[MUD-Dev] Integrating PK

Brandon Cline brandon at merlin.sedona.net
Thu Jun 26 21:32:17 New Zealand Standard Time 1997

On Thu, 26 Jun 1997, Huibai (John G.) wrote:

> A few comments on your (interesting!) list, Brandon:
> : Brandon Cline so eloquently stated:
> :    Anonyimity;
> :     Standardized personal descripts, (hair color, length eye color etc)
> Agreed - but also I'm implementing the 'introduce'-like
> "name" handling in the client, for either tagging a name
> to someone or knowing them by the name they give.

Nod, I've thought about introduction name handling, and would have
mentioned it before in my post, but have not figured out how to explain
tracking 100 or 1000 aliases per player, client or server side, for pc
names, but maybe this would be worth it, and if you possibly forgot
someones name after not seeing them for a while that would help control
things like after 5 months of game play being introduced to tons of
people, but only actually interacting with maybe a 100.

> :     Layered eq visibility (Pc and NPC alike)
> YES!  A point I am adamant about.  Instead of "look at
> brandon" and seeing his Sword of Doom +3, Gloves of
> Giant Mauling, Secret Armour of the Ages, etc., I can
> only see <A sword and plenty of armour> or <A sword
>  and only a shield> or <No weapon but tons of armour>
> I've moved standard 'short descriptions' to just a good
> handling name, with 'medium descs' now taking over the
> old short-desc job.  Shorts can be expected to logically
> fit into any sentence as a handle, while mediums can
> be expected to fit into a sentence as a fairly unique
> identifier.  Objects in the same environment get to see
> mediums, while objects in equal effective environments
> only get to see shorts.
> :     Non-automatic pc name visibility
> only the who list involuntarily, and voluntary tells/pages.

The only problems I see with who lists, are that they are unrealistic, and
allow for generlizations like, oh so-and-so isn't on the who list, he must
have logged out, which people shouldn't be able to tell anyways, shrug.
Sure, it makes it hard to find new people, but, if there was say, some way
to tell if someone you know is around, but not a complete stranger, even
this would be better.

> :  Combat system:
> :  Wound based instead of hp, allows for more 
> :  non-deadly battles.
> I'm now leaning towards sending the dying party straight
> to unconsciousness (except for 1/10 or so chance of 
> accidental kill) so that deathstrokes must be deliberate.
> Based on the greatest damage type (bash/cut/thrust/
> magic) you could then assign a wound as something
> that would need taking care of before you could get back
> to being your old, alive, hoppity self.

Nod, something along that lines would be nice.  Also, another point I
forgot to bring up about making stuff less game termish, i.e. Hit points,
levels, etc, is that if role players are ever going to be playing these
games, not having game terms present, and availiable for describing the
game, would help to intergrate players not interested in role playering
per say, into a role environment. So that you don't have someone saying
"Oh man, that 50th level dragon took off 200 hit points per round, he's
tough."  Instead you get, "Wow, we fought an elder dragon ealier today
and his claws sliced right through my plate armor, knocking me to the
ground, it was all I could to to get up and run away while he was
distracted by the rest of my group..."  Now, we all know, that when you RP
pencil and paper, the second example is how you picture combat going to
some extent, and maybe even how the DM describes it, even though you know
the dragon just whacked you for 200 hp.  So why not, get rid of hp, etc,
which were there as a simplified combat system (Keeping track of each and 
every limb hit on paper would suck) , and replace it with something more

> : Sight, soun, smell, taste and touch have different ranges.
> I'm routing smell through the sound functions; I am not
> going with a true coord system, so taste and touch have
> no use for me...

  Well, the main point with taste and touch is the fact that you may be
able to see on object, on a person, in the room, etc, but that doesn't
mean you can get anything more than visual information from it.  This also
brings the point of doing most of an objects description, except possibly
a lore or history command available throguh a skill like legend lore,
from what the object is and is made of.  A full description of course,
would require texture and weight (touch), dimensions and material type
(sight), odor or lack of (smell), and actual taste...mostly for food and

> : Ranged combat.
> I've played mostly sci-fi muds and am therefore retarded
> for implementations beyond the one I have in mind.  Any
> special extra this depends on? or does it become possible
> solely through use of coord-based ranges?

Well, with ranged combat, if you are to keep it from becoming a power
problem, i.e. why use close combat if ranged combat is so effective, while
at the same time keeping it as a viable combat option, you almost have to
apply things like ranges, cover, and target movement, which needs some
sort of coord-based system.  I've seen ranged combat done on mud systems
using rooms, but you either have over powered or underpowered problems.

> : Less support for invasive player social commands:
> :  Tell, who, shout, etc...bleh, replace with something realistic
> For example, eliminate 'tell' altogether *grin*.  Let the player 
> pay out some cold cash for a "page" (lowly runner-boy NPC)
> to run and 'summon' your intended contact.  Example:
> John:
> > page brandon
> The urchin accepts your coins and runs off to find Brandon.
> <boy compares his coords to target's, selects highway, runs>
> Brandon:
> A street urching arrives panting heavily.  He says to you,
> "A short dwarf wants to see you at the tavern in Goodtown."
> The poor kid lies down for a nap.

Yep, exactly, mostly depending on which genre the server is running.   

> : Now, I could go into a long discusion why I think some or all
> : of this would help to counter abusive players without restricting
> : all the players of the game to non-realistic "game" rules.
> Very much agreed... with 'real' people harder to find (and there-
> for relatively few and far between), I think personal contacts 
> would be initially more friendly & relieved than the usual once-
> over "how good is he _really_?" look.  Such an environment
> can only help steer away from the common squabbles that
> are bound to occur but seem to reach beyond their scope in
> hostility that arises.
> -John G.

Yep, especially on large games where you have large numbers of players.
Multi-player games are cool, but having 20+ people in the same spot
creates way too much chaos, and if they all know each others names, and
general strength, allows too much abuse.  You can't say, don't have 20
people in one spot, but you can say, allow 20 people in the same area
(within sight), but don't allow them to know information they wouldn't be
able to know.  Of course, if you wanted to find people, having meeting
places is easy enough...  

  One problem I've been thinking about is say on a skill based system, no
levels, no classes, who do you differentiate between the solo player, and
the group player.  A person that spends 20 hours on the game by themself,
may be a jerk, but he would then also be able to gain power on his own.
So, should balance be geared towards group players, making solo players
difficult, but not impossible, also, being solo, that would make it harder
to recover without friends, i.e. all beat up, and no healer?  

Brandon L. Cline
brandon at sedona.net

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