[MUD-Dev] Re: Administrative notes

Adam Wiggins nightfall at inficad.com
Mon May 26 22:24:46 New Zealand Standard Time 1997

> On Sun 18 May, Adam Wiggins wrote:
> > [Nathan Y:]
> > > I like to think that, even for a fighter, most of the effort should go
> > > into _avoiding_ fights... unless you think you can win, or, say, you are
> > > providing a diversion for someone else or defending a position that needs
> > > defending, or have been paid/ordered/offended into killing that _specific_
> > > person.
> > Right.  You pick the fights you can win.  Also, not all (in fact, I'd
> > like to think most) fights don't end in the death of one of the oponents.
> One of my history teachers told that the traditional (hollywood) image of
> medieval sieges was completely silly. The reality, he said, was more like
> having 8 men sit in front of the only exit to the castle and do the
> occasional round to see if nobody attempted to get away at the other
> side. Insid the castle were six or so armed men basically staring at
> them and waited till either group got too bored to bother anymore.

Oh, sure. :)  Most everything we model in these games really isn't half
as fun in real life, but of course, that's why it's a game.  We take
cues about the mechanics of things from real life to give it consistancy;
the mood and settings are something we insert to be more interesting than RL.

> If risks were any greater than that it would be impossible to find anybody
> to do the fighting. Not until the invention of reliable canons (napeleon,
> american civil war) were soldiers killed by the thousands.

Yeah, which is why I don't find modern combat quite as interesting.
Just too darn easy to kill people with technology.

> > > :Why?  Why, why, why, why?  I don't get it.
> > > :If you want to be good at something, you do it a lot.  What is the proble
> > > :with becoming a good healer by healing, becoming a good fighter by fighti
> > > :and becoming a good juggler by juggling?  You just don't like for thinks
> > > :to make any sort of sense?
> My problem is that it doesn't work that way. I can throw balls in the air
> until my arm falls off without getting in the least better at juggling. Skills

Heh...here you are wrong.  I picked that example because that is *exactly*
how I learned to juggle.  When I was about...oh, I think maybe 10 or 11,
I saw some guy juggling on TV.  I thought that would be pretty cool,
so I memorized the pattern (not too tough, of course), got some balls, and
set to it.  Within a few weeks I taught myself to juggle pins, do various
under-the-leg tricks, and so on.  (Nicely enough, juggling is one of
those things that looks very difficult to do but is actually quite easy to
train yourself for.  I'm not even very dexterous.)  All without so much
as even a little bit of instruction.
I'm not saying that instruction is not useful, but we learn by doing.
Instruction only helps speed this process along by showing you the best
method straight off, instead of you arriving at it by trial and error.

> are part learning, part practice. (and then you have to excersice to keep
> your skill level up). So you need a teacher (a player preferably) to teach
> you a skill (and how well this teaching goes depends on the abilities of
> both teacher and student, i.e. the teacher can't teach better than she her-
> self does and depending on the intelligence of the student she won't do
> even that well). Once you have learned a skill as well as the teacher is
> able to teach you, you must practice to realise that potential.

A teacher is great, but not required.  I was the best programmer I knew
(not difficult, I didn't know many) for over ten years, until I finally
entered the workplace and met others as dedicated as myself.  Sure, I had
tips from folks on various networks I hung out on, but I'm pretty much
100% self taught.
On the flip side of the coin, those people I met upon entering the workplace
showed me some tricks that I probably *never* would have thought of on
my own; or at the very least, would have taken a long time for me to
puzzle out.  But the moral of the story is that you can learn exclusively
without instruction; you cannot learn exclusively without actually doing.

More information about the MUD-Dev mailing list