[MUD-Dev] RP thesis...

Matt Chatterley root at mpc.dyn.ml.org
Mon May 19 17:07:54 New Zealand Standard Time 1997

On Sun, 18 May 1997, Adam Wiggins wrote:

Just a brief warning, I've quoted rather large chunks of text here.

> Oh yeah, absolutely.  As we started to get more intense in the various
> systems in our mud, we realized a lot of research was necessary...we just
> didn't have enough raw knowledge to throw around between the two of us.
> In particular, as we read anatomy and nutrition books, we had a lot of
> unanswered questions.  So I got in touch with two nurses I know - the
> first with over a dozen years experience in the ER and then later the OR,
> plus an extensive knowledge of gardening and midwifery.  The second has
> about ten years of experience in the OR and then later the recovery room,
> and also some knowledge of herbalism etc.  Let me tell you this was a great
> resource...over the last year or so I've wrung them dry with long interviews
> both over email and in person.  Our original point was to find out more
> 'hands-on' knowledge about how various types of wounds heal, how long it takes,
> what factors influence various effects (knockout, swelling, blood clotting,
> and so on)...but eventually we couldn't help but to bring in the effects
> of nutrition - vitamins, proteins, electrolytes...which of course also
> turned to the topic of various drug effects, including alcohol, painkillers,
> poisons (mainly nerve inhibitors/paralytic agents), bacteria, viruses,
> and so on.  Alcohol does have some benefits...but it also screws up
> your liver pretty bad (it actually leaves scar tissue)...which can result
> in some nasty things later in life; for one thing, sinc your liver isn't
> producing clotting agents, lifetime alcoholics who get cut tend to just
> bleed more or less forever, or until you bind it up.  Nutrition is a large
> factor in how quickly you heal; if your body has the proper building blocks
> at hand, it can do some pretty amazing things.  (Youth is the other
> big factor.)  We fully intend to have various diseases as well as malnutrition
> (scurvy, anyone?) although hopefully we can balance it in such a way that it's
> a factor but not an all-encompassing concern.  Ie..."I sure could use
> a good, hot meal about now!  Let's head over to Hobbiton!" vs. breaking
> your back to make sure you eat three square meals a day.

I'm impressed by your level of research here! Not quite what I want.. but
still, very impressive. Diseases, and drugs are both interconnected with
food (well, the former in part), and are something else I'm looking at
setting up in conjunction. This more 'realistic' approach to things
does look like making the game a tad harder to get to grips with.. but
more rewarding once you are used to it.
> > A troll might like to chow down on a goat's carcass after he biffs it over
> > the head, but a human would almost certainly cut it up and cook it first.
> > This is an important distinction. Different races will have to eat
> > slightly different things.
> Yeah.  Our 'organic' objects (which includes everything from severed limbs
> to leaves from a tree to chicken soup) are rated for a lot of things including
> temperature, consistancy, sweet/sourness, biter/saltiness.  Various races
> have tastes for different things.  This is no big deal for gameplay, really,
> just one of those game-flavor (heh) things.  When the ogre and the elf
> group together and the ogre asks the elf if he has some food...the elf
> gives him some lembas and the ogre thinks it tastes horrible.  One of
> those things about making the world seem different, depending upon who you're
> playing.

Nice way to do it. I'm toying with something internally simpler (tracking
the comparitive edibility of food on a scale, where each race is a
different point, and races will eat within a span of +-X of their level
with no ill effects, +-Y with minor ill effects, and not beyond +-Z).
> > tracking approximate metabolic speed.. how fast you use up food, recover
> > from drunkeness, heal, and such), the sooner you need to eat, and the
> > sooner you heal. It's a decent picture, if you have items which boost
> > metabolism (for instance, a character with a ring of regeneration,
> > necklace of fasthealing, regeneration spell, Troll's natural regeneration,
> > and an artefact anklet "Rumbletummy" which quadrouples your healing rate
> > will need to eat about every 3.5 seconds or starve :P Point taken that
> > it's easy to get ridiculous here).
> Yeah, Angband (a nethack/moria/rogue derivative, and the game the mud 3M is
> based on) has a thing like this.  You usually want a slow-digestion
> item to go along with your regen item to make things reasonable.  (Once
> a friend of mine tried making an item that was regen by 500...a single step
> killed his character, since he starved to death...)

<g> I recall playing Angband, and currently play ADOM (to excess). There
will be upper limits on metabolic speed (no lower limit.. if your
metabolism stops, you die, or at least fall into a biazarre and
eventually fatal comatose state). I also plan on having one race that is
cold blooded (pilkeothermic.. sp?), whose metabolism will slow in the
cold, and accelerate in the heat. All temperature deviations from the norm
will effect them, not necessarily always drastically.. but being chilled
with an ice spell, or heated with a fire spell will definitely make life
> > > eating root and grubs and sleeping out in the forest.  But a night in the
> > > town inn, a bath and a shave, a good hot meal, and a tankard of ale will
> > > do wonders for your ability to do just about anything succesfully. :)
> > > Oh, we also track hair growth (including facial hair) and cleanliness,
> > > so someone who has been in the outback for a while really looks it.
> > 
> > Heh. Hair growth eh? I'll probably track morale more simplistically..
> Another thing that has nothing to do with gameplay, just adds flavor.
> People who spend a lot of time in the outback start to look it.  (Cleanliness
> also affects infections and diseases..)  Except, of course, for our race
> of 8 ft plainsmen who have no body hair to speak of.

<g> Very nice atmospherically speaking.
> > We have both normal rooms, and our own mappable virtual room areas, you
> > can create a map such as:
> > 
> > XXXXXXXXXX	X = impassable terrain
> > **########	* = swamp
> > *######@##	# = grassland
> > XXXXXXXXXX	@ = a lake
> > 
> > and set a scale for each room - this map would be converted into normal
> > rooms with randomly set sizes, descriptions, weather suited to the area,
> > and so forth.
> How is this displayed?

The map exists in a textfile, which is interpreted by the mud and turned
into rooms (larger than normal in 'theoretical' size, with movement which
is costly in terms of endurance and such, representing a longish journey).

One of the # squares above might turn into:

Grasslands (Name-of-area)
Plains of grass stretch out as far as the eye can see in all directions.

Although the final descriptions will be more detailed, and pulled from a
random bank, with items (and modifications) based on any scenery.

	-Matt Chatterley
"Fishing is complete and utter madness."  -Spike Milligan

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