video game complaining
it's the same "kate compton's 10k bowls of oatmeal" problem that applies to pretty much everything in the game (other than the scripted/authored content of course) and maybe all procedurally generated content in general. it's just that the wonder of nature comes from how those kinds of detail—history, ecology—fractally unfold in response to investigation, whereas all investigation of "nature" in NMS reveals is the number of sliders in the underlying algorithm
i feel like you could write a phd thesis on any given square yard of nyc sidewalk but you could only write ~1.5 paragraphs on an equivalent area of any nms planet (without immediately diving into general software/platform materiality). (i'm risking operationalizing "interestingness" here which isn't what i mean—i don't think the interestingness of these two artifacts can be compared, but this is why procgen for me is always an exploration of systems & aesthetics, not stand-in for "content")
the primary failure of procgen in nms being that it exists almost purely to bolster a kind of verisimilitude of the infinite—as galaxy set dressing, essentially. very different even from (eg) random gear in borderlands 2, which offers no verisimilitude ("infinite different guns!" isn't an important part of the fiction) but *does* materially affect how you play the game (watching out for drops, adjusting strategies for drops that are good in some ways but substandard in others)
@aparrish he looks way more like a doctor who than a spock to me
@aparrish I don't know any of this but I recently discovered Monty Don's series on french gardens on Netflix and it's the best thing ever.
Now I want to watch the parody but I believe I have unreasonably high expectations.
@aparrish It's been interesting to watch the game as they keep updating it. It seems they understand at least some of this criticism because I keep seeing more variety with each update.
some nms spoilers
@aparrish I think I've also forgiven more of it since the storyline reveals that all of it is a computer generated multiverse for the purpose of providing infinite exploration fodder for the character(s).
@aparrish Also, I would totes read that dissertation.
video game complaining
@aparrish I wonder if there's a way to enhance procgen to avoid this problem. I've certainly spent many hours exploring fractals, for example; might it come down to something as simple as an intermittent reward schedule, using novelty?
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