Thursday, March 22, 2012

Hera: Frustration Abounds and Tweaks are Considered

I... I don't know what to do. They've... forgotten how to eat again. Amina seems to have her head together still, but Loorea's trying to eat me again and Stella is trying to eat Amina. What is happening? To make things worse, they're remembering the parts of their re-training that that didn't need to... all that time that I was trying to get them to eat food? I started by telling them to look at the food, and tickling them for that, just to try to get them to pay attention. Now while they mill around whining about hunger, they're suggesting to each other, "maybe look seed" AGH. Maybe there's just something wrong with the plant life here, maybe they're giving off improper stims. Or maybe these creatures are just insane. I'm not sure what to do. Should I retrain them yet again? Maybe try removing the plant life and replace it with something else? Maybe I should just sit back and let nature take its course? As much as I hate to do that, it sounds like the least frustrating option right now.
Ah, at least things are going a little better in the swamplands, where Rishi has become a youth and is at least doing better than are resident would-be cannibals. Her newly-acquired score is hovering between 60 and 70 most of the time, while Lilac's seems to fluctuate pretty dramatically between the 60's and a solid 100. I think I might tweak this script to make the score transitions a little more gradual... I think ideally, the scores should edge up or down more slowly, point by point perhaps, instead of being so dramatic.I also might tweak the curve I have a little bit.
 Currently, the higher a creature's score is, the more weight satisfied drives have in lowering its score. It's basically set up so that a creature with a high score can easily lower it just by taking care of itself, but as it gets lower, low drives will factor less and less into the score until they do almost nothing at all. At that point, the only way for a creature to get a score down to 0 is to do a lot of exploring. But I think the other end of the curve is a little too shallow-- a score of 100 ought to indicate a near-dying creature, but instead it seems to be rather common.
I think before I continue onward, upping the population limit and making the way for some new babies, I'll go ahead and make those tweaks and see how they play out. With any luck, we'll be seeing new life crawling around soon! 


  1. The thing though, is that PinkiePie seems to be doing generally okay, despite her 'very tired' episode. Have you tried decompiling the C2toDS plant agents, to rule that out?

    I agree that the scoring system seems to need tweaking - for example, Stella and PinkiePie were both 'happy' earlier with scores in the 50s and 60s. Perhaps the idea of 'exploration' is being given too much weight - a happy norn will naturally want to stay right where it is, close to the things that make it happy.

    How is sex drive being taken care of/accounted for in scoring? Most of these creatures wouldn't be able to lower it from kissing each other - in the average norn genome, only opposite-sex kisses count.

    1. Friendliness isn't a problem actually; I suppose because it generally requires opposite sex pheromone to chemically develop, and since there are no males around....

      Prying into the C2 plants isn't exactly high on my priority list right now, but it might be something to investigate if this problem continues on through the next generation.

  2. I know that the seeds for the Death Cap Mushroom (which are classified as such) are inedible. If you're seeing them around the areas where the norns are living, I strongly suggest you get rid of them. I'm not so sure about other potential inedible edibles, though.

    If you get rid of the Death Caps, try retraining the norns again (and try using the "urge writ" command instead of yelling at them to eat - it has a higher rate of success, I've found). If that doesn't work, then let the ones who aren't eating starve - if they can't take care of themselves, then they shouldn't be allowed to contribute to the gene pool (I know that sounds a bit brutal, but that's what I'd likely do).

    1. I'm aware of urge writ, but for the purposes of this world I've chosen not to use CAOS outside of the script that's running. I feel like I've gone a little further than I'd like by trying to retrain everyone; really I probably should have just let them be to being with.. I just can't help myself sometimes.

      That's interesting about the deathcap seeds though, I'll have to look into it, though I think I'd rather reclassify them or make them invisible to creatures than get rid of them altogether.

  3. Oh dear, you probably have inadvertently taught them that looking at seeds will cure their hunger. Norn's can't really hold more than one thought in their head at a time, so they can't figure out that looking at seed leads to eating seed which leads to satisfied hunger. If they feel hunger, they look at seed and receive reward for it they'll associate the two which seems to be what's happened.