Sojourn 3 Update: Areas

Archive of the Sojourn3 General Discussion Forum.
Cyric
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Sojourn 3 Update: Areas

Postby Cyric » Sun Feb 18, 2001 9:43 pm

Salutations and thanks for staying active in our planning process! I figured it was time to give you all an update to keep you in suspense, so here's the latest and greatest on my sphere:

1. The new race I mentioned previously (although not by name) has been approved by all, and although perhaps a bit of a niche race, will fill a void on one side of the good/evil equation. I am confident that their hometown will be completed by the time we open for beta.

2. Menzo will unfortunately not be ready for beta...it is an enormous zone, and Kris is balancing his time between Menzo, code work, and his new admin duties (since he's taken on the head of that sphere). It's still being worked on, but for opening, all of you drow weenies will get to start in Mir as before.

3. Item balancing is being put on hold until we see how the new code changes will affect race, class, and level balance...there's no reason for me to change 10000 objects, only to have to change them again, so for now, and at least through alpha testing, all stats remain as they were when we shut down.

4. New zones: I have a bunch that'll be ready for beta:

-Moonshaes will be greatly improved/expanded
-IceCrag will be expanded
-Ruins of a large city will finally come in
-We will be expanding into the Sea of Stars
-Multiple other zones are being placed where they are most needed
-Castle Hades (Hell) is being removed and replaced by another zone...all old Hell items will remain in that new zone
-A hometown is being moved north

5. Other high level zones are being worked on as well, and although probably not in time for beta, they should be ready by the end of summer in time for everyone to be 50th level again. ;) These include planar zones and the like.

6. The newbie system has been changed...when you log into the mud you will have a choice of starting as before in your guildhall, OR running through a tutorial, OR being sent to a newbie zone filled with stuff that wants to eat you. At any time you can change your choice up until a certain non-newbie level.

7. Large wilderness areas are being placed near every hometown using the random description generator Tempus mentioned in an earlier post. They will be filled with mobs designed to be fought by solo players or by the casual player that has trouble finding big groups on Sunday morning at 4 am. Altogether they number more than 3000 rooms.

8. The arena is not a room, but 400 rooms. Think Quake for Sojourn.

9. I have 9 new areas makers working on their very first zones (seems you all have tons of free time on your hands)...whether they will be completed, submitted, or ready by the time we open is unclear, but the quality looks to be great.

10. That's enough for now...I'd rather not give out more details as that might spoil the surprises we have in store for you. All areas introduced will NOT be available during alpha testing, so everyone will get to see them at the same time.

Oh, and yep, the mainmud is now up and running with new code, and we're working hard at breaking it prior to letting you guys try...so I guess right now we're in pre-alpha (versus pre-pre-pre-alpha where we've been :P)

Roy aka Cyric
cherzra
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Postby cherzra » Sun Feb 18, 2001 10:56 pm

You mentioned that instead of starting at your guildmaster, you can start in a newbie zone.

Question: is this zone connected to the hometown, or the 'outside' mud? I mean, specifically for evils, won't this be an easy way out of their hometown? I.e. roll a troll, choose the newbie zone as starting point, and head for the hills without running into mean green lizards?
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Postby Sarvis » Sun Feb 18, 2001 11:42 pm

Does that mean you're starting alpha? Soon!?! *bounce* C'mon... My last week of classes/exams is this week and I need something to do for the next two weeks... I'm not signed up for alpha so I'm hoping beta comes real quick... which will only happen if you start alpha like tomorrow. Image

Hrm... anyway... so what _is_ this new race you mentioned? Wemics? Mermaids? Driders? (ewww... I hate spiders.)
Cyric
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Postby Cyric » Mon Feb 19, 2001 1:10 am

Nope, it's a self-contained zone with no connection to the outside world. Storyline goes something like this:

You've left home looking for adventure, glory, and fame, and you end up in a town where you ask about where to get started. A guide takes you deep into a mountain cavern, and you see a path leading down into darkness...you'd never choose to go back...you couldn't handle the shame, so instead you go forward and the rest is history.

Again, once you reach sufficient level POOF you're off to your guildmaster.

R
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Postby Gormal » Mon Feb 19, 2001 2:12 am

beta implies to me that there will be another wipe before the mud is "truly" open. Is this the case or does beta= open in this case.

Gormal the curious
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Postby Malacar » Mon Feb 19, 2001 3:13 am

Side note... Cyric, I've been hacking away at mine. Will update you this week. Haven't had much time, but have completed 11 rooms so far.. And yes, they all have lengthy descriptions..

Having some issues with quests though.. gonna hafta email or chat with you somehow on that to better understand it. Image

Mal
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Postby Varkus » Mon Feb 19, 2001 3:42 am

Wow...this is like a dream come true... I remember the early days of the 'old' Internet when Sojourn/Toril was a new realm and a MUD was a relatively new concept... In any event, it makes me happy to see such enthusiasm in a good old community. Personally, I guess I'm responsible for the existance/lack-there-of of the city of Neverwinter and you can bet that I will do my best to make sure that the shady little city to the north of Waterdeep lives again.

Long live Toril! (or SIII)

-Varkus
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Postby Ragorn » Mon Feb 19, 2001 5:59 am

To all the other area coders out there, I offer one suggestion. Save your area in Toril Edit often, and make backups of all your zone files every time you finish a session.

I went to save my area, and the editor corrupted the save. I lost 38 out of 48 rooms of my zone, and all my objects and mobs. It didn't just crash, it actually corrupted my zone files.. my .wld file was salavagable after the 10th room, but the .zon, .obj, and .mob files were all damaged beyond repair.

Moral of the story: Back up your zone every day.

- Ragorn
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Postby Tempus » Mon Feb 19, 2001 6:47 am

Ragorn, your post about backing up your files is right on, its very important. The other thing I found interesting is that you appear to be doing all of your files at once, instead of one at a time. I thought I would post the following thoughts and experiences regarding the building process.

I find the first thing I have to do is graph the whole zone on paper, and then label each room with a vnum. Then I write out room descriptions for each room in a word proc, but no formatting, just descs. When all the descs are done, spell check it! Then you have three choices. You can do the wld file in TE then paste in your descs, you can finish the wld file by hand, or you can add in basic format structure by hand and then tweak with TE. I used to do the whole thing by hand, but now I do the last option.

Once your world file is totally spanked out, I do the mobs. TE is great for mobs, doing it by hand is a pain in the arse. Now that you have a spanky world file already completed, you have a little bit better of an idea about what mobs you need to fill it.

TE is also pretty fabu for objects, so I use it for that as well. Next is zon file, which I do by a combination of TE and word processor. I find I have to do the funky stuff by hand (R,X,pop stoppers,rares, etc..). Then qst, then soc, both completely by hand. I haven't used TE for those two files mainly because it seems more cumbersome.

This is the process by which I did my most recent projects, and seems to have worked well. Hope thats helpful to someone.

Temp
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Postby Bibbe » Mon Feb 19, 2001 11:43 am

The new newibe zone choice seems great!!!!
Good thinking. I just hope that the areas won't be filled with cockroaches and squirrels. I assume it's an idea to take away the critter killing east of turningpoint and such...

It seems nice...
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Postby namatoki » Mon Feb 19, 2001 8:21 pm

Yay! Thanks for the update, Cyric. Hmmm... You said that you guys are in 'pre-alpha' versus 'pre-pre-pre-alpha' so, ummm, what happened to pre-pre-alpha? Sorry, had to be a smart-ass. Image

I think the newbie zone is cool. It will definately help reduce the competition for low lvl mobs when we all flood in.

Gormal, beta = open according to posts by Miax and Shev. I think Cyric might have said that too.

I'm curious to see the new race. Very exciting! Image

I hope alpha starts soon so beta can start soon and then life as we know it will cease to exist outside the mud. *drool*

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Postby Faerwynd » Mon Feb 19, 2001 8:55 pm

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR><font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Cyric:
2. Menzo will unfortunately not be ready for beta...it is an enormous zone, and Kris is balancing his time between Menzo, code work, and his new admin duties (since he's taken on the head of that sphere). It's still being worked on, but for opening, all of you drow weenies will get to start in Mir as before.</font><HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Bah, figures. Like I haven't heard that one before. *snort* I've come to realize this whole "Menzo" thing is a plot to get me to come back after every wipe. Tell the truth... It doesn't even exist! *sniff*
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Postby Tempus » Tue Feb 20, 2001 6:01 am

It exists, I've seen it, and its farkin _HUUUUUGGGGGEEEEE_. Hope that makes ya feel better.
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Postby Harthorm » Tue Feb 20, 2001 3:18 pm

If (when Image) Menzo comes in, will existing/new drow all be relocated/started in Menzo or will they have a choice of starting in Mir as well as Menzo?

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Postby namatoki » Tue Feb 20, 2001 3:34 pm

Yeah, I want to know what Harthorm asked. Can existing drow choose to relocate hometown to Menzo when it comes in? I for one want to (although I love DK as well)...

Nizrath
Cyric
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Postby Cyric » Tue Feb 20, 2001 3:40 pm

Um, I honestly don't know the answer to that, but it's a good question. As with real life, I suppose you should be able to change hometowns, although there are certain religious reasons that might preclude the move in this instance...in any event, we'll cross that bridge when we come to it, as it won't be for quite some time yet.

And to echo what Tempus said, it's big...here's a snip from testmud's zone list...the 5 digit numbers are the vnum range, so you can count the number of included rooms yerself:

10 Menzoberranzan: Tier Breech 25 15 10 16000 17249 1
11 Menzoberranzan: Donigarten 25 15 10 17250 17499 1
12 Menzoberranzan: Center City 25 15 10 17500 17799 1
13 Menzoberranzan: Manyfolk 25 15 10 17800 18159 1
14 Menzoberranzan: Lake Four 20 0 20 18201 18299 2
15 Menzoberranzan: Lake Three 20 0 20 18311 18399 2
16 Menzoberranzan: Pitwarrens 20 0 20 18400 18499 2
17 Menzoberranzan: Lake One 20 0 20 19011 19099 2
18 Menzoberranzan: Lake Two 20 0 20 19111 19199 2
19 Menzoberranzan: Narbondellyn 0 0 0 19250 19668 0
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Postby namatoki » Tue Feb 20, 2001 3:46 pm

Wow, it's *HUGE*! Image

Well, I was thinking that this hometown change would be an exception since Menzo won't be ready for a while and us drow who were ready to start in Menzo are itching to populate it. I really hope we can make the move when Menzo comes in! Image

Nizrath
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Postby Faerwynd » Tue Feb 20, 2001 3:49 pm

Can I get a HELL YEAH?!?

Ok sure, I sounded cynical, but dammit, I want some Menzo! I never doubted you Miax!

(Ok maybe I doubted you, but ya gotta admit it begs the question. How long has this been in work?)
Guest

Postby Guest » Tue Feb 20, 2001 4:25 pm

If I remember correctly, Kris has been working on it for well over 3 years, off and on between other projects. It's his baby. Well, his other baby, after Dee. (Who I get to go see next month. yipee!!)

Mask
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Postby Yayaril » Tue Feb 20, 2001 6:43 pm

I have a question.

Will Waterdeep be renovated? It would be great if it was expanded so as to be on par with Baldur's Gate. I really enjoyed when Baldur's Gate came out, as it was HUGE!


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Postby Shevarash » Tue Feb 20, 2001 10:59 pm

We'll probably allow existing drow to choose Menzo as their hometown when it comes in, yeah. Until then, all the little drow will be starting in Mir. Image
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Postby Harthorm » Tue Feb 20, 2001 11:12 pm

Cyric/Shev/Mask: Thanks for info. Another quick question. Will a drow still be able to start in Mir once Menzo is in?

As for the size of Menzo, it looks amazing. If the zone is on par with Baldur's Gate for descriptions/mobs, then I can totally understand the amount of time this has taken. I'm definitely looking forward to this Image

Harthorm/Twiblin

[This message has been edited by Harthorm (edited 02-20-2001).]
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Postby Guest » Tue Feb 27, 2001 5:56 am

It is unfortunate that Menzoberranzan could not be ready on opening day. I worked very hard on it for several months before the critical need for coders arose (You can never, ever have enough coders on a mud). So I took up the C sword and began work on olc, a mud balancing system, the trade system, and another soon-to-be reveled project. These are either done or will be done for the alpha, some by the time we open full for beta.

As for the Drow, your day will come. o_o Menzoberranzan is a project I started in 1996 for Sojourn I, and has been worked on over time for 5 years. When fully completed, it will be a self-contained world for the drow of all levels. The cavern (city) and surrounding under-dark zones consume over 2,500 rooms. By comparison, Waterdeep with all of it's support zones is 961 rooms. There are 5 nobe houses and 3 destroyed noble houses in the city, each ranging from 25-250 rooms in size and each their own high-level zones to conquer (though conquering House Baenre will be equivalent to Tiamat in difficulty). I wont even venture on what you'll find in the destroyed compound of House Do'Urden. Image The city proper itself is around 1,000 rooms in size, roughly 3 times as large as Waterdeeps city proper, with a huge bizaar, at least 100 shops, lots of small houses and mansions, theaters, a combat arena, etc, etc, etc.

Drow will start in Academy if they are warriors, mages, or priests, and in the Brearyn Stenchstreets if they are rogues. The academy has all three training facilities, mini-leveling zones, practice tunnel excursions, etc. They graduate at level 5, and can leave the academy. The city itself is littered with low, mid, and high-level zones. A drow need never leave the great cavern if they don't want to. A party of goodly characters trying to invade Menzoberranzan would find players there with equipment they have never seen, and get massacred by magics and procs beyond their experience.

To get it done right, I need to finish olc first. I have world files and the core system done, I need mobs and objects done. The world file generator is done and kicking, Cyric has already turned out huge world files with it. To realistically complete and balance over 1,000 unique mob types, and thousands of objects, will require OLC. Menzo is coming, but I will need more time to get it all done I've said this before, you don't have to believe me, just wait and see. Image I will likely hire some playtesters to start combing what is done, and helping to balance and refine the city.

Miax
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Postby Thurg » Tue Feb 27, 2001 6:06 am

worships the god that is miax, all hail the maker of menzo

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Postby izarek » Tue Feb 27, 2001 6:20 am

Dang. I'm actually drooling on my keyboard. Go Miax and the rest of the team!
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Postby Harthorm » Tue Feb 27, 2001 6:52 am

Damn! Sounds like I better get a mapper ready... and plenty of patience with dying to map it all! *drool*

Amazing work, even just tackling a project like that, Miax, let alone being near completion (I hope Image).

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Postby Dizzin » Tue Feb 27, 2001 6:53 am

Well, Menzo certainly looks to become an amazing place for us drow to challenge ourselves. I, and I'm sure pretty much everyone else around, will greatly enjoy wandering through it's vastness, and finding all the hidden goodies that will be squirreled away therein.
However, I was hoping a concern of mine could be spelled out very clearly by one of the staff. I very much enjoyed Dobluth Kyor, as I'm sure anyone who wandered down there can testify to. Image
The fact that us drow males were actually equal to the females, and we actually had a patron god to look up to was something I'm afraid I have to admit to finding quite pleasant. DK was just made for RP that isnt about the overbearing female and their male lackeys. Not to mention DK was quite a nice, simply laid out city with several interesting places to keep one occupied.
Anyways, where this is heading: Will DK still be around as a possible hometown choice for drow after the arrival of Menzoberranzan?

I personally can't see any reason to take it out, but, doesnt hurt to make sure right? Image

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Cyric
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Postby Cyric » Tue Feb 27, 2001 8:00 am

DK will stay in as a hometown for ever and always. How's that for surety?
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Postby Dizzin » Tue Feb 27, 2001 8:08 am

Sounds wonderful, for sure.

Thanks Cyric.
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Postby kwirl » Tue Feb 27, 2001 6:49 pm

ruins of a large city . . . .

*kneels*
its gotta be myth drannor, the coolest of ALL forgotten realms worlds

-kwirl/thamas/dazok
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Postby cherzra » Tue Feb 27, 2001 8:37 pm

GHORE POWER! Trolls bow down to no stinkin' drow! Legions, hordes, ZOUNDS of trolls will invade that damn drow town and turn it into the troll UD home-away-from-home amusement park!

Cherzra LEAN MEAN GREEN (troll) stands here
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Postby Elseenas » Tue Feb 27, 2001 11:02 pm

Dizzin, long time no see :-)

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Postby Nerzul » Wed Feb 28, 2001 1:51 am

I hope menzo welcomes emmissaries from ghore, I dont like going up against pissed off drow.
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Postby Ronathar/Galnyrith » Wed Feb 28, 2001 6:25 am

Will it be ruled by Female Drow, as like it is in FR, patron god, Lloth? Will we perhaps see the rise of whole player run drow houses? (would be super cool)
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Postby izarek » Wed Feb 28, 2001 3:19 pm

Question about Menzo:

Will Menzo be the drow equivalent of the grey elf Leuth? By this I mean will other evil races be restricted from going into Menzo? In the FR books most of the non-drow races in Menzo were slaves, as I'm sure you know. Was just curious. I'm not advocating this, but I do think there should be lotsa mobs that are aggr to non-drow (similar to the aggrs running around BS, perhaps, though race-restricted).
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Postby Cyric » Wed Feb 28, 2001 3:22 pm

Good question...not sure I have the answer to it, but here's a new question:

Should Menzo be equivalent to Leuth in that players cannot leave the city until they're level 20? If you don't like those restrictions you can just start in DK, but it seems there'll be PLENTY to do in Menzo to level effectively.

Just a thought to stimulate some discussion.

R
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Postby Malacar » Wed Feb 28, 2001 3:26 pm

They should absolutely have a level restriction for leaving their hometown/area. But then again, I play grey elves, and I think it'd be unfair in the Elven Wars theme to allow their arch enemies to walk the lands when grey's can't!
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Postby belleshel » Wed Feb 28, 2001 3:37 pm

A player actively grouped with a drow, and that drow being present should be okay in mezzo (starwars when they pretended chewy was a prisoner Image. I have a hard time seeing a society such as the drow tolerate any other race walking freely around in the city thou, without a drow 'chaperone'.
As for the level limits, I played a grey and never liked the level limit on EM, I never could figure out a reason why it was in place. True it forced a lot of us to explore the neat island more which otherwise might have gotten overlooked when we all bolted to WD to group.(but every grey does this at 20 anyway) (lotta ef quests are kinda fun). But most of us would have came back to explore the island at a higher (better survivable) level anyway, and just slowed down grey exping/equipment being secluded on the island (but made us tough Image.
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Postby Jegzed » Wed Feb 28, 2001 3:43 pm

<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR><font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by izarek:
In the FR books most of the non-drow races in Menzo were slaves, as I'm sure you know. </font><HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

The Matron Baenre had an illithid ally which definitely was not a slave. (There are probably other illithids in town also.) Duergars and occasional humans are also in Menzo in FR and does not seem to be trated as slaves. Trolls, goblinoids and ogres are slaves though Image


/Jegzed, mage of Dobluth Kyor
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Postby Sarvis » Wed Feb 28, 2001 4:37 pm

In <u>Daughter of the Drow</u> in the beginning there's a human merchant selling stuff in the Menzo marketplace... course, he gets killed but it's only because he was haggling too hard and everyone was pissed off from losing the war with Mithril Hall.

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Postby Treladian » Wed Feb 28, 2001 6:11 pm

Hmmm . . . it does sound like Menzo would be well stocked enough for having to wait til 20 (unlike another place I can think of *cough* =P). What I'm wondering though is WHY you might want to have that restriction. And in any case, I'm guessing that there will be some aggro mobs outside the city that could "discourage" leaving the place to early, along with the fact that you're still in the Underdark even after you leave.

I think that the drow might have problems with some of the less intelligent evil races wandering around without supervision. After all, ogres and trolls might be dumb and inferior but they still can pose a threat if not properly controlled. If the gods want to reflect that, maybe it could be coded so that ogres and trolls can roam around if they're in the company (read grouped in the same room as) a drow or if they get some sort of identification marking them as "safe" after a "donation" to the city (something like a collar they need to wear). Just some thoughts. The more intelligent evil races would probably allowed to roam around though some mobs in the city would probably be aggro to them.
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Postby Elseenas » Wed Feb 28, 2001 6:27 pm

I too don't really see the need for a level restriction. Throw a couple of hook horrors or somesuch out in the caves and most people won't leave until they are 20 anyways.
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Postby izarek » Wed Feb 28, 2001 6:44 pm

Hafta agree with Elseenas. In the FR, Menzo connects directly to the underdark and danger lurks right there in the caves. I think its silly to hard-code a low lvl restricts. Just make it tough to out. And of course, I still advocate mobs aggr to non-drow in Menzo Image
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Postby Mplor » Wed Feb 28, 2001 10:36 pm

I like the idea of limited access for other evil races...must be grouped with a drow or city guards will attack. It really couldn't be restricted to Drow only (a la Leuthilspar) because there's so many zone encounters within the city from the sound of things.
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Postby Harthorm » Thu Mar 01, 2001 6:06 am

Hehe, zone groups would have lvl 5 drow sitters that could chaperone them around the city Image Maybe that should be prevented, eh? Hehe only lvl 20+ drow can chaperone, perhaps?

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Postby Selias » Fri Mar 02, 2001 7:31 pm

Well if you want to restrict access to other races into Menzo, you're going to have to come up with a way for drow and only drow to do the zones that Miax mentioned. If you can't get trolls and ogres in there to tank reliably, then it's going to have to be drow warriors to the rescue, and we all know how good drow are at tanking compared to trolls. I've read a bunch of FR books about Menzo, and any !good race should be able to walk around there w/o much of a problem, especially Illithids and Duergars because they're UD races also.

As for the level rescrition to leave, I think that it is a very good idea, because it forces people to learn the zone. Even if there are hook horrors or something like that in the tunnels around Menzo, a drow could just have a few high level evils take them out, and then clear a path to the surface and viola... baby drow out of Menzo. I know that when I played elves on EM, the level 20 restrict got on my nerves, but it made me come up with new ways to solo mobs as an enchanter, and I think it would do the same for drow.

The idea of player run drow houses kick ass! We just need more evils to play drow characters. Drow warriors are supposed to be the best dualers in the world, except for drow rangers Image If you can give assassins 5 attacks/round hasted and wielding piercers, then you should be able to give drow 5/round hasted wielding piercers/slashers... just some food for thought.

Selias
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Postby Dizzin » Fri Mar 02, 2001 8:16 pm

Hmm, I guess it's my duty to respond here.

Selias, I'm afraid that even if we all agree that drow are supposed to be the best dualers in the world (Which I dont necessarily agree with considering that throughout most of Salvatore's Dark Elf trilogy, very few of the warriors actually used more than one sword etc.) it would be unfair to many of the other races to give drow warriors rogue-like hitting skills. After all, if any drow warrior could hit almost as hard as a rogue, and have that many more hp, assuming the various other skills balance off(i.e. shieldpunch + bash vs. trip and backstab etc.), why would they?
Now that's not to say that drow shouldn't have better dual wield than trolls or ogres, which we did btw. I was able to get mine several notches into below average when I heard that most trolls couldn't get it beyond the very first notch into that level, and that was at 50 practicing it for hours at a time.
However, I firmly believe that each race has it's strengths, and it's not productive to try and get special advantages to a race/class combination that just doesnt deserve it. Drow are fine, precise warriors, but they are not there to outdo, or even be on par with trolls or ogres. I'll have to agree with many others who say if you want to play a decent warrior, be a troll, or better yet, an ogre. If you want a caster, or even a rogue, *then* be drow.
Of course, that's assuming you don't enjoy the fun that is RP, and as we all know, Drow warriors are just +style.

Dizzin -What do you mean I need max_str to wield a Flamby?-Tre'Verien
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Postby cherzra » Fri Mar 02, 2001 9:27 pm

I never once notched dual wield. Heheh. Not that I cared, 2hnders are the way to go babee!
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Postby Rausrh » Fri Mar 02, 2001 9:40 pm

Not to mention who can bash with two weapons?

...Ok rausrh you bash the High Priestess...
...Going...

Rausrh Group-says 'Who me bashing?'


Rausrh licks you.
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Postby Brugg » Fri Mar 02, 2001 9:47 pm

just saying hi

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