Slaves to Armok: God of Blood Copyright (c) 2000 - 2005 by Tarn Adams
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The Future: The Environment

Digging:  This can get scary when the 3D lakes get involved... indirect digging skills include the perception of cave-ins and minerals of various types. Depending on the substrate, a certain number of supports are required to keep a tunnel from collapsing. Some "digging" might be accomplished by giant beasts smashing away rock columns, etc. Thick arms should be able to push through loose soil (andscare people on the other side). Different creatures should have different natural digging abilities. One should be able to bury creatures dead or alive (happens to you too), and wild creatures should be able to dig up bodies and drag them off.

Vegetation:  Each distinct part of a given plant will be assigned nutritional/poison values and value as spell components. Herbs and berries might have all kinds of powers (water breathing, night vision, healing, etc.). Perhaps constant use of a given herb could lead to tolerance and mutation.

Swimming:  This is fun. Swimming while wounded is more difficult, although dilute blood might change the water pretty colors.

Flying:  This is also entertaining.

Weight and Gravity:  This is useful for projectiles and reverse gravity spells. Falling damage should take into account what you land on.

Daylight:  Moons... The significance of astronomy in the magic system, use in navigation, etc.

Seasons:  The worlds might not have seasons, but they might, and there should be effects.

Soil Quality:  Farmers likes this.

Jumping:  This will provide some amusement. This includes running jumps, standing jumps, and jumping into things.

Flows:  Liquids should move and drag things along with them. In general, there is need to keep track of liquid viscosity, density, temperature, color, nutritional/poison value, taste, and other characteristics. It should be possible to dive into a swamp cave and have to tear through nets of slime, etc.

Fires:  Materials will burn. Fires will spread. Smoke. Mean creatures can set fire to forests forvarious reasons. Hair can be singed by close calls.

Wind:  Like liquid flows I suppose. The severed halves of a bifurcated creature might flip around in a windstorm, creating a blizzard of blood droplets that get all over the player, enraging him or her. You know, stuff like that.

Gases:  Mixing, flowing, suffocating creatures - all that.

Rainfall/Snow:  Snowball fights. Rain shadows effects if possible (although that might be somewhat difficult).

Temperature: The effects of clothing, keeping warm, all that. Wet items brought near heat sources should dry off faster. Creatures that can sense temperature differentials might be able to find airshafts, etc.

Mist/Fog:  Especially for illusions and vampires. Some mists (swamp gas, clouds of evil, etc.) might cause illnesses if breathed. The player should be able to put a cloth over his or her mouth to partially keep the fumes out. Certain base creatures might not be affected. There might be enchantments that filter certain types of gases. I wonder if someone could inhale a vampire while it's in gaseous form. That would lead to all kinds of strange scenarios.

Cooking:  Fire and raw meat work well together.

Cave-ins:  When do they occur? Dependence on substrate? This is a real pain when combined with digging. Entombed creatures should have troubles.

Mounts:  There will be some kind of riding system. I guess it may be somewhat like wrestling as far as the technical side goes. Horses should be able to rear up and drop riders.

Square Occupancy:  You should be able to occupy the square of an unconscious opponent, and you should be able to push by subordinates. This will facilitate vulnerability attacks among other things. Multiple square occupancy should be subject to size restrictions. Perhaps dozens of little sprites should be able to occupy the same square (this will allow them to gang up on large creatures). Demons might summon many tiny imps to attack the player.

Natural Events:  Volcanoes, earthquakes... perhaps at a world changing level.

Regional Character:  Certain regions will have reputations for onething or another. Regions will have a certain amount of evilness that canbe altered by the actions of creatures. Regions also have a virginityrating. With every army marching through a territory and every newsettlement, the virginity of a region will decrease. Conversely, druids,magical regional forces ("spirit of the forest", etc.), and intelligentnative races will work to increase the virginity of a region for various reasons(that is, the druid has philosophical reasons, the force will be extinguished ifthe region becomes too corrupted, and the native races that live there are tiedto the region for sustenance and virginity also keeps them hidden if need be).These creatures might protect the forest from incursions. Certain nativesmight be proud that their region has never been visited by humans or similarcreatures. Virgin territories attract monsters, and evil territoriesattract evil beings. Virgin, evil territories might attract powerful evilbeings (liches, etc.). On the other hand, corrupted territories (asopposed to virgin) will attract towns and commerce. If a tribal entityborders a virgin or evil region, there will probably be a system of superstitionbuilt around it (although some of their fears might indeed be well-founded).Specific structures (dungeon of a lich, etc.) might exude an evil aura.Evil places might have dark clouds around them that block out daylight, etc.Evil auras might also twist forest creatures into mockeries of their originalforms, and they might also rot trees, bring shadows to life, etc. Thetrees and vines in these places might twist to slow the progress of intruders.It might be possible to discover "the inner secrets of the swamp", etc.,find the source of regional power, and use or twist it. The source ofpower in a swamp might be the ever-living heart of some horrendous beast, orsome such thing. Items such as these might be linked to other such itemsduring world creation... and the uniting of all of them could lead to somemajor event (and each item brought into the united item might lend new powers,etc.). This type of thing could occur in many contexts.

Material Restrictions on Detailing: Certain materials can be worked in more elaborate detail than others. Thegame should account for this when it is trying to randomly select materials forvarious uses. This will also impact the raw value of materials in somevenues.

Stealth:  When it's broken up intogame components, this is more difficult to define. A creature is basicallytrying to avoid being detected by the senses of another creature. In Armok,this would involve hiding or becoming invisible, masking scent with oils or somesuch thing, restraining noisy equipment and moving quietly, etc. So thereprobably won't be a stealth skill - stealth is more like a profession(collection of different skills/knowledge/powers).

Cobwebs:  I need to remember these.Spiders will leave webs around. Abnormally large spiders might leaveabnormally large webs.

Boats:  I haven't thought about thisvery much. It'll be nice to have navigation, docks, merchants, piracy,etc. The sea monsters will be happy to have boats to play with.

Scouts, Tracking, Stalking, Shadowing, and Evasion:  There should be some way to hunt down creatures and a way tolook out for them. Creatures should be able to use pets (like dogs) thathave superior senses to aid in a hunt. There might also be guides to helpcreatures get around, and safe paths that are preferable for various reasons.An evil player might choose to betray safe paths to opponents, or relocate safepath markers to lead into sinkholes, ambushes, traps, etc.

Fun with Liquid:  Rivers should carvetunnels with boundaries of stone that is relatively hard to erode... waterfalls... standing bodies of water... underground water sources... bodies of water should support flora/fauna...

Mineral Veins:  Depending on the typeof mineral... I have lots of geology books to work with. Materialrarity in cultures should be based on geography determined by these.

Caves:  There are lots of differenttypes. I have a number of references to lend some authenticity to it... then fantasy can come in - dragon's lairs, tribal residences, social insecthives, planar incursions, underground primal mushroom jungles, standardogre/troll junk, undersea caves, volcanic caves... There is also the issueof creating the cave itself. This is more difficult in the 3D system.Hopefully I won't have to resort to just gluing 3D modules together.Another cave list: ice caves, river caves, dry river caves, sea caves,grottos, burrows, fortresses, dungeons, prisons, beast's lairs, tombs,pyramids... Caves that are carved out by small creatures will generallyhave smaller passageways, and those of large creatures will have largepassageways. Caves can have multiple entrances, airshafts, etc.

Ground Interactions:  Dirt can be thrown in the eyes of creatures.

Z-Coordinate Nastiness:  Flows, heavygas, liquid, molten solids, wind and gas flows, projectiles and falling bodies,vision, cave-ins, stairwells, flight, drawbridges, trees, rainfall and exposureto the "heavens", buildings, liquid mixing, and disturbed solids suspendedin liquids and gases. Objects that can roll should roll. Dragonsshould be able to perch on top of castles and shoot flame jets (or fireballs,depending on your tastes).

Getting around:  The player should beable to slide, climb, hang, roll, back against a wall, and sneak around.There should also be really tight caverns that the player needs to slitheraround in with some difficulty. Horses might have trouble negotiatingsandy dunes, or not... all that kind of thing. If we have sandydunes, we'll probably have sinkholes. Careless characters in swamps andjungles might trip over snakes.

What's that Smell?:  Smell could be used to detect bodies and the undead.