Goo ball sizes should be saved at WoG corp

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Goo ball sizes should be saved at WoG corpHiking Viking07/26/2009 - 19:00

I really like this game, but there is one thing that really annoys me. The goo balls at WoG corp are clearly of different sizes if you look at them. Also the visual width and strength of strands attached to a goo ball seem to rise when goo ball size rises. I haven't managed to notice any difference in the weights of the goo balls or the strength of the strands depending on the goo ball sizes. However, I've found out one thing that the goo ball size clearly affects. When you are building the basement for your building, you can notice that the center points of bigger goo balls remain higher than those of small goo balls. In other words, the goo ball size affects collisions with the ground. However, when you exit from WoG corp and then come back, all the goo ball sizes have changed to random ones, changing directly at least the basement of the tower. That change causes the whole tower shake (for a short moment only, unless the changes are severe), even if there are no free goo balls, and the tower was perfectly stable when you left. A straight tower might just have become a leaning one (or even the other way around with enough luck/tries).

In addition to the goo ball sizes, I fear there could be also other important data that is not saved between visits at WoG corp, like strand tensions. It is ok for me that the positions of the free goo balls aren't saved - they can be all attached to some temporary piles around the actual tower. That way they'll also never shake your actual tower when you don't want to. Besides, how would the positions of goo balls not earned yet be saved?

Here are two pictures (taken with GooTool that shows all goo balls same-sized, trimmed with GIMP) demonstrating the problem. Originally, both of the two triangles had big bottom left goo balls and small bottom right goo balls. There were no free balls and both triangles were steady. I left WoG corp (and whole game), and took the 1st pic. I returned to WoG corp, waited till the shaking triangles got steady again, and left after noticing that the left triangle had now small bottom left ball and big bottom right ball while the bottom balls of the right triangle were both medium sized. Then I took the 2nd pic.

PS. If you don't want to save the goo ball sizes, please make all the goo balls have same size at WoG corp, and share the update.

Last modified Sun, 07/26/2009 - 19:04 by Hiking Viking
Re: Goo ball sizes should be saved at WoG corpStickybomb6707/27/2009 - 10:51

That's very...precise.

Re: Goo ball sizes should be saved at WoG corpdavidc07/31/2009 - 21:23

I really wonder how much of this is perception versus reality. I'm pretty sure the visual size has nothing to do with the physics of it (maybe someone like Soultaker would know better) and maybe what you're observing is friction against the floor and rounding/simulation errors?

Re: Goo ball sizes should be saved at WoG corpSoultaker08/01/2009 - 13:27

You raise an interesting point, Hiking Viking, and most of your observations are correct. Goo-balls do have different sizes; these are picked at random when the ball is created, and this affects both how the balls are rendered and the size of their geometry used in the physics simulation, so a triangle using large Goo-balls at the bottom is indeed a little bit higher because the distance from the center points of the Goo-balls to the ground is greater.

(That Goo-balls have different sizes can also be seen very clearly if you reset WoGC; the balls will be packed several layers thick and it is clear that large balls really do take more space than smaller ones.)

The profile stores position and speed for free Goo-balls and the strength and length of connections in WoGC but not the size of Goo-balls. (Note that connection strength is actually constant in the game, but it's stored anyway.) So you're right about that too: when you re-enter WoGC, the sizes of balls are regenerated at random. I think this affects the balls that touch the ground, but not any other balls in the tower (since these do not touch any other geometry). I'm not sure if this has a huge effect on tower stability, but I can't deny that the effect exists to some degree.

davidc also has a good point: numbers in the profile data are rounded to 4 decimal digits, so you lose a little precision there (this affects ball position, velocity and connection lengths) although I'm not convinced this has a huge effect on tower stability in practice either.

If you want to experiment with size variations, you could edit the Drained ball template that is used in WoGC (see the default template on The shape-attribute of the ball-element determines the geometry of the balls. By default, it's "circle,30,0.25" which means the balls have a diameter of 30 pixels on average, and a variance in size of 25% (so the diameter is chosen uniformly between 22.5 and 37.5 pixels); changing that last value to 0 should make all balls equally-sized. (edit: I've created a Goomod that does exactly this.)

I can imagine that some people would consider editing the ball template cheating, though, so you might want to discuss how people view this before claiming top spots on the highest tower rankings. ;)

Last modified Sat, 08/01/2009 - 17:08 by Soultaker
Re: Goo ball sizes should be saved at WoG corpPavke08/02/2009 - 05:26

You beat me to it Soultaker. :) As soon as saw the topic I had an idea to make a mod with uniform balls but I have been busy for few day and now I see you made it. Great work!