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» SmaugMuds.org » Codebases » AFKMud Support & Development » Main continent size
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Main continent size
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Post is unread #1 Jul 5, 2008, 5:49 am   Last edited Jul 5, 2008, 6:11 am by BlooCat
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BlooCat
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What do you guys think is the optimal size in pixels for the "main" continent?

EDIT: Also, is it possible to add any kind of description to an overland room? such if you're walking on a road and there is something next to it, or a landmark or something.
       
Post is unread #2 Jul 5, 2008, 3:43 pm   Last edited Jul 5, 2008, 3:56 pm by The_Fury
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The_Fury
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What do you guys think is the optimal size in pixels for the "main" continent?


How long is a piece of string? Really this comes down to personal taste and what your trying to achieve with your overland. What is the point of overland in your game? How is it to be used by the players? How .....

I have played games that had huge overlands with over 4 million rooms, for me personally i think vast expanses of nothing are boring and i dislike games that use overland or in the case of picture games expansive maps of nothing as filler that i need to travel across to get anywhere.


EDIT: Also, is it possible to add any kind of description to an overland room? such if you're walking on a road and there is something next to it, or a landmark or something.


Yes its posible, there are already the beginnings of what could become descriptions in the code, where one sentence is displayed for each sector type."You are travelling along a smooth stretch of road.".
-{  PK ROOM  }- The Region of Xianza                         Coords: 55x 37y
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
~@~@~~~~~++++++@#+@+++++++++^@@^^
~+++++++@+++@+@+#++@+@@+++++^^@^^
++@+@++@++++@+++#+@++++@+++++++@@
@++++++@++++++++#++++@@++++++@@++
+@+++@++@++@@+++#++++@+++@@+@++++
++++@@@+++@+@+++#+++@++@++++@++++
+++@+@+@+++@@+++#++++++@+@o++++@+
+++++++++++++++@#++++@+++@ooo++@+
++++++++@+++@+++@@++@+++++ooo@+++
+++++++++++@++++#@@++@++++oo+@+++
+++@+@++++++@++@#+++++@@++oo@++++
+@@++@++++++@+++#+++@+++++oooo@++
+++++@++++++++@+#+++++++++oooo++@
++++++@+++++@+++#++++++++++++oooo
+@@@++++@++@++@I#I+++++@++++++oo+
++@+++++@+++IIII IIII++++++++@+++
+@++@+@+++++I       I++@+++++++@@
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 You are travelling along a smooth stretch of road. The sun continues on its wes
tward journey accross the sky, increasing the length of shadows cast by its eter
nal warmth. A lively breeze cools the area and thick, grey clouds mask the sun. 
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


The overland is the perfect place to use dynamic descriptions that you can pull together on the fly to display information about whats happening. The above is output from my overland. The dynamic descs are only in their infancy so do not do anything more than show the default 1 sentence and the weather for now, but as time permits i will extent it further.

In my game the maps are somewhat smaller than what is seen in many game, being only 100x100 rooms and there are 9 maps in total. I use these maps as you would in a picture game, they are the primary leveling areas, i have done away with the random spawning of mobs and have the maps full of resets instead and only have a a couple of conventional zones, the rest will be instanced quest dungeons.

So as long as your main continent fits in with what your trying to achieve, it can be of any size necessary to fulfill the vision you have for your game. Just dont leave them great vast enmpty spaces of filler between zones, give them some life and some purpose other then that.
       
Post is unread #3 Jul 5, 2008, 8:32 pm
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BlooCat
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I guess I just want a map to better visualize the "travel space" between the actual content rooms.
I knew about the sector descriptions, but what I mean is more like the descriptions regular rooms have, so that every road doesn't seem the same, or you could find something interesting when wandering through a forest, you know?
       
Post is unread #4 Jul 5, 2008, 10:31 pm
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The_Fury
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I guess I just want a map to better visualize the "travel space" between the actual content rooms.


Then what i would do to determine the appropriate size would be to determine the number of rooms that i would like someone to travel between zones and how many zones there will be on the continent and work it out suedo mathematically,ie 5 zones atleast 100 rooms apart, i would need to have a map minimum of 600x600 rooms.


I knew about the sector descriptions, but what I mean is more like the descriptions regular rooms have, so that every road doesn't seem the same, or you could find something interesting when wandering through a forest, you know?


The code does not currently support anything more than the sector descriptions. Extending them is pretty much an easy affair, but again it will always suffer from repeditivenss as they are static. IMO the best way to have real descriptions on the overland is to have dynamically created descriptions, with such a system its pretty much your imagination that can limit what you do.

The way i have made my system work is to use sector_type as a basis, then i pull a description together based on a number of different things, time of day, weather, if there is a mob or mobs in the room, and a couple of other things, the hardest part is getting enough fragments of descriptions together for each sectortype that you use on your overland so that your descriptions are not too repeditive.
       
Post is unread #5 Jul 5, 2008, 11:22 pm
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David Haley
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The_Fury said:

IMO the best way to have real descriptions on the overland is to have dynamically created descriptions, with such a system its pretty much your imagination that can limit what you do.

Well, yes, except when you want hand-crafted descriptions at specific landmark locations... :wink: Dynamic descriptions are great for the majority of rooms but occasionally you want to throw in some important detail, at which point you need to fall back on hand-written descriptions (or extraordinarily clever dynamic descriptions).

I think the easiest way to solve this is to implement some kind of optional description on the overland squares. If the description is absent, the usual happens. If the description is present, it is displayed instead of the default/dynamic/whatever.
       
Post is unread #6 Jul 6, 2008, 1:34 am   Last edited Jul 6, 2008, 1:37 am by The_Fury
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The_Fury
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DavidHaley said:


Well, yes, except when you want hand-crafted descriptions at specific landmark locations... :wink: Dynamic descriptions are great for the majority of rooms but occasionally you want to throw in some important detail, at which point you need to fall back on hand-written descriptions (or extraordinarily clever dynamic descriptions).

I think the easiest way to solve this is to implement some kind of optional description on the overland squares. If the description is absent, the usual happens. If the description is present, it is displayed instead of the default/dynamic/whatever.


Yes i totally agree with you. Mostly i was talking about my own game design and the things i have specifically implemented and in my game hand crafted descs are not something my game has need for. But it might be something that someone else's might.

Tho thinking on it, the overland system has landmarks that can be both points of reference and a room description. So for that there really is not a lot that needs to be done other than write the descriptions, tho, i don't know for the life of me anyone who would want to hand describe a 100x100 room area, let alone anything bigger. LOL.

The setmark command can be used from the overland to add a description, setmark add, will drop you into the editor and setmark isdesc will make it a description.
       
Post is unread #7 Jul 6, 2008, 3:37 pm
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Samson
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Ah, I see the world hasn't fallen apart yet, even for my snippets and codebase :)

I saw the topic last night but was way too tired to think straight and David beat me to it. The landmark settings can be used as a clunky form of hand written description if that's what you want. But as The Fury says, hand editing 10,000 rooms that way would be a nightmare. A dynamic system would work out way better, and I certainly wouldn't object to someone writing it up for inclusion in AFKMud if it's wanted. I'm sure people are aware that further development of it won't be coming from me, but I'm willing to incorporate stuff other people might want if there's enough demand for it.
       
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