[MUD-Dev] Re: PK's: A solution?

J C Lawrence claw at under.engr.sgi.com
Thu Apr 30 14:51:16 New Zealand Standard Time 1998

On Tue, 28 Apr 1998 10:26:48 -0700 
John Bertoglio<alexb at internetcds.com> wrote:

> Remember, I said this was *a* solution, not *the* solution.  I have
> read thousands of messages lamenting the problems of PKing. When
> compare the PK messages to the MK (killed by a monster) messages,
> these complaints begin to develop a pattern.

I find it more valuable to examine a different facet.  The single key
source of the upset related to PK is that of intent.  They are upset
because someone intended to harm them, and did.  Without the intent,
the upset disappears.

Consider the case of a character walking along beside a high castle
wall.  A rock falls from the castle wall and splits his skull.  Bop!
He is dead.

If he dies because Bubba stood atop the walls and dropped the rock on
his head to kill him, he is likely to be upset (yes, I know some
souldn't be).  If conversely the rock fell because of in-game
system-derived reasons, such as the fact that the castle is gradually
falling down and he happened to be standing in the right place at the
right time to catch the next rock falling off the collapsing castle
walls...then he unlikely to be upset (comparitively).  

The key distinguishing factor seems to be that there was no actual
concerted _intent_ to harm him.

This also resolves the ccase of getting killed by a mobile:  The
mobile is machine run and has no "intent".  It is merely operating
on its preset course and has no concept of who or what the player's
character is other than byte values in the host machine.  

> So what is the solution?

> Have player killers play monsters. And don't let those players speak
> (or at least don't let them have control of the language
> used). 

Cute.  I like.  First thought on implementation:

  Characters have a "karma" stat.

  The karma stat controls what range body types a character can
control (cf any of several eastern standard re-incarnation
cycles/wheels models where the next lifetime's body is selected on the
basis of the previous live's karmic balance).

  The selection of body style selects the range of *other* body styles 
that can be communicated with.  

Ergo.  In the game there is a range of, say, 20 different body types,
ranging from a lumbering mould beast at the bottom to some sort of
enlightened super-being at the top.  Each body type can speak to and
be understood ONLY by bodies withing a range of 2.  Outside that range 
and the attempted speech becomes gibberish...

Variation on the model:  

  Each body type can understand the speech of all body types of its
own level or higher.  

This one has a more intereting result.  Bubba the Troll can then
understand all Trolls or higher, but can be understood only by other
Trolls or lower....

(In)direct mappings to levels are also possible.

J C Lawrence                               Internet: claw at null.net
(Contractor)                               Internet: coder at ibm.net
---------(*)                     Internet: claw at under.engr.sgi.com
...Honourary Member of Clan McFud -- Teamer's Avenging Monolith...

MUD-Dev: Advancing an unrealised future.

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