Thursday, April 4, 2013

The Kepler in the 2-Mile Hex

Regarding my plans for Kosovo.

Before I get into any of this, I need to state first and foremost, I have no intention of working over my entire world upon this scheme.  I would not live long enough, for one thing.  It's purpose is to define small areas which need greater detail, and no more.

Secondly, I feel I need to rejoin with a comment that a computer program goes into far, far more intricate detail about relatively unimportant things than I'll be discussing today.  So where it comes to describing me as going way over the top, I don't think that's at all fair.  The programming for watering one of your plants the year round would be much more complicated than this ... and, like this, that is also something you could just do yourself.  So let's have some perspective.

Now, look at this.

That is a recent generator I have fixed up on excel for the use in creating hex patterns, or 'groups,' for my world.  See, unlike the random hex mapping posts I've done, I have no intention of calculating out 6-mile hexes.  I did once, yes ... I must admit, my mind was in that place.  But of late I have been thinking, if you're going to do something, go long and go deep.

My intention is to expand the Kosovo map on the post linked above (see below, where I've posted the map again) down to the 2-mile hex level ... here's a rough representation:

Forgive the rough appearance; and as I've explained before,
I like using the color pink as a base color -
it stands out, so that if you've missed something,
it's obvious
 And here's Kosovo that I posted before:

Nine hexes across doesn't quite make 2-mile hexes, obviously.  Each hex is actually 11,733.33 feet, or 3,911.11 yards.  That's 44 battlemaps in diameter, assuming 53 five-foot hexes on the long axis.  I hope that helps the gentle reader's conception.

My plan is to generate 7 Groups per 20-mile hex ... and then to fill in the holes later in two clever ways (which I will get to in due time).  But how does one define the groups from a single figure?  Is it really possible to define 55+ hexes with nothing more than the number '25?'

At this point, I'm going to assume you've looked at the excel download that's available on the wiki link I've posted.  The front page, the Entry sheet, asks you to add the number that's highlighted in yellow.  For this hex in Kosovo, we would type 25 ... and then it would generate a combination of hex groups which would correspond to that number.  I got 1 type III; 1 type V; 1 type VI; 3 type VII; and 1 type VIII.  We should know from previous posts about hex generation that this applies to groups that contain 2 wilderness hexes (type III), 4 wilderness hexes (type V), 5 wilderness hexes (type VI), 6 wilderness hexes (type VII), and all, or 7 wilderness hexes (type VIII).  Sorry to be pedantic and all, but I'm hoping the reader is on the same page with me.

The hexagonal figure on the Entry sheet then indicates the order that these hexes are places, with 1st referring to the most civilized hex and 7th referring to the least civilized hex.  Each hex is then rolled for its 'group' precisely the same way I rolled them in the plotting posts.

How does the generator arrive at that distribution?  Well ... this is something I worked out just yesterday.  If we look at the Stage 1 Sort sheet, I worked out all the possible combinations for group types, where the total number of groups added up to seven.  I couldn't manage to work out the exact calculation of how many there ought to be ... I just couldn't drum up the requisite math.  So I laid them out manually, because I'm completely nuts, the way Johannes Kepler was.  The total combinations I got were 3,131 ... which sounds like it ought to be the right number, but who the hell knows.

I then assigned a type I hex 64 points, a type II hex 32 points, a type III hex 16 points and so on, adding them together to get all the possible combinations.  If you roll down the spreadsheet to line 2,856, you'll see that there are 15 possible group combinations that can add up to '25' ... so when you think about it, with 3,131 combinations for all the possible infrastructure levels - and a complete 20-mile hex being covered with civilized small hexes not occurring until reaching 448 - we are talking very, very little repetition.  The massive cultured areas will be similar, in at least their wilderness aspects; many 20 mile hexes will be pure wilderness; but the gradient between will be varied to the extreme.  Which I just have to say, I love.

Pure civilized areas will have the most features, so that will change their nature ... adding in all those things I talked about here.  And the wilderness has its own appeal.

So I'll be sketching out Kosovo over the next week or so.  For now, this is all just food for thought.  The reader can observe how really clunky I am with excel ... but I use what I know, and it doesn't have to be pretty to work.


Arduin said...

Ha, I've been beating my head against a wall trying to figure out how to transpose the larger numbers into the simplified set you designed.

I should have known when you made the posts about land size that the direction to go was down, especially since I made the damn post about infinitely scalable hexes in days long gone.

Egg. On. Face.

With that in mind, I'm even more interested in what will be going on here.

The online party (where did that go, by the way?) will be nearing their land soon enough, so that'll be awesome to see this system "in action" as it were.

As a lead in to eventual encounter tables, and how to distribute treasure based on the surrounding "wealth" of civilization, this is absolutely thrilling.

I love these ideas. They are simple, expandable, and not even difficult to implement. Perfect storm.

Alexis Smolensk said...

I did change something I'd intended to do before, rating those things at 100, so don't feel bad. I misled you. I kid you not; the methodology for making the connection was entirely invented in the last 24 hours. Up until yesterday, my thought process on how to do it extended to, "Well, I'll think of something."

I always feel confident there, because I always think of something.