Re: An uncommon problem...

From: Co-Sysop (dmodem@CYBNETONLINE.COM)
Date: 09/30/97

At 01:55 PM 9/29/97 -0400, Aaron Miller wrote:
>> >Well in an EFFICIENT scrambling system there would be random scrambling,
>> >thereby defeating the learning method of overcoming the system.
>> CircleMUD already has a scrambler, extend it or give it variable tables for
>> didferent languages.
>> (it is used for spells currently)
>Perhaps base it off that, but not too much. Don't want your languages
>coming out looking like spells. That is, assuming in your world spells
>have their own mystical tongue.

This just happens to be very similar to something I am doing.  The basic
idea is that before humans there was a race of very powerful beings whose
words could alter the shape of the Earth.  Now all of that ancient race have
died off and all that is left is the occasional scrap of paper or
inscription on a statue which is scrabbled just like spells.  Players can
pick up a few words and be able to read these texts (barely) and that is the
point.  The highest level players usually know the most about the history of
the MUD.  Newbies will look up to them with quiet awe because they can speak
in an ancient tongue that few players know.  But humans aren't as powerful
as the ancient races of the land so just saying some words won't really do
anything.  This has plenty of RP applications and will help get the player
involved in the MUD a bit more.

On Mon, 29 Sep 1997, Daniel Koepke wrote:

> On Mon, 29 Sep 1997, Cris Jacobin wrote:
> -+        Well as far as players eventually catching onto a particular
> -+language, isn't this the way it works in the real world?  Seems for most
> -+non-oriental languages at least, hang around long enough and you start to
> -+pick up a word here and there.
> No, that isn't how it works in real life.

  I think looking at scrambled words that I know mean something would make
me want to decipher the puzzle so that communication is difficult but not
impossible.  I would get pretty mad if I saw everyone talking and all I saw
was some message telling me I didn't understand.  Are we assuming the
player's character is too dumb to recognize common words and phrases and
learn what they mean?
This whole discussion, especially the scrambling part, reminds me of high
school French class.  My French teacher often said "French is not a code for
english" and that applies to all languages.  French is harder to learn than
scrambled english because they aren't the same language.  No, I'm not
suggesting you actually change the structure of what the player says in
scrambling it.
Also, if you do allow the player to learn the language just by listening (if
you're not then this question doesn't apply to you), what will you do about
typos and mispelled words and names (which are usually the same or similar
in foreign languages).

While we're at it why not just code a MUD that can speak any language to
accomodate people from every country?  Just have the mud translate every
line of text sent to the player to their native tongue.
Okay so some things I have mentioned go a bit too far for just a game but
you might want to think about what your doing and ask "am I insane?".

It's been fun, later.

"Je suis le fromage!" -- Me, after a keg or two

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