[MUD-Dev] Mud Games

Jon A. Lambert jlsysinc at ix.netcom.com
Mon Sep 8 00:58:48 New Zealand Standard Time 1997

On  7 Sep 97 at 2:53, Matt Chatterley wrote:
> On Sat, 6 Sep 1997, Jon A. Lambert wrote:
> > On  6 Sep 97 at 17:45, Matt Chatterley wrote:

> > Horse racing, Bull fighting, cock fighting, frog jumping.
> > Running, swimming, three-legged race, sack race, marathon.
> > Archery contests, Taber tossing, Rock/shot/discus throwing, weight 
> > lifting, Gladiator events, wrestling, boxing, martial arts.
> > Horse shoes, rowing, canoeing.
> > hrrm.. team sports like mud-football(?)..

Maybe these can be categorized:

1) Races - players or animals/pets.
2) Dueling - players or animals/pets.
3) Player executing a skill set to manipulate an object.
4) Team sports

> I've seen football (by which I mean soccer) coded badly on one mud (It
> basically didn't work, but was a nice idea), and lots of mud have 'arena'
> pits where players can duel (this is rather unimaginative, and on my mud
> would be rather lethal for the players involved - no safe deaths!)

Of course with referee Bubba in ring to provide warnings, checking 
equipment, etc.  Wrestling and boxing might be reasonably safe 

> I like the idea of translating field events (and possibly track events!)
> onto the mud, and other sports in the vein, but I think having
> combatative, and watchable events (as well as directly particible in) is
> good too. Bull fighting, Cock fighting and races of some kind (which you
> can bet on) look good to me.

The gambling aspect comes almost for free.  Some "house" code to 
collect and pay bets adds to player security.  Side-bets handled by 
players involved.
The spectator aspect could be exciting.  I've listened to horse 
racing over the radio and would bet an exciting textual presentation 
could be made to viewers.

> Oh yes. The 'fayre' is something that I will probably use - as a host
> place for both lighthearted, and less pleasant things (something for
> everyone - for instance a cock fight off to the side out of public view).
> Several historical civilisations have had a great love for public games
> and entertainment - they didn't have television!

I would think that much of the Fayre setup could be automated.  
Booths built, tracks laid out, targets erected, etc. over the course 
of a few mud days.  These could be regularly events held in some 
conveniently empty field near town.  The "lists" could be posted some 
mud days in advance, allowing players sufficient time to enter 

> > > The jousting tournament and other medieval things are somewhat cliched,
> > > and I'd like to think of something original, hmm.
> > > Catch-the-greased-swamp-dragon? :P
> > 
> > Then again I haven't seen jousting implemented, so it might not be a 
> > mud cliche yet.
> True - its a thematical cliche though. It'll be implicitly possible as a
> consequence for me (since if you have a large weapon like a lance, and are
> on a mount, and dash at something, you joust it).

Can you unhorse someone?  If so, you've got the meat of it.
> > Some questions come to mind. 
> > Take the simple(?) case of a character racing event. 

Hmm. I have a few answers, I think.

> > 
> > Can one effectively implement a "race" in a mud?  
> Yes, and no - doing it in a way that has 'player participation' could be
> tricky.


> > What sort of mud structures would be needed?  
> A racetrack? :P

How about a course layout.  At certain defined milestones/legs the 
player enters a strategy script. More below. 

> > What sort of presentation do you deliver the racer?
> Toughie. Lots of messages, rather than room descriptions?

Yes.  A portion of the race description that would be presented to
the viewers.  Typically those ahead of them.  And perhaps some
sensory input from their own bodies, indicating how they are feeling.
Perhaps some clues in these messages as to why they are loosing.

> > Would user input be needed to sustain a racing character?
> I'd say no - but we should have some degree of interaction with the
> player, so perhaps allow 'foul play' and/or allow them to pace themselves
> for long races (eg, run slower .. run faster .. at key points).

Rihgt.  Let us steal JCL's combat script notation for exactly this 
purpose.  A player enters their strategy throughout the entire race. 
Perhaps a option list at each defined point/leg in the race.  Once 
all participants have their "entire" race strategy entered, the NPC 
referee calls the players to their marks.  The "house" is closed for 
bets and the hankerchief is dropped.
Player cheating could be part of these options at conditional points 
in the race. ;)
Shorter races present fewer options.
> > What sort of character stats are important?  
> Stamina, lower body strength, reaction speed (if foul play is a factor),
> encumbrance (noone is going to win a 100m sprint in chainmail or plate
> armour).

Nod.  I could see different characters pursuing different strategies 
based on their own strengths.
> > Exhaustion, stride, quickness, agility, strength, etc.?

> Size of body is also a factory - bigger = bigger steps, but usually slower
> bigger steps.

Yep. I called it stride.  I also have the notion of pace added to my 
character bodies, but haven't given much thought of it's application, 
except in fleeing from regular combat.

> > Room-based or coordinate-based?
> Coordinate, within one room (or out of all rooms, technically).

I'm leaning towards a special sort of room within a room.  Visible
container withinn a container.  Fayre NPCs keep non-participants off 
the track.  Again allow for cheating.  (At the end of the race, 
instead of the obligatory drug testing you might implement the 
obligatory spell testing)
> > What's the player FUN quotient here?
> Thats the toughie. I suspect that watching and gambling on the outcome of
> races would be more fun than participating in them.

I think the social aspect of such events would provide a nice 
diversion from orc-slaying.  Make the rewards a bit interesting and 
these might become quests of a sort.  Players might increase chances 
through "training"?

Perhaps the winner of the entire mud-olympics would be offered the 
hand of the king's daughter with all the priviledges and 
responsibilities this entails. (oops I'm being sexist again)

Jon A. Lambert 

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