[MUD-Dev] Character evolution

Nathan Yospe yospe at hawaii.edu
Thu Sep 4 08:59:19 New Zealand Standard Time 1997

On Wed, 3 Sep 1997, Adam Wiggins wrote:

:[Jeff K:]
:> It depends on what you mean didn't think of.  I think you are wandering off
:> of my original post which was about abuse of the system.  I don't consider
:> "Hey, if we attack from both sides its easier for me to get a back stab"
:> abuse. I do consider duping, finding a clear hole in the combat logic that
:> allows unresonable things to occur, and such abuse.  This was my intent.

:*nod*...I am indeed wandering a little bit, but not as far as you might
:have thought.  Too many times I've seen coders rip into someone for
:using some inventive method to take advantage of the system as created.
:This doesn't mean causing the game to crash or duping objects through
:an obvious bug - both of those are obviously abuse, and if you have these
:bugs people will eventually ferret them out and abuse them - but taking
:to functioning elements and using them together in an unexpected way.

I for one (And I'm sure Chris L is exactly the same) _depend_ on this sort of
inventiveness. There is NO other way to play my game. I've mentioned the sort
of effects I get... tide lines, thanks to a bit of code designed to make sand
dunes shift realisticly, people able to dig through the top of an
inpenetrable stronghold and bypass the ten thousand sentries, unless the
stronghold designer remembered to protect against this sort of thing...

:Here's a real-life example from my own experiences.
:There is an area with a bunch of puzzles to solve, stuff to kill, etc.
:Eventually you can collect the seven keys and seven code fragments.  Using
:the seven keys you unlock all the doors, and then you figure out how to
:fit the seven fragments together to create the phrase that opens the final
:door.  The trick is, the fragments are all written in demon, and the final
:phrase must be uttered in demon.  Demon costs 50 million gold coins (on
:a mud where it costs five million coins to increase a physical stat and
:the most I ever saw any item sell over auction for was eight million) to
:learn if you have a 29 (max) int, and more for every point under 29.

So you only had one _official_ way to solve the puzzle? Shame.

:An industrious player got to the final door, had the seven fragments, and
:even had a spell which allowed them to comprehend written languages so
:that they could fit the fragments together properly.  Unfortunately, said
:player did not have 50 million coins, or anywhere near it.  So, remembering
:that the brownies in the forest of the faeries were bugged (and had been
:that way for a long time) to cause them to speak in demon, he quickly ran
:to the faerie forest, charmed the brownie, made a portal back to a buddy
:waiting at the final door, and ordered the brownie to hop through and say
:the phrase.

Smart guys. They deserved their reward, I'd say.

:This is a pretty usual scenario.  The question I pose to you, Jeff, or
:any other admin-type reading: would you be angry at the player?  They
:basically circumvented a major device of the puzzle and allowed themselves
:to get the quest rewards before they really "should" have been able to.
:Would you applaud their inventiveness (while quickly fixing the brownie bug
:to make sure no one else decided to copy the idea), shrug your shoulder
:in indifference, or be angry at the player for not solving the quest correctly,
:and what's more, utilizing a known bug in order to do so?

I'd probably fix the language instead... change the puzzle enough that
something _else_ equally clever had to be used to circumvent the impossible
normal solution.


"You? We can't take you," said the Dean, glaring at the Librarian.
"You don't know a thing about guerilla warfare." - Reaper Man,
Nathan F. Yospe  Registered Looney                   by Terry Pratchett
yospe at hawaii.edu   http://www2.hawaii.edu/~yospe           Meow

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