Our vehicles vs mud

I have an idea about mud at fields. We all know that rainy weather in Cata can last for a very long time. I live in a small village and almost every year I see how a long period of a rainy weather ends. Fields are real traps for reckless farmers. Mud will change many things. A few details:

  • speed of our vehicles (lower)
  • fuel consumption (higher)
  • “stuck in the mud” possibility
  • all penalties should be based on a weight of our vehicles as well as on enignes’ power
  • a new use for a shovel (“a” —> remove mud)
  • new vehicle parts like molded plastic recovery tracks (Maxtrax MKII) which are used in the Australian outback
  • new items like a hi-lift jack (it helps to put Maxtrax under a tire), tow strap, winch

Implementing fields of mud would change the present situation connected with engines. I love my heavy duty cargo truck with v12 diesel engine, four 60l tanks, one 60l tank of a clean water, although it’s engine power matters only when it comes to speed and ramming houses. Mud would change everything

Shouldn’t tire wideness be taken into consideration too?
The same can be done with snow, and we could have snow chains for both.

I appreciate the thought you put into this. Personally though, I’d be mad af if my deathmobile got trapped in mud. Even if I just happened to overshoot a road at night and hit a mud tile.

You should probably look at https://github.com/CleverRaven/Cataclysm-DDA/pull/23602 as a basis for some of the changes you would want to make.

Wide tires help with spreading out the weight of the vehicle over a bigger surface area which is very beneficial for driving through mud. But we have to remember that ever extremely powerful “road trains” can stuck in mud

This can be a very deep rabbit hole that adds mostly frustration and tediousness if not done right.

What kinds of surfaces a vehicle can handle depends on a lot of it’s design.
How to get things unstuck does as well.
There are many more hard to navigate surface types than just mud.

My experience is that usually the best ways to get unstuck require a second vehicle, which would make this more fitting for a multiplayer game.

It reminds me of my experience in the Oman Wahiba. Even the most experienced drivers will get stuck there.
Look for example at the second half of this clip, where the “Wahiba Challenge” is only done by some of the most experienced drivers in the country. And they still get stuck and have to be pulled out by others or spend a really really long time digging.

The vehicle code is a mess, and as far as I know, I am the only developer seriously working on it right now. Night_Pryanik has contributed some new features in the last year, but mostly people have been editing it to keep it from bit-rotting as the surrounding code changes.

I welcome other people contributing, because there’s a lot of work to be done and coding cuts into my play time. But this entire discussion of traction and mud does not scratch any itch for me, and I am not going to spend any time implementing mud and traction penalties.

Again, I’m not against someone else doing this, and really, I would love another person to be digging into the vehicle code. But don’t expect traction and mud support will be implemented any time soon.

While it could be mildly interesting, I see this as being one of those features that’s kind of cool (“Wow! Realistic!”) the first time, and a minor to moderate inconvenience every single other time.

Seems like it would have to be implemented in a “realistic” way: dirt tiles exposed to rain long enough become mud tiles, if half or more of your wheels are in a mud tile you can’t move. Recovery is a pretty big deal unless you’re well prepared. Or a “gamey” way: every turn driving in a field during rain you have a driving skill based chance of sliding, and a significantly lower chance of getting stuck. Getting unstuck requires jumping out and activating sand or a shovel to get unstuck in 5 minutes.

Either way, it’s a lot of unnecessary keypresses and headaches for something that wouldn’t be an issue if certain other parts of real life were modelled properly (or at all) ingame.

I am aware that implementing mud to Cata may be quite risky but on the other hand I see “vanilla” Cata as apocalyptic Call of Duty. 90% shooting 10% survival. Hectoliters of water / gasoline/ diesel, tons of food and ammo, tons of guns. It is sooo boring to me. Even with a low monsters spawn is just a constant shootout. That’s why I love using “no monsters” mode, “ZSLua_DegradeBuildings” which provides more chaotic world, 8 city spacing combined(I wish it was able to set on 12 or even 15) with 1 city size, and “base_temperature” set on 30 or -40. Base temperature 30 is very dangerous because food spoilage can be sooo crazy. I was not able to feed my NPC companion due to the fact that I kept all tin cans and sealed jars for myself on “a critical hour”. Summer is sometimes so hot that my character with a high thirst drinks almost a gallon of clean water per few hours. All that combined with dangerous NPCs. For me this is a real survival. Environmental dangers like mud, radiation, diseases, flood, would provide balance for people who do not like Call of Duty: Cataclysm, although I am aware that they may be tedious, daunting and frustrating for most of the players

I don’t think adding mud would be risky. I think the code changes would be complicated, but there’s several half-assed attempts to overhaul traction in github already (I linked to one upthread) and someone could do a better job.

I’m saying I’m not that someone because I am fine with how the game currently models traction and off-roading. So if mud and traction is something you want done, you should strongly consider figuring out a plan that results in you submitting a pull request with those changes.

I take issue with a lot of the things you said in that post, but if adding mud is what gets the game another contributor, then you should definitely get to it.

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when/if mud gets implemmented, it could be limited to open field map tiles, which would imensely reduce player frustration of “just barely missed the edge of the road” or simply not allowed on road map tiles. This would make it so you’r only ‘penalized’ by mud for going through open wilderness without prep. I don’t see any reason to rush a feature like this though, unless a potential modder just WANTS to do it

The issue I see is that it’s a big problem early game when you’re lucky if you have 4 wheels, but it won’t be a problem later on when you have 20 armored wheels or a full set of tracks. At the same time, early game is when you’re darting around from place to place, careening over fields at 120kmh trying to get the hell away from that chicken walker you really can’t fight and oops mud, guess I’m dead.

Like I said, the infrastructure just doesn’t exist for this sort of feature. Ideally we’d have hills and valleys, streams of runoff, flooded roads, all kinds of fun stuff, but we’d also have roads that actually connect towns and labs and stuff logically and reasonably, instead of being all over the place and weird-looking at best.

I’m not saying mud is a bad idea, just that at the moment, it would be a far bigger inconvenience than an interesting feature.

agreed, better road building would be a much better first step

Yeah. The biggest issue I see right now is that you can’t get ANYWHERE without driving over some fields, so making them basically a hard obstacle for 1/3 of the year sounds like a bad time.

bulldosing thorugh forests and such would help with that, but thats much harder for an early player just trying to get to the next town, than for someone with a more specialized setup.

Yeah I’ve never been able to get that to work as well as I’d like to. I usually just avoid forests myself.

Even if it was particularly effective, it would still only be available to the lategame super character with a vehicle that dosn’t even care about a little mud.

I agree that roads are broken. Especially if a given player uses 8 city spacing and 1 city size. But on the other hand we are able to overcome this problem with… fire. My favourite vehicle (heavy duty cargo truck) is too big to drive through a thick forest but I always can use matches or a refillable lighter to burn forests. If I do not want to wait I usually search for “gaps” in forests. It takes two / three ingame hours to chop trees in the gap. In my opinion, fuel consumption is more important in this situation. When I drive through fields, my top speed is 48 km/h in order to avoid an unnecessary damage. But at that speed v12 diesel engine uses diesel like crazy and I love it because I have to prepare for trips