[MUD-Dev] [MLP] The use of ecology models (was: NPC Complexit y)

Daniel.Harman at barclayscapital.com Daniel.Harman at barclayscapital.com
Thu May 2 13:39:00 New Zealand Standard Time 2002


From: Koster, Raph [mailto:rkoster at soe.sony.com]

> We are doing this in Star Wars Galaxies. There was recently a post
> on our boards about how it works, written by listmember Jeff
> Freeman:

> start quote---> 

> There seems to be a little confusion over just what the
> differences are between these four (distinct) things. So here they
> are, in no particular order:

> Spawning is the system determines when and where Lairs, POI's and
> random monsters should appear. The Spawning System is the system
> that looks at you and says:

> Gee, he looks like he could use a little excitement. He's in the
> forest on Endor and he seems pretty tough, so I'll look at this
> list of *Tough Things, In The Forest, On Endor* and pick one of
> them. I'll put it near him (but not too near... don't want it
> dropping on his head!). Have fun!

> There are no "fixed spawn points" or anything of the like. The
> spawning system takes various things into consideration about you
> (just how tough are you, anyway?), and your location (are you in
> or near town? In the wilderness? In a "hard" part of the
> wilderness, or an "easy" part of the wilderness?) and chooses an
> appropriate encounter (so no Krayt Dragons popping out of the
> alleyways of Theed).

I'm not entirely sure I like the spawning stuff as people approach
in terms of it working against low level ecology models. What really
impresses me though is that this near as dammit solves the texture
working set problems that games such as Anarchy Online and Everquest
have.

You have complete control over what is going to be in an area so you
just sidestep the whole issue without resorting to zones. Still a
fairly complex problem, but no longer insurmountable.

Speaking of working sets, one thing that puzzles me is that
alledgely the new EQ gfx have 100s of megs of animation
information. It seems like they might not be using bones, which
explains the utterly ridiculous system requirements if they to store
vertices for every single frame of animation for each entity (you
need 1/2 a gig of ram+ to turn them all on).

Dan
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