Add Fastrun to the MUD to kill mobs faster

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Re: Add Fastrun to the MUD to kill mobs faster

Postby Teron » Thu Jan 07, 2016 8:24 am

Splork/Crumbs, in short, fastruns means that:
- newbies need to learn areas to go and dirs to get there
- newbies run to areas faster and easier
- start killing faster and progress faster, engaging better with the MUD.

(I agree that the exp side won't be that noticeable, it's more convenience, than exp.)

So it seems that we do need a good help on newbie areas and possibly more signs in newbatia to exp areas for real newbies to actually need fastruns.

For example:
help newbie should include a mention of a new command, areas, or help areas
help areas - a list of areas by difficulty/player level, probably with dirs
help areaname (help daar): a description of an area, suggested levels, directions

In this context, fastrun would be most useful, because newbies would have smth to pick from.

As for other muds, yes, there's a system that helps newbies choose mobs: it tracks mobs killed by level and lets players search/refine mob list by level/align. Here, it'll work for newbies, but will be mostly useless for mobs for 2x40+ and above.

As for fastrun itself, here's the summary:
- help areas give dirs to newbies
- newbies run to areas faster and easier
- start killing faster and progress faster, engaging better with the MUD

Essentially, the newbie college helps newbies to go from "What do I do here?" to "What else can I kill to gain levels?"

The help system above will get them from "what do I need to kill?" to "how do I get there?"

Fastrun is a smooth transition from "how do I get there?" to "start killing".

I guess, admittedly, college and help areas would be more useful, but I didn't say I had a plan - I sent it to JB earlier, anyway. I simply had a random idea that someone already had and I wanted to suggest it before I've forgotten about it.

Splork,
If we want to make things easier for newbies to start, they can fastrun to newbie areas w/o visiting them earlier.
If we agree that players need to visit an area before being able to fastrun, enable it for 100% exploration of an area, as long as there are no unconnected rooms. (Though Undead City comes to mind, where there's a quest area. That might even limit the fastrun users further.)

In my groups, people don't run to areas far area for me. Maybe with fastruns they'd do it. Also, fastrun spot is helpful in this regard, as it allows to run to an area after you logged in and you haven't set a beacon. I still think it'd add something unique to this mud. If fastrun spot is a powerful feature, it can be limited with an autoquest+100% exploration or limited in number of spots per character (3-5).

As for comparing fastrunning with aliases, let me remind you that fastrunning is supposed to be several times faster, than running. Speed running is so important to me that I am/was going to create additional, personal, faster-moving aliases, than I'd use for a group. So fastrun would still improve the game even for those, who use aliases.

As you can see above, one of my arguments is to keep the aggro element, as I agree it's useful. Which is why I asked for ways to solve this and Teker confirms it's possible to keep the chance to get aggroed similar/the same as compared to walking.

I have no idea how much effort/time this feature needs and how it compares to other features in this regard. Maybe we need to estimate possibly retention % from this feature and divide it by hrs spent on the feature and compare the number to other features.

I estimate that:
- a newbie college with proper signs should increase conversion by 30%
- help areas with dirs will increase conversion by 5-10%
- fastrun should increase retention at lower levels by 3-5%.

How much time this will take is on Teker, but I guess a newbie college needs weeks of work - no idea how much hours that is.

Also, another way to know what to do, besides estimating conversions, is to actually ask mudders what they look for in MUDs and ask them to grade their needs on importance. This can be done on the forums, but I think we need a more scalable approach: a link to a G.Docs form that we can ask feedback on numerous MUD forums.
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Re: Add Fastrun to the MUD to kill mobs faster

Postby Teron » Thu Jan 07, 2016 10:13 am

Teker,

I think these could be done as a single item where "waypoints" are saved to the database as either "global" or "personal". I would probably use the same "run <waypoint>" command and allow players to override the global waypoint by specifying one with the same name.


That'll work, I guess, though what if a player has a spot in an area and still wants to run to its entrance?

Re: waiting in areas. Yes, waiting means coming to a room and waiting for an event to happen, e.g. moving down through a waterfall in UD2 or waiting for you to be devoured by the flame in Midgaard.

I imagine we'd come up with some sort of limitation to prevent players from putting them everywhere. Actual datasize of a waypoint would be something like of 9 bytes + 1 byte per character in the name.

So there's no actual technical limit. Nice :-)

We can run a check when the player enters the room to see if they're running and give the mobs some sort of chance to jump early.

Nice, so we can keep the aggro mobs aggro, so Splork, just as I, should be content with this.

Thus, players run where the command takes them. If they forgot wb and decided to run to poseidon's realm, their fault.

Not very newbie friendly

Well, my idea was only to speed up the runs.
If we want to make them safe, then you definitely don't want to move past rooms that require flying and you don't have it.
As for waterbreath, I don't see great immediate danger.

You can run through an area underwater w/o waterbreathing. You will be losing hps, but you'll make it. As for Poseidon's specifically, there are a few air rooms (Hermind, Mind) that players can stop by and recast. Or shift to frog and reshift/wb selves.

As far as I remember, there aren't newbie areas that require waterbreath before entering them. Valk Waterfall doesn't need wb early on and you need wb in Kuo-Toans/Sahaguins right after the entrance. Lycanthropia has a waterbreath area at least 5 rooms after the entrance.

Same for flying: you don't enter Clouds w/o flying, that is all.

So I'd suggest to stopping before rooms that require a person to fly or have a boat (and stopping the run there) and not doing anything about waterbreath, since newbies run to areas that don't need waterbreath and you only need wb either in high level areas or after entering the areas (Tower temple) - ie, if you run to a spot. But if you run to a spot that you set, you ought to know better, imho.
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Re: Add Fastrun to the MUD to kill mobs faster

Postby *Splork* » Thu Jan 07, 2016 1:26 pm

I believe that players should have exploration to 100% before they would ever be able to use a feature like this. This belief directly counters your initial ideas regarding the feature because you stated it would make it easier for real newbies to find areas to play in. I've already countered this thought process in my last post because these types of players simply do not possess the knowledge to use the feature. Although, this isn't much different from features like advice and others which newbies just don't know about...

Why is it a good idea, new player or old, to allow players to automatically run to areas they have no previous knowledge of or the danger that possibly exists there? This would be a recipe for disaster. On that thought process:
o I'd suggest to stopping before rooms that require a person to fly or have a boat (and stopping the run there) and not doing anything about waterbreath, since newbies run to areas that don't need waterbreath and you only need wb either in high level areas or after entering the areas (Tower temple) - ie, if you run to a spot. But if you run to a spot that you set, you ought to know better, imho.


Why should we be coding skills which protects the players using them? Should we go back to shadowwalk and make sure it cant go into water without waterbreathing? Should we add checks to backstab and make sure you can actually kill the mob before you stab it? Where does this thought process begin and end?


As for comparing fastrunning with aliases, let me remind you that fastrunning is supposed to be several times faster, than running. Speed running is so important to me that I am/was going to create additional, personal, faster-moving aliases, than I'd use for a group. So fastrun would still improve the game even for those, who use aliases.


I am a bit baffled that you are acting like it takes a minute to run anywhere on this game. My best guess is that the average aliased run takes less than 10-15 seconds real time. To me, saving time really isn't an argument here because you are really saving about 5-10 seconds at best, and that would be if we cut runs in half with this feature. It would have a huge impact on those players who don't know areas and runs but do we really want that?

In my groups, people don't run to areas far area for me. Maybe with fastruns they'd do it. Also, fastrun spot is helpful in this regard, as it allows to run to an area after you logged in and you haven't set a beacon. I still think it'd add something unique to this mud. If fastrun spot is a powerful feature, it can be limited with an autoquest+100% exploration or limited in number of spots per character (3-5).


This is most likely because they are either lazy, don't know the areas, are afraid to die, or don't have the runs aliased. Why should we make it easier for these players? They aren not LEARNING anything by typing fastrun demonweb. They learn by actually running to the areas by themselves, or with guidance from other players, using the website maps to help them, etc. One of the biggest complaints I hear about players is that lowbies are brought up with a silver spoon in their mouth and don't even know the most common area runs. Is this going to help with this issue or make it even worse?

As you can see above, one of my arguments is to keep the aggro element, as I agree it's useful. Which is why I asked for ways to solve this and Teker confirms it's possible to keep the chance to get aggroed similar/the same as compared to walking.


We all already knew this, its how we do it thats vital. Does anyone really want us adjusting the aggressive timers on all in-game mobs just to add this feature? I'm not sure how many of you remember the uproar when we changed aggressive timer to be random, per mob, every 10 seconds and not ALL mobs being aggressive every 10 seconds ( when we could time runs through aggressive areas without ever being hit ) Do we simply trigger a new set of aggressive protocols for mobs marked as running? Do we address the issue another way entirely...

I actually like the idea of the skill ( for the most part ). I don't like the "2nd iteration" idea of it. It impedes on existing skills/features. It would have to be severely limited before we considered it and some suggestions have already been made regarding this.

This also has a huge effect on corpse retrievals and death in general. Plenty of times people die and people can't get to them because nobody knows the run well enough. Well hell, just type fastrun demonweb and save the person. Without proper implementation, a skill like this removes a ton of danger and excitement from the game... and I don't like that.
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Re: Add Fastrun to the MUD to kill mobs faster

Postby Teron » Fri Jan 08, 2016 1:04 pm

*Splork* wrote:I believe that players should have exploration to 100% before they would ever be able to use a feature like this. This belief directly counters your initial ideas regarding the feature because you stated it would make it easier for real newbies to find areas to play in. I've already countered this thought process in my last post because these types of players simply do not possess the knowledge to use the feature. Although, this isn't much different from features like advice and others which newbies just don't know about...


Splork, as I said, there needs to be an adequate amount of signs and help to guide newbies to the areas, which they can run to.

Also, to make fastruns available to newbies and not available to others we can:
- allow fastruns w/o exploration on Valk
- allow fastruns w/o exploration to 1-20lev areas on other continents (penguin tower, asylum, kobolds, jungle, quicklings, lycanthropia, sewers, kings bazaar, AH beach, gremlyns, etc)
- allow free fastruns to our most used temples: Nia, Splork, Ming, Alana, Enea
- require complete exploration for fastruns to other areas
- require exploration and a completion of an autoquest for a runto spot

Splork wrote:Why is it a good idea, new player or old, to allow players to automatically run to areas they have no previous knowledge of or the danger that possibly exists there? This would be a recipe for disaster. On that thought process:

Why should we be coding skills which protects the players using them? Should we go back to shadowwalk and make sure it cant go into water without waterbreathing? Should we add checks to backstab and make sure you can actually kill the mob before you stab it? Where does this thought process begin and end?

I don't understand. Do you want to keep the danger of running to areas or not?
I think I've written enough that it should be obvious my intention was to keep the danger level *the same* as it is now, when you walk. Given your previous posts, I'm assuming you want to keep the danger, which is what Teker can do. Running to a dangerous area is as dangerous to walking to a dangerous area.

Now, as long as the danger level of running is the same, I don't see a problem here. And I am not starting the process of making it safe, Teker made a comment in this regard. If the majority opinion - yours and mine and maybe others - in this case is for danger, not against it, then we don't stop ppl b4 chasms and waterbreath areas. Or you can apply this to players of 20 prime and under.

Also, if a player decides to go to an area, he can walk there or run there. Changing the means of transportation (a walk, a run, or a horse or even a unicorn) doesn't make an area any more or less dangerous.

I am a bit baffled that you are acting like it takes a minute to run anywhere on this game. My best guess is that the average aliased run takes less than 10-15 seconds real time. To me, saving time really isn't an argument here because you are really saving about 5-10 seconds at best, and that would be if we cut runs in half with this feature.

I've just measured a run to the Jungle of Sess'Inek. It took 27 seconds. A run to the Moors - a newbie area - is longer. A run to the Tower of Gr'vald is even longer. If it gets cut to 10 seconds, I'll be glad.
A run to On the Webbed Spiral Stair is 22 seconds with both runs, to the entrance and internally, stacked.

Yes, cutting the time from 20+ seconds to 8 seconds would be noticeable and useful for me. As I said, I am intending to add a whole bunch of aliases just to speed up my runs. For others, it should be a similar convenience, but I'm not sure they notice or argue about it now, but it'll be interesting to see their reaction afterwards.

To see why I want speed, find a website that takes 20 seconds to load. Then make it load in 8 seconds. Then in 1 second. Which one do you want to use and which one you'll abandon before reading?
It would have a huge impact on those players who don't know areas and runs but do we really want that?

This is related to the newbiness of ppl. If they know runs, they can kill more mobs and actually get moving.
Yes, that's precisely the point: to get ppl to the mobs instead of them walking like turtles to an area.

If we limit free fastruns to newbies, then it'll help only them, for the most part.

If you want the player to walk the run and, though, to be honest, it's a sort of an accomplishment to make an alias that takes you to On the Webbed Spiral Stairs w/o a bump in a wall, then earning a fastrun spot could require getting to the spot from recall in the minimal time, say, to be in top 50% of runners to the area:
- say, 20 ppl take a quest to get a spot for the area
- 20 ppl run to the area for speed
- 5 ppl make it under 25 seconds, 5 ppl make it in 25-30 seconds, 5 in 30-40, 5 in 40
- top 10 fastest ppl get the runto spot.

This way, we:
- ensure players get the spot only if they know the run
- add another mini-competition to the game
- limit the amount of spots used at any time.

However, if this tidbit does go in, there has to be a larger limit on total spots to run to. Also, given that this competition does require coding, it should be simpler to just limit the amount of spots. That being said, we can set a limit first, and add quests in iteration #3.

This is most likely because they are either lazy, don't know the areas, are afraid to die, or don't have the runs aliased. Why should we make it easier for these players? They aren not LEARNING anything by typing fastrun demonweb. They learn by actually running to the areas by themselves, or with guidance from other players, using the website maps to help them, etc. One of the biggest complaints I hear about players is that lowbies are brought up with a silver spoon in their mouth and don't even know the most common area runs. Is this going to help with this issue or make it even worse?


If people get used to fastruns and require exploration after valk to get to their areas, they'll be more likely to explore those areas. If we require running to an area under average time, then they'll need to learn the runs and make fast aliases.

If we limit fastruns to 100% exploration to non-newbie areas, in the worst case scenario, this won't change a thing in terms of ppl learning runs: most ppl won't do it and will continue to be w/o aliases or runs. However, if ppl do decide to use fastruns, we'll get ppl to explore the areas completely - this should be a win and an imm's book, imho.

I don't see a problem here other than boosting exploration %.

We all already knew this, its how we do it thats vital. Does anyone really want us adjusting the aggressive timers on all in-game mobs just to add this feature? I'm not sure how many of you remember the uproar when we changed aggressive timer to be random, per mob, every 10 seconds and not ALL mobs being aggressive every 10 seconds ( when we could time runs through aggressive areas without ever being hit ) Do we simply trigger a new set of aggressive protocols for mobs marked as running? Do we address the issue another way entirely...

This is a technical question to Teker, though I believe he had already written that this change can apply *only to those running*. If the change makes fastrunning more dangerous, than walking, then we'll either take it or argue about it and arrive at a solution that works. However I am led to believe the danger level should remain the same.

I actually like the idea of the skill ( for the most part ). I don't like the "2nd iteration" idea of it. It impedes on existing skills/features. It would have to be severely limited before we considered it and some suggestions have already been made regarding this.

I agree that the fastrun spot idea can be discussed and a limit put on it. Atm, there are several ways to do it:
- require 100% exploration, same as for the fastrun
- require an autoquest to complete
- limit total amount per player
- allow only the 50% faster runners to the area get the spot
- give top 3 players by monthly leadership 3 extra fastrun spots (or the inverse of their place: 1st place gets 5, 2nd gets 4, 3d gets 3, 4th gets 2, 5th gets 1)
- give every top leader by exp in the level bracket an extra fastrun spot for a month

This also has a huge effect on corpse retrievals and death in general. Plenty of times people die and people can't get to them because nobody knows the run well enough. Well hell, just type fastrun demonweb and save the person. Without proper implementation, a skill like this removes a ton of danger and excitement from the game... and I don't like that.

If a person died in an area outside the entrance room, fastrunning demonweb won't help: you have to find the room you are running to. Also, even if you die on the fastrun in DWeb, someone will have to use a run alias to save you, because stopping fastrun, if it is there, will be unreliably imprecise.
Also, even if you can use a fastrun to save a person outside Valk, you had explored the area already.

As for danger:
- we keep the danger level the same while running
- fastruns are available only to those with 100% exploration for an area
- fastruns for CRs only speed up the run by 3-10 seconds, because the person w/ the fastrun already has 100% exploration of an area
- fastrun doesn't run to the mob that killed or looted someone, you have to do it yourself.

Even if you do believe that fastrunning will somehow help CRs, getting back EQ easier is what would make the MUD more playable, in the same vein, but not scale, as adding bonus exp for 40's. In this regard, fastruns won't help, because they don't take the runner to the mob. They will help, because they will make ppl explore the areas, if they do this at all.
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Re: Add Fastrun to the MUD to kill mobs faster

Postby *Splork* » Fri Jan 08, 2016 4:08 pm

You are reading but not understanding what I am saying, which is fine.

I've stated my thoughts and concerns and there is a ton of good conversation being bantered about.

Good stuff...

Enjoy,
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Re: Add Fastrun to the MUD to kill mobs faster

Postby Teron » Sat Jan 09, 2016 5:28 am

Splork, I see that you want more active exploration and travelling, than fast running. I like the idea, too, but in my mind, slow random walking is what can drive the newbies in despair, if they don't find what to kill. Questions "What do I kill after college" or "what do I kill on bh for xp?" are asked too often to be ignored, as well, meaning that this exploration *does not work*. No one visits the old library any more. Or knows about it.

Also, don't existing runs, printed on the maps and on the website, hurt natural exploration from the South Gate?
Does it mean that my suggestions of a more informative help system of what and where to kill will hurt this, too?

Once you create an area run alias from a map, you are no longer an explorer, you aren't reading the room descs or even room names, you simply want to get from A to B. Fastrunning will only speed this up.

Still, I'd prefer you clarify your point of view, because clearly I am not getting something.
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Re: Add Fastrun to the MUD to kill mobs faster

Postby *Breeze* » Sat Jan 09, 2016 11:33 am

more informative help files per area would be a useful/awesome thing that would help people decide what to kill after newbie school and even help older players remember areas they haven't run in awhile.. players can write them and submit to us and we can add them in.

we could even display a message after they leave newbie school that points to the new help files as an index and they can read on from there.
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Re: Add Fastrun to the MUD to kill mobs faster

Postby *Breeze* » Fri Jan 15, 2016 5:06 pm

no takers?
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Re: Add Fastrun to the MUD to kill mobs faster

Postby Teron » Sat Jan 16, 2016 10:25 am

I am going to do it, just not sure when. Guess I need to plan better.
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Re: Add Fastrun to the MUD to kill mobs faster

Postby *Splork* » Sat Jan 16, 2016 12:01 pm

We've spoke about doing a system very similar to what Taron has suggested many times, it really comes down to the vast amount of work it actually takes.

Ultimately, something which gave specific information about every area would be ideal such as:

Area Name: Name of area
Run: run from recall point
Levels: Levels the area is ideal for ( we know this isn't perfect )
Difficulty: easy, hard, extremely hard, high avatar
Type: solo/small group/large group/ etc
Aggressive: etc etc

You get my point. From there we would have cmds where players would pull up all the areas which have the different requirements they are looking for, and on and on...

Its definitely something which we could add to over time but I honestly don't see something like this ever being completely finished:)
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Re: Add Fastrun to the MUD to kill mobs faster

Postby Teron » Sat Jan 16, 2016 3:33 pm

Since the amount of areas is limited, the helpfiles can be written - all it takes is dedication, planning and perseverence.

It just takes lots of time, just as with creating lots of different mobs - as you've told me recently.
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