Frosch/GS Area Control

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Contents

Introduction

The goal of this API is to allow game scripts to assign certain behaviour to some regions of the map.

  • A region is a grouping of a number of tiles.
  • Regions are created by game scripts and are identified using RegionIDs.
  • Using the RegionID the game script can assign some properties to the region, which affects all tiles of the region. The region can also be deleted again using the ID.
  • Regions may overlap in which case all properties of all regions covering a certain tile apply to it. If multiple regions try to set the same property to a tile, then some region just wins. (the game script has no control over which region wins; it will likely be the region with the highest or lowest ID)


Definition

A region can be created in two ways:

  • by specifying a rectangle (tile, width, height)
  • by specifying a circle (center tile, squared euclidian distance)

More complex shapes can be created using multiple regions and assigning the same behaviour to them.

TODO Reconsider this approach and instead allow adding multiple shapes to a single region:

  • Grouping any tiles with a single RegionID allows to use regions also with other stuff by only referencing a single ID. See below
  • One can also consider allowing CSG, like setting shapes to add or subtract from the region.

Properties

After creation multiple properties of a region can be set.

  • Company filter
    The region can be set to influence only a set of companies. Furthermore there is a special "game engine" company which affects stuff OpenTTD does on its own without companies being involved (e.g. random industry construction).
  • Restrictions
    The region can be defined to restrict constructions. Following things can be disallowed:
    • Infrastructure construction. Destringuished in various groups:
      • Railroad, road/tram, ship, aircraft
      • Tracks (rail, road, canal), bridges (over the region), tunnels (under the region), stations, depots
      • "Tracks" include "convert rail" and waypoints/buoys
    • Infrastructure destruction. (same groups as construction)
    • Industry construction (including prospecting)
      • defined per industry type
      • industry density (some kind of percentage: 0% = "disallowed entirely", 100% = "normal appearance chance", 200% = "twice as often as normal")
    • Other actions
      clear land, clear river, clear water, purchase land, landscape, plant tree, found town, build object
  • Each restriction is assigned a GSText which specifies the error message if a companies tries to execute the action.
  • For AIs there is a special error code "GS restriction applies" without further details.

It remains to be decided what restrictions can be set using a single region, resp. when multiple regions with the same shape need to be used.

Examples

  • Forbid "game engine" to build processing industries in an area.
  • Disallow all but one company to build infrastructure in an area.
  • Disallow destruction of rivers on the whole map.


Off-topic: non-regional restrictions

Independent of regions it might be interesting to allow restricting these things:

  • building/selling vehicles
  • engine preview
  • town actions

But these things would be associated with engine types or towns, not with map regions.


NewGRF interface

Regions could also be used to set properties readable by NewGRFs. Most likely this is interesting for industries.

So the GS could define per industry type in a region:

  • Density of industry type (already in the list above)
    This somewhat defines a likelyhood of appearing and closure
  • Recommended production level (as in "low" or "high")

Examples:

  • Industries producing COAL should try not to close in this region.
  • Raw industries producing OIL are more likely to spawn here.

As long as OpenTTD controls the production and closure it will try to meet the requirements. Otherwise NewGRFs will have to support it explicitly.


Immediate actions

It might also be useful to add some commands for execution in regions. Such as:

  • Destroy stuff in region (like flooding)
    Problem: Some things need flooding in multiple steps (first vehicle, then infrastructure, ...), so the "flood command" has to persist for some time. (might need some fancy animation)
  • Spawn industries (i.e. the GS does not have to set a specific tile, but OpenTTD tries a whole region to plant one)


Other stuff

  • Cargo payment rates
    Use regions to modify cargo payment in certain areas.
    • Both for source and destination
    • Amount is set relative to normal payment (like subsidies), e.g. 50% or 300%.
  • Highlight map areas
    • Regions could be associated the goals. Then a button in the goal GUI could enable highlighting of the area associated to a goal in the viewports and the minimap. (new value for GSGoal::GoalType -> scroll to region and highlight)
    • Problem: It is only feasible to attach a single region to a goal. So maybe a single region should be able to represent a complex shape, instead of only a simple one.
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