[MUD-Dev] Re: mobile movement

J C Lawrence claw at under.engr.sgi.com
Mon Jan 11 17:06:24 New Zealand Daylight Time 1999

On Mon, 11 Jan 1999 06:46:35 -0000 
Kylotan <kylotan at globalnet.co.uk> wrote:

> Secondly, real-life studies indicate that people tend to navigate
> by using waypoints, such as landmarks or settlements, rather than
> a mathematical consideration of the shortest path, especially when
> such a consideration only makes a small difference overall. Many
> people will take a slightly longer route if it lessens the chances
> of getting lost, for example. Also, should the average NPC know
> enough about all the interposing areas such that he or she can
> make such an accurate mental calculation? Therefore, given that
> areas tend to correlate highly with what might be waypoints on a
> mud, this could also be viewed as an improvement to NPC AI :-)

Given the fact that many MUD worlds are topologically a single long
road with a variety of self contained (ie not or barely
interconnected) blobs of "areas" hung off it, this approach has some
really good real-world justifications.  The processing loop then
becomes a simple (simplified):

  Is target in same area as me?
  Yes?  Plot and follow path to target.
  No?  Plot and follow path to highway.
  Is target on highway?
  Yes?  Follow highway in that direction.
  No?  Plot and follow path to target area.
  Plot and follow path in target area to target.

A lady who used to live in the same apartment complex as me had a
simple way of navigating: First she went from where ever she was out
to the local north/south highway, and then went either up or down
there to the appropriate cross road and then turned back in.  It
didn't matter if her destination was only a two blocks away from
where she was and if the higway was 4 miles away -- her knowledge of
every location was "how to get there from the highway".

She was very earnest in her dedication to this solution, and very
very aware of its infallibility.

J C Lawrence                              Internet: claw at kanga.nu
(Contractor)                             Internet: coder at kanga.nu
---------(*)                    Internet: claw at under.engr.sgi.com
...Honorary Member of Clan McFud -- Teamer's Avenging Monolith...

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