Real Time Ascend Maling List Archive
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Re: CF: Win32 client, version

(sent to crossfire mailing list, as I think there is some stuff in here of
general interest)

Valerye Bostan wrote:

> So, Mark, the whitestar is now out of your grasp?
> A new server at is now the default client's choice,
> and I perform general tests on it.

 whitestar is defunct.  There is a server and, but that is
also a bit out of my control (a friend takes care of it)

> What you would say about thinking again, how to add some important
> server/client protocol features?
> I think, that spell/skill lists are not a hard thing to implement.
> At startup/user logon the client catches a packet describing spells,
> and if a spell is added/removed an additional packet like delitem or
> additem is sent. If somehow spell's parameters are changed, maybe
> a respective upditem command is sent ( 'updspell' to be correct, but
> you understand ).

 David has been discussing similar things for the gtk client.  I'm not really
sure if trying to re-use the item commands would be the right idea - I think new
protocol commands would be needed (The information desired for skills/spells is
different than items.)  For example, for spells, you probably want to have the
spell point and level, and optionally stuff like the spell path the spell is in.

 skills probably only need skill name and level - current exp total for the
skill may or may not be desired (I guess it could be nice if you want to extend
that attributes showing for exp total in each skill).  However, exp actually
goes into skill categories and not specific skills.

 Skills also get a little more complicated when you have items that give skills
that player doesn't actually know.  I would imagine one idea of the client know
the skills is to present more easy interactions for the player (present a list
of skills the player can choose from) - if that is done, you probably also want
to present skills that are granted by items and somehow automatically select the
item if the player chooses that skill.

> It takes a lot of traffic and patience when you want to see again the
> current spell list and typing something like 'cast', and then reading
> the list a lot of time ( the lists is usually quite long ) etc etc

 Arguably, there are too many spells that overlap a lot.  There looks to be 180
spells - now a lot may not be available to players, but most are.

 Some things could be done to reduce this some - make mages more specialist so
they get some portion of the spells but not all of them (this could also be nice
in that you could player a spellcaster multiple times and have a fairly
different playing experience based on what particular specialist you are).  Or
the other is to just reduce some of the variations and instead make that happen
by experience/paths.

 For example, instead of having small, medium, and large variations of most
spells (like fireball), just have one.  Instead, let the player choose to put
extra mana into the casting (ie, cast fireball 30 means cast a 30 mana
fireball), and have that extra mana increase the effects (area in case of
fireball).  The amount of extra allowed would be based on current level.

 So a very high level character might choose to cast a 200 mana fireball which
hits a very large area.

> I am sure that will be a great feature, extending playing fun.
> Of course, some special things like spell faces should be added to that
> list too.

 There are currently spell faces, but they are not always a good representation
of what the spell does (most are just what the spell looks like when it is cast
- see the spoiler file).

> I hadn't also seen a quite important feature like socials in the game?
> For a multiplayer game this should be implemented too, at least at
> a limited level, because some popular muds usually have too much those
> commands. But basic things like grins, eye raises are nice!

 Probably easiest to just use the the say command for that type of stuff.  There
could certainly be a discussion about how mudlike crossfire should get or not
get.  If really desired, it probably just makes sense to make another speak like
command, but a little more generic - you just type in your action, and it
describes it to other people.  For example:

 Twainer: rolls eyes
 Hans: breaks out laughing

 etc. The player would enter everything after the : - the game would just add
the name to keep things clearer and so people can't forge messages.

 Such a feature would actually be quite easy to add.
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