Thank you! Looking forward to playing this when I get back home and I'm not using a 32-bit only netbook...
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The main run is still continuing on this PC. Critters have got smaller again.
Last night, I started another run on a slower PC. I deliberately made things a bit tougher (less fruit spawning, higher reproduction cost) because the main one is always bouncing at 149 or 150 Critters.
By the morning, it'd done just over 100 generations. There were only about 50 of them - that worked! - and they were all yellow. At lunchtime, another 100 or so generations had happened, about 80 were alive - and they were all white.
I am wondering if there was a severe population crunch or two and everyone's the descendant of one yellow mutation, because there's no obvious meat hunting going on to provide a big evolutionary push to change colour. But it's impossible to tell!
Can we have an (optional) log file that records births / deaths (inc health expiring and being eaten) / sex / non-neural net mutations? Just text is fine - the people who will be into this can do their own graphs / stats analysis.
A 'save game every x generations' feature would also be helpful, especially if the random number generator is one where running with same start position with the same seed = same result, so you can replay what happened between two saves. If it's not, having one that is would be good.
(I really hoping I am not the only one playing with this :) If you're reading this, it's fascinating - BUY IT!)
With a higher fruit spawn delay and energy from eating fruit also increased (to see if that increases the evolution of better searching), it's interesting that the average size of Critter has gone up and the average speed gone down.
Given the life expectancy of any of the 'oldest critter' I examine more closely seems so short, I am not totally convinced that they are, in fact, 3333 or whatever generations old.
I do like the way that, when zoomed in, you can often see what they're 'seeing' via changes in colour of their eye.
Linux users vary in how vocal they are :) On Steam, if something works with their 'Proton' system - and most things I am interested in now do - I am not particularly fussed about a native version. Here, if I can see that something is made with tools that can do the port easily, I am more likely to ask...
.. and the Linux build 'just worked' (latest version of Ubuntu MATE, 64-bit), thank you!
Thank you for that - the group icons would be fine, particularly as it's can be very difficult to interpret just what's going on in a neural net, so seeing that 'vision' excitement leads to that action should be enough.
There could definitely be more info around the basic rules of life. I think that energy is mostly a 'reproduction energy' thing, but having lots / none increases/decreases health, and health is life (high) or death (zero). Eating increases energy, but it doesn't look like, for example, moving quickly uses more than just sitting there. Strength determines who eats who? Or is there some directional element in the way that there is for the green stuff? (It's amusing to see a Critter desperate for more energy going backwards, pushing along the food that would save it if it were at the other end...)
I cannot resist wondering what could be added to this without adding to the runtime overhead. Something like attack (teeth) vs defence (shell / spikes) vs hiding (triggering other Critter's visual neurons less - or is this what colour mutations effectively do?) vs... all competing for the same limited resource at birth, with the proportions depending on mutations/sex.
The obvious niche I am waiting to see evolution fill is 'going along walls, eating all the dead fatally bruised Critters'!
The other thing that I can see some people appreciating is the option to turn the sound off :)
- Just what do the various points on the neural net represent? At the moment, without the source/more documentation, users can see that something is going on, but not what.
- It's sometimes hard to click on a critter without pausing the simulation.
One bug: the suggested save file names - eg 'NeuraQuarium Save 03/06/2021 13:01:49' - are not legal in Windows because of the / and : characters.
I'd rather not be running this in a Windows VM in the first place. It's using Mono and Unity, isn't it? Is there any chance of a native Linux version?
A good read and bound to produce 'what, they missed out one of my favourite games' responses - the omission of Empire: Wargame of the Century / Empire Deluxe is particularly shocking :)
Having their excellent guide to video adventure games, I was expecting a bit more than the 'most of a page' coverage of each one though...