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

Jon A. Lambert jlsysinc at ix.netcom.com
Fri Jun 20 03:17:01 New Zealand Standard Time 1997


> From: Adam Wiggins <nightfall at inficad.com>
> To: mud-dev at null.net
> Subject: [MUD-Dev] Alright... IF your gonan do DESIESE...
> Date: Thursday, June 19, 1997 4:34 PM
> 
> > >There are lots of problems, the most
> > >signifigant being that the building blocks of the universe are all constant.
> > >Atomic bonds have a set strength (for our purposes, anyways) and gravity
> > 
> > Huh? What the hell does an atomic bond strength have to do with the
> > possability of very large lizards?
> 
> Flesh, bone, etc etc are all constant density, material, makeup and so
> forth.
> Here's some more questions on these same topics (I'm not a scientist,
> nor do I have any formal education beyond high school) -
> Why are the largest sea creatures so much larger than the largest land
> creatures?

In the case of dragons, if I desired to look at this from a layman's 
scientific point of view, is it not conceivable that these creatures 
somehow convert food/water/air into hydrogen which is stored internally.
This would account for their ability to attain a large size, fly and 
breath fire.

I am quite willing, however, to attribute this strange creature's abilities
to divine and/or magical natures.

> Why are there no 50-ft insects?  It would seem that since insects really
> can live much longer except for their size (ie, you drop them from a height
> of 50 times their body length and they happily scurry off) that if you
> just made a version of them that was several times larger they could
> pretty much rule the earth.  So why is this not the case?
>

Good point with the insects.  I see no reason why they shouldn't rule the
world.  *sigh* We can only hope.

> > >> On top of this, they are meat-eaters.
> > >The T-Rex is probably the best direct comparsion on this, and it had problems
> > >at a mere 6 tons or so with keeping itself fed.  The massive amount of energy
> > >(== prey) which it takes to keep that sort of a body in motion is damn
> > >near impossible to maintain...
> > 

Oh no, dragon's are not carnivores.  This observed behavior is only an 
amusement for them and a side-effect of necessity.  They are actually 
aurumvores.  The mere proximity of certain metals and stones sustains them.  
Younger members of this species are forced to acquire enough to sustain
them.  Ancient members of this species rarely have need to venture forth 
since they have acquired enough of a hoard to sustain them.  This is why
they guard this hoard so fiercely.  This species is also highly intelligent.

> 
> T'was just conjecture.  The point is that every RPG which has followed
> after uses this same sort of setup.  Thus you end up with an ogre
> with a giant growth and 10 strength spells being able to armwrestle
> a dragon and win.  The system wasn't set up to handle this sort of thing
> correctly, so it's not any big surprise that it...doesn't.
> 

Not all.  Rolemaster does not implement linear strength.  It does 
however make compromises in the effects of mass.  Without some 
mitigation in this area "heroic fantasy" systems would provide little
player enjoyment.  AD&D allows player's on  power vs creature power is based on
levels  
 
> > AD&D is balanced aroudn the cocnept of the myth of St. George and the
> > Dragon. ie one fulyl decked out high levle fighter with war horse, alnce
> > and luck can take a dragoin down.
> 
> Yeah, and that's fine.  I'm just bored as hell of this, and I never
> liked it much to begin with.  The whole point of my post was stating
> that what you've said above is the case, and why I find it both ridiculous
> and bad for overall gameplay.
> 

Me too.  
 
> 
> Yeah.  Keep in mind, however, I'm not targeting D&D...that's just a nice
> big bullseye for me, and a good place to draw examples from that I'm
> pretty sure everyone can relate to somehow.  My main complaint lies with
> everything *since* then which has ripped off the D&D system without
> addressing fundamental problems in the changeover from a small, customizable,
> human-run game with handmade campaigns and small parties of adventures, to
> a computer-run system containing hundreds of players with ongoing adventures.
>

While its true that most games have descended from D&D, they are not at all
the same.  I would encourage you to check out Rolemaster, Rifts, or Cyberpunk.
Player power vs creature power is much more realistic.  I do agree with
your last point that most RPGs were designed to handle a cooperative small party 
of adventurers, muds introduce a scale that requires new systems of gameplay.  

> I *still* don't like D&D, and I wish that muds had chosen a better
> model (RuneQuest, for example) at the start.  Unfortunately it didn't
> work out that way...as a result I frequently find myself doing things
> a certain way just because it's the exact *opposite* of the way D&D (and
> subsequently, a large number of muds) did it.

The D&D abstractions of hit points and levels are implemented directly into
many servers.  The equipment-centered game play is also prevalent.  Much
of what I have seen in servers (Diku-derived) resembles the "Monty Hall"
style campaigns of D&D at its worst.  


JL



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