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  1. #1
    Player
    Myranda's Avatar
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    Myranda Al'cyoene
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    The Astronomical Society of Eorzea

    I don't think the original astronomy thread from 1.0 was revived yet on the new Lodestone, so here I am to get this discussion started again!

    Astronomical data established so far:
    -Hydælyn exists in a flatted galaxy, presumably spiral, just like RL Earth/Milky Way (b/c we see it as a streak/band across the sky)
    -The moon doesn't follow proper celestial mechanics for its varying phases, it's annoyingly placed statically at the anti-solar point.
    -The moon is named Menphina, though it is almost never referred to as such, being called just "the moon" most of the time
    -The Sun is *probably* named Azeyma, but like the moon is never referred to by NPCs in this way
    -Hydælyn rotates from west to east (anticlockwise when viewed from above the North Pole), just like Earth does
    -Eorzea is situated at roughly 30°N latitude, as measured by the altitude of the North Celestial Pole. This measurement is the same regardless of region (Thanalan, Shroud, Cœrthas, etc), so it should be considered an average for the whole continent, assigning it to the geographical center of say, Aldenard.

    Items needing further research:
    -Given that even the moon doesn't move and that the game doesn't have seasonal weather, there's almost certainly no seasonal variation in the stars seen each night, should be simple to confirm, just would take time to watch the sky for enough total nights to assure there's no small changes.
    -Do the brighter/colored stars match up with the constellations seen on the sky charts in the Cœrthas Observatorium?

    Am I missing anything that we've determined already? What other things might we measure?
    (9)
    Last edited by Myranda; 02-13-2014 at 11:02 PM.
    Check out my Eorzean fonts! - Twitter: @MyrandaFFXIV
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    The Astronomical Society of Eorzea!
    http://forum.square-enix.com/ffxiv/threads/142965-The-Astronomical-Society-of-Eorzea

  2. #2
    Player
    Myranda's Avatar
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    Regarding things we could work on, in the Cœrthas Observatorium one may find the following star chart in a couple places:



    Has anyone tried/been able to match constellations on that chart to the stars actually seen in the game sky? I've only done some preliminary work on this front, but nothing to speak of for results so far. This also still doesn't tell us anything about names for the constellations or any lore behind them. But it would be nice to know if that chart has any thought to accurate representation or if they just drew random patterns on the texture and hoped we wouldn't notice...
    (5)
    Check out my Eorzean fonts! - Twitter: @MyrandaFFXIV
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    The Astronomical Society of Eorzea!
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  3. #3
    Player
    Enkidoh's Avatar
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    Enkidoh Roux
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    I'm not sure, but I'm liable to take that chart with a grain of salt - it looks awfully simillar to the old Vana'diel constellations chart from FFXI, if I could only find that for comparison.

    Given the starfield used in ARR's night sky does seem awfully bright, at least compared to 1.0, I think it would be quite difficult to really discern any particular constellations from it sadly (at least, I haven't noticed anything, other than a bright Milky Way-like band reaching to the horizon).

    EDIT: I found it on FFXIcyclopedia, and as it turns out, I was wrong - the FFXI one has different constellations to the ones shown in Coerthas's Observatorium:



    So that was nice theory while it lasted. Ah well, back to square one... :P
    (1)
    Last edited by Enkidoh; 01-31-2014 at 12:51 PM.

  4. #4
    Player
    Anonymoose's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Enkidoh View Post
    I think it would be quite difficult to really discern any particular constellations from it sadly
    On clear nights, the stars that are part of constellations seem pretty clear, and some of the more relevant ones seem to glow colors as if to say, "Yeah, totally look at these."
    (3)

  5. #5
    Player
    Myranda's Avatar
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    Yeah, there are some that are indeed noticeably brighter, and as Moose pointed out even with noticeable color, so I think that will be key. The biggest problem I've had so far is that individual screenshots can't really zoom out far enough to get a good wide angle view of the sky because the ground gets in the way, so it's hard to piece together any large scale constellation patterns. Reaaaaally don't want to stitch multiple shots into a pano but I may have to do that...

    Another way to help pick out the important stars is to notice that the true background stars are actually quite noticeably tiled. You'll notice the same small, tight grouping of 3 dim stars all the time, so you know those don't count towards a constellation.

    It would also help if we could identify what the line across the chart represents. My most likely bet is that it's the ecliptic(/celestial equator), thus marking out the Eorzean zodiac, but one problem with that is there doesn't seem to be any constellations marked out ON it, they're all above or below. A second possibility is that it marks the orientation of the galactic plane on the sky.

    Of course, this does all assume the chart has any accuracy to the real sky, and isn't just there for pure aesthetics (which would make me so so sad...). One thing that isn't encouraging is that all for mini-charts in the corners are identical :/
    (1)
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  6. #6
    Player
    Anonymoose's Avatar
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    Don't know if you're still working on this; if not we'll just let it fall back into the necrolands.

    I recently spent some time semi-afking at the top of the astronomy tower in Coerthas. Each night, I'd look around and watch the stars and wait. I've discovered that this is the key. You can't just wait for a clear night and look up. You need to watch it and wait for the right moments. At some points, you can see thousands and thousands of stars and, though there are colors, you can't quite see anything of note. But wait - watch. Sometimes the sky is clearer than others. Sometimes the galactic band is more visible than others. At some points, the background stars will dim and the constellations will glow. I'll upload some screenshots at a later date, but they become very clear. There's a lonely purple octahedron that I use as my achor, but on the other side of the sky there's a very clear green diamond with a tail that's next to an extended purple Z.

    To find your orientation and actually get screenshots of the entire celestial sphere will be a massive effort - but there's a lot to see.

    If the Astronomical Society enthusiasts are still out there - this can totally be done. You can find the constellations.

    The weather has a chance to change at 12:00am, though, so be prepared for that to get in your way on occasion, lol.

    Anybody find any other good places to watch the sky?
    (6)
    Last edited by Anonymoose; 03-16-2014 at 02:37 AM.

  7. #7
    Player
    Myranda's Avatar
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    I am still working on it, though I've been distracted and haven't done much lately. I was taking note the other day though that the Sagolii would probably make a fantastic place (if not THE best place) for grabbing the highest quality night sky screens. Totally open horizon with nothing to block the view. The Observatorium still has that pesky telescope in the way and nearby mountains.

    As far as seeing a truly complete celestial sphere? I sadly doubt it, given what we've seen of the lunar mechanics so far. At best I only expect us to see half the sphere, as one half will be perpetually hidden by daylight. Unless SE actually has implemented a slow seasonal motion of the Sun... yeah... To even get that half sphere though, it will for sure need screens at multiple times of the night, as some won't rotate into view until the mornings, whilst others must needs be glimpsed in the evening twilight.
    (0)
    Check out my Eorzean fonts! - Twitter: @MyrandaFFXIV
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  8. #8
    Player
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    I'll start doing my semi-afking in Sagolii and see if I can come up with anything useful. Once the AFK Timer is removed in 2.2. perhaps we'll see the return of time-lapse videos and we can get a better idea of the celestial sphere.
    (3)

  9. #9
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    lackofwords's Avatar
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    Dalimin Dataru
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    Assuming they didn't fix it, you should be able to avoid the AFK timer kick by either being in middle of crafting or gathering.
    I can't seem to look directly up into the sky, at best it seems like a 40 degrees arc.
    http://youtu.be/hLD-Uzk5bnc

    Actually, I wonder if changing the resolution would cover more of the sky, such as a portrait instead of landscape.

    A few more time lapse;
    North sky, real time 42m: http://youtu.be/Tx1LWEPhwEA
    West sky, real time 6h 35m: http://youtu.be/egIs628sjqQ
    South sky, real time 41m: http://youtu.be/Akpk8NF2hsM
    (0)
    Last edited by lackofwords; 03-21-2014 at 01:33 PM.

  10. #10
    Player
    Myranda's Avatar
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    Haven't gotten around to doing anything myself, but another thread specifically popping up about the constellations gave me the kick in the pants to at least post up the photos I took.

    Dropbox album of the night sky @Sagolii Desert

    If I recall correctly, in chronological order they should start at North and then move in the standard azimuthal direction towards East (clockwise along the compass), and after a full turn around the horizon, I moved the camera up in altitude a bit and repeated the circle. Because I can't stop game time, there will be some minimal amount of streaking/trailing if attempting to stitch these together, from the sky rotating over the course of taking the images.

    I did not apparently take any during the series with the UI on so I can't be sure of the exact in-game time, but based on the position of the Moon high near zenith and the complete disregard known in the game for lunar mechanics, it's presumably at around midnight.
    (0)
    Check out my Eorzean fonts! - Twitter: @MyrandaFFXIV
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    The Astronomical Society of Eorzea!
    http://forum.square-enix.com/ffxiv/threads/142965-The-Astronomical-Society-of-Eorzea

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