Procedural Generation is a mathematical design tool.
Summary[edit | edit source]
No Man's Sky is a game built on procedural generation; that is, each planet, creature, ship, multi-tool and other items are created procedurally using algorithms in the game itself, rendering diversity through each item created. The following is taken from Wikipedia.
What is Procedural Generation?[edit | edit source]
The term procedural refers to the process that computes a particular function. Fractals, an example of procedural generation, express this concept, around which a whole body of mathematics—fractal geometry—has evolved. Commonplace procedural content includes textures and meshes. Sound is often procedurally generated as well and has applications in both speech synthesis as well as music. It has been used to create compositions in various genres of electronic music by artists such as Brian Eno who popularized the term "generative music".
Previous use[edit | edit source]
While software developers have applied procedural generation techniques for years, few products have employed this approach extensively. Procedurally generated elements have appeared in earlier video games: The Elder Scrolls II: Daggerfall takes place on a mostly procedurally generated world, giving a world roughly twice the actual size of the British Isles. Soldier of Fortune from Raven Software uses simple routines to detail enemy models, while its sequel featured a randomly-generated level mode. Avalanche Studios employed procedural generation to create a large and varied group of tropical islands in great detail for Just Cause. "No Man's Sky," a game being developed by games studio Hello Games is all based upon Procedurally generated elements.
Uses of Procedural Generation[edit | edit source]
Almost all objects in the No Man's Sky universe are procedurally generated. The only things in the universe that are not procedurally generated are the names of the first five galaxies. These are some, but not by a long shot all, of the procedurally generated objects in the game:
- All galaxies
- Names of galaxies 6+
- Layout and type of star systems
- Names of star systems
- Amounts of planets and moons
- Biomes and sizes of planets
- Resources on the surface of a planet or moon
- Starships in space stations or trading posts
- Trades at Trade Terminals
- Structures and mission locations
The player's starting starship as of Beyond, Radiant Pillar BC1, is actually procedurally generated. It is always the same due to it being generated immediately on the start of a world, and the IGS (In-Game Seed) is always the same. The IGS differs from the LSS (Local System Seed) in that the LSS is essentially the system's RNG algorithm, whereas the IGS is run by the game itself.