From: Jeff (
Date: 04/04/94

> Jeff "Teker" Fink explains:
> | Ok, here's my solution: (we have this imped):  Mobs do keep track of mana
> | when casting, 
> Nice to see that used somewhere :)  How do you handle mobs for which the
> spell is only the special effect of a "natural ability", ie, one that
> shouldn't be limited by mana, as they tap 'other' sources?

I define mana as being all other sources... if a mob runs out of mana, it says
he/she needs to regenerate a little before doing the skill/spell again.

> Actually, I personally have problems with a person who cannot see anything
> successfully targeting what are mostly ranged spells, even if they are 'in 
> combat' with the target.  In RL, I probably couldn't throw a rock and hit
> someone I am swordfighting with 'twere I blindfolded, even when they were
> often touching their sword to mine.

I've thought about this, and I think you would be able to, especially if
they're actually hitting you... just from listening and feeling where they are,
I'd think you could hit them with a lightning bolt... just MHO.

> | two or three seconds to stand when bashed, and we take into account levels
> | when you make your bash roll.
> Hmmm...I think we just don't see some things the same way :)  Being knocked
> down is being knocked down - unless you are a decent gymnast you don't just
> spring back onto your feet, especially if you are attempting this while one
> or more ppl are trying to do you harm; ideally, the person that was knocked
> on their rear shouldn't even attack the round that they are standing - a
> coded 'stand message' would be shown instead for their action that round.

We actually have the mobs sit and stand, but I think you can still swing
while sitting... you just can't hit very well...

> Again, we see things differently - rather than broadly saying that you cannot
> steal from mobs over 'x' levels higher than yourself, I'd prefer the 
> flexibility to deal with mobs on a case-by-case basis.  I don't see any
> "real" reason why a 4th level thief that is fully skilled in STEAL couldn't
> physically attempt to steal the blue potions from the Queen Spider, or Ki-Rin.

Here's where skill value and level are kind of confusing... should a level 30 
thief be better at stealing than a level 1 thief of the same skill?  I'm not
sure what the correct answer is...

> | I think what we have here is two different styles of fixing what we both see
> | to be a problem.  Things that you see as flags, I see more as coded fixes.
> | (I think this goes for the MOB_MAGE and MOB_CLERIC flags as well... I see
> | a much nicer (IMHO) coded fix rather than putting flags on mobs...)
> Please, expand on this!  I personally think a system of individual flags
> for spells a la Soumit Basu's (Cauchy on Shine and Generic) system is
> about the best idea (short of remaking the mob format, which I've been
> having ideas about...) I've seen.

Rather than editing the mob and obj file formats we have added a series of
optional flags that can be placed at the end of each object/mobile.  For 
mobiles, we give them skills just by adding some of these optional lines.
For instance,

S 45 100

would give the mobile skill #45 (bash? can't remember) at 100 percent.  I've
completely rewritten mobact so that mobs with skills randomlty pick one to
use if they're standing and have mana...  it still needs a little work
(mobs healing themselves when they don't need it, etc) but it gets rid of the
need to use spec_procs to do the work for you.

> It's my opinion that as more mob talents are allowed that more flags will 
> be necessary;  flags are a simple way of 'profiling' a mob to transform
> a generic critter that beats on you to a cunning opponent worthy of thought
> and strategy that still behaves within the bounds of a players expectations
> based upon reality and other experience.  Giving every mob the ability to
> do some new thing - whether it is casting spells, or picking up and using
> items from the ground - requires a way to differentiate the abilities and
> limitations of each mob from other mobs.  While a cityguard should pick up
> and wear a breast plate that is on the floor, a cow should not; MOB_!HUMANOID
> or MOB_USEITEM would have to be available to make even this distinction.

We've got the USEITEM flag... but it gets abused... people dropping cursed
armor for mobs to pick up and use...


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