Wish list for additional ACK features

Chris H.'s Ultima / ACS-style game development system!

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rld

Wish list for additional ACK features

Post by rld »

Let me preface this by saying that the current ACK implementation is nothing short of amazing. I spent a lot of time playing ACS and building adventures on it back in the day, and frequently ran into things that I wanted to do that ACS simply didn't have the functionality to implement. ACK has countless features (macros, animated mosaics, etc.) that already put it light-years beyond what ACS was capable of.

That aside, of course we can all think of new features we'd like to see in a future ACK release. Here are a few I would like:

o Wider range of hit points for the player and for creatures.

Currently, these are capped at 255. I would like to see these go from byte to word fields, allowing ranges of 0-65535, although it might be easier to cap values at 9999 in order to make displaying them easier.

o Weapons with multiple dice rolls for damage.

Instead of defining a weapon to do a random number of damage points from 1 to X, weapon damage could be defined using the 'dice' system, with multiple random 'rolls' added together. So, a weapon might do 3d6 of damage, which would range from 3 (1+1+1) to 18 (6+6+6). As seen in a million and one RPGs, of course. But this gives you a 'bell curve' distribution of damage, which makes weapons a bit more predictable.

This would actually be backwards compatible with the current system; if you have a weapon that does 1-20 damage, that is equivalent to '1d20'.

o Armor that absorbs percentile damage.

Along with the current system for armor (absorb X points of damage Y percent of the time), it would be useful to have armor that absorbs X *percent* of damage *all* of the time. This would be cumulative for multiple pieces, so if a player had

shield absorbs 20%
helmet absorbs 10%

the damage taken would be calculated as (damage X 0.80 X 0.90)

o Creatures that are only vulnerable to particular weapons.

ACS had a setting for weapons that said if they were 'magical' or not. Creatures could then be set to be only vulnerable to magical weapons if desired.

A more general mechanism would have creature settings such as:

Unaffected by weapons (invulnerable)
Affected by all weapons (default)
Affected only by weapon X

Weapons could then have a 'counts as' setting similar to vehicles to allow certain types of weapons to be grouped together when checking the setting above.

Anyway, just thought I would throw these in. It's always lots of fun thinking up new features when you don't actually have to implement or test them yourself. :)
Chris H
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Post by Chris H »

Some good ideas there, and I really like the "vulnerability" idea -- I'll see if I can add that sometime soon, as there should be more to a weapon than its damage. I would probably generalize it like I did with armor, where there will be several "types" that can mean whatever you want them to mean. (Maybe type 1 is piercing and type 2 is slashing in one game, while they're laser and plasma in another game.)
jjsonick
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Joined: Tue Apr 10, 2007 2:49 pm

Post by jjsonick »

My biggest feature wish is for the NPC variables/NPC step macro discussed in this thread:
http://www.joltcountry.com/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=5510

:)
rld

Post by rld »

Chris H wrote:Some good ideas there, and I really like the "vulnerability" idea -- I'll see if I can add that sometime soon, as there should be more to a weapon than its damage. I would probably generalize it like I did with armor, where there will be several "types" that can mean whatever you want them to mean. (Maybe type 1 is piercing and type 2 is slashing in one game, while they're laser and plasma in another game.)
One simple way to implement this that would be backwards-compatible would be to add a byte field to each weapon and armor object.

For weapons, add a TYPE field. The field would be an 8-bit bitmask, so each bit, if set, would mean that a weapon was of that 'type'. In a fantasy game, you might have something like
o bit 1 (1) - fire
o bit 2 (2) - ice
o bit 3 (4) - earth
o bit 4 (8) - air

and so on. Then, for armor objects add a WEAKNESS field. The bits would be defined the same way as for weapon objects, but in this case if a bit is set it means that the armor does NOT protect against that weapon type.

So, by default, all weapons are typeless, and all armor protects against all weapon types. Since the WEAKNESS value is tied to the armor object, the same system could be used for the player or for creatures simply by equipping the armor object.

Then, when you calculate damage, simply do a logical AND of the attacker's weapon TYPE field and the WEAKNESS field of the defender's armor. If the result is nonzero, the defense of the armor is ignored for that attack.
Chris H
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Location: California, USA

Post by Chris H »

I hadn't thought to do it with armor, but that's a good idea. I think I'd do it with creatures separately, so you don't have to create new creature-only armor. (I tend to give creatures normal player weapons/armor that approximate what I want them to have, rather than use up objects)

So this feature is definitely doable.

Of course -- I'm soon reaching a point where I want to see people actually DO something with this whole toolset before I shoehorn in too many more features ;)
jossiejojo
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Post by jossiejojo »

This may be a bit hard and not in fact possible but a macro command that allows creatures to follow the player might help with plot development and would also make it possible
to have parties...

:smile:
jossiejojo
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Joined: Mon Mar 15, 2010 4:02 pm

Post by jossiejojo »

Another request would be a separate section on the forum for members to upload finished games

please!
Admiral Ackguh

Post by Admiral Ackguh »

Use of Page Up / Page Down keys in the macro editor!
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Garth's Equipment Shop
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Post by Garth's Equipment Shop »

ACK MMO!

Like a MUD but with tiles instead of ascii characters. Like Nethack...
Which of you is interested in my fine wares?
Guest

Post by Guest »

HUGE on my "wish list" is turn based multiplayer like the old turn based multiplayer that that was implemented in the old ACS. This feature opened up ALL KINDS of cool possibilities in the ACS. I built enormous world sized arenas full of traps and weapons where players would wander, power up, and hunt each other down for the "final battle". I also used this format to create a multiplayer version of Crush, Crumble and Chomp, where players were giant monsters wandering around a city, destroying buildings, fighting the military and each other. I also made a REALLY cool series of cooperative space games where there were four space ships (players) and they were fighting a war against evil alien invaders. It started from Earth, and moved all over the solar system. It was like a huge space combat board game. It even had a climactic "Death Star Trench Run" in the ending.
These are just SOME of the possibilities that could be opened up if the ACK implemented multiplayer in the way that the ACS did.
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