[MUD-Dev] DESIGN: Why do people like weather in MMORPGs?

Chris Richards doktorstick at gmail.com
Wed Dec 22 21:07:13 CET 2004

On Tue, 21 Dec 2004 09:59:59 +0930, Mike Rozak <Mike at mxac.com.au> wrote:

> I can think of many ways of using time and weather. At what point
> do players start whinging that it's too realistic? If all the
> shopkeepers are away at night, do players whinge? What if a
> shopkeeper goes out to lunch? Etc. Does anyone have any experience
> with this and/or suggestions?

Supply and demand.  If enough folks are wanting to purchase goods
during the night hours, then shopkeepers should/would
accommodate. I'm all for dynamic environments despite the occasional
inconvenience (i.e., I have only and hour to play yet the shop that
sells my Bat Gear (TM) is closed).

Instead of having fixed open/closed times (night, lunch, etc.), have
the shopkeepers determine if it is worth being open at a particular
time.  Based on traffic/sales and the operating costs (labor, lamp
oil, etc.) dynamically determine business hours.  You'll probably
want to incorporate some overriding rules, such as inns/hotels are
open 24/7 but maybe with a reduced staff, an establishment must be
open in X-hour blocks, etc.

Jumping back to the weather topic, IIRC, Morrowind did weather
effects decently.  When it rained, it was obvious; there were audio
environmentals and pools of water, such as rivers and lakes, would
ripple accordingly.  Blight storms would blow fiercely and my eyes
would start to water--a testament to the implementation, IMO.  In
both cases, the viewable distance was either clipped or became
silhouetted, but not overly so, but rather enough to get the
impression across that it was gloomy.

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