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Author Topic: Denting: vital necessay? or poorly thought out solution to a trivial problem?  (Read 4643 times)
germs
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« on: April 07, 2009, 12:21:45 am »

Why do you dent stuff? Do you have some kind of a mathematical formula that you follow that says that for every new piece of eq that comes out, you have to dent so many old ones? Do the consequences of denting(devaluing old areas, giving older players an unfair advantage, making it so that we have approximately the same total number of good eq pieces to choose from as we did 10 years ago) outweigh the benefits? Also, when you first began to dent stuff what was the intent? what problem did you believe you were solving?(please don't say, to get rid of over-powered eq)

I believe the mud desires a clear and honest answer. Smiley
Thank-you in advance for your time and generosity great oracle.
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Dentin
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« Reply #1 on: April 09, 2009, 03:24:59 pm »

(Note - for the purposes of this note, I will not consider binding to be denting.  I primarily bind equipment to clear up arguments and get things loading, not because the objects are too powerful.)

To be honest, the first sets of dents (back in the 1996/1997 timeframe) were in fact to get rid of over-powered eq.  The original Alaska builders were used to D&D and Hidden Worlds, and basically kept one-upping each other until we had equipment that was quite frankly ridiculous.  The first versions of the "object composite" code were a crude attempt to reign this in.

The initial composite code had a lot of holes and weirdness in it, but it -greatly- improved the consistency of equipment.  It also greatly pissed off a lot of the Alaska builders, who no longer could one-up each other and previous equipment.

A lot of the denting between 1997 and 2005 was to clean up the bugs in the composite.  A good example of this is the old Xandar equipment, which was built not necessarily because it made sense, but because it got the absolute maximum possible out of the composite.  A lot of Xandar equipment was dented in this time period, because when those bugs in the composite were fixed, the equipment would no longer load.

These days, the composite is pretty stable.  I still make minor tweaks to it, but generally this results in composite changes of a only handful of points (some of the earlier changes were in the 30-100 point range.)  I also do differential comparisons of equipment before making changes, to see what stuff will be affected.  I generally try to keep the number of non-loading items constant, which means as many things get better as get worse.  I also go through and update a handful of things that are grossly over the limit when doing these checks, to get an idea of what might or might not be working.

In short, denting is much less of an issue than it appears to be; but people are attached to their equipment and how they think the world should look, hence all the fuss.

Two things have always bothered me about player perception.  The first is that while a lot of things have been dented over the years, a lot of things have been undented and improved as well.  Seldom if ever do I hear about how the latest version of X rocks; I simply start seeing a lot of people wearing X.  On the other hand, the moment something obscure loses an AC, everyone bitches about it - even people who don't even use the item.  These grossly disproportionate responses have taught me to simply ignore most of the bitching, and occasionally bring out the big hammer to show people what a -real- dent with auto-updating would look like.

The second thing that bothers me is that despite all the player protests to the contrary, equipment sets as a whole have been slowly becoming more powerful over time.  If denting were really so pervasive a problem, would not equipment sets become less powerful over time?

One final note: as of this writing, there are 87 object vnums that don't load due to the composite.  Of those, around a quarter are god items that are improperly marked, and at least half of the remainder are in unfinished areas.  There's probably less than 30 things that no longer load due to composite, and not all of those are high level.

Hopefully this clears up some of the confusion.
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Cria
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« Reply #2 on: April 29, 2009, 07:13:33 pm »

Dentin is very correct about sets becoming more powerful.

When i played around 1997 there was some insanely powerful pieces of eq, like for instance the adamantium gauntlets were 12 or 16ac and 2/2 1dex.  Or titanium eq also.  The problem was that there is not eq like that for every wear location, so even though you have some super items, your set as a whole is not as good as it can be now.  I remember having to enchant cityguard eq to try and get a cl on it here and there for missing cl spots, even though we had canes loading, castlevel sets were not as powerful (i think we were missing wrists and feet castlevel).  Plus we didnt have as wide or an array of spells to chose from.

There is also a lot more save eq to chose from nowadays, the benefits of a full save set are huge.

So although small dents may make it seem like stuff is getting worse, on the long term i think the obvious trend is players becoming more powerful.

-cria
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ox
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« Reply #3 on: April 30, 2009, 04:35:21 pm »

Dentin is very correct about sets becoming more powerful.

When i played around 1997 there was some insanely powerful pieces of eq, like for instance the adamantium gauntlets were 12 or 16ac and 2/2 1dex.  Or titanium eq also.  The problem was that there is not eq like that for every wear location, so even though you have some super items, your set as a whole is not as good as it can be now.  I remember having to enchant cityguard eq to try and get a cl on it here and there for missing cl spots, even though we had canes loading, castlevel sets were not as powerful (i think we were missing wrists and feet castlevel).  Plus we didnt have as wide or an array of spells to chose from.

There is also a lot more save eq to chose from nowadays, the benefits of a full save set are huge.

So although small dents may make it seem like stuff is getting worse, on the long term i think the obvious trend is players becoming more powerful.

-cria

While I'll mostly agree with dentin, to be fair, cria, there were also gauntlets of striking with 6/6/8 attacks, and canes, and all sorts of funsies eq if you were willing to run such things.

You would be SO surprised what loads, these days, however! The most trouble I have is getting rared out eq to build, if I want something. Most EQ is pretty attainable, except for those one or two pieces that you have to go back in time for, like a cane or a fastest weapon.
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