crash-test dummies and whatnot!

Feedback, bugs, and general gameplay related discussion.
alendar
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crash-test dummies and whatnot!

Postby alendar » Thu Oct 26, 2006 12:39 am

i understand there are rules to be followed...
i understand you cant do for one and not do for all...

but if a crash (caused by buggy code) leads to a nasty cr ( one that you really need 10 or 12 equip'ed people) you'd think that the gods could transport the dead bodies out....


responds to your petition with 'I'm afraid not, you'll have to assemble a team to help break in.''

and some wonder where the player base has gone.

thank you for your time.

p.s. oh and dont let this first lead stop your future leads becks... you did swell.
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Postby Teej » Thu Oct 26, 2006 1:39 am

Nobody needs me to CR. I get bored with xp, I get bored with zones where nobody's talking and interacting except to be crude, I don't know gear enough to get a thrill out of buying and selling. I stick with the things I enjoy, and you don't know me there.

I'm an old fogey who remembers when a call to help CR brought out the best people even when they had other things to do, brought out the CR gear, and we all gave our best.

Now, call your rogue.
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Postby Lilira » Thu Oct 26, 2006 3:34 am

How many times has it crashed today?

I _think_ 6 that I know of... yet you tried to do a zone?

*wince* Yikes.. my age has me scolding.. but I remember the days that days like today were VERY common, and smart folk just didn't zone. Instead they cheered and looked for rares.
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Postby Ifin » Thu Oct 26, 2006 4:26 am

I think crashes and the hand-off policy following one is a cop out.

Crashes are a part of the game, but I don't think it should affect the game. The only "reason" that I've seen argued why crashes should let be is because it resets the game - no crashes and a dynamic time boot code is the optimal solution to that question.

Yes, there will never be crash free code, but again WHY should this affect gameplay? It's purely time wasted, the greatest time of all when you're doing something/lose something (ie why we even have a discussion of cursed weapons)/etc. etc. due to a crash. And it's not something that players can prepare for from a GAMER'S perspective, no fault of skill or effort on OUR part.

The policy might be hard, but it might not. All you do is look at the logs, etc. or make good judgement. Pick imms that HAVE good judgement.

Then people won't get pissed at doing SPOB or these kind of CR's etc. Again, look at the pbase. We don't have 100 people where we can just restart a zone anymore. Each one we lose to these issues that can be resolved w/thought and policy instead of pointless coding makes a much BIGGER impact.

Just think about it critically: before 100 people, 3-5 zone groups. 5 people who think their time wasted, still groups can go on. Now maybe 25 people at keys to zone at a time, 1 zone group, have 2 frustrated people and not even 1 zone group to go on.

And yes I love these short crash times b/c I have a good list of rares to check. But this is a different issue, about affecting people's time and will to play.

Policy & thinking >>>> coding.

*cough guildhall policy eq inflation new player xp/balance cough*
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Postby Duna » Thu Oct 26, 2006 1:35 pm

Well, one of the reason's i went ahead and lead the zone was that 1) I had been planning it since Monday 2) the mud had been up earlier in the day for about 6 hours.. yes it crashed again, but I had no reason to believe that it was going to crash again so soon.. it had been half way stable earlier in the day.
I just got lucky enought that some of the regular afkers were at keys for the time of the evening it was.. that allowed us to cr much easier, as well as it was prime time. we had almost 2 full groups, which tell me that during prime-time other than one key class.. there is enough for 2 zone groups, somedays.. the main class missing.. Enchanters.
But that's just my opinion.. I'm still thankful to those that followed my first lead as well as the clean up crew who let me lead that part :)
I'm thinking of trying again one of these days.. we'll see ;)
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Postby Pril » Thu Oct 26, 2006 2:13 pm

Duna wrote:Well, one of the reason's i went ahead and lead the zone was that 1) I had been planning it since Monday 2) the mud had been up earlier in the day for about 6 hours.. yes it crashed again, but I had no reason to believe that it was going to crash again so soon.. it had been half way stable earlier in the day.
I just got lucky enought that some of the regular afkers were at keys for the time of the evening it was.. that allowed us to cr much easier, as well as it was prime time. we had almost 2 full groups, which tell me that during prime-time other than one key class.. there is enough for 2 zone groups, somedays.. the main class missing.. Enchanters.
But that's just my opinion.. I'm still thankful to those that followed my first lead as well as the clean up crew who let me lead that part :)
I'm thinking of trying again one of these days.. we'll see ;)


Hey sorry I ended up not making it Becky, rl got the better of me. Oh and for future reference, Izans cr's just require 1 rogue. assuming you don't have to rekill dragon. not sure of what the case was with this incident.
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Postby Duna » Thu Oct 26, 2006 2:52 pm

it crashed twice while we were trying to cr.. so had to rekill dragon.
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Postby Latreg » Thu Oct 26, 2006 3:16 pm

For me personally I have to turn down zones because of time. Now a days i ask about how long will it take, factor in a spank and then figure out if I have time to do it or not. I'll bet I'm not alone in this. I really think intervention is warranted in a case like Izan's or if something similar happens in a different zone. I guess from now on, everyone should rent in vt prior to doing it incase of crash. and bring lots of backup books. Basically what happened was, an activity was turned into a time sink through no fault of the players. Fyi I was not part of the group so it had no direct impact on me.
Last edited by Latreg on Thu Oct 26, 2006 3:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Malacar » Thu Oct 26, 2006 3:31 pm

I'm with Ifin here. The hands-off approach has really turned me off to the game.

I'll lump this in with it also: the lack of information being given to the playerbase, or the ever annoying 'I am not telling' (and thinking it's some kind of cute comment) just irritates me (I only speak for me here, but I know I am not alone based on in-game conversations). You want players? Keep us informed. Stop dangling stupid bits of nonsensical information as if we were children.
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Postby Duna » Thu Oct 26, 2006 3:32 pm

Latreg wrote:For me personally I have to turn down zones because of time. Now a days i ask about how long will it take, factor in a spank and then figure out if I have time to do it or not. I'll be I'm not alone in this. I really think intervention is warranted in a case like Izan's or if something similar happens in a different zone. I guess from now on, everyone should rent in vt prior to do it incase of crash. and bring lots of backup books. Basically what happened was, an activity was turned into a time sink through no fault of the players. Fyi I was not part of the group so it had no direct impact on me.


Actually, Izan's was on a set 90 minute pop time with it being early in boot..
we could have cr'd and still been almost done with the zone by the time it popped.. so I don't think that was too bad.. we had 52 minutes until pop when we were assembled and spelling up with fly to get back up to zone.
That was when it crashed again.. with everything, it took almost 2 hours.. that was with 2 crashes while we were cr'ing... so pardon me if I think that we would have been able to cr and get zone done almost within a pop.. and if not whole zone, then at least all of first floor. I don't think that's too bad of timing for a zone.. about 2 - 2 1/2 hours seems about right..
but that's just my opinion..
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Postby Eilistraee » Thu Oct 26, 2006 4:12 pm

Malacar wrote:I'm with Ifin here. The hands-off approach has really turned me off to the game.

I'll lump this in with it also: the lack of information being given to the playerbase, or the ever annoying 'I am not telling' (and thinking it's some kind of cute comment) just irritates me (I only speak for me here, but I know I am not alone based on in-game conversations). You want players? Keep us informed. Stop dangling stupid bits of nonsensical information as if we were children.


We are currently suffering from a recurring crash bug.

This bug is not related to new code, as there has been no new code since the 18th and the crashes started on the 24th. There was a non-copyover reboot between those two.

The bug is random, the debug core points to a different problem each time. Such makes it exceedingly awkward to trace and defeat.

Until the bug is squashed, we will continue to suffer from this instability. Uptimes can vary from 5 minutes to six hours potentially.

I have tried several things with a couple more ideas yet to try, but so far nothing has worked.

Now you're informed.
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Postby Malacar » Thu Oct 26, 2006 4:25 pm

Oh, I meant in general... but thanks for the condescension. :)
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Postby Latreg » Thu Oct 26, 2006 5:01 pm

Duna wrote:Actually, Izan's was on a set 90 minute pop time with it being early in boot..
we could have cr'd and still been almost done with the zone by the time it popped.. so I don't think that was too bad.. we had 52 minutes until pop when we were assembled and spelling up with fly to get back up to zone.
That was when it crashed again.. with everything, it took almost 2 hours.. that was with 2 crashes while we were cr'ing... so pardon me if I think that we would have been able to cr and get zone done almost within a pop.. and if not whole zone, then at least all of first floor. I don't think that's too bad of timing for a zone.. about 2 - 2 1/2 hours seems about right..
but that's just my opinion..


Ok you are pardoned even though I have no idea what you are trying to say hehehe, I don't think anyone was complaining about your lead or the time in the zone. What people are pointing out is the number of crashes and what they would like to see happen when these kind of things occur. Also consider that while this happened to the Izan's group it could have happened to any zone group. The problem is what if it happens in a long and difficult zone that people just don't have time to redo the whole thing? I'm talking multiple/frequent crashes not the occasional ones.
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Postby Duna » Thu Oct 26, 2006 5:28 pm

Latreg wrote: Basically what happened was, an activity was turned into a time sink through no fault of the players.


I was referring to this part, for one of yer post.. as well as the rest of it.. you stating that you have to consider how much time it takes to do the zone, etc..
most times if you tell the leader i have until xpm they will replace you no prob while in zone.. I"ve seen it happen many times.
If you make it half way through a zone, and have to leave, most leaders will give you either a half bid on anything or full bid on items gotten while you were there.. there are ways to zone without alot of time.. instead of just turning down groups why not say, i have so much time.. it's because of this that most of the 3 - 5 hour zones are bypassed..
I was tryin to point out that Izan's isn't a long zone..
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Postby Vaprak » Thu Oct 26, 2006 5:44 pm

Izans is not a long zone if done well (record is under an hour I believe), and often averages on the 90 minute timeline similar to the pop. But it can be a fairly long zone if done improperly or if someone makes a mistake whereby the CR is limited to one of only a few possible means, all of which involve a rogue dying a few times unless they get extremely lucky.

I didn't write this zone, but by the looks of how it was done, and having been to the zone several times I'd say that it was intended that this zone would not be an easy zone to CR or recover from. I also feel that this lack of easy CR and/or recovery factors into the insane rewards the zone has. As a staff member who also plays regularly, I am _personally_ for a hands-off approach from the staff for CRs in this zone.
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Postby Latreg » Thu Oct 26, 2006 5:49 pm

Duna wrote:
Latreg wrote: Basically what happened was, an activity was turned into a time sink through no fault of the players.


I was referring to this part, for one of yer post.. as well as the rest of it.. you stating that you have to consider how much time it takes to do the zone, etc..
most times if you tell the leader i have until xpm they will replace you no prob while in zone.. I"ve seen it happen many times.
If you make it half way through a zone, and have to leave, most leaders will give you either a half bid on anything or full bid on items gotten while you were there.. there are ways to zone without alot of time.. instead of just turning down groups why not say, i have so much time.. it's because of this that most of the 3 - 5 hour zones are bypassed..
I was tryin to point out that Izan's isn't a long zone..


ah ok, and yes i agree that 2 1/2 isn't long for a zone, I'd do Izan's if it took 2 1/2 hours or less. Having most rooms in a zone !tele makes it difficult to leave, especially if you haven't reached that point where the room is gateable. What I'm saying is people have to budget their time more these days, I know I do. So when I get a chance to zone I would really hate it to end in nothing but a big cr mess because of crashes. Not long ago we did Golem Forge, right before the "gear fight" it crashed, while that sucked, we didn't have to worry about having a bunch of corpses in there to get out.
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Postby Malacar » Thu Oct 26, 2006 6:00 pm

Vaprak wrote:I didn't write this zone, but by the looks of how it was done, and having been to the zone several times I'd say that it was intended that this zone would not be an easy zone to CR or recover from. I also feel that this lack of easy CR and/or recovery factors into the insane rewards the zone has. As a staff member who also plays regularly, I am _personally_ for a hands-off approach from the staff for CRs in this zone.


For a normal CR, I completely agree with you. However, we're not discussing a normal CR. We're discussing a crashed zone, and time schedules people have.

Look, I am all for hard CRs. I miss them. I am not for having a crash require two hours of my time to recover from, because we spank due to circumstances BEYOND OUR CONTROL.
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Postby Vipplin » Thu Oct 26, 2006 7:00 pm

I think if you have a crash that causes massively increase CR difficulty I don't see why god intervention at least to restore the group to where it would have been without the crash would be unbalancing or make zone rewards less earned. I don't think the eq calculator has a "zone is a bitch if it crashes" factor, does it?

If a character or group or leader is careless and gets into a bind on their own, fine, let them get themselves out of it with pbase help. If a crash puts them in the bind, I think _if gods are available to do so_ they should fix it. Everyone knows ppl are short on time nowadays, so why not? It will encourage groups to do harder/longer zones. What is the down side?!

I wasn't in the Izan's group either, but I was in (maybe the same one mentioned earlier) a GolemForge group that spent a lot of time and ended up with nothing due to a crash just before the rewards. It would have been appropriate in my opinion to restore us to where we were pre-crash. It isn't like there are 5 zone groups running at once and this would be highly time-consuming, is it?

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Postby Duna » Thu Oct 26, 2006 7:12 pm

Vipplin wrote:I wasn't in the Izan's group either, but I was in (maybe the same one mentioned earlier) a GolemForge group that spent a lot of time and ended up with nothing due to a crash just before the rewards. It would have been appropriate in my opinion to restore us to where we were pre-crash. It isn't like there are 5 zone groups running at once and this would be highly time-consuming, is it?



I've gotta disagree on the reset.. Only thing that should be reset are the 10+ hour zones.. and there aren't many of those left.
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Postby Malacar » Thu Oct 26, 2006 7:34 pm

Yeah, you shouldn't get a 'zone state restore'... Just pop the corpses out, so they can start over. CR'ing is a bitch, and if you screw up and end up needing to do it - so be it. If, however, you don't spank, but the mud crashes, and people invariably log in and die one by one... How is that their fault? How can you POSSIBLY stand behind that with any form of conscience, and say 'oh well, go CR'.

You want people to play. People play to have fun. CR'ing for an hour or more, because of an event 100% beyond your control... Sucks.

I can't explain it more plainly than that.
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Postby Branthur » Thu Oct 26, 2006 7:53 pm

Malacar wrote:Yeah, you shouldn't get a 'zone state restore'... Just pop the corpses out, so they can start over. CR'ing is a bitch, and if you screw up and end up needing to do it - so be it. If, however, you don't spank, but the mud crashes, and people invariably log in and die one by one...


Erm...if there's a crash, it doesn't matter if people log in one by one...they wouldn't die, unless there's an aggro in the place they last camped/rented. It's only on a reboot that people pop back where the game went down. ;)

Maybe I'm old, but c'mon. CR kits. People who talk about how much equipment is in the game, and people can't help re-eq for a CR?

CRing takes almost nothing nowdays. Toss in a rogue, and you're done. Izans is complicated by the dragon, sure, but he's not a hard dragon, and see my previous comments on a CR kit. :P And don't say that a rogue can't solo CR Izans after the dragon, cuz you know it's not true. Might be slightly difficult, but definately not impossible. Hell, _I_'ve CRd a full pop izans, and pretty much anyone can attest that I am a crappy rogue at best.

While I certainly don't agree that crashes should be factored into a zone's "difficulty", I also definately don't think that we need our hands held if something on the game breaks, unless it's a) a long zone like BC or Tia, or b) highly unusual circumstances. CRing from the first room of Izans is neither a nor b.

edit - BTW, congrats on attempting to lead your first zone Duna. Wish I would have been there. :)
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Postby Oghma » Thu Oct 26, 2006 8:31 pm

Malacar wrote:Look, I am all for hard CRs. I miss them. I am not for having a crash require two hours of my time to recover from, because we spank due to circumstances BEYOND OUR CONTROL.


I'd like to point out that the group had already spanked by the time the zone crashed. There was one person left alive at crash, and that was a rogue. At the time of the second crash, the group had not even engaged with the dragon yet (They were still 1s of Pelur), so the time to regroup should have been negligible.
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Postby Malacar » Thu Oct 26, 2006 8:39 pm

If they had spanked prior to crash, then moot point (unless they had started to clear it, but that's speculation). That's their issue.

Good point, too Branth. I haven't played in a while, so I forgot that was the case on reboot versus crash. Mea Culpa.
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Postby Ifin » Thu Oct 26, 2006 10:27 pm

Lotsa crash or not, even if the mud was stable and crashes during a long zone the policy still isn't in place for any reimb.

Yes I know Izan's, I can run it in 60 min., but these kind of policies put off *newer* leaders. Newer leaders need extra time to run what people have taken for granted shorter zones, and I think it something like this will only discourage these newer people.

Again, it's something about player control, and crashes aren't. In this scenario what would've been fun for 15 people and an accomplishment for Duna turned into a fiasco. If it didn't spank and the zone normally repopped w/dragon and they didn't make it back then yes, they should clean up their mess. But again why should crashes be factored in when they're out of the player's hand? CR kitting etc. still take time, and the penalty should be when the players make the mistakes.

If the God's had more control over these decisions, a reasonable solution would have just God-kill the dragon. It's not like Izan's gets done every single boot now.

Second, moving past this, as many have stated, maybe not for shorter zones but for more epic zones... is there currently discussion on even modifying the policy for these?

There's 3 paths I see: 1) judgement of God's on applying resets, hoping they would know the realm well enough to judge effort/reward 2) a policy where if a group has been in a zone for > x time (ie 1.5 hrs or something) then they would get a reset if it's due to crash 3) go over the zone list and say maybe all the red zones will get a restore, or select a few like BC/Tia/SPOB/or whatever

Again from personal experience, especially during all those partial Jot invasions where 15 * 5 hours were basically wasted each time, it really left a bad taste in my mouth the apathy and lack of empathy in these times.
Last edited by Ifin on Thu Oct 26, 2006 10:31 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Postby alendar » Thu Oct 26, 2006 10:28 pm

ok my post was started due to me being tired, angry, and on a time limit.

i dont think the gods should just hit the win button whenever there is a crash during a zone. Something on the time frame of spob or longer zones (2-3 hrs possibly 4hrs), might need reset to the point where they were at time of crash.... anything less than that i dont thing gods should interfere. However, I due think its a situation to situation call, not a blanket call...

in the case last night... the dragon repoping upon crash was a bit of a problem, (not as bad since the OLD SCHOOL players... you know who you are and I thank you all again for the help)... would not have been an issue without the crash....

i guess i'm rambling and not saying anything at all... maybe i should run for a government office...

anyhow... i dont think this situation warrants 23 posts or so.. so just lock the door and turn out the light on the way out...

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Postby Vipplin » Thu Oct 26, 2006 11:19 pm

Funny at least a couple of people said they're not in favor of putting players back to where they were in a zone after crash unless its (XX size zone). Those people offered no justification for their position. Why the hell not? If gods are available - which is what I said. I can understand gods saying they don't have the time, but what possible reason do players have to say they don't like this?

In the instance I brought up, which is NOT the only time this has happened of course, but which is the last time it has really bugged me, we were going through GolemForge with most people never having been there before and nobody in group having led it before. We'd been there at least 1.5 hours before the crash, maybe 2+ hrs So tell me a the reason it is good for the game to not help our group there? I don't even remember now if there were any gods on that time, but as a matter of principle, again, why the hell NOT help? Most people in that group have never been back to GolemForge even though I remember liking it.

That group never finished. Why? Because people may have 2-3 hours to zone maybe, but after 2 hours in zone and a crash, now you have 1 hour left or less for most in group and you can't redo the zone completely. Plus now you're worried it is just going to crash again. It is stupid not to put the group back on track if the gods have time to do it.

P.S. Sorry for the emotions. Guess I'm taking out all my lack of zoning frustration here! I love you all :)
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Postby Gormal » Fri Oct 27, 2006 12:03 pm

I've always been distraught by the general attitude towards crashes as a feature of the game. I'm all for difficult CR's, but I think a more liberal attitude should be taken in the case of crashes midzone.

SPOB is my biggest complaint, simply because I've seen it crash too many times at or near the very end of the zone and you lose everything simply because you have to turn in the items afterwards. This could be remedied by a simple areas fix... make the gems/heart/seals rentable. No matter where the game crashes, you'd still have to complete the entire zone to reap your rewards.

The portals in Izan's make it CRable even when the worst happens, even if you can't complete the zone so I don't see it as a problem. Bronze Citadel should have some sort of crash restoration policy laid out though, simply due to the length and difficulty of the zone.

"You risk the game crashing on you and losing everything." should never be considered a feature of the game. If I wanted this kind of random chance, I'd roll a d20 once ever hour, and suicide my character every time I got a natural 1.
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Postby Latreg » Fri Oct 27, 2006 12:53 pm

Remember when good and evils raced to Jot to be there first, remember the "rule" that spawned because of the disagreements? The first side to get a zonable group there got to do the zone. Sadly those days are gone. Given the current state of things how are restart points and resets a bad thing? We want people to zone right? We want activity right? I guess some people said this is "dumbing down the mud" what good is having the smartest mud going if no one plays? Are we even gaining new players?
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Postby moritheil » Fri Oct 27, 2006 4:08 pm

The problem is that there is no way for the imms to adjucate this fairly and evenly because zone difficulty is something of a question of perception and opinion. So unless there is a universally approved list of zones that merit intervention, I don't see imms intervening if such intervention might be questionable in any zone.

Latreg, the lack of new players has nothing to do with high-end zone rules, and probably more to do with the fact that new players have nothing to do with zones.
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Postby Gurns » Fri Oct 27, 2006 6:26 pm

Vipplin wrote:what possible reason do players have to say they don't like this?

Crashes suck. Running out of time to play sucks. God intervention sucks more. That's my reason. :)

I could talk about the classic Roots case, but look at this situation. From the above posts, even if the imms were allowed to interfere in some cases, it doesn't sound like they would have here. Not enough reason to. Given how annoyed some people were that the imms didn't intervene, when you know they aren't going to, how much more annoyed would people have been if imms were allowed to intervene sometimes, but had decided "Nope, we're not going to this time, it doesn't warrant it"? How annoyed would other folks be if the imms had intervened here, but not for, say, the GolemForge run you mentioned?

Make some keys or items rentable? Sure, good idea for some places. Make it possible to do longer zones in chunks? Sure, if that's keeping the zone from being done more often, and the imms want the zone done more often. But hard-coded in. Active god intervention for stuff like this? Horrible.
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Postby Lilira » Fri Oct 27, 2006 7:20 pm

agree Gurns!
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Postby Tasan » Fri Oct 27, 2006 8:21 pm

Gurns wrote:Make some keys or items rentable? Sure, good idea for some places. Make it possible to do longer zones in chunks? Sure, if that's keeping the zone from being done more often, and the imms want the zone done more often. But hard-coded in. Active god intervention for stuff like this? Horrible.


Horrible = changing people's work/creativity to solve "problems". It's a drawback that crashes happen. I hope some sort of save state can be implemented if there are changes to the way things are instead of changing zones to suit the problem.
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Postby Gormal » Fri Oct 27, 2006 9:01 pm

I don't see a problem with a short list of big zones that have points where you earn a "save point" in them. BC would be easy to have specific places where you can be re-advanced to. The list would be pretty short now, but would be a great thing imo.
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Postby Lathander » Sat Oct 28, 2006 5:20 am

I feel like we have this subject come up once a quarter. If a zone is successfully done more often, then more eq gets in the game faster, making the eq less rare and more likely to downgrade. Think about it, how many zones can players actually fail these days without a crash? Really Choking Palace is the only one that comes to mind. While I know the argument is "crashes shouldn't be part of design", they (crashes) do affect the rate of introduction of gear into the game especially for long zones. If area makers wanted their zones to have "save points", they would have put them in there, it isn't hard to do.

I have to say I am surprised, some of you folks have been around for a decade, and it has always been like this. If anything, I'd argue the mud is way easier than it was a decade ago. And you want to make it even easier with instant cr's and save points? *Boggle* Personally, I believe the increased ease of things is one of the biggest problems with losing folks not that it is too hard.

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Postby Pril » Sat Oct 28, 2006 10:45 am

Lathander wrote:I feel like we have this subject come up once a quarter. If a zone is successfully done more often, then more eq gets in the game faster, making the eq less rare and more likely to downgrade. Think about it, how many zones can players actually fail these days without a crash? Really Choking Palace is the only one that comes to mind. While I know the argument is "crashes shouldn't be part of design", they (crashes) do affect the rate of introduction of gear into the game especially for long zones. If area makers wanted their zones to have "save points", they would have put them in there, it isn't hard to do.

I have to say I am surprised, some of you folks have been around for a decade, and it has always been like this. If anything, I'd argue the mud is way easier than it was a decade ago. And you want to make it even easier with instant cr's and save points? *Boggle* Personally, I believe the increased ease of things is one of the biggest problems with losing folks not that it is too hard.

Lath


I think part of the issue Lath is that over the years the people who mudded hardcore back then are now in their late 20's/30's etc and can't spend the time doing and redoing 5-6 hr zones randomly.

I'm personally against crash resets, and yes crashes have pissed me off at some points like when i was leading magama and it crashed on Dresk fight with 1 of his drakes dead already. However, I understand the current policy and suck it up and deal with it.

For those of you who are unaware of the policy the reset policy for most gods is: if the crash is caused by a bug in the zone you are doing and zone is a long one most of the time they'll reset it.

Anyways if my understanding of the "policy" is wrong gods can correct me but the times magma or bc or tia have crashed due to their zone bugs i've noticed gods reseting the zones.

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Postby Ifin » Sat Oct 28, 2006 4:42 pm

Wow, saying that crashes are legitimate way to slow the influx of eq and fail a zone... I really don't know how to respond to that.

But anyways, okay, old school vrs. new school, let's see where this path goes. There's maybe 1 zone that gets done done a day now. Fail that, is a greater impact than when 2-3-4+ zones got done daily. Or even SPOB or BC, can't even get a group monthly for that now. If it crashes on that attempt... How's that for controlling eq into the game? Congrats.

I'm not about making the game easier, but for something that I know has been the "tipping point" for some people quitting after they realized they wasted so much time playing, esp. on something they couldn't control.

Times are different, and policy needs to change with it. What wasn't an issue or could be ignored before doesn't mean it shouldn't be looked at now.

We'll see how well all these old school mentality holds up in these days.
Last edited by Ifin on Sat Oct 28, 2006 4:48 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Postby Gormal » Sat Oct 28, 2006 4:46 pm

Lathander wrote:I have to say I am surprised, some of you folks have been around for a decade, and it has always been like this. If anything, I'd argue the mud is way easier than it was a decade ago. And you want to make it even easier with instant cr's and save points? *Boggle* Personally, I believe the increased ease of things is one of the biggest problems with losing folks not that it is too hard.

Lath


In all fairness, this isn't the same game that it was a decade ago. Back then, we had an overabundance of players, and zoning wasn't a problem. Getting together even a few years ago for something like scorps was doable most any boot. Now, we're forced to plan well in advance for the high level zones simply because we don't have the playerbase to support it. When was the last time anyone did 3-5 zones in one run with the same group?

I think that this type of policy could be implemented to impact a bare handful of zones: Tiamat, BC, and possibly Magma are the only zones that come to mind.

I don't see ChP as a long zone at all, in fact its designed to be relatively short. Izans is CRable easily and you get eq as you go. The 3 zones I mentioned are long, painful, and relatively reward-free until completed. Dangerous zones in the past were: roots, cc, brass, crypts... and were only from a spank standpoint. The same group would still be willing to do any of those zones again if it crashed... the same cannot be said for the new 'epic' zones.
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Postby Tasan » Sat Oct 28, 2006 7:48 pm

The main problem is still the fact that a few zones came in and basically demolished the premise that no more than 2-3 really great items should ever come from one zone. Because these zones abused the system of ranking equipment at the time and because they felt they needed that equipment to be more difficult to obtain, they went about making them doable in certain ways. !Teleport is a huge point modifier for the system that was in place because it limits your means of moving around. Typically moving around is only a problem during a CR. Some of the new zones went the way of giving rewards for an entire zone being done because people have ALWAYS looked for the cheapest time spent v. reward. So technically it is the mindset of the player that has changed things to be the way they are now.

Crashes do limit the amount of equipment coming into the game, but very rarely do they limit it to any real extent. They are something that most area creators to take into account. Perhaps the people that made SPOB and GF actually wanted you to get the zone done in a modicum of time to avoid a crash and by that means make the zone more difficult. Who is really to say what makes things more difficult now in a game where every player is so individually overpowered? We have equipment available to us now that would have been artifact quality only 5-6 years ago. We continually go back and "fix" items that were never broken because there is some need to justify their existence. There are plenty of items in the game that are available on mobs that are only done if someone is feeling nostalgic or needs the item for an obscure quest.

Jot invasion isn't even close to what it used to be anymore. It isn't the cool epic zone that when it loads you reschedule mundane things so you can go. Now it's just another of the changes that is sending this place in an entirely wrong direction. When before you could do the zone in 4-5 hours MAX, and most likely escape without a crash being thought of, now you triple that time perhaps?

I guess in reality I feel that crashes/length of time to do a zone are what became the "difficulty" factor since the players themselves have so much power. There isn't a zone in the game that really scares anyone anymore. CR's are a joke even if they do take time.

I think the biggest problem has been the players mentality that 2 hours of time now should equal rewards like Tiamat of old. I realize that people have less time on their hands, but why should the game cater to that group of people? It never has before. It was always dominated by the people that spent the most time here. Nowadays you can spend 2 hours here, complain about the zone you did, have the eq upgraded and the zone shortened and still not be satisfied. Maybe the people that left just got tired of the game changing to suit the needs of the people who don't want to spend time here.
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Postby Lathander » Sat Oct 28, 2006 11:03 pm

Ok, how about this. Back on HL, if players couldn't cr, we would staff cr them but they'd have to give up one item they wore. This is just a trial balloon, but what if there was some mechanism that could cr your group from a zone, but it might cost you an item or alot of plat, on the order of 2K+ per corpse?

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Postby Ifin » Sun Oct 29, 2006 12:53 am

Thanks for at least trying different angles Lath. Shows that at least the question is floating around.

However, I don't think the question is about CR's in general. If a group spanks or whatever normally, then they should be able to CR themselves. That's why it's not dumbing down the game, that's what they're supposed to do. I think that's why you probably responded as you did about dumbing down the game.

At least from what I've read, it's about crashes and crash restores, something where let's say you been in a zone 2 hours meticulously zoning and then boom it crashed. There's no way for the player to prevent that and is just a lost of 2x15 hours of time.

Here's another analogy: what if Microsoft Word didn't have a save feature til the very end? If it crashes and you lose all your work, wouldn't you want to move to another product?

Or imagine zones where maybe 5% of the time they load with no eq, just no eq, just because that's the way it's set up. Wouldn't that be the dumbest zone ever?
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Postby Lathander » Sun Oct 29, 2006 5:15 am

A "save point" would make it more certain that a group would get the eq from that zone everytime they do the zone, right? Also, creating some means within the zone to create save points would also, most likely, be persistant, meaning that "save point" item would probably be able to be reused, although you could make that save item a quest item to get past a later portion of the zone. At the end of the day though, an easier zone, which by definition means, a group is more likely to get the eq leads to fewer points for the area writer to use on their items.

Two hours of zoning really isn't all that much, and the move to group gear at the end of a zone really finds its roots in the points calculator for gear. Any gear earlier in the zone, results in fewer points since a group does not have to go through as many mobs to get it. Most people understand that the normal zones always have an element of risk from a crash.

Toril has a save feature. You can rent at the inn, and it doesn't even cost you anything. Also, you can camp in a zone. Finally, if a reboot is done by staff, you enter back where you were when it was rebooted. Only on a crash do you lose your progress in a zone. Also, a crash does not lose your character, just some time in a zone. Folks that use Microsoft Word know that the auto save feature only kicks in at certain intervals, which means you do lose progress you make after the last save but before the next save if there is a crash.

5% wise, hell, I'd argue we already have that in some cases. Zones with those randomized eq loads can sometimes have some pretty junky loads. This doesn't mean we don't smite the zones because the gear that can possibly load is good enough to spend the time for and loads enough to where we have some expectation to get it.

Epic zones like Tiamat or big quests like a Kern's load could be argued to receive some staff assistance on a crash. I'm not involved with that so I can't comment on it, but those are extreme cases based on the effort involved in attaining the goal. I think if a big group was going to do tiamat, and it crashed as they were starting in ribcage, not many folks would scream for a reimb on their time. Now if it crashed on the 3rd version of tiamat, that's a different story.
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Postby moritheil » Sun Oct 29, 2006 8:25 pm

Ifin wrote:Or imagine zones where maybe 5% of the time they load with no eq, just no eq, just because that's the way it's set up. Wouldn't that be the dumbest zone ever?


That is a totally awesome idea - the flip side of an invasion load!
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Postby Tasan » Mon Oct 30, 2006 1:25 am

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Not every experience has to be identical.
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Postby Ifin » Mon Oct 30, 2006 2:54 am

The analogy of a save point or document is based to a zone. You're trying to do a zone, a document, and only if you get to the end do you get to "save" or get the eq, not the span of your player's life.

And again, a save point isn't to be used to be breaking zones up into smaller chunks at a time, only in cases of crashes. Coding doesn't even need to be an issue, but policy.

And yes, risk is good, if a group keeps spanking and runs out of time and they have to abort that's normal. But again, the point is crashes and why they should affect us when it's not in the player's control. Randomized loads, yes sometimes you get crap, but you don't get nothing, and this only applies in the case of 1 or 2 of the shorter zones like Izan's.

If BC, or SPOB, or Seelie, or Jot Invasion, Musp Invasion, whatever litmus you want to apply to you get NOTHING til the end. Saying "tough luck" and trying to justify crashes as a part of risk, shrugs.

Just stating that 2 hours of time playing isn't that much... 2 hrs not a lot? I challenge imms to mort for a week, just a week, try to put together zones and see the responses you get. I really do. Just look at the pbase, # of zones that get done, and judge who quits or gets jaded after 3 hours in Jot invasion and it crashes next time.

It's not about CR, splitting up zones, etc. etc. but crashes after you spent a time, time is still time, and something out of your control happens to wipe that away, and there's power to reset but it's not used b/c people are justifying *1* extra run as eq inflation or it's to be expected or too hard to policy/judge or whatever. 2-5 * 15 hrs, what a waste IMHO. Just different point of views, but we'll let the pbase decide.
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Postby Tasan » Tue Oct 31, 2006 12:36 am

Ifin wrote:but we'll let the pbase decide.


The pbase has already decided. They decided they can push the staff around to get what they want faster and easier than before because they can hold the "well then I won't play" comment over their heads. If you continue to devalue equipment by catering to the thought that players will quit if you don't do something, we will end up with Progress Quest.

Personally, I find the game less enjoyable now that a lot of the older policies have been done away with and some of the long-standing tradition thrown away in order to appease the remaining playerbase. Continuing to devalue equipment by making it easier to obtain, adding upgrades to equipment months after initial changes etc. contributes to people leaving as well.

Something to consider.
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Postby Vipplin » Tue Oct 31, 2006 12:55 am

Crashes have no significant impact on the amount of eq that comes into the game from big zones, so that really is no reason not to help groups after a crash. The majority of the time the game doesn't crash.

'save points' in zones are fine with me if they're there, fine if they're not. That isn't really the issue here. We're talking about players who enjoy the game but may not always have -another- 3 hours to zone after a crash. Save points would also cure the problem, but that's not the only solution.

I think it enhances the game to put them back where they were. It gives them no benefit, just takes the burden of a crash off the players. Like it or not, our pbase on average has less time than it used to. If we want the people who play to have less frustration, restoring a group that has spent a lot of time on a zone to where they were will help.

To say god intervention in general is a bad thing, well I disagree. If you put guidelines and rules in place it isn't a problem. Make a list of zones and the points in each at which players will be eligible for help -if it is available- upon crash.

I think if I have managed to schedule to have the right people on to do a zone and we all have 3 hours and the (generic zone) takes 2 normally, and we get a crash after 1.5, it would be nice to get to finish before the groups busts up to go to work or whatever. If we spank and can't finish, oh well, our fault. This is no 'guaranteed finish' - honestly, what % of failed long zonage is from crashes? Small. The impact of helping would be just that, small. The psychological impact on the players? I think Huge. Gods acknowledge that player time is not unlimited and that they care.
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Postby moritheil » Tue Oct 31, 2006 3:01 pm

The problem with making a fair shake contingent on imm intervention is that imms cannot always be here and actively watching for such problems. What happens when there are no imms at keys or no imms on at all?

It seems to me that the ideal thing would be to have intervention-free mechanics.
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Postby Vipplin » Tue Oct 31, 2006 6:54 pm

Then you're back where we've been for a decade, the crash just cost you some hours. At least we could get some help when they ARE available, though. An improvement in my book.
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Postby Latreg » Tue Oct 31, 2006 7:53 pm

Tasan wrote:The pbase has already decided. They decided they can push the staff around to get what they want faster and easier than before because they can hold the "well then I won't play" comment over their heads. If you continue to devalue equipment by catering to the thought that players will quit if you don't do something, we will end up with Progress Quest.

Personally, I find the game less enjoyable now that a lot of the older policies have been done away with and some of the long-standing tradition thrown away in order to appease the remaining playerbase. Continuing to devalue equipment by making it easier to obtain, adding upgrades to equipment months after initial changes etc. contributes to people leaving as well.

Something to consider.


I have never heard anyone pushing the staff around, I'm one of the people that if I don't have the time for a zone i won't do it, that's life. I don't expect to get tia gear from a 2 hour zone either, don't know who would expect that. Yeah you do have to appease the remaing playerbase to a certain extent, otherwise what good is a game with NO player base? How many things/games/business or whatever have to either change with the times or become history. Things will always change if you can't grow and deal with those changes you are s.o.l.
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Postby Sarell » Wed Nov 01, 2006 9:31 am

I don't think crashes should be a game 'feature' in terms of limiting gear or satisfying equipment calculator, but more of an inconvenience we will have to deal with because we love an ever evolving game.

I think a few things could be done to minimise the inconvenience for both staff and players. For example, I've had eilistraee(spelling?) pull corpses out of bel's room for our group after it crashed which was great. No way people had 4 hours to get back there. If no handy staff were available or maybe they had something on really important themselves, what would happen? Crankiness all round. I like the idea of paying to get a corpse back. Let me take you on a journey....


(I'm picturing a bar in BG)

A Githzerai Planeskipper sits nursing his drink.

ask gith hello

The Githzerai turns to you and says 'So, you've lost yourself again eh cutter? You know the drill.'

ask gith drill

The Githzerai peers deeply into your eyes and speaks slowly in a condescending platitude of convenience, 'Don't waste my time. Two thousand platinum pieces and I'll find your ill fated wreck of a body.'

give 2000 p gith

Without breaking his gaze the Githzerai fades out of reality. You hear a thump behind you as a dead weight hits the ground. You move to turn to see what it is when a flash in front of you reveals a smirking Githzerai ariving just in time to catch his drink before it hits the table.

look

The corpse of Moritheil rests here.





TADA! So yeh, that would be neato. Just remember to unload the platinum incase some sod tries to get it back, he will probably be getting a LOT of heavy plat in his inventory. You could make it work for certain items even. Diamondine earring, lightning/flaming earring, skymetal earring, elements earrings, emerald earrings, fireweed earrings, raindrop earrings, distortion earrings, you get my drift, he's a piercer!
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