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Cellular Automata

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Cellular automata (CA) are virtual particles which are emitted from agents, such as food and plants, allowing creatures and other agents to "smell" this agent and make navigation decisions accordingly. Cellular automata were introduced in the Creatures Evolution Engine games such as Creatures 3, Creatures Village and Docking Station.

Sometimes the emitting agents are invisible so as to give the appearance an area is emitting CAs; for example, an agent in the Grendel Jungle emits Grendel Home smell, which entices the Grendels to live there. CAs are called "scentons" in the help menu for the smell emitter.

In creatures, the Cellular Automata enter through the foot that is in contact with the ground, then intepreted by the smell lobe. The reason why creatures smell with their foot touching the ground is to avoid changes which could happen when creatures turn around.[1] Creatures also emit smell themselves depending on their genus: Norns emit the Norn smell (12), while Grendels and Ettins emit their own smells respectively. In Creatures Village, male and female norns have different CA scents.

Commands[edit]

  • CACL (command) FAMILY (integer) GENUS (integer) SPECIES (integer) CA_INDEX (integer)
    The command CACL is used to link the CA to an object in the Creatures' minds, for example, that smell 18 means a gadget. In DS, this can be seen in the Bootstrap cos file z_DS agent smells.cos. In C3 this can be seen with the Bootstrap cos file z_agent smells.cos. The agent included with the Butterfly Norn creates a flower smell by associating CA 9 with plants and flowers.
  • LINK (command) ROOM1 (integer) ROOM2 (integer) PERMIABILITY (integer)
    Cellular Automata only travel between rooms which are linked horizontally, not vertically. To link vertical rooms (as is used in the lift shafts) the command LINK is used. In DS, this can be seen in the Bootstrap cos file "lift ca linkers.cos". Using the LINK command without the permiability value returns the permeability between the two rooms.
  • PROP (command) ROOM_ID (integer) CA_INDEX (integer) CA_VALUE (float)
    The command PROP is used when making metarooms to set the amount of a CA in a room, and if you leave out the CA_VALUE it returns the amount of a CA in the specified room.
  • RATE (command) ROOM_TYPE (integer) CA_INDEX (integer) GAIN (float) LOSS (float) DIFFUSION (float)
    The RATE command is used to set how fast a smell travels through rooms. This command is used in the !map.cos file and in the Heat Transfer agent which allows heat to travel through water. Using the RATE command with only ROOM_TYPE and CA_INDEX returns the gain, loss and diffusion values for that smell/room type combination.

They are used in Creatures Village, Creatures 3 and Docking Station as follows:

Creatures 3 and Docking Station[edit]

Number Name Agents CACL linked to
0 Sound --
1 Light --
2 Heat --
3 Water (from the sky, often used by plants to grow) --
4 Nutrient (used by plants to grow) --
5 Water (bodies of) --
6 Protein Fruit
7 Carbohydrate Seeds
8 Fat Food
9 Flowers Originally, linked with nothing - the Butterfly Norn agent makes this link with Plants and Flowers.
10 Machinery Machinery
11 Creature egg smell Creature Eggs
12 Norn Norns
13 Grendel Grendels
14 Ettin Ettins
15 Norn home Norn Home
16 Grendel home Grendel Home
17 Ettin home Ettin Home
18 Gadgets Gadgets
19 (unused) --

Creatures Village[edit]

Number Name Agents CACL linked to
0 -- --
1 Movers Movers (2 2 0)
2 Anims Animated toys that lower boredom and raise sleepiness (2 3 0)
3 Lonelies Toys that reduce boredom and loneliness (2 8 0)
4 Instruments Instruments (2 11 0)
5 Clothes Clothes (2 26 0)
6 -- --
7 Protein -- (2 22 0)
8 Fat -- Cake (2 23 0)
9 Carbohydrates -- Carrots, fruit (2 24 0)
10 Food Vendors -- (2 35 0)
11 Scaries Things that go bump in the night and scare norns.
12 Male Norns Male Norns
13 Female Norns Female Norns
Editnorn.png This stub could use more information.

See also[edit]

  • Magic Words - a module allows for easy creation of CA links
  • CAev - creates CA emitters easily ingame

External Links[edit]