[MUD-Dev] DGN: Chemistry based magic systems

Bryan Bryan
Thu Dec 6 15:42:03 New Zealand Daylight Time 2001


Nathan F. Yospe [yospe at kanga.nu] said:

> Welcome.  Planettribes?  Gaming news site, right?

The one and only. :) I am a news monkey.

> Mostly preset.  Yeah, we've all seen them.  The question here is,
> how is the effect of mixing two magical elements determined?

I suppose every element would also need properties to be defined by
the designers.  Maybe a list of properties could be developed and
each element could be given a rating in them.  For example:

Fireball:

   Fire             100%
   Water              0%
   Earth              0%
   Wind               0%
   Speed             75%
   Area of effect    20%
   Skill required    30%

Any other ideas on how this could be done?

> As long as it's designer determined, you're really just creating a
> guide for designers.  A cooler idea would be to build a system for
> magic which actually modeled the effects of combined magical
> elements, based on some series of factors.

Can you further explain how this might work.  It sound interesting
but I am having trouble understanding it.

> I certainly used as complex and combinational a model last time I
> designed a magic system, though one of the consequences was the
> absense of "traditional" spells.

A hybrid system could be used where "tradition" spells exist for
easier lower level magic.  I don't know if I like the idea of two
distinct magic systems in one game though.

> But what does the magical equivalent of, say, crystal structure
> translate to?  That is one of the things that you can predict from
> purely ionic chemistry, with a little training.

The system wouldn't necessarily need to take structure into account.

> I'd think that you would get things like transforms, transfers,
> illusions, energies, knowledge, creation, and destruction, or some
> such set, as "chemical properties" of a spell... and remember,
> even knowing the chemical formula doesn't tell you everything
> about an object of whatever material.  Graphite, fullerene, or
> diamond?  Powder or large crystal?  Perhaps something equivalent
> to structure, when there's varied solutions to the question, what
> is it?

If in the game would you have the equivalent of H2O, the easy thing
to do with properties is just take 66% of what H's properties, and
33% of O's properties.  Upon further examination though, one element
could be much larger than another and maybe that should make it have
more influence on the properties.  Maybe elements also need a weight
property.  Is this a good idea? bad idea?

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