RE: SOFTWARE: Do you play computer games?

From: Dickey, Michael F (
Date: Tue Feb 26 2002 - 08:09:25 MST

-----Original Message-----
From: Anders Sandberg []
Sent: Tuesday, February 26, 2002 8:21 AM
Subject: Re: SOFTWARE: Do you play computer games?

My main complaint is that all these new technologies doesn't really
change the world - you still have cities, army units and mines even
when your devices are nanotech with AI powered by controlled
singularities. I would really like to create a game where such
developments really changed the way everything worked, but I realize
this might be extremely tricky to do game balance-wise and in a way that
non-initiated players would understand.

One day - when I have time - I would dearly love to participate in
writing a game like SMAC with truly transhuman technologies and more
interesting personality simulations of the opponents.


Indeed, same here. I can not add another 'extropian' like game that exists
to the list (I did really like alpha centauri) but, like Anders, I would
like to write my own sometime. My idea, in case there are any programmers
out there with a lot of free time would be an RTS, like star craft / alpha
centauri. It starts in a similiar way that some other games out there
start, at the beginning of technological evolution, say early in the
agricultural age. The whole game is logorithmically based, at first you
control individual units (your village people) the game progresses through
the ages and technological changes. Not a whole lot different then what
some other games do. But here is the difference, the game progresses far
into the future from Type I to Type II onto Type III galactic civilizations.
Your map starts out as, say, a 1km x 1km grid, a town or village. You
control individual units, they are all to scale and 3D models. But, as
technology and scale progresses, your map gets bigger and you can scale in
and out. The smallest map is 1km x 1km, and covers 1km^2, the next can be
10km x 10km, a county sized scale (or maybe something in between, 2.5km,
5km) At 10km you control 10 units at a time, and AI takes a small hold over
the units. You zoom out again, you are at 100km x 100km and control 100
units at a time (for example) Your territory covers a whole state. You
scale further out to provinces, countries, hemispheres, planets, solar
systems, galaxies, galactic clusters...

The flow of time would not be linear as well, as you progress further, time
passes more rapidly (just as kurzweil speaks of the diminishing time between
salient events) At the basic level, time passes 1 sec for every second
played, then moves to a 10:1, 100:1, etc. etc.

The technological progression can probably be modeled by following basic
technological curves, things that like speed of transportation, (past the
confining light speed limit of classical / relativistic physics through
whatever technological name you muster)

The main measurement in the game will be energy, how much energy is your
society producing how much can it control / harness (for transporation,
weapons, etc)

Energy generation / storage devices will go through the same technological

I would like it to be 3D, so views could be scaled and rotated easily, and
to switch to a first person view as well (which just amounts to a different
camera location in the 3D world)

The game could start out as just one planet, and expansion packs would make
solar systems, galactic quadrants, galaxies, etc. available.

I would like to model algorithms that make up the names for the
technological breakthroughs, so they will not be limited or predifined, and
different civiliazations may have different means of accomplishing these
things (different size devices, different levels of effeciency, etc)

Ok, Im done.... back to the real world.



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