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Topic: Making wild animals reproducible

Solstice_s_Return
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Posted at: 2020-02-22, 10:43

Wouldn't it be nice if wild animals had a chance to breed by themselves? If they had such an ability, I think it should be something like this:

Whenever two animals of the same species pass through the same node on the map and in this node there's also a tree, there's some percentage points chance that a new animal of the same species gets spawned. Trees are involved in the equation only to make this happen most likely in dense forest areas.

Different animals could have different breed rates and maybe if not passing through a node with a tree from time to time(should be quite a long time) , also a possibility to die.

Other nice things to have would of course be to make predators have a chance to eat herbivores when they pass through a same node. Also, when a herbivore sits in player's field, it can't grow because it is being eaten at the same time.


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stonerl
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Posted at: 2020-02-22, 10:56

Wouldn't it be nice if wild animals had a chance to breed by themselves?

Well, in theory but this would render the barbarians gamekeeper useless.


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Solstice_s_Return
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Posted at: 2020-02-22, 11:04

It doesn't need to be that effective and as it also depends from forests, the breeding would most propably be effective only if player intentionally pursues to do so on some areas. And if there's too low amount of same species on the forest area, it won't be effective even then as propability of passing through the same node would be pretty low.


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Nordfriese
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Posted at: 2020-02-22, 11:25

+1, I like all the ideas in the first post very much face-smile.png

However we should keep them all pretty uneffective:

  • low breed chances (perhaps give each animal a "preferred climate" and make breeding chance dependent on how well it matches the tree's terrain preferences)

  • low effect of herbivores on player fields (if the animal stays there for x seconds the field's next growth stage should be delayed by the same amount)

  • low chances of predators succeeding in eating herbivores (in particular they should not actively hunt for them).

The animal maximum lifetime should be very very large (~10 hours, with random factor going up to 50 hours) imho


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niektory
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Posted at: 2020-02-22, 11:59

I think the breeding chance should be high or even 100%, since the animals meeting in the first place is already based on luck. Low chance to meet combined with low chance to breed together would make the breeding very random and rare.

Instead, to limit the number of animals spawned, give each one a timer so once they breed once they can't breed again for some time. Newly spawned animals should also have a timer until they can breed. This way you can still limit the rate of breeding as desired but make it less based on luck.

Animals' death rate (and/or breeding chance) could be based on their population: If there are too many animals in an area they are more likely to die because of starvation (too much competition for food). This would prevent their population from exploding if left alone for a long time.

Edited: 2020-02-22, 12:10

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the-x
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Posted at: 2020-02-22, 12:34

I like this idea very much, some new concepts, but we also should keep in mind that it might changes lot in gameplay, like wildernesskeeper / fish ratio


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GunChleoc
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Posted at: 2020-02-22, 13:51

I like the idea too. I have opened a new issue with a link to this discussion https://github.com/widelands/widelands/issues/3709


Busy indexing nil values

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WorldSavior
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Posted at: 2020-02-22, 14:41

Changes are welcome here, as animals don't have a huge impact on the gameplay. Frisians and Empire might benefit on this, which is welcome too.


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king_of_nowhere
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Posted at: 2020-02-22, 15:20

i think if we want this to work without going in strange directions we need to recreate a small ecosystem. which is not really all that difficult. follow my lead

  • herbivores don't need to eat (well, they do, but it is assumed that grass is everywhere). when two of the same species move on a node, they can reproduce

  • carnivores also need to eat. if they move on the same node as an herbivore, they eat the herbivore. if a carnivore spends too much time without eating, it dies. carnivores reproduce like herbivores, but they also need to have eaten recently to be able to reproduce.

if we don't do that, i can easily envision runaway situations where the whole map is choke full of animals having reproduced without control. or where the carnivores have hunted all herbivores to extinction. with those few simple rules, if we set the parameters correctly, populations of herbivores and carnivores should control each other. also they should stay roughly constant, hence the need for animal breeders


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Solstice_s_Return
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Posted at: 2020-02-22, 16:17

king_of_nowhere wrote:

i think if we want this to work without going in strange directions we need to recreate a small ecosystem. which is not really all that difficult. follow my lead

  • herbivores don't need to eat (well, they do, but it is assumed that grass is everywhere). when two of the same species move on a node, they can reproduce

  • carnivores also need to eat. if they move on the same node as an herbivore, they eat the herbivore. if a carnivore spends too much time without eating, it dies. carnivores reproduce like herbivores, but they also need to have eaten recently to be able to reproduce.

if we don't do that, i can easily envision runaway situations where the whole map is choke full of animals having reproduced without control. or where the carnivores have hunted all herbivores to extinction. with those few simple rules, if we set the parameters correctly, populations of herbivores and carnivores should control each other. also they should stay roughly constant, hence the need for animal breeders

Low values should work like a control mechanism in itself, but careful consideration is absolutely necessary. The control mechanism suggested above would work only if there is a balance of carnivores and herbivores on the map to begin with (because I assume that game keeper doesn't favor any animal species and thus doesn't alter balance). However, most propably there is imbalance to begin with and so that kind of control mechanism might not work very well.

Low values and the fact that breeding takes place only in forested nodes would most likely prevent runaway problems exept maybe on maps with very high coverage of forests.

Currently it is very typical that animals go extinct during the game, so a runaway extinction problem is already there. I think that it would be nice for the player to be able to maintain animal resources by having forest areas and from time to time stopping hunting to avoid overhunting. The barbarians would still have an advantage because they wouldn't need big forest for that and also no need to avoid overhunting.

Maybe hunters could also have a bit of intelligence: if there's less than three animals of any species on the hunting area, the Hunter does not hunt those species as long as there's meat in the stock.

Edited: 2020-02-22, 16:22

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