I understand this will drag a lot of unclanned chars too, but the suggestion is going to be fairly realistic anyway :P
When hunting, a low perc char should have more delay in initial hunt and when moving through rooms. For example, a character with perc below 50 will have a 3 round lag upon typing hunt, and maybe 2 round lag while moving from room to room. A char with perc below 70 but above 50 will have a 2 round lag upon typing hunt, and maybe a round lag while moving from room to room. A char with perc above 90 will not suffer any lag from typing hunt at all... you get the drift.
What this will do is make it more likely that a high perc char can disengage and run from combat, while also making them more quickly approach their target. Also, there should be a much higher chance of losing trails randomly if perc is low, maybe the chance of losing trail equal to 100-perc of the hunter. In essence, this will eradicate the usefulness of hunt for a lot of chars, and make this mud less hunt- dependent. And of course, it will give another reason for ppl to use the locate spell, instead of simply transing in three areas and typing hunt.
For chars with perc above 80, a skill that lets you see trails from a bleeding character that you have engaged, without typing hunt, could be nice, but i doubt that'll be too feasible to code economically :p But it would be nice, certainly, to have a hunt skill that leads to at least the position of the prey when typing hunt, even if the prey no longer is huntable (ooc/trans/etc)
A skill that reduces the chance of somebody getting a trail on you would be nice, something you would activate/deactivate, but instead takes a toll in mv while you move, with its effectiveness in preventing the creation of a trail increasing with the number of ticks you've been with the skill on (it would have to automatically turn off upon attacking tho, just like sneak)
You don't make changes in a mud for realism sake alone I don't think, and I would say most people like hunt. So really the question is, do we need to make the perc requirement higher on hunt. I don't think to have hunt the amount should be changed, its fine like it is, and its usefulness should not be taken away either, but since there is a perc requirement for hunt, I could see perc giving extra benefits with hunt, but wait high perc allows you to hunt victims further away right?
Its absurd to say that hunt should give false messages, right now theres only a handful of dts that you can't hunt past, autohunt at least, why would you want to make it so you couldn't autohunt past any of them
Secondly what reason is there to change hunt because snipers where downgraded? Are you saying that snipers are underpowered? You explain the whole change but only say that it should be changed because snipers were downgraded, and you want to change a skill thats for everyone, and change it drastically also And although I haven't been pkilling lately, I've seen some people who had extremely aggressive pkillers in the past playing 3rd circle con cause.
I always had the feeling people played snipers cuz they were easy to make and level, no need to screw with learning words and last but not least, you get a chance to snipe, always very handy when your in an all out pkill war and you need to get a quick kill and then multi them till perma.
My first pkiller was a shooter, heh won't say sniper cuz, I permaed that char before we got sniper, so maybe im just jealous :P
Seriously, I think its more enjoyable to play a mage and if theres some sniper out there that hasn't tried it, do. But I know snipe has to be really hard for the imms to balance in the fight system. So give the changes a chance.
Personally, I think a mage would always kick a snipers ass. Youd look into that scope at that mage 500 meters away and he'd be making eye contact.
I got a few:
Leave hunt alone.
Well, I guess I only had one....
I think Papercut's suggestions would be more realistic, true. However, if his suggestions were implemented, with 30 perc, I'd have a 70% chance of either not finding a trail or of finding a misleading trail. If that were the case, hunt would become essentially a wasted practice for me. In that case I'd rather treat perc like spirit, drop it as low as possible, and make up the hitroll some other way. Especially since I could easily make a 100/100/100 character if I didn't want to keep my perc at 30.
Just a few thoughts.
I personally think the skill lag on perc should at least be considered, since there really isn't much incentive to have perc be anywhere between 30 and 80, unless you wanted slightly better backstabs or maybe the hide skill or something. It should probably be that way for mind, to have more skills for all hometowns for the range of 30-50, and maybe even something for spirit in the 35-55 range. Perc is a silly stat since there is no point of having a 'relatively high' amount of it, esp since bonuses it gives only come at 70+ and stuff (any tangible bonuses i can see, anyway)
In essence, i think that's another reason why snipers are so weak in pk... the advantage of having 100 perc is really the same advantage one might get for having 60 str (30 str being the 0 damroll pt, and 70 perc being the 0hit/ac bonus pt)... so in reality, perc chars lose 40 pts in addition the the wasted spirit, and they're capped at only 30 pts more worth of an advantage, even if their perc is actually 70 pts higher.
just a thought
This idea is a little bit out there, I'm afraid. Best leave builders to build new ones than be able to buff up old ones.
(although being able to 'enchant' weapons, in order to add a special would be pretty cool....)