Friday, September 2, 2011

New rumor system for JADE

This morning I finished the new rumor system for JADE. It will serve as one means to make the game and the story appear (and be ;-) ) a lot more dynamic.

The new features include:

  • a set of global rumors that are available throughout the world
  • a set of optional local rumors for each specific location
  • a new chat model for beings which allows to include rumors or subset thereof
  • the ability to add new rumors dynamically
  • the ability to connect rumors to a kind of frequency (e.g. rare rumors or uncommon rumors)
  • a connection to prerequisites so that rumors only sometimes will be available.
This allows things like over time adding more and more common rumors about consequences (real or imagined) arising from the deeds of the PC ("There are purple clothed monks traveling through the Drakalor Chain.", "They say that the Ancient Lord of Chaos has risen anew.", "More and more travellers get slaughtered by purple robed monks.", "Rites of Chaos are conducted in the woods nearby.", "Have you heard about the abbey that was opened in our town? Purple robed monks are said to have it built overnight.", "They king has introduced a new advisor, Brother Ondar of the Purple Sign.", "Brother Ondar saved the princess from evil assassins and as a reward has been betrothed to her.", "The accident in which the king died is said to have been planned murder", ... and so on - all over months of game time).

This creates an interesting questions: What interesting global (or even local) rumors do you propose for JADE? Im looking for more interesting stuff to include and time will show if things remain a rumor or become reality ;-)


  1. Purple does seem to be in fashion these days, doesn't it? Seems odd, it's a hard dye to get hold of...

  2. Well, as for local, first of all the dynamic NPC quest-based rumors: "They say the smith living at the south side of the city is looking for eternium ore... You didn't happen to encounter any, did you", "By the way, that hairy guy living at the end of the village is always doing something in the woods at night, but nobody's seen what exactly... I'd be wary of him", and so on.

    If there are some global or local events not directly related to PC's progression through the game, that would also be a good rumor fodder: "We see more and more orcs gathering nearby. Some of the hunters have been killed. We feel they're going to attack us any time now", "Civil war is imminent... I can almost feel the smell of blood and steel linger in the air".

    As for global, I guess that would depend on the story and player's objectives? Like, you have the primary objective (antagonizing the forces of Chaos that manifest themselves in various ways), some important secondary quests (like restoring peace to a country, saving a city from warring tribes, introducing tools to a backwater village that grow up to be a famous resort or an important transport hub, there's lots to come up with), and some potentially important random events (pissing off an orc tribe but not finishing it off could lead to a rampage on a nearby village, accidentally freeing a strong demon from its confinement in some magic-imbued rock prison could lead to something similar). All of these could have rumors told about them, and the farther away from the source, the more unrealistic and grotesque details they could be filled with.

  3. What about having rumors about previous characters in your high score list? Especially for characters higher up on the list (who would be the most likely to be famous enough for people to talk about). "I heard the great hurthling archer, Dingaling, was blown to bits by an exploding door trap." "They say the last person to challenge the Minotaur Emperor, the human druid Jimmy, was cleaved in half by his powerful axe."

  4. ooo i like Ryan's idea might add a little extra flavor into the game. Though I always imagined Dingaling would go out bit more epicly. Maybe make it so your hero has to have scored 100,000 (or some other arbitrary number) on the highscore to have a change at being in a rumor

    "I hear that Sigurd the paladin ate that little girls puppy. Tis sad times we're living in"

  5. I have one idea
    -while travelling in wilderness (global message) "You see red flash in the sky!" and then rumor from citzen about its localization(not exact but in the desert/near tower etc)-it may be some kind of artfact ore(like meteorite/abyssalite/etc) with unique demons guarding this. It would show its (random) location only when you step on this certain wilderness spot(or 9 square) with local (1/9tile) message "You suddenly notice smell of burned earth and wind of galactic ashes around..." This location could contain one big crater in the centre,lots of sulfuric gases/magma (this obiously inlcudes your previous ideas) unique monsters and treasure ore(which could be for example smithed in other quest/location) for one of a kind item.That would add some interests in exploring wilderness not only for dungeons but such kind of events :) I dont know how many wilderness tiles are(50k approximetly?) but this could be quite challenging to find( and beat if one found). Ofcourse this could be added in very late version when the density of locations will be higher(so we will avoid pointless exploring) and players could ascend more events like this :)

  6. All these ideas are very good, and rumors in ADOM do a lot to enrich the story and atmosphere.

    I think another classo of rumors should give hints as to how unusual items in the game work, or combinations of items that it would be hard to stumble upon in ordinary play. Things like dipping items in a potion of exchange, blessing the ring of djinni summoning to get a wish, and the meaning of prefixes/suffixes, scrolls, and whatnot where the effect on the game is not obvious.

    Ooh.. I just had an idea. I've always loved the alchemy skill, but what if there were potions that could only be created through alchemy, never found at random? Or potion miscibility rules that anyone could use whether or not they had the alchemy skill?

    Ex. A druid rumor: "Demon daisies, although poisonous when eaten, could be used to make an effective ointment for the eyes." {dipping a blessed demon daisy into a potion of ultra healing to create a potion that gives you the see invisible intrinsic}

  7. Rumours could also give information about dungeons:

    "They say that {$DUNGEON} is very deep, it has {$LEVELS} levels"

    "They say that there is {$FEATURE} in the depths of {$DUNGEON}"
    where {$FEATURE} could be things like "a potion shop", "an ancient forge", "a mysterious and dangerous magical pool", "an area bustling with undead", etc.

    "They say that the legendary artifact {$ARTIFACT} can be found in the depths of {$DUNGEON}"

  8. It would be fun to have rumors that would be connected with something that might happen eg.
    "They say that there is ancient red dragon in the cave to the north" then PC goes there and finds out if the rumor is true :)

  9. If the PC killed enough bandits and muggers around town he could become like a local superheroe, or target of both the police and the gangs. yeah duude!!

  10. I think that nasty rumors would be also very interesting, for example rumor that says that our character has earned a huge money reward from someone like elder or king. After rumor spread, during one silent night a pack of assasins attempt to kill our character and steal gold that we have got.

    Another idea is based on reputation level. Say that our PC done a lot of quests. Once we buying new items in nearby shop, someone approach us. He tells us, that only we can help him and bring us to location where horrible monsters kill town's people during midnight and so on.

    Good luck Thomas!

  11. This sounds like it might relate to a broader question I have about jade. What I'm wondering is: are you looking to randomize aspects which were fixed in adom...such as the location of towns / dungeons, the quests, artifacts... i would personally love it if these were randomized...

  12. Very good ideas, keep them coming. Can't make that happen all at once but it's going to happen :-)

  13. What about chaotics spreading false rumors in order to trap the player or make him do something evil against his will? Like saying there's an evil monster terrorising the village, but it was actually guarding it. The player should choose the right (or bad :) thing to do. Maybe the person spreading the rumor would be suspicious and/or the monster seems too kind.

  14. Seconding the above! Seriously awesome idea!

  15. Yet another: rumors about current achievements of character.

    For example: player in a dwarven town was given a rumor from citzen: "People say that ya dont show respect to our race...Wont ya show me what blood is on your hands? (Y/N)"
    -Yes option would give check on current counter of "dwarven" species kill.
    IF its high (over 5% of overall kills) citzen calls alarm with proper message and it can spread to global dwarven towns.
    IF its (1-5%),prices are increased by 10-50%.
    IF its (0-1%) ,you will be granted discounts in shops,maybe better prizes in quests (just something signifant )etc...
    -No option would increase prices in shops(" Ah, I see you have something on your conscience and you wont let me verify my assumptions? Ya shall be cursed in ")

    This idea ofcourse works if we wont get access to "kill count" during one game. These x% numbers are straight guess - it needs more testing to see what is "real" overall concern of each race in total population. It can be modified with subtraction of raceless monsters (animals,corrupt things - unless you are goin to create towns with these) just to avoid players killing weak rats, bees, ants etc to abuse this idea and leach profits in every town :) . It just needs testing

  16. Yeah, what townspeople say should also be modified by your reputation/alignment/race etc. Basically they give you more specific and useful rumours if they like you, or if they don't like you they will not talk to you or recommend that you take on a very high level quest that will get you killed!

    If there are no quests here, they will direct you to other towns based on proximity/number of quests. "There is no work here, adventurer, but they say there is always work for adventurers in Riverdale to the North-East." "There is no work here, adventurer, but you may find a job in Ashmounts to the South."

    Druids will tell you the nearest place to find herbs.
    Clerics will tell you the closest place to find an altar.
    Bards will always give very good advice on some random subjects.
    Thieves will give the location/passwords for black markets. They could also tell you which townsfolk are worth pickpocketing/robbing if you tip them.
    Alchemists may give quests to get herbs, or kill a specific beast and will give potions related to that quest in return "Bring me the horn of the rare red minotaur in the cave north of here. I can use this to make potions of youth, and will give ye one for ye trouble" (potion brewing might take a while)

    I also want to see other powerful adventurers wandering the world as well. They may assist you, fight you, trade with you, do quests before you do or anything in between! But because they're celebrities, goodwifes will keep track of their progress. "Alar the Red defeated the goblins terrorising Rivervale. I thought you accepted that quest - were ye too scared?" "Oh, ye want to know where ye can find Alar the Red? He is still in Rivervale, resting from his lastest quest."

    Well, hopefully something here was inspiring!

  17. They say that when Kranach, the raider lord died, he took the knowledge of finding his hidden stash of treasure with him.

    They say the cattle that have been going missing from Terinyo were actually taken by a fierce manticore that has made its home deep in a nearby cave system.

  18. Sorry for a double post - and this isn't really quite about rumours, it's more about making the townspeople interesting to talk to, which is partly what you're doing with the rumours, I think!

    It would be useful if some townspeople could add to your list of identified items "They say potions of youth look like sparkling potions" "They say mithril longswords weigh 32s".

    It would also be handy if some townspeople could sometimes identify the cursed/blessed status of one of your items, maybe based on their professions. A town guard might say "Aye, that chainmail you're holding looks cursed. I wouldn't wear that if'n I were you".

    Some more unique-looking townsfolk - remember that you can be an orc or troll and go to Terinyo/Dwarfton without being killed on sight, so there is some tolerance. In the same way, it would be cool to see a (peaceful, mostly law-abiding) orc living in a city! A fairly rare occurence, of course.

    Finally, I think the rumour system would be very good in helping the PC to find HIDDEN dungeons. ie, there might be a hidden dungeon on that patch of grass in the world map that can only be found through using the rumour system to locate it's coordinates. Perhaps it might also need a password or a precious gem before it can be opened - rumours will also help to point you towards which person knows the password/what gem to use. Hidden dungeons would be more difficult than usual due to the difficulty in even finding them in the first place!