Preferred Method of System Creation

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Tegmine
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Preferred Method of System Creation

Post #1by Tegmine » 27.03.2011, 12:47

Long, pretentious subject, I know. But I'm curious to know what programs everyone is using when making their fictional systems. I have yet to find the "do-it-all" program, though I'm sure it exists (somewhere.)

For example, here's what I'll use...(say I'm starting from scratch)

StarGen http://www.eldacur.com/~brons/NerdCorner/StarGen/StarGen.html(until I find something I like system-wise.)
Astrosynth http://www.nbos.com/products/astro/astro.htm (if I need a system where the primary is outside of StarGen's capabilities, like brown dwarfs, stellar masses>1.5, sub-giant stars, you get the idea.) You can't save any systems made on the demo, but there are ways around this...
Genetica Viewerhttp://www.spiralgraphics.biz/ it's free and I've been getting really good results lately. The demo version of the program is available as well, but it's only good for 30 days, after that, it's done, but it's really good too.
Gimphttp://www.gimp.org/ for fixing and completing textures. Hasn't disappointed me yet.
System Maker I downloaded this a while ago and couldn't get it to work, but once I got it going, it's pretty much the only thing I use to make my ssc's. Great program, unfortunately not available anymore.
Asteroid Maker never used it 'til recently. Very handy. (available on the Motherlode)
I've used other programs but was never happy with the results (Fractal Terrains) or the demo period ended (LunarCell).

So, what are you using?

-M-
Last edited by Tegmine on 28.03.2011, 12:07, edited 1 time in total.

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selden
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Re: Preferred Method of System Creation

Post #2by selden » 27.03.2011, 13:50

Please include URLs, too.

For fractal planet surfaces, I've had fun using Planet by Torben Mogensen
http://www.diku.dk/hjemmesider/ansatte/torbenm/Planet/

It can be persuaded to generate specular maps and 8bit bumpmaps if you create the right colormaps.
It doesn't do rivers and lakes, though. :(
Selden

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Tegmine
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Re: Preferred Method of System Creation

Post #3by Tegmine » 27.03.2011, 15:43

Sorry. I apologize for my dumbness.

I also forgot Rassilon's SSC Generator http://home.arcor.de/christianlenz/ssc.html (Crossing fingers, hoping this works...)

-M-

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John Van Vliet
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Re: Preferred Method of System Creation

Post #4by John Van Vliet » 27.03.2011, 22:22

--- edit ---
Last edited by John Van Vliet on 19.10.2013, 07:51, edited 1 time in total.

ajtribick
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Re: Preferred Method of System Creation

Post #5by ajtribick » 28.03.2011, 21:16

Personally I don't like the system generators very much: they seem to be designed to create planetary systems like our own.

For textures I like POV-Ray but while it is powerful, specifying textures via text files is not for everyone!

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Re: Preferred Method of System Creation

Post #6by Tegmine » 29.03.2011, 11:25

Do you know of any system generators that would reflect the modern understandings of solar system formation? Or do you just type it out from scratch?

By the way, POV looks rather slick!!! Got any samples of planetary textures you care to show?


-M-

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Re: Preferred Method of System Creation

Post #7by selden » 29.03.2011, 12:42

Generators based on ACRETE are the only ones publicly available.
Stargen by Brons has a mode to create Celestia ssc files. It does not include moons.

I came across a mention of a modified version of Stargen in a published paper which supposedly was able to generate some systems similar to those being detected by planet searches, but they didn't publish the modifications.
Selden

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Re: Preferred Method of System Creation

Post #8by Tegmine » 29.03.2011, 14:19

Is that Celestia-friendly mode for StarGen only online, or is the home version capable of it?

-M-

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Re: Preferred Method of System Creation

Post #9by selden » 29.03.2011, 17:21

You have to invoke StarGen from the command line. It has many command-line qualifiers, but not all of them are implemented by the Windows gui. In particular "-c" = generate Celestia ssc format.
e.g.
open a cmd window, then
cd to the directory containing StarGen, then
type the command

Code: Select all

StarGen  -W5 -s1850770294 -c >pell.ssc

The first entry in the output created by this command is

Code: Select all

"p1" "TAU Cet"
{
        Texture "callisto.jpg"
        Radius 2564.6
        Mass 0.1

        Color   [ 0.52 0.47 0.42 ]
        BlendTexture true

        EllipticalOrbit {
                Period            0.17  # years
                SemiMajorAxis     0.285  # AU
                Eccentricity      0.001
                Inclination       0.0
                AscendingNode     0
                LongOfPericenter  0
                MeanLongitude 0
        }

        RotationPeriod    1473.32
        Obliquity         23
        Albedo            0.070
}

Of course, that is just a start. You'll have to do a lot of editing of the ssc file to get exactly what you want.
Selden

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Re: Preferred Method of System Creation

Post #10by TranslightDefender » 10.04.2011, 17:53

Tegmine wrote:Astrosynth http://www.nbos.com/products/astro/astro.htm (if I need a system where the primary is outside of StarGen's capabilities, like brown dwarfs, stellar masses>1.5, sub-giant stars, you get the idea.) You can't save any systems made on the demo, but there are ways around this...
What are those ways around it? Its driving me crazy. :wink:

selden wrote:You have to invoke StarGen from the command line. It has many command-line qualifiers, but not all of them are implemented by the Windows gui. In particular "-c" = generate Celestia ssc format.
e.g.
open a cmd window, then
cd to the directory containing StarGen, then
type the command

Code: Select all

StarGen  -W5 -s1850770294 -c >pell.ssc
Cool. What does -W and -s do? I assume -s is the seed.
For some reason I'm missing the manual for my copy of StarGen.
Win 7 Pro 64bit
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selden
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Re: Preferred Method of System Creation

Post #11by selden » 10.04.2011, 19:19

TranslightDefender wrote:
selden wrote:You have to invoke StarGen from the command line. It has many command-line qualifiers, but not all of them are implemented by the Windows gui. In particular "-c" = generate Celestia ssc format.
e.g.
open a cmd window, then
cd to the directory containing StarGen, then
type the command

Code: Select all

StarGen  -W5 -s1850770294 -c >pell.ssc
Cool. What does -W and -s do? I assume -s is the seed.
For some reason I'm missing the manual for my copy of StarGen.

-W is used to specify a particular known star (Tau Ceti in this case)
-s specifies the random number seed to start with. If you use the same seed, you'll get the same result.

E.g. if you run Planet multiple times, specifying appropriately different color maps with the same seed, the resulting images can be used for surface, specular and height maps of the same planet.

StarGen's manual is available online at http://www.eldacur.com/~brons/NerdCorne ... 3143969261
I think it's included with the Unix source code, but not with the Windows binaries. I'm sure it's just an oversight, but JimB told me that he won't be doing any updates in the near future.
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Re: Preferred Method of System Creation

Post #12by Tegmine » 11.04.2011, 02:57

My cheat on AstroSynth is this: Generate a Sector Report. It makes an HTML of the star(s), the planets in the system (not just stats, but orbital info and any textures), moons, etc. Then you can just visit it when you need it.

Sounds too simple, I suppose, but it works. I use AstroSynth when I'm wanting to generate a system around a star that is outside of StarGen's capabilities (i.e. less than .25 solar mass or greater than 1.5 sol mass.)

Hope this helps

-M-

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Re: Preferred Method of System Creation

Post #13by bh » 11.04.2011, 08:00

I've been using Rasillon's generator... it generates complete star systems with planets and asteroids.

You have to have the (two) texture packs though.

I've had some nice results... win only.
regards...bh.

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Re: Preferred Method of System Creation

Post #14by TranslightDefender » 11.04.2011, 16:44

bh wrote:I've been using Rasillon's generator... it generates complete star systems with planets and asteroids.

You have to have the (two) texture packs though.

I've had some nice results... win only.
I've been looking for that, but the links seem to be down. :(
Win 7 Pro 64bit
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Re: Preferred Method of System Creation

Post #15by bh » 11.04.2011, 16:59

Selden may be able to help...
regards...bh.

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Re: Preferred Method of System Creation

Post #16by selden » 11.04.2011, 18:22

I've asked Chris if he can restore Rassilon's directory.
It may take a while.
Selden

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Tegmine
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Re: Preferred Method of System Creation

Post #17by Tegmine » 12.04.2011, 02:26

I have a link for it on the first page of this thread... :wink:

-M-

While I do like the SSC generator, I find I have to hit "generate" a lot...it takes a while to get something I like. I also find I have to go back through and fix stuff. If anyone knows some ways to tweak this a little better, please enlighten me.

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Re: Preferred Method of System Creation

Post #18by W0RLDBUILDER » 13.04.2011, 16:24

I have some stuff you guys might like.
TextureGen (generates planet maps using POV-Ray): http://lib.povray.org/searchcollection/ ... rldbuilder
Orbital Period Calculator (math isn't perfect, but it's close): http://tbh-1138.deviantart.com/gallery/#/d2rei4p
My site (has way too many maps than is healthy for one guy to make, you're free to use them): http://sites.google.com/site/mapsandsuc ... nal-worlds

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Re: Preferred Method of System Creation

Post #19by Guckytos » 14.04.2011, 13:41

Guys,

you are also very welcome to post all those good links to programs and other stuff here http://shatters.net/forum/viewforum.php?f=25

And any other helpful program for enhancing Celestia.

Perhaps that will liven up that topic and more people will find useful stuff.

You can even make some tutorials for the programs there :wink:

Regards,

Guckytos

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Tegmine
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Re: Preferred Method of System Creation

Post #20by Tegmine » 15.04.2011, 11:30

You know, the second I started this thread I had the feeling I put it in the wrong department! :lol:

I'll move my recommendations there. As far as a tutorial goes, I don't think I'm the guy for it. I'm just getting the hang of what I'm doing, and basically just fiddle with settings until I see something I like.

-M-


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