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Dasir
08-14-2005, 02:46 AM
While collecting jewels I get warnings of scripts I maybe use.
I do NOT use scripts, but i pushed the FlyTo-Speed to MAX.

Why should this be punished? :???:


Thx for better coding. ;-)

Mickey
08-14-2005, 02:54 AM
While collecting jewels I get warnings of scripts I maybe use.
I do NOT use scripts, but i pushed the FlyTo-Speed to MAX.

Why should this be punished? :???:

Because in theory, the Fly-To speed shouldn't matter. You should be flying yourself there manally, rather than using the placemarks. If you fly to the city by pointing to a placemark (whether yours or ours), it lands on the exact same spot every time and looks suspicious to our system.

While I can appreciate that this is a pain for you, it's the best way we've come up with to curb cheating. If you have a better suggestion, I'd be happy to listen. Thanks.

Dasir
08-14-2005, 03:19 AM
Exact positioning several times sounds like a good parameter detecting scripts. But what u did now is letting them know ur strategy and their adding a few more lines to get their scripts flying to their cities with a little random variance.

Looks like u need better/more parameters !!

So to get it philosiphically: There is war between the GEHwar City owners. But there is a real-world war goin on - a so called meta-war - between the Good GEHWar Programmers(TM) and the Evil Scripters(TM).

uuhhh...spooky :-)

rasqual
08-14-2005, 04:21 AM
Chuckles to Dasir, and this to Mickey: Gotta work this out, dude. When it comes to the place where you're advising people to fly manually around the planet, we're in trouble. ;-)

Here's the problem. You have a game on a platform worthy of superb strategic thinking, plotting, planning, diplomacy, intrigue, and so forth. But who has time for that? They're spending all their time flying around the world to get jewels. ;-D

IOW, you want people to think. But the means of obtaining what they need is mindless, yet requiring the mind to be involved in simple geographic navigation.

Wait . . . "the means of obtaining what they need is mindless" . . .

Good grief. Half of us have jobs like that. LOL

rasqual
08-14-2005, 04:53 AM
Whokay, here's what I suggest.

How about scattering jewels all over the bloomin' planet? Distribute them randomly and uniformly (which means dividing longitude by the result of a sin operation on latitude, so they don't get more dense toward the poles). Then people have to LOOK for them. When they find and click them, they register themselves for that user and, possibly, pop up somewhere else on the planet.

Now conceptualize this a bit further. In Arabia, these "jewels" may be thought of as oil. In Africa, diamonds. In Russia, titanium. In Columbia, coffee. In Afghanistan, opium. In France, cheese. In Norway, lutefisk. Whatever.

See how easily jewels can be reconstrued as "natural resources?" But like any natural resource, they need to be discovered. Discovery takes time, which is analogous to the cost of exploration and such.

Now, stop thinking about Jewels and start thinking about the variabls involved in making the acquisition of these resources kind of realistic. Perhaps some areas of the world might, actually, have a higher density of jewels. Perhaps, for example, that oil field jewel that looks like just one is actually 20, because when you claim it (dig a well), it ends up re-appearing in the same, exact spot for you. You get exhilarated (like anyone with a gusher) and keep clicking the placemarks like a madman, and they keep coming. You never know when the well runs dry. So you exercise a second option -- you tag that jewel as your own. You stake a claim. No one can jump that claim. You discovered a resource that keeps paying out -- but you don't know how long it will continue to do so. But you decide you want to hold that in reserve as an asset, and you go on to discover other assets.

This would make all this running around the planet productive in new ways. At the end of the day you wouldn't just have a pocket full of jewels, you'd have a gold mine in Denver, an oil well in venezuela, an ethanol plant in Iowa (you found the corn fields, and one option was to turn 'em into ethanol), and so forth.

And you could trade with people! So this particular oil field you discovered really paid out. Some wells didn't hit oil until after a lot of expensive tries (you kept hitting an icon for a drilling rig, but it didn't change to a gusher icon until after you'd spent quite a bit [each click, analogous to another 400 feet drilled, COST you[), and you're loathe to drill 'em all. But you laid claim to several. So you offer half your field to someone else -- if he'll only humble Quebec by dragging his Great White Fleet into port and negotiating the mineral rights for northern Ontario secretly on your behalf. ;-)

Re-imagining jewels as anything you want 'em to be. Far from worrying about some additional things to add to jewels so this is more diverse, just realize that this running around to get 'em is what humans actually do all the time anyway -- for all kinds of thins.

Even for real jewels, now and then. ;-)

--

Scott

araT
08-14-2005, 05:10 AM
Scott,

Brilliant! I couldnt agree with you more! I was in the midst of contemplating a way to get away from "Jewels" myself.. I really like your ideas about local natural resources... brings things right back to reality.

Hell, I would even like to see natural disasters incorporated.. imagine waking up one morning only to have GEHwar tell you that there are bushfires in your city, and 5 of your armies have perished... so on, so on..

Also, and this is a big also, I would like to see it venture closer to Risk as far as alliances & etc go, but I guess that wont really be usefull for a while, not untill we can run most of the game out of GE and get private messaging or chat or something going. The game is no fun if you all work alone & attack without strategies... make teams, form allies.. and when they are relying on you the most INVADE THEM! *cackle*

T. :D

Dasir
08-14-2005, 05:16 AM
Trading is 1 of the greatest ideas. This leads automatically to the concept of alliances appeareing between players.

How can alliances be realized?

Maybe in culminating the strength of several cities ti gain more/faster some of these natural resources rasqual was talkin about.

But also its possible to think of a Weapon system that only works when several players work together proberly.

Do u know that german site ´www.brettspielwelt.de´ ??

They implented a city-system where the citicens have to raise Money to run the cities. They also realised a complex ranking system with many rank-based commandos and e.g. elections of Mayors.....

My opinion is that ur first ideas very fast turn into a kind of political game/community....

Get inspired............

Mickey
08-14-2005, 01:30 PM
I like the thoughts about oil wells and such!

I think we still need a common currency in the world, to make purchasing items in the store easier. Maybe way to convert your "new" resources into "jewels" (or whatever the common currency is). This way, we don't have to come up with 10 different prices for each thing (5 jewels OR 8 barrels of oil OR 27 lbs. of coffee, etc). They can just trade in their new resources for real money, then spend it.

rasqual
08-14-2005, 05:45 PM
I like the thoughts about oil wells and such!

I think we still need a common currency in the world, to make purchasing items in the store easier. Maybe way to convert your "new" resources into "jewels" (or whatever the common currency is). This way, we don't have to come up with 10 different prices for each thing (5 jewels OR 8 barrels of oil OR 27 lbs. of coffee, etc). They can just trade in their new resources for real money, then spend it.

Aaack

Your common currency would be whatever it is, and one of it's "properties" would be "oil". Another property would be "what oil's value is," and so forth.

Everything you could BUY would also have a "what it's worth" property.

Heck, you can have any kind of money you want, from any country, with exchange rates and all.

rasqual
08-15-2005, 01:24 AM
The concern for a common currency is, itself, a very real-world concern!

Well, it's been the dollar for a long time. The Euro would like to supplant that, I think. So I'd suggest we come up with something entirely unique and, as you wish, global. I'd suggest that it be decimal, like dollars or Euros.

How about GEOS? A "geo" would be equivalent to a dollar, or a Euro. There's something sufficiently global about the name, and it also plays into what Earth is about.

Just a thought.

Appletom
08-15-2005, 01:38 AM
How about GEOS? A "geo" would be equivalent to a dollar, or a Euro. Just a thought.
Nail. - Head. - HIT!

I vote for GEO as the official currency of GEHwar.

The current market value of the GEO (if needed for anything) should be the sum of One US Dollar ($1.00) plus One Euro (€1.00) divided by two.

Mickey
08-15-2005, 01:52 AM
"Geo" it is (or at least, will be soon). So if I am correct, the various resources that we set up can be traded in for Geos, and Geos are all you can spend in the "store" (whatever that ends up being called). Right?

We could also have market prices, based on how many of a particular item is being collected. If a ton of people get oil on a particular day, the value goes down to 3 Geo / gallon instead of 4 Geo / gallon. Stuff like that. With the right work, that could all be automated, so it wouldn't be too difficult to keep up with.

Appletom
08-15-2005, 02:13 AM
Every currency needs a symbol. The US dollar has $, the Euro has €, the British Pound has £.

This is my first brief attempt at a symbol for a Geo, it takes the dual horizontal bars from the Euro, the single vertical bar from the dollar, and a capital G using the Bookman Old Style font:

birq
08-15-2005, 04:09 AM
Nice symbol. I like it. :)

araT
08-15-2005, 04:12 AM
Very Nice Work, Appletom! we have our global currency! :D

T.

Mickey
08-15-2005, 04:19 AM
So, in moving on to the other natural resources (which can be traded in for GEOs), how should they work? I'm having a hard time getting a feel for it, which makes it pretty well impossible to create. :)

Let's start with oil. Think in terms of the limits of Google Earth and network links and such. How can you "find" it? I don't want to necessarily go back to the early days of jewel-hunting where it was entirely random. When you find the oil, what happens? Do you get it all at once? Do you have to do something to get it a bit at a time? Does it run out? Can the well be taken by force?

As you can see, I'm having a hard time figuring out exactly how to make this work...

rasqual
08-15-2005, 05:52 AM
Dang, and I was thinking we could have a competition for the design.

My submission seems lame. Can anyone get lat & lon lines into the currency symbol with more skill than I? I am NOT a graphic artist. My notion will speak for itself. ;-)

rasqual
08-15-2005, 06:34 AM
Dang the three minute thing. It takes longer than that to add further comments if I take time to think about 'em. Which, I admit, though rare . . .

;-)

Here's what would be extremely cool. Imagine if some layer was available that showed the world's oil concentration. You use this layer to fund an algorithm for distributing placemarks around the planet. They're concentrated where the layer says oil is concentrated.

My point in saying that is this: this is a game for Google Earth. The game can leverage just the interface, OR it can be a showcase for Earth's features, using them to the max. It'd be a shame if Earth itself exposes all kinds of data about our planet, but you ended up going and doing what all other game developers have to do anyway -- create all this stuff from scratch, and tinker with it at the bit level. No! Use what Earth -- and other Earth users -- provide!

Unfortunately, not all such data are in yet. However, perhaps you could adopt some fairly lame resources until such data are in. The advantage of doing so wouldn't, at this stage, be realism -- it'd be learning how to leverage Google's assets.

Thus, I'd start by suggesting the exploitation of geothermal and solar energy. Why? Simple -- Google already has layers for this. How you would code for this on the server side, I don't know. I hope you know someone at Google. For Geothermal, you locate geothermal resources near volcanos. For solar, you use the DG Coverage -- anywhere in the 0-10% cloudcover areas is where you'd locate your solar energy assets (it's sad that the coverage for this stat isn't complete, but hey). These assets have global assets, which is nice, since a lot of Googles stuff is only currently covering a few countries at most (and the U.S. in particular). Keep the game global, as you've excellently done thus far.

For oil, I've already suggested that a person first needs to stake a claim when they find an asset ("a likely spot for oil, according to your Schlumberger exploration team"). Then s/he drills. And this costs money. Then they MIGHT find oil. Or it might be a dry well. If they do find oil, placeholders may be consumed in quantities over time that seem logical. How many barrels do oil wells actually yield in a day? What's the price of oil (it varies -- and it's probable that it'll increase as more and more armies globally are requiring it to do battle: I hope you're getting the picture of the interrelatedness)? How long does it take the average well to go dry? Build a normal distribution that respects the actual deviations from the mean for such things, and you have a viable model.

But since we don't have a way of automating distribution of oil assets since no one has a kml or layer for that yet, let's look at solar and geothermal. Interestingly, both of these are pretty perpetual sources of energy/cash/whatever, so it makes it a bit simpler for you at this point. The sun keeps shining, so anyone with a Sol farm will continue to reap profits from it. Anyone with a geothermal range will continue to do so, as well.

So someone stakes a claim (which will cost them), they farm the assets, and trade these for other things -- armies, the loyalty of hoped-for allies -- basically lawyers, guns and money (or sex, drugs, and rock & roll ;-)

Then they buy and install their generation equipment (which costs money), and they sell the power (which yields profits). Eventually, someday, you can make this more sophisticated (operating expenses, lifecycle management costs for equipment replacement and such, how many of their labor force was drafted for that last insane war by the mad lunatic from the north, and so forth).

They sell power at some rate which indicates the fruitfulness of their particular asset. Hey, let someone have a solar farm in the 11-50% cloud cover area if they WANT to. No problem. But they'll be running about 30% as efficiently, on average, as someone sensibly operating in one of the prime 0-10% areas.

Did I mention the power generation plants would need to be near populated areas in order to sell their power? And that the price would be determined by the laws of supply and demand? Larger populations can absorb larger numbers of generating plants before the price of electrical power suffers a hit from market forces. Hey, that's another way of doing war -- come in and compete for energy with your enemy. This goes beyond nukes and armies to multinational corporations working the wealth angle (in this case, though, the corporations and the armies are the same entity, from a management standpoint).

Did I mention that you need to register your stake with the country where it's located? Not likely to happen if this is an enemy, eh? This also means that folks who are shareholders in governments of resource-rich countries are not likely to vote in parliament for a foreign stakeholder's proposal. Protectionism!

Did I say parliament? Yeah. Countries should not be owned by any one person. There should be some number of people required to be in alliance (a "government" in order to run a country. Any decision -- such as to let another player have mineral rights for oil or whatnot -- would have to be ratified by a majority vote.

Did I mention taxes? Absolutely. If you let people in to farm your geothermal resources, you tax 'em. You negotiate the rate. You offer tax incentives if you wish, to compete for their presence in your country instead of your neighbors. But those revenues are something you can count on. Ah! Getting other people to "get your jewels" for you! Nice!

Big, big architecture. Leverage the layers. Learn as you go by using available data, expecting that there'll be more to come. Blah, blah, blah. I could go on for hours -- 'cause the platform your using will be more and more bottomless, as far as data you can make part of the game's information assets is concerned, as time passes.

Mickey
08-16-2005, 03:49 AM
Not to just skip over rasqual's great post, but Geos are now active! :)

Mickey
08-16-2005, 04:05 AM
First response from Google. Specifically, from "ink_polaroid" at the Keyhole BBS.

"The border/roads layers are vector data pushed from our fusion servers. Unfortunately (for you) the format is a highly encrypted binary one, and not simple kml.

My advice would be to hit google and go looking for some simple csv data for country borders. There's plenty out there, and a clever chap like you should have no trouble converting to KML."

I've pressed for details about other layers, but this is a disappointing start...

Mickey
08-16-2005, 05:38 AM
Next reply, equally bad:

"You're out of luck, I'm afraid. I commited enough code into a Quake III server to know the value of making a game as compelling as possible, but much as I'd love to help you out, our vector data is a one-way transaction. No hooks, I'm afraid. All binary, all encrypted up the wazoo.

There is one vague exception. The BBS layer is vector data, but has an obvious source. We just pushed a new data set tonight (go look at the White House, and when you're done with that go look at Area 51) so there are about 40,000 points to play with. Feel free to use those as a part of your game, if you can think of a way."

rasqual
08-16-2005, 07:37 AM
Well, there you have it. The layers are buried under layers of encryption.

Fine, it only means you can't count on Google's layers. It's up to The People, as ever. The useful layers will come from laymen, and it has always been so.

Well, I think the world's principal sources of mineral and petroleum wealth are high on the list. Finding geo-tagged data, now . . . <low whistle . . . that's gonna be interesting Needess to say, the oil companies have it all geotagged -- in spades!