Streamer shows off a Reduced Instruction Set Computer (RISC) build they completed inside of Astroneer, allowing for automated functions

Astroneer (Image credit: System Era Games)

What you need to know

  • Tyler Hill, a Twitch streamer, showed off their latest creation inside of Astroneer on Twitter.
  • The new build is a Reduced Instruction Set Computer (RISC), which is essentially a full computer inside the game.
  • It can carry out basic instructions using buttons and other inputs, allowing for autonomous actions.

While it's been a while since we've talked about Astroneer, it's still very much healthy and alive. The game continues to recieve updates, and has a strong dedicated fanbase constantly finding new ways to take advantage of it. Recently, Twitch stream Tyler Hill, who's known for finding creative ways to essentially build computers inside of video games, as shown off his newest accomplishment inside of Astroneer: a Reduced Instruction Set Computer (RISC).

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In the simplest terms that I'm able to reasonably follow, an RISC is the most basic and efficient form of computer, which is able to process simple instructions and carry them out. Using various tools in Astroneer like generators, sensors, and cables, Tyler Hill was able to build a functioning computer inside of Astroneer, which could be used to complete basic tasks inside the game. It's very cool to see people do things like this inside of video games, even if it's all far too complicated for me to wrap my mind around.

Previously, Tyler Hill also finished a basic calculator inside of Astroneer as well, showing that there's a lot that can be done by utilizing the tools available in a game like Astroneer, which encourages creativity. It reminds me of talented people building similar projects inside of Minecraft.

If you're interested in trying your hand at this (I'll probably stray away), Astroneer is available through Xbox Game Pass, alongside over 100 other games on Xbox One and PC.

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Zachary Boddy
Staff Writer

Zachary Boddy (They / Them) is a Staff Writer for Windows Central, primarily focused on covering the latest news in tech and gaming, the best Xbox and PC games, and the most interesting Windows and Xbox hardware. They have been gaming and writing for most of their life starting with the original Xbox, and started out as a freelancer for Windows Central and its sister sites in 2019. Now a full-fledged Staff Writer, Zachary has expanded from only writing about all things Minecraft to covering practically everything on which Windows Central is an expert, especially when it comes to Microsoft. You can find Zachary on Twitter @BoddyZachary.

  • In the simplest of the simplest terms, everybody reading this probably has at least one device with RISC processor. That would of course be your smartphone or tablet. Every mobile processor these days is built on ARM architecture which in turn has a reduced instruction set (RISC).
    What that actually means is a RISC processor has a limited set of basic functions it can do and all other operations are performed using these functions. You can look at it this way: a CISC (complete instructions set) processor has addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. A RISC one will only have addition, it will perform subtraction by inverting one operand and performing addition, similarly multiplication and division will be done by repeatedly adding the operand. There is a way to do this with division too, I just don't remember it. This is done in software (at compilation) so the processor doesn't need to have this logic.
    The inherent advantage is the chip design is way simpler, cheaper and in turn is less power demanding in low difficulty tasks. The disadvantage is that in complex computations the processor is slower and less effective.
    An example of CISC processor is of course the x86 architecture, that's why pretty much any Intel beats the crap out of ARM in gaming, since games take advantage of complex matrix instructions from the x86 extended instruction sets.
  • Thanks for the info.
  • Nicely done. Even us non-programmers are able to follow along a bit. The question now is how Apple has been able to get Intel-beating results from their ARM-based, fan-less, mobile devices (at least in the test scores).