[MUD-Dev] Alright... IF your gonan do DESIESE...

Marian Griffith gryphon at iaehv.nl
Wed Jun 18 19:52:34 New Zealand Standard Time 1997

On Tue 17 Jun, clawrenc at cup.hp.com wrote:
> In <Marcel-1.09-0616205130-0b0Ky&5 at Gryphon.iaehv.nl>, on 06/16/97 
>    at 10:17 PM, Marian Griffith <gryphon at iaehv.nl> said:

> >The idea is that if you encounter a dragon  you have no chance of
> >surviving a fight. No matter how powerfull a fighter you are. No
> >matter how well made your dwarven armour is. Dragons are simply too
> >strong and tough, and deadly to fight. 

>   Are dragons (or Tiamats for that matter) so deadly that they might
> as well be considered the archetypal irresistable force, or is there
> some gradation?

> Translation:
>   Bubba Joe as staggered out of a bar vs dragon == dragon food.


>   Bubba Joe as suitably perpared with all possible dragon
> killing/weakening EQ/magic/etc vs dragon == what?

I would suggest that the second case would also be dragon barbeque but
at least a suitably prepared fighter would have a fair chance to fight
his way out of the confrontation.  The chances of actually defeating a
dragon should be close to non-existent.  Because I believe a game will
be much more interesting if players can't hope to be the all powerfull
characters they can be on ordinary muds.
I'm also not too thrilled about the dragon-killing, weakening, magical
and so on equipment. From what I have seen on muds this kind of equip-
ment tends to quickly overwhelm the other aspects of a game. Sooner or
later  it ends up with players running around  with swords of ultimate
destruction and wearing armour of invulnerability. Skills and anything
else for that matter become insignificant compared to that. The result
is that the games becomes very shallow.

> Next up is consideration of the dragon as a predator, and by that
> view, what level of control and affect players have upon their
> predators.

My preference would be the same kind of control any prey has over their
predator: hide, run or be eaten.

> Do you intend for the only solution to the threat posed by dragons to
> be avoidance?  If so dragons and their (seemingly random?) travels
> almost come to represent the clumsy fatal hand of fate -- not a big
> winner with many players.  Is it possible to either dissuade dragons
> from passing over or through an specifc area?  Conversely can you
> encourage dragons to haunt or travel through an specific area?  Are
> the two possibilities related?

First off, yes. Dragons should be avoided at all cost in this scenario.
But the risk they represent is not that big. They don't travel much be-
yond their lairs.  They are not in general after players.  Unless it is
hungry or the player in question carries something that would be a nice
addition to said dragon's hoard.  And even then  it is not looking very
hard to find humans. Hoarses and cows in general find it much harder to
hide themselves from a dragon.
Very powerful players might be able to hold their ground against a dra-
gon for a time and fight their way out of a confrontation. But they too
must eventually run for it. The creatures in a game should be smart en-
ough not to pursue fights that are uncomfortable or uncertain.  Dragons
don't hunt after players that are able to hurt them, unless they really
want something from that player. How to define that is another problem,
perhaps something that was stolen from the dragon's hoard would qualify
for that?

>   To what extent can your player's control of influence the habits of
> dragons?

That's a tall order for any player to control the habit of dragon. Of
course the more dangerous a creature is, the less likely it should be
that a player actually encounters one.  And if they do encounter one,
there shouldn't automatically be a fight.  This is why the ability to
hide from such creatures is important.
And being able to hide from something also means not wearing anything
that might attrackt attention.  Like shiny armour, magical or blessed
items and so on. Being skilled at hiding might help too.
The idea is not to create a hand of fate, but to provide a game where
the players are clearly not the most powerfull beings. The ability to
hide, or escape fighting from such confrontations is to -prevent- the
dragons from turning into such hands of fate.
Of course I have no idea if it actually will work out like that but I
do hope it makes for a more interesting game.

Yes - at last - You. I Choose you. Out of all the world,
out of all the seeking, I have found you, young sister of
my heart! You are mine and I am yours - and never again
will there be loneliness ...

Rolan Choosing Talia,
Arrows of the Queen, by Mercedes Lackey

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