Rule #1: Planning Makes Exceptions
The original plan for for Wxyz and I to hammer out some code for the DGD migration, however, those plans quickly changed for two major reasons.
- Implementation details led to a need to change the migration path
- Not enough time to write up changes and get something meaningful done
We contribute to the public upstream of DGD and, what we discovered, is we would essentially be maintaining a lot of carried patches due to how we want our internal API to work. It doesn't mean that the pre-existing library on DGD is bad, it just means that it doesn't quite fit our specific use case.
We talked it through for about three days and realized that we needed to step back and take some time to think through all the changes and really make sure this is the direction we want to take with the port. We continue to clean up the existing API as preparation for a port - what we are talking about is the very core layer that determintions all the actual login process. (Tech geeks: it's the LPC layer that implements the telnet protocol and keeps track of connections.)
Rule #2: Make Lemonade
It was more than a little disappointing to us because we figured that by the end of the week we'd have a really solid core API and we could get moving ahead with the next step of migration. We instead turned to a topic that is a little bit near and dear to everyone's heart: the biomancer guild.
We had talked about a need to update the biomancer guild a few months ago but the initial plans were met with a lot of resistance. We decided to do a roundtable discussion with a few staffers and some friends who also design games to talk about what we could do to make it better. The biggest insight to come from that first session was the lack of compelling reasons to pick a specific secondary in the first few iterations we had shared on channels.
The team took the whole re-write back to concept and came up with a new trio of choices for biomancer. The assumption to make here is that biomancer prime stays and these replace everything else that currently exists for biomancer.
We haven't gone through the naming process so these are raw but will give a good idea of where the secondary is heading in terms of development.
Lifemaster students focus solely on restoring the life of their patients to the exclusion of every other discipline. They are the undisputed masters of health restoration although their singled-minded course of study hampers their knowledge of other biomantic disciplines.
- lvl 14: Party+Target Heal: Target receives 450, party members 250
- lvl 14: Target+Party Heal: Target receives 600, party members 100
- lvl 12: Target+Self Heal: No numbers, still in discussion
- lvl 11: Rebound Heal: Heal targets midrow only at variable rates (heavy debate)
Most citizens rely on the wandering doctors for their day-to-day health needs. The average sawbones has seen everything at least once and knows how to fix any injury large or small. They are also the masters of curing various ailments and fortifying their patients health.
- lvl 14: Reduce damage over time damage on party members
- lvl 14: Remove morale effects including minstrel's wrath
- lvl 14: increase hitpoints of minor phlegm and resists from major sanguine
- lvl 14: area effect interrupt + psionic damage (tentative name: hypochondria)
The shadowy agents of the Larpulian Sect use their knowledge to practice a less reputable form of biomancy. They are the quiet enforcers of the biomantic council's will and do not hesitate to do what others might find distasteful. They are masters of physiology and, as such, are skilled at normal surgery as well as a few "optional" procedures.
- lvl 14: increased damage from biomancer based disintegration and poison abilities
- lvl 14: aoe poison/disintegration attack spell with side effects
- lvl 14: higher level interrupt single target (live surgery as an attack)
- lvl 14: decrease a target's ability to heal
- lvl 13: increase effect of major phlegm and major melancholy
- lvl 12: single target attack with damage based on physiology knowledge
- lvl 11: amplify damage from any source of damage over time on a target
All of the secondaries share a few features and will have the same ability to heal a secondary target. Here are some shared abilities.
- lvl 14: self only learned immunity to physical and magical disease
- lvl 13: resist magical disease
- lvl 13: rejuvenating elixir - lets mix elixir skill make a Heal over Time potion
- lvl 12: resist physical disease
- lvl 12: "bedside manner", adds charisma and passive check in other skills/spells
- lvl 11: skill based heal for 550 hps for 60 ep
- lvl 9: metic surgery as a passive check in the lvl 17 biomancer prime surgery skill
Do you like what you see above? We want to make the full spec available for comment and I am testing platforms for that trying to find a good workflow that is easy for staff to update and easy for players to use.