[MUD-Dev] Striving for originality

Kwon Ekstrom justice at softhome.net
Wed Jun 12 13:53:43 New Zealand Standard Time 2002


From: "Edward Glowacki" <glowack2 at msu.edu>

> On Tue, 2002-06-11 at 22:11, Kwon Ekstrom wrote: was a
> cleric/thief/warrior/mage, with the HP, mana, and other stats as a
> mage, but the ability to use warrior and thief skills, as well as
> cleric spells.  This combination is obviously very

I've played characters like that, and I personally don't like "I can
do everything" mule chars.

> almost always hold my own and survive, though I could rarely win.
> off (which was sometimes impossible if they used skills to knock
> me down).

This is the reason why I don't think mages should stay in the front
of battle.

> So, yes, I had less HP than a warrior, but by no means did I need
> to run and hide all the time.

"not getting hit" != "running and hiding".  I'm used to ranged
combat systems, and for the most part I view a "mage" as being
someone who uses their head.  Sure they can take a hit or two, and
they most likely will.  Do they stand up in front of someone beating
them upside the head with a club making it impossible to use their
magical abilities?  I don't think so.  Sure, I believe that some
magical abilities will be used in conjunction with melee, but that's
an implementation detail.

Sure, some "magically inclined" people will have extensive use of
melees with minor magic.  My system is a classless system with
chosen character progression.  Pretty much you get a set of base
skills which improve certain knowledge spheres and allow you to
learn spells and skills which can add to what knowledge spheres you
have access to.

Some abilities will use a "little" bit of magic and a whole lot of
melee allowing for chars which use magic as a secondary ability.
But in my mind, if you're a "mage" then "magic" is your primary
weapon.  If you've spent alot of your time building up your warrior
abilities then you're not a "mage" you're something in-between.  In
you're case you were a "mage hero" which is a definite distinction.

There's alot of details in my implementation of magic that make a
major difference in how mages work.  Maintaining affects uses up a
magic users ability to cast spells.  The more affects, and the more
powerful those affects then the less "power" you have left to cast
spells.  An extremely powerful mage can end up maintaining enough
affects to be "almost" invunerable... but they'd be seriously
handicapped in being almost unable to cast anything substantial and
being extremely limited in what physical tasks they can perform
(They may end up having to stand in the same room)

The mage has dozens of choices on how to handle a given situation.
They're brains will be the primary ability, they should be easy to
kill without devoting a large amount of their abilities to defense.
Sure, I have a classless system and it's entirely possible to be
both a good warrior and a good magic user... and if someone ever
acheives that, then I'll be duely impressed.  I think for the most
part the mages on my system will have at least a little bit of a
warrior in them.  There will be very few capable of handling the
capabilities of a "pure" magic user to their full advantage...  the
frailties of a mage will be too apparent.

Compare the situation, a combat analyst who spends the majority of
his/her time indoors reading material and extrapolating details vs a
trained martial artist?  Who's going to win in hand-to-hand combat?
Poor example, the analyst has no combat abilities, but someone who
spends all their time in intellectual pursuits will not gain
physical attributes.  Throw in magic and anything is possible, but
that's why I believe that "a" weakness should be enforced.

There's nothing that says you can't balance things
differently... but then it's the difference between a warrior with
magic and a better warrior without magic, not a mage vs a warrior

-- Kwon J. Ekstrom

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