Desert Oasis

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wapcaplet
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Joined: Thu Dec 08, 2016 9:52 pm

Desert Oasis

Post by wapcaplet » Sat Dec 08, 2018 1:36 am

For a while I have been pondering what to do with all the extra nutrients on the "Desert II" substrate. I got some good inspiration from reading an old forum thread with bwisialo's idea of doing a Desert parasite, and megathosto's droner organism: viewtopic.php?f=3&t=1734

Despite the challenge name, the nutrient chunks are quite large here, more than enough to reach the maximum substrate population. I imagined an organism that could store excess nutrients in a lipocyte pool, which could spawn new crawlers, something like the "queen and drone" model where drones feed queens, and queens make new drones (and queens).

That isn't quite what I ended up with but it still turned out really neat. I started with a crawler that could win the challenge, and added two new cells: an extra phagocyte on the "foot" to grab a lot of food that the head misses, and a new stereocyte to steer toward blue (though that part doesn't work very well).

These crawlers sometimes, very occasionally, create a blue gluocyte pool, and drain all their nutrients into it. All crawler cells have "Prioritize" off, so the pool cells grow pretty fast. This is a one-way trip: the pool does not generate new crawlers, but only makes more gluocytes. It's really just a parasite phase of the crawler's life cycle, the final phase, oblivion, the Abyss, from which none return.

So far it looks like the crawlers reproduce enough to support several pools without threat of extinction. I don't think they can reach the substrate maximum cell count, but they can still easily beat the challenge.

Substrate with a few starting cells: https://www.dropbox.com/s/5s54fv6nurf0z ... trate?dl=0

For the pool, I tried lipocytes and keratinocytes, but then a lot of dead/dying crawler cells build up and hinder pool growth. This also made it hard for the pool to spawn new crawlers, since they would just pop out among the existing gluey mess. There are surely other ways to make it work, though.
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WhatTheSillyName
Posts: 129
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Location: Hong Kong

Re: Desert Oasis

Post by WhatTheSillyName » Sat Dec 08, 2018 2:04 pm

Nice work! It has been a long time that I didn't see your work. d(・ω・`)
Ya~
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wapcaplet
Posts: 322
Joined: Thu Dec 08, 2016 9:52 pm

Re: Desert Oasis

Post by wapcaplet » Sat Dec 08, 2018 6:06 pm

Thanks! Yeah, I have entered a new phase of interest in Cell Lab lately (they come and go every few months) and I keep coming back to the forums for inspiration. It's nice to have someone to share ideas and accomplishments with too.

The substrate above did OK for a while, with crawlers and pool populations going in a few waves before eventually going extinct at 3,000h. With some adjustment in the pool-seeking behavior (to avoid them instead), this could be fine-tuned so they don't die out.
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wapcaplet
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Re: Desert Oasis

Post by wapcaplet » Sun Dec 09, 2018 1:04 am

Here is another version, identical to the first, except crawlers (try to) avoid the blue pools instead of seeking them out. They seem more stable long-term this way, holding a steadier population between 900-1000 cells, and reaching over 4,000h with no sign of stopping.

https://www.dropbox.com/s/uq7aqcslih50t ... trate?dl=0
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