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radical concepts?

1997 Topic Index

Posted by Ptah on 08/29

- Level is a measure of achievement. Therefore greater achievement should not come from GETTING there. In other words, level should not figure into any game things at all, except as a measure of how far you have gotten.

- In-game actions should have in-game consequences. This means everything from language to pkilling should have actual in-game impact for your character. This is supposed to be an immersive game, yet we distance your actions--including cheating!--from in-game consequences. Why?

- The game needs to be unpredictable. You shouldn't know what creature is now lairing in that cave. The reset system we use sucks.

- How many swords of Weland can there really be? We need to have limits of some sort, and I do not mean the typical cheesy Diku eq limits and unique items. I mean that something nice should be rare and precious, and not reliably popping up in the same place every fifteen minutes. And its effect should therefore be likewise.



From: Ptah Friday, August 08, 06:33PM

Oh yeah, how do you feel about the idea of actions imposing perceptions and even restrictions on you? If you get blinded, you are blind, we have that. But what about enforcing some degree of say, emotions on you? Of character background? (Like, we could make it optional, don't freak yet).

If you were stupid, your room descs are stupid. If you are focused on herbal tasks, you notice plants more, and ignore buildings. And you have no choice, the descs come filtered this way.


From: Tyche Friday, August 08, 06:40PM

I think the filtered descs would be NEAT!

From: Jen-Creature Friday, August 08, 08:19PM

I'm with tyche...I think it's cool. It lends a really important dynamic to the game in my opinion.

From: Asmodean Friday, August 08, 08:44PM

I don't know...i'm still sticking by the fact that i come here to escape reality, not play a different version of it...I think that would kinda suck but who knows? Would it make a difference if you use brief? And wouldn't this makem ore work for the builders?

Dunno, just bringing up a few questions

- Asmodean, follower of Allah

From: Densiva Friday, August 08, 11:33PM

a brillianty stupid idea, thank-you!


From: Beam Friday, August 08, 11:42PM

Which idea is stupid?

I'd like to see immort run quests for artifact items, kinda like a tinyplot to search for the artifact. Artifacts being items there are only 1 of ever.

Asmodean you really get this mixed up with your real life? Not having levels wouldn't make me forget this wasn't real life or anything. This mud basically isn't set up around fantasy or anything so I would think you could find a more fantastical type mud that would be less like real life.

Ptah your right about going after the same eq for the 10th time not being any fun. Mainly its just a task that has to be done some times, back when I did go kill stuff a lot more, the main highlight was when new areas were added and some new eq was put in. But as has been said most of the eq don't do anything and after someone else has got it and checked the stats it isn't as much fun.

My idea of an immort run quest could be something like, so and so immort writes up a new piece of eq, and either sticks it somewhere does a global with a clue or somesuch.

These could be made incredibly difficult, either a riddle or killing mobs. Mainly I like the idea of a vague hint, not like most quests where if you ask the right first question, you usually see the next question to ask in the reply. Most people like quests and eq in new areas as much or more than anything, this would give a bit of both, ie everyone could try to figure out the quest, and one person would get something neat, but there wouldn't be any telling friends how to do the quest etc.

Lotsa possibilities.

From: Erodic Saturday, August 09, 01:14AM

well, this is a response to ptah's comment about levels being a form of achievenment. well, this is true.

however, right now, levels don't really count for anything except the fact that you can get more skills or stats. oh, and it accounts for a pkill range-limit.

if we took this stuff out, then levels would remain nothing more than the achievement that ptah spoke about right? well, i hate to sound lame, but what's the use of this achievement if no one knows about it? frankly, most achievements are worth their while because you're accorded something. very few of us do things just for the sake of doing it.

with levels removed from the wholist, no one really cares about level as an achievement anymore. achievements now are regarded by checking someone's whois flags. if you want to take the levelling "bonuses" out of the game and reduce it to an achievement, then put it back in the wholist or give level 50's some kind of prize. sadly, it's human nature to desire accolades or rewards before we desire achievement for its own sake.

wow, i just felt like philosophising.

From: Chaykin Saturday, August 09, 01:48AM

I agree with the statement that Legend is sorely lacking in in-game consequences. I think the filtered descs and info idea is a good one (though a LOT of extra code?) and would enhance the character aspect without being too harmful to gameplay. However, I think any changes to this effect should be limited to first-person physical gameplay and not intrude on the freedom we enjoy on channels, tells, OOC and such. I'm not sure if that's the sort of thing we were talking about here but just wanted to make sure. :)

Another thing to ask is, sure, the idea of filtered desc may be cool, but does it go deep enough to solve the problem Ptah's talking about? I would guess not.


From: Rufus Saturday, August 09, 08:18AM

Current things level affects (just fyi):

Hit roll
Hit points
Hunt range
Qualification for levels of skills (bowman, sniper, fight skills)
Rate of success of certain skills
Damage (kick, headbutt, bash)
Level difference in instant death
Pkill range
Amount of exp per mobile
How much prestige and experience you lose by fleeing
Whether or not you can permadie
Backstab damage (though don't ask for the formula, I've been staring
at it for 2 years and still don't quite understand it)
Certain spell affects (major or minor demons, etc)
Regen rates (esp move)
and this is just a partial list.

From: Kamiya Saturday, August 09, 12:53PM

Actually, the idea of filtered descs is something that I was looking into a few months ago. Making it so that the character's current status affects the room description they see is a neat idea, imo. There can be other parts to a room description other than just the visual, for example. If the character is blind, they wouldn't see visual parts of the room descriptions, but if, for example, they enter a field filled with fragrant wildflowers or a bakery, they'd get information pertaining to other senses. This gives a way to navigate using reference points even when blind, which is more realistic. Other senses could be included this way also. If someone steps into a marshy swamp, they could 'feel' their feet sinking into the soft, wet, squishy ground. If someone is near some structure or object that makes noise, that could be included also, assuming the character wasn't deaf. ;)

Another thing that could be done with filtered descs would be to remove the 'brief' setting altogether and assigning 'noticibility' values to different parts of the room desc. The mud could keep track of the number of pulses they spent in the last room and use that to determine the speed they're travelling from room to room at. if they rush through rooms, they'd only receive information about the most 'noticible' parts of the room, but if they move at a more leisurely pace, they'd get more information because they'd be more prone to pay attention and notice more.

It could be set up so that the amount of time that the character spends in the current room is combined with the ammount of time that they spent in the last room such that if they rush into a room, they'll initially get a terse description, but subsequent "look" commands in the same room would reveal more information as time went by. With a system like that, it would be possible to set up room descs with specific clues to quests or subtlties that would only be visible if the character stayed in the room for a while before looking instead of just running all over.

From: Charity Saturday, August 09, 05:29PM

Not to quell a 'wouldn't it be nice' or 'what if...' discussion or anything, but removing levels or adding consequences for things like cussing, or killing in towns, basically would mean shutting down Legend and building a new mud. There is no way that the current 'wouldn't it be nice'es on the coder list could be accomplished simultaneous with these changes, and no way builders could continue to make areas for both the current mud and a totally redone mud. One would have to stop before the other could begin. Which is not to say that you shouldn't discuss it... after all, maybe a Legend player will go do this stuff on a new mud of their own. =)

Some other ideas, like a replacement for the resets system, and a manner of randomizing what mob lives in a particular cave or where the 'best' eq can be found... well, the best model I've heard for changes like this is legally owned by Origin. Come up with different, viable implementations and I'd be willing to discuss it, but for now it falls into the same 'unimplementable' category that I mentioned above, only with nasty legal repercussions if we somehow managed to do it. =(

Some of the things Kamiya mentioned sound neat, and are prolly the sort of thing Ptah was thinking of... I've wanted flexible room descs for ages, for a different reason. Take as an example the mobs in the Dun. You get used to seeing them, you know a bit about their personalities, and you know what any casual visitor would about what their rooms look like. Now, you embark on a quest, promising Gawain that you'll help him overthrow Cian and take the crown. You go search peoples' rooms, and find different things in the descriptions, because now you're looking for indications that they would or would not support your side. If the crown is Cian's physical symbol of authority, suppose he gives it to someone in his family to keep it safe for him... and it's not necessarily the same person each time, depending on which mobs decide (through randoms, or however) that it's in their best interests to help Cian. So now the 'best' item is in an unpredictable spot, you'd probably not be able to get it at all without finishing Gawain's quest for him, and you'd have to re-explore an area you already thought you knew, because the circumstances of your quest mean that you're seeing different things.

So basically, I'd use modifiable room descs as a tool in writing randomized quests... this is a much narrower scope, but because of that maybe easier to implement (because the only lookups would be pre-determined quest flags, not a bunch of character attributes like stupid, blind, horny, whatever). Supposedly it will be possible to modify mob extra descs (Sadist says it's not that hard, it remains to be seen whether he or someone else can/will actually code it -chuckle-) and that would add another dimension to questing too. This addresses someone else's comment about quests not being fun once the first person does them and is able to tell others how to do it... more and more, I suspect you'll be seeing quests which cannot be done the same way any time. A lot of the tools for that already exist, though they are ghastly to write and would be much easier with reattachable acts (they'd let us shuffle quest steps, items/mobs needed, etc like a deck of cards, and deal them out differently each time).


From: Kinch Saturday, August 16, 01:24PM

While we're playing "what-if's", I'd like to add a suggestion that would seem to dovetail nicely with filtered room descs and randomised quests.

When I started playing (yeah, this is my first character and first mud) I sort of imagined that my choice of stats would have more of an impact on what I could and couldn't do. The trade-off (I imagined) would be that there would be things I could do that other's couldn't...and vice versa.

To give you an example, I thought that selecting perception as a major stat would mean I woul notice more...and hence maybe pick up clues to quests that others wouldn't see.

On the flip-side, my low spirit would mean that out of doors there would be any number of game elements that I wouldn't notice/be able to influence.

It's called opportunity cost...you accept that being good at one thing means you can't be good at another.

I believe this could be better reflected "in-game".

So...if we're having filtered room descriptions, and quests that play differently each time, can we have mobs that respond differently to you according to your stats? (More so than currently?)

For example, mobs might deliberately lie about quest clues...a high perc (or spirit?) might allow you to work out that they had sold you a red-herring. High strength (or con?) might allow you to intimidate certain mobs for information.

Take it a step further, and I believe that there should be quests that (putting all the elements discussed in these threads together) can ONLY be completed by a character with a certain skill-set, and are relevant to that skill-set.

For instance, as a thief, it would mean more to me to complete a quest that could only be done by a thief with the necessary skills/stats, and gave me a whois with xp, a special eq item only usable by thieves (lockpick?) etc rather than simply realising that almost any quest is attainable by any character if you find the right person to help you.

In this way, whois and eq would mean more in a character sense.

I'll stop now, before this append enters spam/waffle territory.


From: Nihil Friday, August 29, 02:33PM

Well, with the possible perception thing changing descs and all that .. I think most people use brief anyway ... ;P


1997 Topic Index