[MUD-Dev] Re: Levels (was: Administrative notes)

coder at ibm.net coder at ibm.net
Mon May 26 07:53:24 New Zealand Standard Time 1997

On 25/05/97 at 12:21 PM, Adam Wiggins <nightfall at user1.inficad.com>
said: >[Chris L:]

>> Agreed.  This is was much of the meat of my argument.  I dislike
>> having to hunt down a mobile...yada yada to get a known skill.  The
>> equation instantly becomes:
>>   Want XXX skill == Find YYY mobile/player == Get him to teach me
>>   == Maybe have to do something he asks first.
>> Boring.  Simplistic.  Inelegant.  Dumb.

>Maybe, although if you had an equation *this* complex you'd already
>be ahead of 75% of muds out there.

>  Want XXX skill == kill more mobiles == gain a level, learn skill

To really massacre an old quote:

  "I judge myself not by what others do or have done, but by what I
know is possible."

I don't find being being better than a DIKU is not a really admirable

>> I want a choice of possible paths.  Thus I proposed the basic "think"
>> verb and the possibility of a lone player deriving a new skill without
>> external help.  I don't think its a *good* solution (actually I think
>> its a lousey idea), but it at least offers a seperate model and
>> compleatly different path to take for skill advancement.  Now at least
>> the equation is:

>You can learn skills from many different people (mobiles or players),
>books, or even by just seeing someone else doing it.  Many skills are
>considered 'implict' - you may not know the first thing about
>swiming, but if someone picks you up and tosses you into a lake, you
>will find yourself learning pretty quickly.

Having learnt swimming precisely this way, and also taught others the
same, some interesting stats:

  Take an infant of less than 3 years, toss them in a pool and they
will very competantly swim and keep their head above water.

  After 3 years do the same thing and watch them *glub* their way to
the bottom.

I'll also note that this technique does teach the ability to stay
afloat and breathing air.  It does very little for ones locomotion
skills in water.  Spending time in a pool with a kickboard and/or an
instructor who knows what a proper stroke is conversely does a lot.

>In fact...I'm having trouble thinking of any skills that aren't
>implicit in this way.  You try to sneak around, your stealth-related
>skills go up.  You spend a lot of time in the forest, your
>botany-related skills go up.  Maybe this is because we have really
>simple skills (a benefit of being a fantasy world) - there's no
>"brain surgery" or "solving 6 variable integration functions" skills. 

Practical application can do a lot for a skill.  I'm a good RL example
there -- I make a six figure income as a programmer, yet have no
formal education in computing, nor any college degree or college
education at all for that matter.  I'm compleatly self taught.  As
such I have a lot of practical skills and a very strong awareness of
what is actually useful and what is not for RL programming.  However,
my theory is weak, and this is starting to painfully show as I get
into some of the more complex areas such as parallel processing et al.

Yup, Bubba sneaking about the woods is going to get better at
sneaking, and his awareness of the difference between poison oak and
ivy is likely to increase.  However, Bubba's ability to become a
Master Sneaker is likely to be stunted due to his lack of theory and
inherited knowledge in the area (received education/skills). 
Similarly his wonderful and ultimately personal diligence and ability
in knowing what is and is not poison oak (and whi its not smart to
hide in it), is not likely to get him to start getting him to think
about herbal remedies, monocotyledons vs dicotyledons, suitability of
various woods for firewood and specific cooking tasks, biotype
formation, ecology management etc.

>> I'd love to think of a reasonably elegant way to turn this into at
>> least three or four simultaneous equations.

>How about:

>(find a teacher) or (see someone else do it, and try to immitate
>them) or (read a book about it) or (stumble upon it by accident)

Because only the first of those is a causitive approach by the player,
all the rest are passive.  I want something where Bubba will have
multiple options when he determinedly goes out to gain a new XXX

>That's my point.  30 people aren't the 'world', they are the players.
>If you have skills only teachable by players, it's gonna be rather difficult
>for those at the begining.  I suppose there's nothing wrong with that,
>exactly, but I want the game playable on Day 1.

Hehn.  Just don't remove logged out players from the game then.

J C Lawrence                               Internet: claw at null.net
----------(*)                              Internet: coder at ibm.net
...Honourary Member of Clan McFud -- Teamer's Avenging Monolith...

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