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Tsyolin

What value does sovereign territory have in an infinite universe?

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Hi all, I've been a long time lurker here and decided to finally register to ask a question that's been bothering me. I understand that there's a lot, if not most of this game that isn't quite set in stone. There's a lot of questions I want to ask but I know most of then can't really be answered yet. What I do want to ask is about the so called "persistent universe".

 

Now in the F.A.Q. it's a little vague about how it describes the way the universe functions. It is implied that it is infinite but it never directly says it either so I'm left unsure about how that will all work. I'm pretty interested in the political concepts that are being looked at. It seems to be possibly derivitve of EVE Politics which is to me a good thing, politics in EVE are probably the most interesting part about that game. However it should be know that often times what drives political conflicts and wars in EVE and even in our own history is landgrabs, there's always some peice of land or territory that somebody else wants to get their hands on.

 

My question is that if there is no limit to how much territory there can be, what value does it even really have? I've read plenty already and I see it being said that it will take a long time to even claim territory and try to spread out amongst the stars which is all well and good but let's be real here nobody outside the dev team really has anyway to measure that. In EVE territory is limited, and with low supply comes high demand and spectacular conflicts ensue as a result. If it's easy to just explore some more and get more land why would anybody fight over it?

 

Obviously the idea of a never ending MMO universe sounds cool but is it really the best thing to do? Or will politics not really matter as much in this game. If this question has already been answered then I apologize, I searched but didn't find anything anywhere.

 

Tl;Dr basically what the title says

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I think infinite is misleading. No game environment is "infinite", at least not these 3D sandbox worlds. I like to compare with Minecraft. Roughly a few Earth sizes large, you eventually hit a generation or processing limit and enter the "twilight zone" before it just fails.

 

Instead I would think of a potentially very large virtual world space that we need, assuming single-shard idea. And with this I don't necessarily see a broad devaluation of space or territory. There can be plenty of reasons, still. A good location, a city or settlement, certain resources, etc.

 

You could find or make some of this elsewhere, but some would ask: why, if you can try to take it?

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Firstly, expansion into the universe beyond the first planet will take months to begin, and will take weeks to travel between systems by FTL initially.

 

After that, I don't think being infinite or not matters in this context. I think it is a question of the path of least resistance and of value. Would an organization have an easier time expanding further out into the universe or to take over another territory? Due to the time involved, it's probably the latter.

 

Or perhaps there's value in territory because of resources or strategic location. The value may even come from constructs which exist on an otherwise worthless territory. Territories that aren't required to expand into or that have no resources or other attributes could be called worthless. They may as well not exist. But other organizations may find value in that territory for other reasons.

 

Lastly, JC Baillie has stated that the point of procedural generation isn't to be infinite, but rather to generate the content in the first place or something to that effect.

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There will always be people who want to simply take over other people's stuff.

 

Plus I have a feeling that planets closer to the Ark starting planet will see much action.  Stargates have a range or certain max distance they can work within.

 

The issue with Eve is that being finite you have very few organizations that can live in null.  Newer organizations don't really have much of a chance to grab a piece of it from established organizations.  IMO this makes it pretty stale.

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I could see it also happening because of over growth, say hex A is owned and all the other ones around it are as well all by different organizations.  when the city or whatever is built in A needs to expand it might need to fight to take over an adjacent hex.

 

I do agree with your point though, once we are all space faring, why not just explore. and move else where. a planet for everyone.  I can see big, hungry organizations, letting the smaller ones do the work then swoop in to take it over.  because the other organization already built the stargate etc...

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"Infinite space is infinite, theoretically in games, but for organisations, land is limited. It isn't going to easy to develop and build on a land, just to have someone else take it over by force and then move on in search of greener pastures. It will be possible and easy for smaller organisations and in the early stages of the game, but as organisations grow, the game develops and you're forced to abandon territory in search of others, it gets frustrating and outright infuriating. As DaSchiz has noted, some people have no interest in exploring, they simply take what they want from others. Then it becomes your duty to decide whether to give it up and look to new lands or to defend what's yours and risk losing all.

 

Some explorers will always be explorers and some organisations may base their income simply off exploring fertile lands and selling them at a price. But there's a limit to which an empire can expand and it is the duty of the leaders to find that optimal territory size and stick to it. Explore too far and the empire will crumble, keep too little of a territory and you will face resource problems among others. To the open mind of the explorer, space is infinite, but to organisations and people like us, space is very, very limited.

"

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"Infinite space is infinite, theoretically in games, but for organisations, land is limited. It isn't going to easy to develop and build on a land, just to have someone else take it over by force and then move on in search of greener pastures. It will be possible and easy for smaller organisations and in the early stages of the game, but as organisations grow, the game develops and you're forced to abandon territory in search of others, it gets frustrating and outright infuriating. As DaSchiz has noted, some people have no interest in exploring, they simply take what they want from others. Then it becomes your duty to decide whether to give it up and look to new lands or to defend what's yours and risk losing all.

 

Some explorers will always be explorers and some organisations may base their income simply off exploring fertile lands and selling them at a price. But there's a limit to which an empire can expand and it is the duty of the leaders to find that optimal territory size and stick to it. Explore too far and the empire will crumble, keep too little of a territory and you will face resource problems among others. To the open mind of the explorer, space is infinite, but to organisations and people like us, space is very, very limited.

"

Thats pretty much how I see it going as well.

 

sorry out of likes!

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"Infinite space is infinite, theoretically in games, but for organisations, land is limited. It isn't going to easy to develop and build on a land, just to have someone else take it over by force and then move on in search of greener pastures. It will be possible and easy for smaller organisations and in the early stages of the game, but as organisations grow, the game develops and you're forced to abandon territory in search of others, it gets frustrating and outright infuriating. As DaSchiz has noted, some people have no interest in exploring, they simply take what they want from others. Then it becomes your duty to decide whether to give it up and look to new lands or to defend what's yours and risk losing all.

 

Some explorers will always be explorers and some organisations may base their income simply off exploring fertile lands and selling them at a price. But there's a limit to which an empire can expand and it is the duty of the leaders to find that optimal territory size and stick to it. Explore too far and the empire will crumble, keep too little of a territory and you will face resource problems among others. To the open mind of the explorer, space is infinite, but to organisations and people like us, space is very, very limited.

"

The point is, that empires will have their hubs, capitals, etcetera and querry worlds. Imperialism costs. Storeing those minerals will be a logistics thing. To store minerals, you need space, and that space better not be near the borders to a hostile faction That's the point of sovereignities. Also, trading routes. If you have a strategic point, you'll be able to add tolls to it. Those tolls add up to more money for your faction.

 

A capital of a faction located far behind enemy lines, is the kind of place where the builders and industrialists will have fun in tournaments for PvP, while a shitstorm will be raging in the borders, were PvPers wil lbe clashing to keep borders safe.

 

 

Ah.... they say video games are art, and I do like it when art imitates life. :P

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I agree with most of the others in this thread that land will perhaps not be all that valuable but what you put on that land will be. I also wonder if they plan on having most land not have a large amount of resources but some area with very dense resources. This would create a high amount of value for certain pieces of land as mines.

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This whole idea of hexes in game on one planet sounds kinda dumb. You have a whole Galaxy with billions of planets. Why are the organizations on one planet? If this game and Elite Dangerous could be put together it would be the greatest Game EVER!!

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Reality check.

 

Using our one REAL measure (Earth):

 

Surface area: 501,000,000 km2

 

Dry bits (usuable "territory"): 139,870,000 km2 or about 29.2% of the total surface area.

 

Arable land - example only - obviously mining is different): About 55,948,000 km2 or about 10 of the total surface area...

 

And then to refine it further (for instance) when it comes to human settlement, historically something like 80% of all human settlement was within walking distance of salt.

 

Key takeaway - there is a crap ton of "territory" to be had in a setting like DU - you may consider this "infinite". But only (if modelled right) a very small percentage of that territory will be usable in some way and thus matters - Sovereign Territory therefore is really actually "finite" and always will be.

 

Sovereign Territory isn't about how much km2 you control - it's about WHAT is in the territory you control, or what controlling that territory strategically gives you access to or control over.

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expanding will also be very expensive at least until something is set up while just bringing in something like mining equipment and drilling a hole then getting out is decently cheap compared to setting up a whole city. also yes you will probably need a city or at least some kind of infrastructure as you need fuel along with possibly food energy and maybe some other things which is far easier to come by when you live near other players. so there are things that drive people apart and to expand but also other factors that cause them to group together and that territory that they group together on will be valuable to organizations.

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This would or could in turn however result in niche markets far out - as alternative or competition to a potential "stranglehold" others may have over the "core areas".

 

Whether socially or economically, I assume branching or moving out will still be useful or viable. With demand comes supply, or the other way around.

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Choosing to bulld a new outpost or not is a logistics thing, presumably you are going to need to build refineries and factories to build new constructs eventually the time and risk of pirates when traveling from mining sites to refineries will make it worth the cost of establish outposts. Defending those refineries, factories, storage areas and social spots will be a big job for a large organisation. Defending ever large volumes will be tricky.

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Mentioned that in other thread already but again the same point would be valid here. 

If Dual will be well balanced based on energy requirements there is nothing to worry about.

 

The answer to your question will come down to one thing.

 

Work out how much energy/resources you need to acquire land vs expand.

If expansion will be hard enough that nobody will reach ends of galaxy in a lifetime it is safe to call this game infinite.

If you need a year or so to reach next solar system I think we will never run out of territorial wars ;)

 

I bet many nations we know on Earth given a chance to move within a year to next solar system would leave our planet many centuries ago :D

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How valuable is it in real life?  it's just the same.

 

 

But we can't go to the stars you say... we can't even get off our planet practically...

 

Yep.  Just like in Dual Universe it'll take time and effort and many people working together to travel...  The limit is practicality.  

 

This won't be a free flying go anywhere at any time in no time game.  The same things that prevent you from loading up your car and driving across a continent on a whim in real life are the same things that will stop you from going too far in Dual Universe. 

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Even if the universeis endless, and it's not hard to get around (neither of which are necessarily true according to the devs), there are still plenty of economic reasons why people will want to stay centralized. You can't make money if there's nobody to sell anything to. You'd also have to be entirely self-sufficient in terms of rare resources, construction, even new blueprints. You'd have to design and build everything yourself. Not to mention you'd have a real hard time getting any more recruits, as they'd have to travel all they way out to wherever you are to be worth anything. No, I think people will stay centralized because it will be difficult not to be close to the Hub, which will probably be the Arkship.

 

To use the EVE example, the closer you get to the trade hubs, the more people there are, Jita especially. Even null-sec entities that base their existence on being on the fringe of space still live as close to the core as they can. Not many alliances have their base of operations out in Cobalt Edge, or the back end of Period Basis, do they? Even if they own sov there, that's mostly for ratting space, and the rest of the time they fart around the high-traffic areas like everyone else.

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The same things that prevent you from loading up your car and driving across a continent on a whim in real life are the same things that will stop you from going too far in Dual Universe. 

 

How do you know about that court order?

 

Er... I mean - yes - I agree - practical limitations, resources, other words about something something early game limitations.

 

:ph34r:

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I have seen some people arguing if DU is really infinite, and i honestly don't know, but in theory true infinity could be achieved like this:

 

minecraft isn't infinite because the world center is the center of the map, and thus due to floating point exceptions, the extremes become jumpy. additionally, the terrain generation has been fixed, but before that it was wired because of floating point exceptions too (and an error in the algorithm).

 

recipe to make a truely infinite universe:

1: the center of the universe is literally the player, he will thus always experience the optimal floating point precision.

2: each planet/chunk must have its own plane of reference. no float as position, no double, Big Integers. they will only become expensive once in the 128 bit range:  1.7014118e+38 units, which for 1mm precision, you would have 1.7014118e+35 meters with the galaxy being 9.4607e+17 meters which is 1.7983995e+17 galaxies, so yeah.... try travelling that in a lifetime.

3: have planets in their own frame of reference and organized in an octree lookup table so you can easily get the reference described of all the planets around you so you can query them individually for different precision. lower precision are not generated until needed (the metadata is kept with the planet to resume generation of more detailed features. 

4: every enclosing type has an octree of the types it encloses to promote efficient movement (galaxies could rotate efficiently with its people and planets inside)

 

the Intel Xeon Phi already even supports 512 bit operations... so yeah... performance is not an issue...

 

this system allows for a linear performance scaling in performance and memory needs of the world.

 

I don't think NQ has implemented that, since 64 bit sizes already allow for a galaxy sized playing fields, but if they are gonna be around a long time (10 years) they better plan for a system, to use the available performance for optimum fun :)

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Ah this question. Why not infinite? The main problem remains the memory space it takes. The more you go further the more space is generated. Then, when it comes to a limit (computed by the server), why not close the Universe on itself, making it the interior of a sphere? We would go round, it will be fun, and easily readable on a map (even though it would be a big map, scalable). The servers them only load user by user with a visibility range, so the main loading charge should be the player's connection asking for the game to show.

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Ah this question. Why not infinite? The main problem remains the memory space it takes. The more you go further the more space is generated. Then, when it comes to a limit (computed by the server), why not close the Universe on itself, making it the interior of a sphere? We would go round, it will be fun, and easily readable on a map (even though it would be a big map, scalable). The servers them only load user by user with a visibility range, so the main loading charge should be the player's connection asking for the game to show.

Ah but here is where it gets neat.

 

You can pitch the idea of a semi-infinite world, but when the server reaches its limit in generating new planets (and I'l willing to bet after some players in beta decide to fly off in different directions for as long as possible), it will simply stop generating new planets. Sure a player could continue to explore beyond, but as long as there are no voxels to be edited beyond the edge of a planet, the server will only track the player's position as relative to the nearest worlds. The player could probably continue to march into the void, but the server would prevent them from building any stations beyond the "edge".

 

Then the universe would be effectively limited at that point, taking the shape of all of the discovered planets so far, but it would certainly not be a sphere. The furthest points will be the furthest points explored, and everywhere without a discovered world would be blank until the next expansion.

 

I don't expect the players to really hit this limit, you can do some nifty things with game mechanics to make it very challenging to travel long distances. Especially if they decide that planets further out are also further apart.

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Actually a closed sphere would be the same as boundaries but you would be as teleported when you reach the boundary. I will find this pretty interesting for the gameplay. The problem if you make boundaries as you say is that the one that settles at the boundary first has a very advantage on others. The people at the boundary will have not to look at their back. A world where there is no center seems more balanced to me.

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