The Auto-Evo Algorithm Forum Game
For those of you who have been following, I’ve been working on creating an algorithm for implementing Auto-Evo in Thrive. It’s a three episode series, and I’m still only on the first episode because of how much content there is to cover. I’ve covered a lot of concepts so far and the algorithm is getting pretty complex, but I think that the actual simulation, and the patterns between evolutions and changes to the environment, are still predictable and intuitive.
To test how intuitive the model is, as well as a free chance for catching any bugs, I will be using the current algorithm to run an evolution forum game. Everyone will control their species which will be represented by a collection of stats in the algorithm. Every round I will input these into the algorithm to see how the populations change over the millennia. Every time a species evolves I will input the evolved stats into the algorithm and see how it changes the overall ecosystem. I will basically be acting as the computer when you actually play Thrive with the final implementation of Auto-Evo. Hopefully this gives a little taste of what Thrive will feel like when the Aware Stage has been fleshed out!
If you want to join, post now! If you don’t post in time, I can add you to the waitlist.
Keep in mind this is a very, very, very early play-test. Think of it as an alpha of the alpha of the alpha. It’s mostly to fix bugs, observe patterns between traits, and see how intuitive the gameplay and the provided performance statistics are. Hopefully you have fun while helping to build the algorithm.
The game will start by only accepting two players, who will take over the first two species that split off from the original species called Primum Thrivium. Every time a player’s species goes extinct, they will be put back to the bottom of the waitlist (if they wish to continue playing). Every round, a new player can join for every existing species. So if there are 3 existing species (controlled by 3 current players), then 3 new players can join in the next round and increase it to 6 species.
The time jumps between rounds will represent 100,000 years of evolution, but the algorithm will run simulations of only 20 years to predict what populations will look like 100,000 years later. After all the evolution votes are in, I will input the stats into the algorithm and show you how your species fared over 20 years. The final population you achieve after 20 years will represent your population after 100,000 years.
I will likely run the game for 10-20 rounds, or until all life goes extinct, whichever comes first.
I will limit the game to one patch for now, since the algorithm currently does not have the ability to handle anything outside of the current patch. Future versions of this forum game will have more features when the algorithm is further built. Combat is currently also not in the game, and neither is autotrophy (aka being a plant and using photosynthesis or chemosynthesis). Instead, combat will be purely decided by which species is larger.
Every turn, you generate points equal to your population times 10 ^ your trophic level above the first. This means if you are a plant your score is your score. If you are an herbivore your score is multiplied x10. If you are a first order carnivore your score is multiplied by 100x. Etc. At the end of the game I’ll declare a winning species (the species with the most points) and a winning player (the player with the most points across all his species).
In previous forum games there were RNG mechanics to your rolls. To simulate the real Thrive experience as closely as possible, I will not include any RNG to your mutations. Instead, you will have a budget of 100MP (just as in game) and be able to spend that to evolve as you want. You can spend all 100MP on changing one trait, or divide it over changing multiple traits.
I tried to include hints on how changes to some traits can affect other traits. For example, increasing your body length will increase your overall body volume, which will increase your overall metabolism.
Notice that some traits cannot actually be directly changed themselves. These are the ones that are greyed out. Instead, these are derived traits, and will only change as a result of changes to other traits.
That’s it for the rules! The below post will contain the introduction, the 0th round, and details on the starting conditions. Once we have at least two players signed up I’ll post the first round.