[MUD-Dev] Re: Leaving characters in play

Ling K.L.Lo-94 at student.lboro.ac.uk
Tue May 19 20:39:02 New Zealand Standard Time 1998

On Mon, 18 May 1998, John Bertoglio wrote:
> From: Adam Wiggins <adam at angel.com>
> >On Sun, 17 May 1998, Travis S. Casey wrote:
> >> On Saturday, 16 May 98, John Bertoglio <alexb at internetcds.com> wrote:
> >> If, for example,
> >> your game includes shotguns, grenades, and other such weapons, such a
> >> rule starts to look silly.  If you go on into the kinds of
> >> superweapons available in some SF, it becomes downright ridiculous.
> I would love to be able to model worlds outside of swords and sorcery. The
> problem is that those worlds lend themselves so well to this kind of
> gaming. The problem with warfare after the age of massed muskets (a better
> inflection point would be the Boar War in South Africa), combat became so
> deadly that most kills were made by people who never saw their opponents
> (artillery). While effective, the advanced weapons make the actions of
> small units and heros somewhat irrevelant. Notice that most games that
> model the modern era do so on a larger scale than the solo hero or party of
> 6. The ones that do (X-Com and BattleTech comes to mind) do so by
> essentially modeling medieval combat by introducing powerful armour which
> can absorb large amount of damage. This gives players the time to get to
> know their heros before they are killed and replaced.

This is something I've regarded as a plus of sorts.  It just means I have
to think differently when it comes to mission design.  Much less emphasis
is placed on overt blasting at things and more so on covert sneaking
around.  This means the usual run of the mill affair will be watching how
the sentries patrol the base and mugging which ever ones look susceptable.
There's certainly a place for heroes, just not long lived ones.

I must admit, I'm having difficulty right now trying to figure out how to
make things more survivable so player vs. player could be a regular
occurance but here's a gist of how things look currently:

One side enters a campaign of sorts, rest of the players play non-descript
throwaway forces.  Eg: Bubba negotiates a stint at Zone Goo.  Bubba is
then dropped into a series of generated missions.  Anyone who happens to
be logged in at the time can go play the opposing side or the server can
do the job.

This does run away from the problem of proper players vs. player (using
their own teams) but my excuse is that the chances of two teams being
dropped into the same zone is tiny as to be ignorable. :)  Note the server
is expected to host several missions at once on several different
locations.  Those tutorial/scenario things talked about would, in theory,
just be treated as standalone missions.

I kinda feel it's got very little to do with a, er, 'traditional' mud. 
The only link would be the glue events that happen between missions and
compaigns.  The current thought is to make the players owners of mercenary
teams.  If things do go successfully, I may end up building a mud *around*
this core centre, rather than the other way round.

Note, there seems to be a wave of computer games similar to what I said
above.  Could be a backlash to Quake.

> Note the world of Dune. Advance technology virtually neutralizes high-tech
> weapons so small scale combat is fought with psionics, bladed weapons and
> poisons. I would guess that Herbert did this to introduce the notions of
> personal honor and combat into a highly advanced empire.

Dune was just so weird, it went past futuristic and wrapped round to 
medieval.  So, doesn't count. :P

  |    Ling Lo of Remora (Top Banana)
_O_O_  Elec Eng Dept, Loughborough University, UK.     kllo at iee.org

MUD-Dev: Advancing an unrealised future.

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