex cellular scaffolds, and incubate the final results of bio-engineering.

The synthesis tool includes the SCRAPE command.  Scraping harvests a genetic sequence from a corpse, if one is available and in good condition.


To bio-engineer a creature, a player needs both a scaffolding and a set of reagents to manipulate a collection of genetic strands.  To create larger or more complex creatures, a larger scaffolding and extra reagents are required.  The genetic strands are combined with the scaffolding to create the prepared genetic sequence.  A complete genetic sequence can then be incubated via the synthesis tool.


The different colors of strands impact not only stats, but the appearance of the creature, such as size and weight, number and configuration of limbs, and maximum dodge and health.  These attributes, especially limbs and size, determine the available attacks the creature can use.

Creatures will follow and assist you until they die or are lost - if lost for too long, the creature will escape into the wild and possibly ruin the nearby ecosystem.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Belated 08/20/13 Updates

Alright boys and gals, it's been a while since anything new's been up on here and as a result the updates have been piling up ready for publishing. Here goes:

- NPC pilot routines are now functional, applications for these routines are in the works.
- Civilians are no longer randomly aggressive towards their colony owner, or any members of the faction that owns their center (if a faction owns it).
- Faction reputation mechanics are now in place, even non-aggressive NPC factions will attack you on sight if you're below a threshold reputation (-1000 across the board right now), and aggressive ones won't attack you unprovoked (and less aggressive ones will be more forgiving) if you're above the upper threshold (1000 across the board.). All faction chapters under each name will handle the same reputations respectively, negative reputation also decays over time.
- Faction reputation tasks are now in place, the delivery task is available at the contract office which should be present next to each NPC faction's sector center. This task requires you to deliver an otherwise useless quest item to a certain member of the faction for rep and cash, if your rep overflows above the upper limit (5000) the overflowed amount is multiplied by five and added to the cash reward.
- Killing an NPC faction's members and destroying their buildings will reduce your reputation and likely make them aggressive towards you.
- Discounts at NPC faction owned shops for people with high positive reputation are in the works.
- The travel command is fully serialized and now relies on coordinates instead of room objects, all the AI processes (a LOT of processes, mind you) I had tied the travel command into have been changed as a result. Some features of travel have been polished to handle invalid or no input better.
- Several new NPC-constructed buildings including pawnbrokers, pharmacies and more.

- Gas giants and fuel scoops to harvest fuel from gas giants are now working, there's no gas giants in the current four systems but when the universe is exploded and reborn there will certainly be some.
- Dust cloud zones containing various materials in the form of coalesced bodies of dust are also working but not currently present.
- Numerous updates to starmaps including new symbols to account for new solar bodies and an updating mechanism which can account for the (relatively) rapid turnover of asteroids and gas/dust clouds, as well as any changes in solar systems.
- Solar system generation routines are much more flexible and allow for hugely variable solar system biomes
- Moon and planet hibernation routines are now more flexible when new planets or moons are introduced.
- Two new moon dungeon types, containing all-new hackable containers and stuff.
- The planet maps on the wayfar1444.com website such as that for FROG-1322 are now much more efficient and will load faster now.

- Several models of pre-made modular starship are in the works.
- A handful of new drugs, including a broad-spectrum vaccine for common alien diseases and three drugs for increasing dice pool and dice regeneration of each type of dice.
- Several new other medical items, including two new medical kits containing previously unused items and a coagulant injector for quickly reducing bleeding.
- A few new robot types.
- A new swimming/drowning mechanic in which you are allowed to spend roughly 180 seconds swimming in an ocean before beginning to drown. You will receive progressively higher damage when drowning for prolonged periods until it outdamages any possible healing. Wearing diving gear will maintain your swimming stamina until the gear is used up.
- Various updates to flavor items.
- Several descriptions of creatures and items amended.
- Trophies and trophy cabinets have been reworked and several new trophies are available.
- Refining processors now announce to their containing room when people add things, mass-add things and when they are finished processing.
- NPC indoor pathfinding is now more refined and NPCs no longer freak out or get stuck (as much).
- Slot machines (the house always wins)!

Oh and I made a tutorial/chargen too.

I didn't even document most of the more trivial bug fixes and changes, and I still need new wrists after writing this.
Keep tuned folks, there's more to come.

23/08/13 Edit: What is this? A moon in front of a spinning WY-1444?

Background stars and zooming function?!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

HTML5 website maps

After a bit of fiddling with outputting large volumes of code from the game to the website, I managed to cobble together a map which pulls data directly from each tile on a planet and displays it as a 4x4 pixel block with a color respective of it's biome. The map doesn't have a key but you've gotta walk before you can run.

Who said text-based games couldn't be pretty? If you want to have a look for yourself, the planet list is available in the Guides section of Wayfar1444.com, and each planet is listed and linked to their respective pages.

And back to the regular updates:
- A few more biomes (can't have enough of those).
- Multi-tile driving is now possible (and recommended).
- More work on NPC faction capabilities and their (still kinda stupid) AI.
- An important events logbook in the Guides section of the website, displaying interesting information such as abundances of shortfalls of trade goods, collapse of factions, the slaying of horrid monsters/world bosses and the likes. All of these reports are also reported on everyone's favorite trash TV channel SensiVision.
- Much more info is now displayed when viewing a player on the website, such as their first connection time, their currently equipped armor and weapons as well as whether they're a member of, or even a leader of a faction. (Faction web info has yet to come but it'll come soon).

Given that I've been dabbling in the web client (it's only managed to connect to the socket.io on wayfar1444.com once, but hey), you might even get some fancy dev screenshots/previews involving a (more simple) 5x5 or 7x7 map of surrounding tiles when on a planet surface.
Keep tuned folks, plenty more to come.

Monday, June 17, 2013

new $economy object testing 6/17/13

Currently Wayfar uses an $economy object to track transactions on each planet.  This is handy for calculating NPC buy orders or adjusting the (totally unfair) pricing on NPC provided items.  As it is, these economies actually hold and track real item objects.  I've written new methods to abstract this in order to save memory.  Testing continues!

* Wayfar server RAM has been upgraded to 2GB in order to host more systems and the upcoming graphical client

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Updates 5/26/13

TV 'n' fish, good times have been had in the last couple of weeks.

- There are now over 20 species of fish to be found in various biomes, a job now exists for fishing up loads of weird alien fish and also there's now four types of fishtank to keep your fish in.
- There's now four more TV channels and existing channels have had their awful daytime tv programming extended to rot your mind even more.
- Various changes to interfaces, with the gear readout having some figures and calculation changed, dice usage now shows the exact number of dice used and your current/max dice for that pool.
- Robots can now be given a line of direct input using the 'direct' command on the robot's control handpad.
- Weapon modules, hurray.
- A bunch of new trophies have been made for various jobs, making competence cabinets at least a little bit useful.
- A TV channel that's full of star trek cast markov bots.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Updates 5/15/13

- New citizen type added to sector centers (Maintenance  technician, this and the engineer citizen type will repair buildings and vehicles in the nearby future)
- Crew commands! You can now hire up to three civilians (this may be increased in future by skills or reroll bonuses) and use 'crewhire' and 'crewfire' to manage which civilians you have in your crew. You can give orders to your crew such as converging on your position, holding ground/guarding, looting corpses and attacking. They also respond to standard civilian commands such as 'guard' and 'follow'.
- Cargo droids now have three more commands: 'pickup', 'dump' and 'inventory'. The function of these is fairly straightforward.
- Biome web interface has been neatened up, resource spawn rates are now quoted as verbal figures rather than numerical, all current weather types are now described.
- Creature web interfaces have been neatened with blank lists being replaced by 'does not drop any items' or 'does not spawn with equipment' and drop lists have been added with links to the objects.
- Charge rods have been buffed again.
- Requirements on some items have been fixed or modified.
- Some items and creatures have been given descriptions.
- Many locked treasure containers have now been given descriptions.
- Some new helpfile entries have been made.

So far, not bad considering I only got awakened from my text slumber three days ago.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Updates 5/13/13

* New command for refinery processors called 'mass-add' which also responds to 'massadd' and 'madd'
* Four new creatures in forest and desert biomes
* New citizen type added to sector centers (game hunter)
* Planetary surface exploration rate doubled
* Charge rods now recharge more weapon power per tick
* Various descriptions and bug fixes
* New skill command for Situational Awareness that trades stamina for clarity and aggression


Monday, April 1, 2013

Using cooldown_check tutorial for Hellcore

Hellcore provides an easy way to implement cooldowns for whatever use you desire, using the verb 'cooldown_check'.  The verb is located on $creature and can be used by $player as well.

The verb itself:

:cooldown_check(ANY action, INT seconds-of-cooldown[, INT silent, INT dont-start, INT force-new)

The arguments:

action - this can be any type, either an object representing an action, or a string, or whatever.
seconds-of-cooldown - self explanatory, this is the actual cooldown itself.  Best stored on a property relevant to your use.
silent - if true, no cooldown message will be printed to the player.
dont-start - if true, no cooldown countdown will be started.
force-new - if true, a new cooldown coutndown will be forcibly started regardless of cooldown remaining.

Usage example:

For the example consider an action, let's call it "pray" since that's what I worked on last.  Your _finish verb might look something like this:

who = args[1];
target = args[2][1];
if ( ! who:cooldown_check( this, this.cooldown_period) )
  return E_NONE;

This would do a check on the cooldown for the pray $action object.  If the cooldown hasn't elapsed, a message is printed to 'who' by cooldown_check, and we abort our action by returning E_NONE.  It is ideal to preform the cooldown check in _finish, since if the check passes in _start but the player aborts the action they will be on cooldown without actually having preformed the action.

DNS outage 4/1/13

Update: Wayfar1444.com is fully functional again

Easter Sunday a large scale denial of service attack was launched using hijacked DNS servers.  The Wayfar DNS server was one of the hijacked parties and due to this our DNS has been blocked by the host.  I have made the fixes to correct this and hopefully the domain will be back up shortly.

You can connect directly to Wayfar via IP address in the meantime: (port 7777)

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

stuff 3: revenge of the stuff

What would appear to be inactivity is actually just developers being very quiet, we've stil been working on the game and have made a bunch of improvements since the last post here.

For starters, we've got a shiny new Central Complex Alpha which is situated inside an actual space station in the local system DSO-12. It's got a bunch of new shops and facilities and now has a hangar floor below, and an administrative floor above the mall and recreation complex floor. Amongst the new facilities are a starship store, rec dome, holotheater, medical bay, a loan terminal, four whole hangars to park your ship in, and three stores which each stock one element of the former central gear stores stock list. All in all, it serves those who visit it better than the original did and can be accessed via starship for pick-up/drop-off of things and people and refuelling.

Moons previous were dungeons which could be docked with, they now have the same randomly generated surfaces as planets (though are mostly boring rocks covered in ice and have no atmosphere) with the existing types of moon dungeon generated within a building somewhere on the moon's surface. The rarer resources are more common on moons and thusly make EVA trips to your planet's local moon a worthwhile activity. As well as this, you might find more than one pirate hideout on a moon.

Likewise, several new items and vehicle weapons have been added to the game and some existing items have had their credit values reduced to allow new players to be able to afford them from the gear stores. Here are some other changes that have been done recently:

- More balancing of crafting requirements on some items.
- You can no longer own more than one pre-fab shelter at once, this makes the retiree background less of a cakewalk.
- Plasma grenades have been added, for giggles.
- A few more starship weapons have been added.
- Vertibird health has been increased by three times, supermarine sillohuette health has been reduced to 300.
-  The starship store in central complex alpha can deliver any starships you buy to a personal hangar or starship complex, if you own one.
- Intelligent creatures (such as pirates) now behave slightly more intelligently towards grenades thrown at them.
- Planets are now centered within their zones, and their moons are spread around in orbits around them.
- Thermonuclear missiles, for extra giggles.
- A whole swathe of objects have been given descriptions.
- Tractor beam modules for solar carriers, so you can collect all those starships people have left in space and chop them up for their delicious parts.
- And a lot more.

All in all, it's been a fairly productive two months and we're looking forwards to pushing into beta (eventually).

2/20/12 update:
- Four new armor sets.
- New armor 'superior' mechanics (which give a bonus to quality, +25 module capacity and a free random module 50% of the time).
- Six new weapons and seven new ammo variations (oh boy 40mm plasma grenades).
- Battlegrounds, a set of maps and scenarios which you can compete in teams against against other players for money, skillpoints and new 'battleground points' which can be spent on goodies.
- Six new armor modules and three new implants.
- Nearly all armor pieces have had weights and values assigned for them.
- A bunch of weapons have had their attacks revamped and given multiple start/miss/hit messages.
- A bunch of new starship weapons.
- Pretty much every armor set has had their resist values changed and all armor pieces should now have the same resist values as their respective torso piece.
- A feature object added to all players to allow them to join/leave a battleground queue anywhere in the game and a command to see the status of the current battleground (it shows the current battleground and queued players if you're not in a battleground otherwise it shows players in assigned teams, team scores, match time left and the match type).
- A mechanic to allow critical success in crafting depending on your crafting skill roll, this increases the produced item's quality by 10-20%.