[MUD-Dev] TECH: Flash Crowds and overflow control

J C Lawrence claw at 2wire.com
Wed Apr 18 14:52:37 New Zealand Standard Time 2001

On Wed, 18 Apr 2001 06:59:47 -0700 
Raph Koster <Koster> wrote:

>> From: Vincent Archer According to Marc Bowden:
>>> Not to display my ignorance, but what is a 'portal storm'?
>> A mechanism for crowd control in AC. If there are too many people
>> congregating within a volume, a "portal storm" started (swirly
>> effects clustering on characters). If you stayed, eventually, the
>> portal storm began in earnest, and the oldest characters in the
>> area were grabbed and "portaled" (teleported) to a random
>> location adjacent to the area.

> UO had the samne effect, except it was called a "teleport storm." 
> I believe it took a significantly larger number of players to
> cause it to happent, though, since they are very infrequent--only
> times I remember seeing them were during big events.

If the trigger value is small (subjective evaluation) it becomes
ripe for (ab)use.

  GooGoo's gallstone is heavily defended by clan Bubba.
  Bubba is defending the GGGS with N players.

  Clan Boffo wants the GGGS.
  Trigger value for the (tele)port(al) storm is T.

  Clan Boffo assembles in two groups of size Q where Q<T.
  Each group proceeds toward the GGGS

  When the two Boffo groups meen Bubba at the GGGS, the population
  is 2Q+N.
  If 2Q+N>T there will be a teleport storm.  

A problem, depending on how you view it, is that Boffo can
causitively use the teleport storm function as a feature to reduce
the number of defenders via teleport attrition.  

Minor variations on this theme abound:

  Bubba wants to ger Boffo.

  Boffo is in a location where Bubba can't get him (in a house,
  behind a wall/gate, up a tree,inside a real of magical protection,

  Bubba implements the above method to have Boffo teleported out of
  his protective zone.

Stalking is one one abuse vector, herding of other players via
teleport storm brownian motion is another.

J C Lawrence                                       claw at kanga.nu
---------(*)                          http://www.kanga.nu/~claw/
--=| A man is as sane as he is dangerous to his environment |=--
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