[IDEA] Translucent Population

From: Eduo (eduo@CIATEQ.MX)
Date: 04/24/98


Remember the idea behind the "invisible population" present in the RPG
Proposal by Claywar, Dak and others?

It meant that even if you don't see them there is people behind the mud,
the ones that built, the crowd you read about in descriptions but don't
actually see.

I also read something about creating a mob that looked so much like a real
player that people thought it was indeed one.

I thought... How about uniting these two concepts and creating a
"translucent population", people that come and go but don't have actual

Bear with me for a second.

My idea implied two things:

1.-Creating random mobs (according to a set of templates, maybe) that
looked like mobs and just roam here and there.
2.-Creating random PC Mobs, that is, mobs that look like PCs and maybe say
a few things and scurry from here to there (PCs usually pass by running
and you barely see them, NPCs/Mobs usually arrive and stay for a while).

How to make this and make it usable and not annoying.

Easy, with a name generator.

This may sound stupid but I thought that using a name generating algorithm
like this (follows) wwould make the randomly created mobs more original,
since they'd never have the same name from reboot to reboot (or from zone
reset to zone reset).

This is an algorithm I found works great for this:

Pick a random template name:


Exchange every character for a random picked one in the correct list:

K (hard consonants)           t, k, b, g, p, d
N (soft consonants)           n, m, v, s
O (vocals)                    a, o, i, u, y
E (ending vocal+consonants)   en, et, al, an

Some hints:

Use many types of character 'classes', i think mine were:

Vocals                          a, o, i, y, e
Middle Consonants               n, m, r, l
Hard Consonants                 k, t, b, g, d
Ending Vocal+Cons               (e, i, a, o) + (r, l, n)
Starting Two Cons               (hard consonant) + (middle consonants)

and some more i cant remember... double chars classes too.

These are some names this alqorithm came up with:

Laik, Nfuko, Ujolo, Slovu, Tugep, Gilagar, Peknaraka, Urti, Fligo, tildan,
Balypyl, Isejyn, Lfeky, Telt, Sirasyl, Tunoken, Dundy, Fleeklyl, Fadded,
Veet, Motiv, Ojevyn, Slity, Jyme, Kebak, Telytil, Tynsar, Kadry.

This can be worked on, but I think it'd make a good starting point.
Coupling this with a random mob generator (based on templates on for stats
with upper and lower levels per zone and on randomly chosen adjectives
from lists for descriptions) would be great as an addition to make
"translucent population" a part of the mud and add to the flavor of a town
or a mud itself ("feel" that there are more players is as rewarding as if
they were there, the "fake" players I'd have could even show on "who"

BTW, having a very simple parsing mechanism for tells for these Pseudo-PCs
would add a lot, if only to answer a set of five or 10 phrases (the most
common, like "hello", "who are you", "where are you" and the like).

Do you see any problems with this idea? I haven't even started putting it
on the ground so any hints would be great. Also, if anyone likes it so
much he'd like to code it himself let me know, because it'd take me some
good six months to make (given my current schedule and my, ahem, coding


PS: Hints are also appreciated..:)
Eduardo Gutierrez de Oliveira   Mythago//On   eduo@ciateq.mx   ICQ# 3824675
 Centro de Investigacion  CIATEQ,A.C. -- MEXICO  Research Center Queretaro
General Electric Center of Excelence    -    Manager of Information Systems

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