Page 1 of 2

[Project] Supermobs

Posted: Thu Mar 06, 2008 7:51 pm
by Gothmog
Hey, I unretired to start fixing the supermobs. The simple guidelines I'm working with are these:
1. It should be fun to try to kill a supermob.
2. It should not be trivial to kill a supermob.

If you have any ideas for any of the mobiles who load legend eq, post them here or mail me on MUME. If you have a Maia, and you feel like working with this, let me know.

-- Gothmog

Re: [Project] Supermobs

Posted: Thu Mar 06, 2008 8:24 pm
by Thanik
I have a suggestion :) Start with the mobs that die most frequently. Those are the ones who provide too much reward for too little risk. I have a few actual ideas for a couple of the mobs too, but I'll post them later after I get them clearer.

Re: [Project] Supermobs

Posted: Thu Mar 06, 2008 9:01 pm
by Wobbler
Get rid of superstab and downgrade the power of high-level chars and that should be enough.

Re: [Project] Supermobs

Posted: Thu Mar 06, 2008 9:07 pm
by Thanik
I still think that making old mobs harder isn't the answer. Encouraging old players to kill difficult new mobs would be better. But PMed you anyway.

The current flurry of activity is making me think about creating an immo for the first time in 6 years.

Re: [Project] Supermobs

Posted: Thu Mar 06, 2008 9:51 pm
by Gothmog
Wobbler wrote:Get rid of superstab and downgrade the power of high-level chars and that should be enough.
Thanks! I never realised it took so little to make all supermobs fun and challenging.

Re: [Project] Supermobs

Posted: Thu Mar 06, 2008 10:49 pm
by Razoor
I feel that #1 and #2 are sort of contradictory.

If they are made less trivial more people will die doing them, or it will take a lot more time doing them. Neither contributes to #1, rather the opposite.

I'm not sure if smobbing can ever be 'fun', to be honest. The problem is that mobiles will always be static, and therefore after XX times you'll
know exactly how to kill it, and the fun will be gone again. (Or you'll die a ton, which surely isn't fun with todays mobrip xp-loss)

If you can find a way around this i'd be truly impressed, perhaps i'm thinking too much inside the box?

Re: [Project] Supermobs

Posted: Thu Mar 06, 2008 10:51 pm
by Elemmakil
There are plenty of ways to making a smob more exciting. For example, when Eoghha points to where Dragon is, perhaps his roar can be heard from DT to ZOC to NOC. Or uh, Willow randomly sleeps players for 10 seconds, I dunno.

Re: [Project] Supermobs

Posted: Fri Mar 07, 2008 2:10 am
by Caerroil
In my opinion the three best supermobs in the game are Eblees, Unqalome and Balrog. In all cases killing the mob involves more than just walking to it and hitting/nuking it dead, it involves a non-trivial area you need to travel through, it generally requires the group to know the area/mob or a careful leader and likely a group more powerful than is needed for the supermob itself. Something else these supermobs have in common is that they require more time than most other supermobs but they also always load something of value. I'm not talking about 2 gold here but rather something of significant value even though they don't always have full load of the equipment they can load.

With the current number of players I don't think it would be a good idea to make some of the older supermobs much harder to kill. Different? Sure. More variation? Sure. But the general powerlevel should preferably be kept the same otherwise I think it would hurt the more casual players, and new players (though they wouldn't know about it), too much.

I am all for making a place like Moria more dangerous though. I don't have any ideas at the moment, but I will certainly try to come up with some things.

Re: [Project] Supermobs

Posted: Fri Mar 07, 2008 2:56 am
by Peapend
I think that its really cool your doing this, and one of the things that comes to mind is however difficult it may be to kill a smob often the most fun ones are those that can be done in a variety of unique ways involving multiple types of classes. Balrog isent that cool to me because basically you sanc 8 superlegend dwarfs and kill it. Muranog is really cool, it has pretty decent AI, is very difficult and can be killed in a huge variety of ways.

Re: [Project] Supermobs

Posted: Fri Mar 07, 2008 10:48 am
by Wobbler
Gothmog wrote:
Wobbler wrote:Get rid of superstab and downgrade the power of high-level chars and that should be enough.
Thanks! I never realised it took so little to make all supermobs fun and challenging.
You may have been sarcastic, but I am not. The western supermobs are easy for high-level characters because there are many powerful high-level characters around and because they can be backstabbed. Making them unstabbable unless blinded (and not all of them can be blinded) while reducing the power of high-level characters (see this idea, for instance) will mean more effort required for high-levels while still leaving them possible for new players to battle.

As has been pointed out before, the main excitement possible for an eastern supermob is the risk of being ambushed by enemy players (and this happens in the west too, although infrequently).

No mob, be it a supermob or a boar, can have the potential for repeat excitement as pk.

While I'm very happy to see a pking Vala unretire, I don't think buffing up mobs is the most lucrative project you could undertake - unless you find it extremely entertaining in itself, of course.

Re: [Project] Supermobs

Posted: Fri Mar 07, 2008 2:56 pm
by Thanik
One thing to keep in mind is that increasing the effort it takes to obtain an item decreases the players inclination to take a risk with that item in a pk situation.

Re: [Project] Supermobs

Posted: Fri Mar 07, 2008 4:24 pm
by Elestir
I think the direction it should take would be making the smobs doable with weaker groups (perhaps even soloable), but at the cost of time required to kill it. That way, it will be more fun, as you won't have to "skip" it for the lack of groupmembers, and at the same time you will give better opportunity for ambush (it is easier to ambush weaker groups) to the other side, making it more challenging. If you go the direction where every smob will need 7 legends, smobbing will be restricted to few players and ambushes will almost never happen.

I could even generalize this idea to combat as such. Combat would be much more fun if it was not so heavily dependant on numbers, but rather on skill (both char's and player's). That in effect would mean that combat would slow down a bit (which would have to be balanced somehow - harder fleeing and less mobility for example), but who is interested in being wizkilled in 1 bash because he failed 2 flee attempts etc. anyway? You often see these kills in current MUME, and for me, these are not proof of skill as much, as proof of relative good link and luck. I am not biased here, because I rarely die to bash trap or link issues, but still I would enjoy a kill more if enemy had a chance to do something about it rather than if he has none. In other words, I prefer to outsmart ppl rather than outlink them or rely on luck too much. Pity MUME allows so little in this sense.

Just imagine the logs of fights where 5 level 30ish legends fight a one legend of level 80 and during the 10 mins of intense combat they actually manage to slay him, but he manages to take 2 of them down during the fight as well.

Re: [Project] Supermobs

Posted: Fri Mar 07, 2008 4:46 pm
by Slippy
Razoor wrote: The problem is that mobiles will always be static, and therefore after XX times you'll
know exactly how to kill it, and the fun will be gone again.
Obviously, after doing anything one thing enough, you learn how to do it. Its a given that after time, anything put into the game will be mastered by someone. I'm not sure of what exactly you meant by static - but I think that mobiles (with enough work) could be made dynamic enough to at least make it take much longer to master.

Re: [Project] Supermobs

Posted: Fri Mar 07, 2008 6:58 pm
by Peapend
Ok, thieves are underpowered enough wobbler this idea about making things less stabbable seems like its based on the opinon of someone who dosent like thieves not a actual imbalance. Wobbler your being kind of dense, making things have more hp or with your method making players weaker dosent make a mob more fun just difficult.

Re: [Project] Supermobs

Posted: Sat Mar 08, 2008 3:15 am
by Snarp
GC - Should be able to roam around in the randoms outside shatteredbranches. He should only return to his one room lockable when he's low and needs to use a scroll or somesort of heal. In effect, he's near unkillable in that room but outside of it, he fights like a player, he'll flee around in the randoms, hit different players/choose a weaker target. Giving him the ability to heal in his one roomer should mean his hps are relatively low so the trick becomes how to chase him down in the randoms and behind shatteredbranches/bw key load area before he goes and heals. I can't really think of a smob that wonders in randoms except maybe bw in those 3 rooms outside and in his 'attack zone'. So it might be a nice twist.

For pk it would be fun having to dodge gc and fight people as well.

Great Goblin/Thrakghash - Thrakghash in wnoc should have an item that gives a person +30 max mana. When players fight him and he gets low, he runs to gg and gives him the note containing the spell and then returns to help his acolytes. The players will then need to kill GG in a certain amount of time. When the note is given to Erestor or someone who can decipher the language, they cast the spell on the note giver giving them 30+ max mana for 3 weeks or so. This way there might be a greater reason to attack noc and venture in wnoc instead of just when people get bored enough and theres enough people on.

Tbad Chief - The sorcerer with chief should be above chief to begin with and have one bodyguard with him. The remaining guards and chief will call for help at some point. Sorcerer and the guard should come down and cast spells/engage. To combat players fighting until the sorcerer comes down and then fleeing (to reset the smob), the sorcerer should have the spell summon and be able to summon mobs like the armourer, weaponsmith, baker and gms. Instead of chief just being a nuke/sanc/quake affair it would turn the fight into a 2 phase fight where the first phase is easier than the last.

Glorfindel/rd horn patrol - These mobs should be toned down and made more killable. As it is they just kill afk/ld darkies around moors. I'd like to see maybe Erestor heads out with 2 guards and if they are engaged with players, they blow another horn and out comes glorfindel and more guards. The two mob groups (erestor + his guards, glorfindel + his guards) should chase as 2 different group. Both the groups should be allowed to be engaged in separate rooms so in effect you might have 2 groups of 3 darkies, one fighting erestor, the other glorfindel. An alternative play of events could be that glorfindel comes out first (stronger than erestor) and the 6 darkies fight glorfindel and his followers till they are low and have to call for help with another horn. Out comes Erestor and the trick to killing them is keeping the two mob groups separate otherwise they just mash the buffer. More complex than typical mume fights but more fun since there might be some pk too.

WC - Should have the ability to call lightning. To counter it all you have to do, is hit him when he starts casting it (slow cast time). Simple change but it could turn an easy smob into an easy smob with brutal power if given enough time.

Amanrandil (place nw of tomb, east of tbad) - The acolytes and aman should cast alot of weak spells just to make it more interesting and spammy. Basically they spam magic, missile, burn, smother and maybe block for aman if allowed time. The goal of the change would be to overwhelm players fighting in there. For example a darkie group charges a whitie, the mobs start spamming spells this way and that and someone misses in the spam a block or that there's more whities inside. It gives another place a bit more of an edge.

Re: [Project] Supermobs

Posted: Sat Mar 08, 2008 3:36 pm
by Vardamir
I would like to see more interaction between the "super" mobs and the players encountering them. For example, not all of them should instantly hit you or your group (like they do today) unless you attempt to engage them with a spell, a bash or whatever. They should add more flavour to the roleplay.

Let's consider for example as you enter Muranogs room, then he could either...

1) Command his group, and yours, to holster weapons and pass without any harm (maybe if he senses that your group is too powerful).

2) Force you into a questionnaire trying to reveal your true intentions in visiting his halls. (Like when you're playing cards with the dealer, you'd only be able to nod or shake your head as you would be unable to trust your tongue standing before him)

3) Simply order his followers to stand back, and deal with you alone (if alone you are).

There's actually an endless amount of examples of how to interact mobs more thoroughly, making them more RP'ish.

Let me try to give you a quick example of what it could look like:

!O HP:Fine Mana:Burning>West
Dreadful Cave
Covering a section of ground is a pool of a thick red liquid.
Bill the stone-troll holds a large sack ready to bag you.
Tom the stone-troll brandishes his great club at you.
Bert the stone-troll licks his lips at the prospect of food.

!O HP:Fine Mana:Burning>
Bill the stone-troll says 'Look! What's this? Another treasure seeker?'

!O HP:Fine Mana:Burning>
Bill the stone-troll peers at you, trying to figure you out.

!O HP:Fine Mana:Burning>Shake
You shake your head.

!O HP:Fine Mana:Burning>
Tom the stone-troll says 'Then what's your business here stranger, are you lost?'

!O HP:Fine Mana:Burning>
Bert the stone-troll says 'He stinks too!'

!O HP:Fine Mana:Burning>nod
You nod solemnly.

!O HP:Fine Mana:Burning>
Bill the stone-troll points his finger at you, laughing. Was it something you said?

!O HP:Fine Mana:Burning>
Bert the stone-troll says 'Look! It's got hairy feet!'

!O HP:Fine Mana:Burning>
Tom the stone-troll says 'FOOD!'

!O HP:Fine Mana:Burning>
Bill the stone-troll says 'Looks like Mama remembered our birthday this year!'

!O HP:Fine Mana:Burning>
Bert the stone-troll sends you sprawling with a powerful bash.

...This outcome was obviously not in your favour, but imagine there's a 1% chance (or level based, or whatever...) that they would believe you and let you pass? What a feeling for a lowbie explorer to survive that, don't you agree?

Re: [Project] Supermobs

Posted: Sat Mar 08, 2008 5:35 pm
by Elemmakil
I like Snarp's ideas besides GC and Erestor.

GC - sounds near impossible unless you have a decently huge group esp. if GC sits n or 2 n shatteredbranches and flees around there (I know it's a super mob but...)

Erestor- Darkies own fault for getting killed near moors afk and Erestor and his buddies take years to even get out of RD, not to mention they blow their horn x 2 as a warning to the other side.

Re: [Project] Supermobs

Posted: Sat Mar 08, 2008 6:07 pm
by Wobbler
I certainly would not want good-aligned mobs to come to the aid of evil-aligned mobs fighting good-aligned players.
Having Thrakgash give +30 maxmana for 3 weeks to anyone with block door + quake seems a bit too rewarding.
The wandering GC seems interesting, but having him outside in the sun also means that he can be attacked by more than four players at the same time and also make it easier to get away if ambushed by enemy players (since there are no doors to open or close).

Re: [Project] Supermobs

Posted: Sat Mar 08, 2008 7:09 pm
by Caerroil
Amanrandil: I like Snarp's idea, if Thrakghash's apprentices can cast some spells why shouldn't Amanrandil's acolytes? Regarding Amanrandil himself casting block I'm not so sure that is a good idea, magic blast would be cooler and much less abusable.

Chief of Tharbad: Having the warlock summon the shopkeepers and the guildmasters is a very bad idea, since those mobs are good aligned. If they were changed to be neutral or slightly evil people would start exping on them so that is also a bad idea. Having the mobs load in two different rooms is quite likely to be (ab)used, all you need to do is block the door to the warlock and the Chief of Tharbad is suddenly much easier to kill.

Rivendell sortie: I like the idea that the leader of the sortie will call for reinforcement when he is wounded or so. If enough darkies are fighting the first part Erestor could join in the second wave, and if Erestor dies it could temporarily weaken the protection of Rivendell allowing darkies to find Rivendell. That is something I'd really like, and I believe most people playing the game would agree. (It might be quite unfitting with regards to that it trivializes some characters like Elrond but in my opinion it's not really worse than all other unique mobs dying and respawning, especially mobs like Tom Bombadil.)

I really like Vardamir's example with BBT, and the general idea that supermobs (and really most unique mobs) shouldn't just start whacking away at players as soon as they see them.

Muranog really should attack all whities on sight (same with BNs, IMO most mobs shouldn't be able to separate them from regular men) and possibly give a warning and a very short time (only a few seconds) for orcs to leave (they annoy him and he doesn't like them littering around). This leaves us with trolls which I see as the only real candidate for something that Muranog could let go without attacking, if they act with sufficient respect.

Re: [Project] Supermobs

Posted: Tue Mar 11, 2008 12:36 am
by Parrafin
Raiding Rivendell and killing Elrond wasn't even possible for the Nazgul. He holds the mightiest of all the elven rings, etc etc. Basically he should be unkillable. Think about it, if you killed Elrond, would you be able to put a ring of power in your EQ? This is all nonsense about invading Rivendell. Did any of you people read the books or at least watch the movies?

Black Numenoreans are very distinct from other men and instantly recognizable as so. Remember the mouth of Sauron?

I think it would be interesting if you could escape smobs.

Bill, Bert, and Tom almost let Bilbo go his way.
There are some other examples, but a lot of the really powerful beings-good, bad, or neutral-are quite reasonable.