A new concept for a modpack

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Drbretto

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Mar 5, 2016
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So, I've been thinking.

(Pause for groans)

I was self admiring my progress on my RS unit, joking to myself about how if it gets any more complex, it'll literally gain consciousness. A point I am not alone in thinking, see the thread on Colin's Adventures. As @Inaeo pointed out, that's the same concept. These things can get pretty advanced and actually pretty early on can be set up to practically build itself once you set it up to automate building it's own expanded storage blocks and other parts.

So, I know much @ShneekeyTheLost wants to see modpacks designed for specific purposes, let's take this idea to the next level and make that the focus.

This is essentially the opposite of a Skyblock. You'd start in a little cave at bedrock level (no bedrock flatteners) with the barest of essentials, and the goal is to build, with the fewest materials as possible, a self running, mining, world-eating, damn near living RS storage based system. Like a mechanical giant worm that eats the rock surrounding itself, processingbits own materials into the parts it needs to expand it's own capabilities, like automatically building its own storage blocks and placing them based on mathematical patterns you program into a computer mod.

The idea being that you'd have this minimalist setup, then, you flip a switch and the rest is entirely automated. You can measure yourself in different ways, too. For one person, it might be about starting with literally 5 blocks or something, where the results are about the mathematics. About seeing just how complex of a thing you can create with so few starting materials.

For someone else, it could be about making use of every block it "eats" so there's no... Er.. waste left over. (Yes, that waste would be literally it's own poop. Think about that for a second). These could use algorithms to place decorative blocks as well. The possibilities are endless. Especially if you throw in things like Silent's Gems that can sort if dye stone bricks, you can have a lot of fun and show a lot of creativity with this.

It's literally a model for the mechanics of life, too. Everything you are is built out if what you shove down your mouth hole. In this I'd think if it more like a worm or caterpillar, eating the world and processing the "nutrients".


I think this can be done with existing mods, the only part that's hard is getting it to place blocks. It's not necessarily cheating to set up RFTools builders, for example. Bit if there's a good reliable way to build any kind of a builder that actually moves and places blocks in 3d space, that would be better. If not, let's just make that mod ourselves.

Anyway, what do ya think? Can we do this? We can pool some ideas together, get some different perspectives together and maybe whittle it down to something pretty cool?

Edit: tentatively calling this World Eater
 
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Drbretto

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I didn't want to just brainstorm a bunch if random ideas in the opener, so I'll do it here instead.

I am thinking a world with no sky. 100% underground. That way they wouldn't need to start at bedrock. Could really play with oregen. Put everything you need in there somewhere, but we can diversify playthroughs by having a lot of biome dependent generation. I'd leave the details to one of you pros out there.

Caves? Monsters? I do feel like it should still be a little bit survival based. Is there any way out there to play with cave generation? If your worm is going to eat the world around you, it should reveal a surprise here and there. Maybe build some underground structures and generate them through something like recurrent complex? Can make some crucial ingredients only findable this way, to encourage some early game exploration.

It wouldn't necessarily have to be one flipped switch. As you play for the first time, you won't be able to anticipate everything. So, you'll still be encouraged to automate as much as possible throughout, you'd be working your way up to that point fir a good while before you can just let it run forever. Then you can watch your baby grown up, all by itself, lol

I really like the idea of a mod just for this. Something simple enough. It's a block controlled by a base terminal. It can incrementally move one block at at time anywhere in 3d space, and each side of it can mine a block, or place a block. Pretty simple, right? Set up the whole gamut, upgrades for speed, fortune and silk touch, you know, the classics. Maybe bigger drill heads to mine bigger chunks at once. That way, we could make it easier to program the block placement.

This is totally doable.
 
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Drbretto

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Hell, just make it an RS addon. Can make it tiered, like, the block starts off it has to return to empty storage, later on it can beam the items back to the main unit, or interface block. Upgradable range, maybe give it it's own WiFi like the wireless grids or tie into that one and let higher tiered world eaters go further from an antenna. Can set it up to mine in different patterns, too.
 
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Cpt_gloval

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You can already do world eaters with Funky Locomotion flying miners, Direwolf20 builds them from tie to time in his various playthroughs.
Uses AE2 or RS destruction planes to "eat" it's way through things. It's complicated but can be made to eat on 5 sides with the side pointed back at you open for access/maintenance.

RS has wireless connectivity that's is power limited in distance.
 

Drbretto

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Perfect, so it's already kind of there! I'll have to see what I can do with funky locomotion, then. If that about covers that part, the rest is just throwing together the right mix of mods and configuration.

Edit: more I think about what I was thinking about for a mod, the more I realized it sounded more like an RFTools builder addon than an RS addon. And if Mcjty wants to steal that idea, you go right ahead!
 

Cpt_gloval

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For the building of itself an RFTool Builder would be the ticket.
In the Maintenance opening of the locomotion machine put a builder that is set to run once every say 20 times the machine moved forward putting in a lattice of RS cables for connectivity.
Would only really work well for single direction eating/growth without needing to be rejiggered but you could easily make a machine that would dig a tunnel to infinity with RS cables all along for branching out from there.
 

Inaeo

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I was watching a bit of random YouTube the other night, and I saw a 100% Vanilla automated mining machine. It uses pistons and some newer blocks like the Observer and the new slime block(?) to basically make Vanilla frame machines. Using something like this and some basic block placers fed by Ender Chests or similar, you could conceivably autocraft and place parts of the system with ease.

I've considered trying to duplicate the old IC2 Mining Well ships using the AA Vertical Digger, but I haven't used it enough to get a feel for plausibility yet. Anything that can move a small RS system forward (Funky Locomotion comes to mind, as noted above) can use a wall of Destruction Planes (or equivalent) to chew through the world horizontally forever, assuming you can chunkload it as it moves. If you combine the two systems, it can theoretically mine the entirety from build limit to bedrock in an infinite line, again assuming chunkloading.

Challenges involved in a fully underground play through are different than normal. For instance, food and farming will be nearly non-existent, as passive animals need sky and grass to spawn, and long grass will be harder to find. I think AA adds the caverns full of trees, so apples would be available in small doses, and long grass may possibly spawn, allowing wheat. No sugar cane means no paper. Some of this could be seeded as dungeon loot, but it would be a considerable challenge when starting out. Add in something like Spice of Life, and survival becomes a race of it's own.

Due to the way initial player spawns are handled, I'm not sure if spawning in a cave is possible without some mod intervention. I believe Vanilla mechanics dictate the player is placed on top of the highest Y-level solid block, which in a solid world, would place the player above the build limit. I'm certain you could overcome this, but it's something to consider.

Sorry for the disjointed thoughts. I'm way to tired to think. I'll come back with some conceptual thought later.
 

Drbretto

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I think there's just a little bit of misunderstanding here, and it very well could be on my end.

I am ware that there are things like this world eater out there. That's where the concept started. I could do exactly this right now on my own pack that I put together a couple of months ago and I didn't even have any of this in mind.

But, this is just a little bit of a different focus. Right now, the idea of building a large, self-moving world eating machine is the challenge itself. In this, it's not about whether or not you CAN build it, it's about what you do with it.

First, it doesn't have to move. It only needs to grow. This is sort of modeled after my own little underground base that I've built in my current world where I've manually done most of what I'd like this to do automatically. Where that base is now was all solid rock and I've been digging it out bigger and bigger to mine, while the size and scope of my main machine continues to grow, both because of the resources I've picked up and to hold more of the rest of it.

Second, it's as much about using the resources it picks up as it is about clearing up the area. Most world eater machine's I've seen are pretty much just there to clear a big ole hole. This would be meant to automatically build itself with those materials. Eg, let's say there's some sensor there to detect when storage space is getting low. That gets triggered, then it would automatically craft another 64 storage block (let's leave the discs out for a second here), and not just make it, but automatically place it, adding onto the machine's main storage. Coal or oil or whatever gets processed and sent automatically to generators that run the whole thing. Meanwhile, that cobblestone is getting condensed, leaving plenty of open space, but it's building a little shell around itself with the decorative blocks that it mines as well.

Let's take the rest of the details out. Forget about the world gen and the world being all underground. Just picture this machine starting at bedrock level. Now imagine it's mined out a giant bowl, like an 8 chunk radius from the center, all the way to the top, looking like a DE reactor just blew up. And in the center at the bottom of this giant bowl would be a large core of an RS system, a bit block full of 64k storage blocks, auto crafters, fluid storage blocks, etc. And all around that, spiraling out are pretty patterns of processed blocks that it picked up. Almost like petals of a flower, with the RS system at the core acting like, I don't know what they call it, but the bud of the flower, essentially. Just one example, you can make it a big, long worm. Instead of making the decorative blocks look like they're part of it, you could have it automatically line the walls with patterns instead, or whatever.

But, this is different from existing world eaters. The goal is different. By necessity, it would need a simpler system to do this than what's out there. I really like the idea of this basic, but powerful mod.

Imagine this mod like this. There's a main core interface and one or more of these blocks that can move around via algorithms from that interface, kind of like simple drones. Maybe there are prepackaged mining shapes, right, like you would build a drone that's programmed to mine all around that center point, but in the shape of a dome. Or, maybe make that giant bowl from the previous example. You could upgrade this drone with all the stuff I mentioned in the previous posts, like fortune and speed and all that, but otherwise, once you set it on its path, it will continue to mine in that pattern. Then, build another drone, this time, you give it a block type, and you set it to continue making this pattern with that block type as long as that block type is available and there's room to place it, so, say, as you continue to pick up, say, granite, the machine would first convert it to polished granite, then the drone would continue to add to its pre-programmed pattern every time it gets more granite to work with.

And you could control these patterns with something like RFTools control. Which is why I was saying that maybe it fits more as an RFTools type addon than RS.

Maybe that's all unrealistic right now, but I feel like this mining drone thing could work. And not just for this pack, but as a general miner/builder in any pack, really. But a cornerstone for a pack designed specifically for something like this.
 

Inaeo

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It reminds me of the ComputerCraft Forum challenge to design a self replicating turtle program. Several submissions were put forward, all with unique perks and flaws, but all of them ended up being one turtle to start, then two, then four, then...
 
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Drbretto

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It reminds me of the ComputerCraft Forum challenge to design a self replicating turtle program. Several submissions were put forward, all with unique perks and flaws, but all of them ended up being one turtle to start, then two, then four, then...

Yes yes! Exactly that, only Minecraftized! And perhaps made easier for your average Joe Blow
 

Inaeo

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Yes yes! Exactly that, only Minecraftized! And perhaps made easier for your average Joe Blow
ComputerCraft was a Minecraft mod based around the LUA programming language. It was amazingly overpowered if you knew how to code it and spent the time (or found and downloaded the right programs), but since most people don't know how to code, it had an odd sense of balance.
 

Drbretto

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Right, which is why I'm talking about making a mod just for this that streamlines it. Think of RFTools control meets Buildcraft robots. Programmable mining and building drones that you could put together in a non-programmy interface. Someone convince McJty this is a good idea so he can do it for us! lol
 

ShneekeyTheLost

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So basically a mobile semi-autonomous RFTools Builder? Not sure if I can get behind that. I mean, I'm pretty firmly in the camp of 'CC was a bad thing for every pack it was included in' for the same reason EE was back in the day... it blew the top off of the power scale. Not to say it was 'OP', since that's a fairly meaningless term to begin with, but simply that its power curve was MASSIVELY higher than anything else in any pack it was listed in, and as a result would throw off the balance of the whole pack. Then again, I've been programming for a while now, and kinda picked up LUA's logic right off the bat, so... YMMV. I didn't really need to download programs, I just wrote what I needed at the time.

This... sounds a lot like that. My problem with CC was Turtles were Too Good(tm) for what they were supposed to be. So I would wager that this would feel roughly the same.

I do like the basic idea of starting deep in the earth, though. Do you remember the old 404 challenge from pre1.7Beta? There was a thin skin of gravel over a huge pit, and you had one day to gather All The Things on the surface that you would need, and when sun set, you broke a gravel, and slid down the watery slope all the way down into the depths, never to see the light of day again. And now you need to survive and thrive with what you have on you, with hostile mobs 24/7 since we're underground and thus dark (and lava both preventing spawns nearby AND being a huge risk due to being knocked in).

Something like that would be a really fun pack to play. Your first problem is getting food sorted in the dark depths, because even if you started off with Seeds of some kind, you will need to get water and dirt. And to get water, you're probably going to need a bucket, which means iron. With mobs crawling all over the cave system you are in, and no torches to light it up with yet.

Of course, modded minecraft makes some of the challenges the old 404 challenge had less challenging, but still interesting.
 

ICountFrom0

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I've been plotting on this idea for a long time. Back in the day I called it skynet, and theorized that it would be possible, from a platform trapped impossibly high in the air, to program a turtle to do everything needed in the world that you where not allowed to touch.
 
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Drbretto

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Well, I guess this doesn't have to be a modpack or a mod. It can just be a personal challenge. This is doable now. I'm going to see how close I can get to this idea in my own pack. I think it would make THE coolest time lapse videos.

I think this idea has legs. I can't get it out of my head. I don't think I'm going to just get started on it this weekend, really. I think I need to run background calculations in my head for a few weeks while I continue my current projects. But, ultimately, I think I can solve this riddle and refine it into something neat.