[mod] Dwarf Fortress style caverns [dfcaverns]

FaceDeer
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[mod] Dwarf Fortress style caverns [dfcaverns]

by FaceDeer » Sat Mar 25, 2017 18:32

Inspired by caverealms and the epic work of gaming art that is Dwarf Fortress, this mod adds a series of vast cavern layers to the depths of Minetest that are populated with the flora of Dwarf Fortress.

Image

New "trees" include:

  • Tower caps
  • Goblin caps
  • Black caps
  • Nether caps
  • Fungiwood
  • Spore trees
  • Tunnel tube
  • Bloodthorn

New farmable plants include:
  • Plump helmet
  • Pig tail
  • Cave wheat
  • Sweet pods
  • Dimple cups
  • Quarry bushes

Caverns belonging to the first cavern layer can be found between -300 and -900, the second cavern layer between -900 and -1500, and the third cavern layer between -1500 and -2100. There are placeholder layers below that for the lava sea and hidden fun stuff. Eventually this will be configurable.

This mod depends on the utility mod subterrane, which was derived from Caverealms code which in turn was derived from Paramat's subterrain. Dynamic liquid is also recommended to provide Dwarf Fortress-like fluid dynamics.

This mod is still a work in progress right now and since it's a mapgen mod it's not easy to upgrade existing worlds with it. But it's reached a point where most of the main bits are in place so I'm announcing it here on the WIP Mods forum so that interested players can check it out and provide feedback.

Links

Last edited by FaceDeer on Sun Apr 02, 2017 00:00, edited 2 times in total.
 

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Re: [mod] Dwarf Fortress style caverns [dfcaverns]

by qwertymine3 » Sun Mar 26, 2017 01:56

I don't play dwarf fortress - but I took a look around in creative:

Great work so far - all of the caves are well designed and look nice.
It is also nice to see that they all present differnet challenges / rewards to the player. Leaving mese ore inside the lava tunnels is a nice touch to that effect.
I would also recommend using the dynamic liquids mod - as that would make the uppermost layer much more fun.

The transitions between the different levels need some work though:
The transition from the water-filled caves to the first large open caverns can generate a cavern with a roof of water which grinds the game to a halt when it flows.
It would be nice if the near-surface lava tunnels sprouted into a volcano on the surface - rather than just being cut off.

This would probably go well with a mobs mod - but that would obviously be a long-term goal, if at all.
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Re: [mod] Dwarf Fortress style caverns [dfcaverns]

by FaceDeer » Sun Mar 26, 2017 04:12

Thanks for the feedback! Comments from a non-DF player are greatly welcome too, helps me to know that the mods' appeal is more than just "cool, always wondered what a tower cap looked like" :)

qwertymine3 wrote:It is also nice to see that they all present differnet challenges / rewards to the player. Leaving mese ore inside the lava tunnels is a nice touch to that effect.


Once I get the lava sea implemented properly I think I'll be removing most of the non-lava mese ore and putting some giant mother lodes down there. :)

Differentiating the various biomes is definitely going to be an ongoing effort as I continue working on this thing. I've gone a bit beyond Dwarf Fortress with some of the details, such as making the farmable plants somewhat biome-specific. I am considering restricting their ability to grow to certain depths so that you'd need to have a continuing presence down there, not just a single seed-gathering run.

qwertymine3 wrote:The transitions between the different levels need some work though:
The transition from the water-filled caves to the first large open caverns can generate a cavern with a roof of water which grinds the game to a halt when it flows.


Yeah, the cave tsunamis are a tricky thing to fix. That's the main reason I've left the lava sea empty for now, a cave tsunami is messy enough when it's just water. For the time being I console myself that the worst of the CPU grind resolves itself in a few minutes as the water towers collapse, and then the cavern's water stays fairly stable after that.

qwertymine3 wrote:It would be nice if the near-surface lava tunnels sprouted into a volcano on the surface - rather than just being cut off.


Probably the subject for a whole other mod. :) This has been my first real foray into mapgen modding, I've learned a lot while doing it but one of the main things I've learned is that it can be annoyingly hard. Mapgen only "sees" one chunk of the map at a time so coordinating things over larger distances (such as the water level inside a cavern) can be tricky. You may have seen a few cave trees or giant stalactites in the caverns that have been cut in half by chunk boundaries, for example. Still working on that.

qwertymine3 wrote:This would probably go well with a mobs mod - but that would obviously be a long-term goal, if at all.


Indeed, and mob-making is something I haven't touched on at all yet so I'd have no idea where to get started on that. :) I could easily add spawners for existing mobs into the caverns, though, that's a more likely near-term thing I'll do.
 

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Re: [mod] Dwarf Fortress style caverns [dfcaverns]

by burli » Sun Mar 26, 2017 09:53

I really like those gigantic caverns, but only to fly around. I don't know how they should work an a normal game. If you hit such a cavern from the top you may see just darkness because the ground is out of the render distance. And it is impossible to get down without an endless rope or something like a parachute. Digging around will be frustrating.

I also don't like the excessive use of liquids. It's a problem if the cavern hits a normal cave with water.

And because of the height you can't enjoy the atmosphere cause you can't see the top of the cave

But I like the decoration of your mod. Never heard of DF
 

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Re: [mod] Dwarf Fortress style caverns [dfcaverns]

by FaceDeer » Sun Mar 26, 2017 10:20

You might find my sounding line and ropes mods useful for navigating large caverns like these. I've found that a 50m rope is often sufficient for climbing down from the ceiling, and only very rarely is a 100m rope not enough.

Draw distance depends in part on client settings, I'm usually able to see the ceiling when I'm down on the cavern floor. Varies with the size of the cavern, of course, and also to some degree on how I've entered the cavern - if I came in at floor level from the side the ceiling might not have actually been generated yet. The cave generation code has hooks to make dimensions configurable, I'll put them into the mod's settings next time I sit down to do more work on it so you can shrink things to your taste. I'll see about adding a setting to disable the flooded caverns, too, though personally I've rather been enjoying the challenge of cave diving.
 

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Re: [mod] Dwarf Fortress style caverns [dfcaverns]

by azekill_DIABLO » Sun Mar 26, 2017 14:16

looks like a very good mod!
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Re: [mod] Dwarf Fortress style caverns [dfcaverns]

by texmex » Tue Mar 28, 2017 16:49

I tried to try the mod out, but all I could find was the stalactites, stalagmites and some fungi. Went down to about -3700. Is there something else to do? Did I get a bad seed? (I put df2 as seed on mgv7)

I also get random lava lakes and flows at the surface.
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Re: [mod] Dwarf Fortress style caverns [dfcaverns]

by FaceDeer » Tue Mar 28, 2017 17:51

The giant caverns are somewhat sparsely distributed under the default settings, most of the underground is still solid stone. You may have just had bad luck with that seed. I'm working with a test map with seed "6" right now and when I go straight down from the origin there's a small Tower Cap cavern around the -500 mark (with more if you head in the +X direction, a bigger Tower Cap cavern is at 200, -500, 0) and a large Tunnel Tube/Spore Tree cavern at the -1700 mark. You can change the cavern dimensions a bit in the mod's advanced settings but I haven't experimented with them much myself so I can't guarantee nice-looking caverns if you fiddle with them.

The random lava lakes are a feature, they're the upper ends of vertical lava veins meant to emulate how lava is distributed in Dwarf Fortress. If you don't want them to punch all the way through to the surface you can remove the surface soil types from the "wherein" table of the lava ore registration in init.lua, though that could lead to a bit of a dangerous situation for the player when there's a layer of sand generated over lava. :)
 

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Re: [mod] Dwarf Fortress style caverns [dfcaverns]

by FaceDeer » Sun Apr 02, 2017 22:22

I've just updated the farming code to use node timers, so farm plants will now grow while you're not present and have a more consistent growth time. This is in line with modern farming mods (I rolled my own plant growth code rather than using existing farm mods directly so that I could have better control over it).
 


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