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NIFE v6 (Life Update) Notes
Posted: Posted February 14th by Xhin

This is a planned version of NIFE that I've been doing some planning on. I shifted away some nonessential plugins from v5 here as well, but v6 kind of has its own theme beyond that.

The basic idea of v6 is making things more randomized so players don't necessarily get a fixed experience. This also makes games easier to create for Hosts. In addition, there are features designed to make game worlds feel more like homesteading or pioneering, so you can get a much richer open world and continuous type of experience with NIFE.

Below, I'll outline v6's features:

  • Sorcery / Tech plugin -- I've covered this elsewhere. Basically it lets you make machines that can have targets, so you can have a machine that lets you pick a mine in the room and restock it for example. The Tech portion of this is a machine that does this, while the Sorcery system instead treats it as a spell that decreases some stat like Mana. Sorcery spells can also be categorized better.

    Liquids

    This is a plugin that introduces vessels such as bottles and room fixtures that are pools of liquid that the vessels can be dipped into. Once dipped, the vessel becomes a different item. You can dump out vessel contents as well.

    One example is a pool that has a Mana potion in it. You dip a bottle in and now you have a potion. When you drink it, it turns back into an empty bottle.

    Vessels can additionally be room fixtures. In this case, they have some specified amount of liquid they hold. Vessel items can as well, and you can freely move liquids around in this way. Events can fire when a vessel fixture is filled or emptied, when it overflows, and when you interact with it in general. This allows for some new puzzles.

    Vessels can be limited to the kinds of liquids they can pick up. For example, maybe a bottle can't pick up lava, you need a bucket for that.

    Lootboxes

    These are room fixtures. When you loot one, you gain a random item.

    You have things known as Loot Categories which let you categorize various items and then categorize them further down as far as you want.

    When you set up a lootbox, you can set different chances for different loot to appear, for example a lootbox that has:

  • 50% chance of giving you a potion
  • 25% chance of something fire-themed
  • 10% chance of a weapon
  • 10% chance of armor
  • 5% chance of a rare weapon

    Lootboxes can hand out multiple items at a time well.

    Lootboxes can require specific Conditions in order to use or see them. They can also have "stocks" of each loot type or in general. They can be reusable depending on various things.

    Basically it introduces a lot of flexibility in what you reward players with.

    Lootboxes can also be called from events -- in this case, that event trigger would give you some number of items from a lootbox's definition. This allows for things like gaining random loot when defeating an enemy, entering a room, etc.

    Continued

  • settingsOptions
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    Fishing

    This update allows you to fish in room fixtures known as "pools" with items known as "rods" in order to catch items known as "fish". Additionally, you have bait and lures.

    Each pool that you fish at has some random chance of various fish. They work a bit like lootboxes, except each fish can have a "weight" (the likelihood of getting that specific fish on your bait) and a "chance" (the likelihood of actually catching that fish). You might for example have:

  • Red snapper -- 100% chance, 5 weight
  • Pirana -- 20% chance, 1 weight
  • Hylian Loach -- 50% chance, 2 weight.

    In this case you're twice as likely to hook a Loach as a pirana. But more than likely you're catching snapper.

    However, different types of Lures can increase the weight of specific fish. Maybe you find a Toothy Lure that increases the weight of piranas and sharks (in different pools).

    Even so, you only have a 20% chance of catching a pirana... Which is where bait comes in.

    Each time you fish, you use bait if you hook a fish. However different baits can increase the chance of actually catching a fish.. maybe you have a Beef Chunk bait that increases the chances of catching a pirana or Orca (the shark is a strict vegan).

    Additionally you have Rods. Each Rod has a Rod Level, and each fish has a Rod Level. Maybe in order to even hook an Orca you need a level 3 Rod.

    Kind of essential to this plugin is a Genesis toolset that lets you randomly distribute fish in pools, bait and lures to fish, and pools throughout the world. You pick some base criteria and Genesis will randomly generate the world for you, saving you lots of time. Or you can custom-make your own stuff.

    Continued

  • Posted February 14th by Xhin
     

    Astrology Plugin

    This plugin allows you to set an in-game time based on real world time. Days can be longer, shorter, whatever. You can set cyclical events such as moon phases, blood moons, meteor showers, planetary alignments, etc.

    Additionally, you can set weeks, months, years, and other various categories of time.

    Additionally you can set offsets to real time. Maybe you have a machine that makes a month pass in game time. Or a time travel spell that goes back some number of hours.

    Game time can be global for all players or character-specific. While you can't literally go back in time, one character can be at 6am while the rest are at 10:36pm.

    This plugin allows the Conditions plugin to draw from various stuff in game time. Maybe certain fish will only appear in the morning. Maybe your weapons deal extra damage during a Blood Moon. Maybe room relationships will become visible during winter.

    This plugin comes with a nice clock / calendar widget that appears in the interface and updates in real time according to whatever the settings are. For the sake of sanity you can't change how long seconds are, but you can totally make minutes 72 seconds long or hours 100 minutes long or set some new time type entirely that displays alongside hours and minutes.

    For the time being, the clock will show all data to everyone (some stuff is probably less visible until you click it, like moon phases). In the future though I'd like to create items that show various parts of the clock, and fixtures that do the same thing.

    Continued

    Edited February 14th by Xhin
     

    Weather

    Weather is similar to Astrology, but it's a bit more random. Basically you have some chance of different weather occurring at any given time. Weather events can have range of time that they occur in, so maybe Rain can last from 20-40 minutes.

    Weather events can have their own subweather.. maybe Rain has a 20% chance of 5-10 minute tornados. And then tornados have a 10% chance of being a Cat-5.

    Weather can be global, room specific, or room category specific. There can also be ways to set a weather event or subweatther event through the Events system. You can also start or stop loops where the weather runs continuously.

    Like Astrology, Weather ties into the Conditions system. Maybe Acid Rain decreases your defense, or an NPC will only give you a specific Quest if it's snowing.

    Continued

    Posted February 14th by Xhin
     

    Genesis

    I've covered this elsewhere. Basically this is a megaplugin that lets you randomly generate your world according to some criteria.

    The first version of it will at least let you generate:

  • New rooms in a grid-like or tree-like way.

  • Pick a bunch of rooms and Genesis will reshuffle them, but preserve relationships.

  • Weapons with all the interesting properties weapons come with

  • Armor once that system is done

  • Fish / pools / bait / lures

  • Mines

  • Enemies, although I kind of like the random spawn system better.

    Other things are planned. Like eventually I'd like to be able to generate everything, but it'll take time to really beef up the megaplugin.

    One useful thing in Genesis is the ability to save presets for later. These can then be exported and imported into other game worlds for use by other players maybe.

    Continued

  • Posted February 14th by Xhin
     

    Tools plugin

    This plugin optionally alters the mechanic of auto actions so that you need a specific type of item to do different things. For example you might need a pickaxe to mine, a Scythe to harvest crops, a Glove to interact with machines, etc.

    Tools are optional on a per-action basis.. you can require a pickaxe for mining but not require any other tools.

    You can additionally implement various degradation mechanisms to individual tools:

  • A Tool Damage stat will go up every time you use that tool. Or it'll have a chance of doing so according to a different stat.

  • Tools can break when they hit the max, or disappear. You can also set "degradation" ranges where you only get a chance of being successful at the action (even though it counts towards your AA limit) depending on the damage it's accumulated.

    Additionally, tools may have a "benefit", which is a chance of duplicating the action some number of times but only counting as one action.

    Forge plugin

    This introduces fixtures known as "forges" where you can combine items together in some way. I haven't done much work here yet, but basically it'll be pretty customizable and let you combine weapons / tools / armor together into a new item that has a hybrid set of properties or adds them together. Needs more concept work.

    Enchantments plugin

    This plugin extends the pour, drink and fling potions system so that you can "enchant" those effects without having that potion in your inventory.

    Items and characters have a specific number of Enchantments they can hold -- new ones will have to override old ones. You can probably also enchant rooms (why not).

    Enchantments can cost some stat, be on a time-based thing, require Conditions, and/or use items.

    Since items and characters are *everything*, this offers a lot of cool stuff you can do -- enchant a chest so its storage capacity is greater, enchant a sword to become fire-based, enchant your teammate so their defense is higher.

    Homesteading Plugin

    This plugin allows players to build new rooms, fixtures and NPC's at a cost. This can require items or a specific stat.

    Homesteading can only happen in Rooms that allow it. The rooms that are built can only connect to rooms players have permission for. There are three types of permission:

  • Game -- these rooms are part of the game world and can't be connected to.

  • Public -- anyone can connect to any of these rooms

  • Private -- these are user-owned rooms. They can set who can work on their rooms, connect to them, or even enter them.

    For version 1 of this plugin players will be about to build:

  • Rooms
  • Relationships between them
  • NPC's with the character talking system
  • Signs
  • Crop plots of land
  • Pools to stick fish they've caught in
  • Vehicles

    Probably other stuff, I'd have to check my notes.

    The permission system is pretty flexible -- you can categorize rooms you own and set permissions based on those categories, or globally. You can make your rooms public or rescind that. You can individually customize whether people are able to build, connect to, or enter rooms. You can also kick characters out (they go either to the entrance where you first started building or their own rooms ilf they have something connected).

    This all takes place in a separate Homesteading panel. Players can optionally affect things remotely, otherwise they have to be physically present in the room (or keep a minion around).

    Continued

  • Posted February 14th by Xhin
     

    Crops v2

    This is an optional update to the Crops system.

    Plants can have multiple products, each of which has its own harvest range, mature time and grow time. Seeds are a part of this system -- so you might have cases where you can harvest leaves but have to wait to get seeds.

    This system also introduces a breeding and mutation mechanic. You can breed crops two different ways:

  • Breed a plant to itself and it has a chance of mutating -- some amount of it's various mature/harvest/etc stats will go up or down randomly, based on its Mutation property.

  • Breed two plants of the same type together and the new crop will share their stats -- 50% chance of being an average, 25% for either extreme. You can then name this new species.

    You can also just collect normal seeds, in which case the species line will stay pure.

    Additionally, as a Host you can group base plant species together into a Genus with some infertility chance.

    Players can then breed two different plants together. They'll gain a mixed set of items if those are different, and hybridize the ones that are the same. There's a chance that it won't produce seeds (host-set by Genus).

    To improve things interface-wise I'll be introducing a basic Crops panel that lets players plant, harvest, breed and otherwise manage Crops.

    Crop species can optionally still exist on the old system as well if you want something more basic.

    One more plugin continued

  • Posted February 14th by Xhin
     

    Livestock

    Livestock function similar to Crops, but are more complex. For one thing, they're characters instead of fixtures.

    Livestock can be either male or female. They can also be adult or young. Livestock of all kinds have the following properties:

  • The species likelihood of being male.
  • Mature time

    Adult males have the following stats:

  • How many times they can breed before they need a break
  • How much of what food they consume to breed
  • How long until they can breed again

    Females have these stats:

  • How long they gestate until they produce young
  • Litter size
  • How long after a litter until they can breed again.
    *" How much of what food they need to breed

    Male adults, female adults, male young and female young each have their own (maybe unique for each of those four) stats:

  • How much of what item they drop when slaughtered
  • How much of what item they drop when milked
  • How many times they can be milked until their cutoff
  • How long until they can be milked again
  • Health
  • Defense
  • Attack
  • Docility (their chance of starting a battle with you when you attack)

    With breeding, you must mate a male to a female. You can usually mate males to many females; females you have to wait for gestation and recovery. At the end of gestation, they'll produce a litter of male young and female young according to that stat with combined Genes of both parents. They will also mutate slightly.

    You can keep lines pure by mating related animals together, but there might be a system where traits degrade if you do this too much. Maybe a v2.

    Similar to the Crops system, you can mate Livestock from the same Genus together with an infertility chance.

    The slaughtering and milking systems work like crops do -- animals can produce meat *and* bones *and* hooves in varying amounts. Unlike the crops system, these all mature when the animal matures.

    When you slaughter an animal, they die and you have to loot them -- however with milking the animal stays alive.

    Different types can produce different things -- maybe an adult female you can milk for milk, a young of either type you can milk for rennet, slaughtered make adults give you horns, etc.

    Version 1 *might* allow for farmable minions. Eventually I'd like to allow for farmable Vehicles (ie horses )

    Note that *all* properties get bred together. If you're breeding minions, they'll have the full set of combat stats that can mutate and be bred together.

    There will be a panel for all of this, for sanity reasons.


  • Posted February 14th by Xhin
     

    ALSO: Crops and Livestock can both be randomized through Genesis.

    Conclusion

    This, plus the rest of v5 (and a couple smaller plugins I haven't mentioned) is pretty much everything I'm trying to do with NIFE long term. I want to see it capable of making large-scale rich and complex worlds, where you can add unique content at your leisure but aren't reliant on it for interesting experiences.

    The kinds of worlds I'd like to build with v6 are more about continuous mmorpg experiences, instead of the streamlined fast-paced competitive games we've been making with it. Things that are almost Minecraft/dwarf fortress like -- except multiplayer and extremely customizable.

    I like building worlds outside of NIFE. I want to be able to use NIFE to showcase those worlds and add custom content over time but in the meantime let players live in them.

    I'm sure a lot of worldbuilders feel the same way.

    Here's to 2018 and all the awesomeness NIFE will bring!

    @Moonray:

    Posted February 14th by Xhin
     
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