[MUD-Dev] Re: Character evolution

clawrenc at cup.hp.com clawrenc at cup.hp.com
Tue Aug 26 17:27:50 New Zealand Standard Time 1997

In <Pine.LNX.3.96.970820071756.121A-100000 at mpc.dyn.ml.org>, on
   at 12:32 PM, Matt Chatterley <root at mpc.dyn.ml.org> said:

>On Tue, 19 Aug 1997, Jeff Kesselman wrote:

>> At 09:52 PM 8/19/97 PST8PDT, JCL wrote:

>Entire text quoted because it makes a few nice points. This sums up
>my motivations in going with a "reputation" system - a basically good
>person could have an awful reputation and so forth; plus it provides
>a medium to track notoriety/fame.

How does your notoriety handle the case of:

  Bubba is a successful <whatever> in town.  He also has a double
life.  He regularly goes on extended hunting trips, or business/trade
trips to other parts of the world.  He works hard to keep his route in
such travels to low population areas.  He murders anyone he finds as
long as he can assure himself that no-one saw him with the victims. 
He sells the victim's EQ to a variety of fences scattered in various
parts of the land, __always__ with a minimum of a 6 month MUD time lag
between the murders and the sale to a fence fo any given EQ.

The basic idea is that Bubba is a pretty nasty sort who paints a very
good face.  Under your system, and JeffK's for that matter, what is
his reputation?

Variation on a theme:

  Identical to the above, except that now Bubba strangles beggars he
finds in alley-ways in the city with no witnesses present.

>Something important of note is that while players can get an idea of
>their reputation (by little signs - if you hear good songs about
>someone who sounds like you, after a great deed, it might be you, and
>from more obvious references by shopkeepers and so forth), but can
>never have an idea of their actual alignment. It might be better
>considered an 'aura' of some sort.


  Bubba is a generally, Okay-sh sort of character, not to good, not
too bad.  One day he's out and about and discovers a Super-Whammy
Sword.  He then wanders into a fairly sizeable town and slaughters
every soul therein.  No survivors.  None.  Nada.  Zip.  Perhaps a
dragon comes along as well and eats the corpses and burns the place to
the ground after the fact.

What is Bubba's reputation?

To extend to a more Natha-esque scenario:

  Bubba is flying an attack ship.  He's generally a good guy.  This
time he nukes a friendly city.  He deliberately targetted and aimed
the nuke during a firefight.  Ther is no obvious way for any others to
either determine taht the nuke came from Bubba's ship, or that it was
deliberate (it could have merely been a sloppy shot at the enemy
mother ship that missed).

What is his reputation?

That point I am heading towards here is that reputation is dependant
on perception.  The fact that Bubba takes off on a long voyage and
appears later as the only survivor does not mean that Bubba is a
murderous cannibal.  It may merely mean that he was a lucky survivor
who managed to scrape through desperate times.  He could also be a
murderous cannibal.  The key element is perception.  Is Bubba
perceived to be a murderous cannibal, and if so, why?  Is it because
his can looks suspiciously like a set of femurs nailed together?  Or
his satchel has a similar scar in the leather to Boffo's tattoo?  What
sets and changes the _perception_?

J C Lawrence                           Internet: claw at null.net
(Contractor)                           Internet: coder at ibm.net
---------------(*)               Internet: clawrenc at cup.hp.com
...Honorary Member Clan McFUD -- Teamer's Avenging Monolith...

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