Some rough sketch ideas on procedural terrain generation for The Salvage. Iím doing some ultra-simplified mockups using quick dice rolls to inject randomness. I want to get a mental model of the most important steps for creating random yet interesting maps for the player.
Donít take any of these as indicative of the way the game will look, theyíre just sketch models, and very rough ones at that.
The rough steps I'm playing with are something like this:
1 - Create a mid-line which establishes the general pattern of the terrain. The line can change direction based on random input, so at each point it asks 'do I go up, down, or horizontal from this point?'
2 - Additional layers are drawn above and below the mid-line which follow similar rules. Each line uses the mid-line as a reference for direction, but uses random input to determine if it should mimic the mid-line or exaggerate up or down.
3 - Random sections of ground along the y-axis are picked to become shear points where the ground will be lifted or depressed, adding a bit of chaos into the general curvature.
4 - Caves are seeded randomly, with some caves growing using another dice roll.
5 - The terrain layer boundaries and cave edges are 'stamped' with random shapes to remove the straight geometries.
I'm not satisfied with this process, but I'm learning from it. I think the real interesting stuff will need to come from perlin noise or something capable of fast interesting results. What I need though is to work out procedures to edit down the amount of ugly monotony those types of terrain generators tend to spit out. I want the maps to feel stylized yet unfamiliar.