jueves, 2 de junio de 2011

Random Board Generator

When a game is started, part of the systems responsibilities is to generate a board on which players can play.

The generation of the board is not trivial as it sustains the game play and thus must facilitate a grateful experience from a players point of view. Generating boards that don't resemble a normal world on which cells are just put randomly so that a player can not move naturally in the terrain where he is put would end up meaning a frustrating experience for the player.

Thus it is important to somehow imitate the world we are living in so that continents exist, together with some islands. It is also important to generate certain group of cells in a uniform way, so that e.g. desserts don't border green cells.

When constructing a random board, we should have the following elements in place:
  • Climate: climate will dictate which kind of cells are more likely to appear in certain areas.
  • Tectonic plates: so that these dictate the latitude of the cell and thus the probabilities of being a water, normal or mountain cell.
These two elements should be combined in order to produce a realistic game board.

Main Game Play Mode

The primary gameplay mode in mPango is based on organization of units across the landscape of the territories controlled by the player. On this gameplay mode the player will be able to see an isometric perspective of the map on which she has the units deployed as well as the different cities and other useful information.

On this gameplay mode the player will be able to perform the following actions:

  • Interact with units:

    • Perform actions on own units: depending on the unit, the player will be able to perform different actions (attack, force, move, sleep, harvest, mine, construct, etc...).

    • Interact with other players by clicking on their units: establish a chat window, kick units out of their own territory, browse unit information (such as experience, number of different units per cell...)

  • Switch to other gameplay modes:

    • Diplomatic Gameplay Mode: by clicking on the diplomacy icon on the screen.

    • Economic Gameplay Mode: by clicking on the economy icon on the screen.

    • Science Gameplay Mode: by clicking on the science icon on the screen.

    • Militar Gameplay Mode: by clicking on the militar icon on the screen.

    • City Gameplay Mode: by double clicking on a specific city on the map.

  • Browse information from the map (such as resources, other players visible units and cities...).

On this gameplay mode the user will have available the most important information which includes:

  • Events that have happened as a result of the turn passed.

    • New citizens available.

    • New technologies available.

    • Cancelled agreements.

    • Start and end of wars.

    • Citizens killed.

  • Chat window in order to talk to other players.

    • There will be a general chat window for all players.

    • Players are free to create chat rooms (with password protection if wished) in order to communicate among them.

    • Players can anytime contact another player and have a one-to-one chat window with her.

  • Unit information in case a unit is active.

    • Experience points.

    • Life.

    • Weapons and Shields.

    • Cargo.

    • Tools.

  • City information about the activities taking place in the city.

  • Important global numbers such as population, food, resources...