[MUD-Dev] Curing skill spam (was: Moving away from the level based system)

Travis Casey efindel at earthlink.net
Fri Dec 29 13:20:11 New Zealand Daylight Time 2000

Tuesday, December 26, 2000, 1:24:30 PM, z032383 at students.niu.edu
<z032383 at students.niu.edu> wrote:

The example here of skill spam made me think of an important point...

> Let's give an example of a teleportation spell. How often does a
> player need to teleport in, say, 10 minutes? Generally, the teleport
> spell is not used all that frequently, as it takes a lot of mana,
> and you just don't need to be hopping all over the world all of the
> time.  Let's say the game keeps track of how many times player
> "Bubba" has casted 'teleport' in the last 10 minutes. . . 25
> times. In fact, the mud realizes that those 25 times took up over
> 90% of the player's mana pool in the last 10 minutes (this could be
> estimated, or you could keep exact track of mana, etc). So now the
> mud says, "No, I don't think so, you must be spamming!" (Not to the
> player, it's talking to itself! ;)) So now the mud takes away most
> of the points earned in teleport over the last 10 minutes, AND it
> puts a hold for two hours or so on gaining any more skill points in
> 'teleport.'

Sometimes, the best way to break skill spamming can be to rethink the
skill -- see if there's another way to work it that can prevent, or at
least mitigate, the problem.

Reading this, I immediately thought that a better setup might be to
give players a skill not with the teleport spell, but with teleport
*locations*.  In many of the fantasy and superhero versions of
teleporting that I've seen, teleporting to a particular place requires
you to have a clear mental image of it; that image is the primary
determinant of how well you will teleport to a particular place.

Following that line of reasoning, you could give players a "skill"
with each location they teleport to.  When teleporting to an "unknown"
location, their "teleport" skill would be used, but then they gain a
skill for that location.  On future teleports, their skill for that
location will either be advanced or upped to be as high as their
general teleport skill.

With such a system, you could easily script a routine to raise your
ability to teleport to a few particular places, but a routine to raise
your actual teleport ability would have to be able to keep generating
new places to teleport you to... which would be likely to get you into

       |\      _,,,---,,_    Travis S. Casey  <efindel at earthlink.net>
 ZZzz  /,`.-'`'    -.  ;-;;,_   No one agrees with me.  Not even me.
      |,4-  ) )-,_..;\ (  `'-'
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