[MUD-Dev] RE: Realistic Ecological Models

Leland Hulbert II lhulbert at hotmail.com
Sun Apr 28 23:49:35 New Zealand Standard Time 2002

Sasha.Hart at directory.reed.edu wrote:

>   -- Dynamics need to be played out at the right rate. Not hard to
>   engineer this, but it's important - if you want players to
>   interact with it rather than just be affected by it, if you want
>   them to be able to see signs, predict events and control them to
>   any extent, they have to be able to see it, and they have to be
>   able to keep up. Birth rate and more concrete instantiations
>   (gestation time) are perfect.

This can be deceptively hard.  Since mobs will be prey, and your
player base are the predators, you need an accurate way to model the
changes in your player density, or a good system for changing the
birth rate/death rate based on it.

Say, for example, your game server is knocked off the net for an
hour.  Not actually crashed, but knocked off-line.  With a fixed
birth rate, mobs will consistently outnumber players for a good
period of time after they can log back in.

Say you make birth rate proportional to number of players, but leave
death rate alone.  If you have any group of players that logs on at
relatively the same time, but only stays connected for a short
period, then you have another spike in mob population, and nothing
to put it back down.

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