[MUD-Dev] better usage through mechanics [from: CGDC dinner]
Fri Mar 17 10:45:59 New Zealand Daylight Time 2000
On Fri, 17 Mar 2000, Joel Kelso wrote:
> Lovecraft wrote:
> > Embarassingly, I don't know of other games that reduce bandwidth/daily usage
> > by game mechanics. I imagine you, gentle listmember, may offer examples. I
> > offer one I know well.
> Starlane (which I'm testing at the moment) uses a constantly regenerating
> "energy" value that to restrict movement. Starlane's not an RPG, its a
> strategy game, but with a real-time rather than turn-based control system,
> so it's absoutely vital for game balance to limit the number of moves that
> a player can make in a day.
> Despite this, a few of the test players were in the habit of connecting
> every half-hour or so and waiting for his energy level to go up by 0.1
> so they could perform a move (there was a war on) ... I guess there's a
> balance here between rewarding enthusiastic players and penalising players
> with limited time to devote.
The time-limiting thing reminds me very strongly of my first on-line
gaming experience(s), BBS doors. First Empire and Tradewars on the C64 BBS's,
and then later the more complex Operation Overkill 2, Baren Realms Elite,
and Tradewars 2000 when PC-based BBSes gave the server more processing power
and more bandwidth. All of these games gave you a certain number of turns
per day (plus your total time online was limited by the BBS itself).
This worked very well as far as causing even those that were very obsessive
about (say) the currently running Baren Realms game, but regardless of
how much time you had to spend on it per day, you only got 10 turns, which
kept things very "fair" for those that didn't have a lot of time as long as
they could spare 30 minutes or so a day.
The only funny side effect, which was similar to what Joel mentions above,
was that your turns reset at 12 midnight, so everyone would set their
autodialers for 12:01 in order to be the first to get their turns for the
day. Usually it was next to impossible to log onto the BBS any time between
midnight and 3am, depending on the currnet number of players...
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