[MUD-Dev] New topic: AI and NPCs

Nathan Yospe yospe at hawaii.edu
Mon Sep 8 08:06:43 New Zealand Standard Time 1997

On Sun, 7 Sep 1997, Jon A. Lambert wrote:

:On  2 Sep 97 at 9:11, Nathan Yospe wrote:

:> Not only that, but a reciprocation. For example, lets take our old friends,
:> Bubba and Boffo. Now, Bubba has just walked into the locality of a Freudian
:> BakerSigma beast, and has activated the FBSB's 'AI'... the AI looks for any
:> current player with combat attributes (tallied over time, yes, this bears a
:> resemblance to NNs) similar to its own, and happens across Boffo, wandering
:> innocently in another part of the world. "I say," thinks the AI, "This will
:> work just fine." Bubba happens to resemble nothing in particular, so the AI
:> generates a Bubbalike (but quite different in appearance) critter from some
:> template, and places it in a spot analogous to the FBSB's view of Bubba. It
:> then ties the critter to Bubba's control feed, and the FBSB to Boffo's, and
:> turns the two loose. Of course, speech is obfuscuted, as Bubba cannot speak
:> FBSBese, and Boffo cannot speak critterese, but all subsequent actions are,
:> in fact, performed by two PCs in four bodies and two locations.

:It occurs to me that many creatures or alien life forms would use 
:tactics not commmonly available to players or have a very limited 
:set of tactical options.  For instance, the FBSB monster you mention 
:might have the the unique Psi abilities of ego whip or id 
:insinuation. In addition, you may have given it a very powerful 
:attack form like a dreaded diagnose skill.  In this case, finding an 
:appropriate player to mirror would be difficult.   

Obviously, this depends on two things: it only works for humanlike NPCs 
(In the context of this humanoid only PC game) and it only works when the
playerbase is sufficient to reasonably approximate most monsters. Oh, 
there are few unique abilities, spells being instead matters of scale in
managing consistant background energies in the four magical planes, 
mind powers being projections on three additional planes, animistic and
empathic yet another pair of planes.

:The speech obfuscation is interesting in it's own right. Given some 
:consistent translation tables, in languages which no player could 
:hope to learn, an appearance of intelligent alien banter could be 

NPC speech patterns that a player cannot understand can be quite fun. I 
do it in Physmud++ as well.

"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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