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Author Topic: "Compare Animal" Feature and Observed Habits  (Read 1505 times)

NW_Kohaku

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"Compare Animal" Feature and Observed Habits
« on: May 28, 2015, 03:29:18 pm »

I fully understand why Toady doesn't want to allow players to weigh exactly how large a ham hock we get from a pig while they're still in the cages.  Giving precise-to-the-Γ measurements makes things a little unrealistic. 

Still, there are reasonable features to add that even the stupidest medieval peasant would be capable of doing that would benefit players managing their ranches. 

For example, "which of these pigs is the biggest?" is a reasonable thing for a dwarf peasant to be able to do without any tools but their eyes. 

Basically, this is another of those "data invisibility in the Interface" things...

Furthermore, there are serious problems players have with animals that are either not sexually active or are gay animals. 

I personally believe asexual animals are FAR too common in this game, and are an artifact of assuming human sexuality for animals.  Gay animals are fine, but a dog choosing not to hump the pillow because it has commitment issues is crazy.  Still, that's more the purview of the bug tracker...

Rather, there should be some sort of interface feature that, when you look at a description of an animal, some of their past history is revealed.  A gay dog is distinguishable in real life because they try to hump the other dogs of their gender, while there's zero evidence of that in DF, there's simply an inexplicable dearth of puppies. 

Because of this, there should be some sort of "observations" counter, where dwarves with some sort of animal empathy traits or skills add their skill to a counter on each animal whenever they can see those animals.  When this counter hits certain points, different aspects of that animal's behaviors become known and reported to the whole fort.  For example, "This boar doesn't seem interested in the sows, but has been chasing other boars," or, "This boar seems to chase boar and sow alike."

Additional information might be added, like guesses as to the parentage of each animal, or whether its current pasture is too small (it is getting hungry and/or has been fighting) or too large. 

In general, there are many things that the game could do without too much trouble to make ranching easier for the player.
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Bumber

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Re: "Compare Animal" Feature and Observed Habits
« Reply #1 on: May 28, 2015, 05:23:54 pm »

Because of this, there should be some sort of "observations" counter, where dwarves with some sort of animal empathy traits or skills add their skill to a counter on each animal whenever they can see those animals.
Expand it to adventure mode too. Let us learn information about the various NPCs we meet.
« Last Edit: May 29, 2015, 05:57:46 pm by Bumber »
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stuntcock42

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Re: "Compare Animal" Feature and Observed Habits
« Reply #2 on: May 28, 2015, 06:52:40 pm »

Because of this, there should be some sort of "observations" counter, where dwarves with some sort of animal empathy traits or skills add their skill to a counter on each animal whenever they can see those animals.  When this counter hits certain points, different aspects of that animal's behaviors become known and reported to the whole fort.  For example, "This boar doesn't seem interested in the sows, but has been chasing other boars," or, "This boar seems to chase boar and sow alike."
It would be a neat addition.

Almost any passerby ought to be able to notice that a sheep is overdue for shearing.  An apprentice farmhand should have no trouble identifying a pregnant mare or a starving cow.  It might take a few seasons for your ragtag team of ranchers to domesticate the local wildlife and begin to form opinions about their sexuality (starting with the obvious question of "how do I figure out the sex of this alligator without getting a hand bitten off?").  And then the next migration wave bring a Legendary Animal Caretaker who can take one glance and declare...

Urist McCartman: "That dog is a gay homosexual."
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Witty

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Re: "Compare Animal" Feature and Observed Habits
« Reply #3 on: May 28, 2015, 08:19:23 pm »

All very good suggestions. +1 for sure.
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DG

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Re: "Compare Animal" Feature and Observed Habits
« Reply #4 on: May 29, 2015, 02:07:56 am »

The problem on the size side of things is that animals are described as "huge", "massive", "giant" etc but there's no indication to the player as to what hierarchy Toady has put those terms in, if any. Is a massive frog bigger than a huge frog, for example? I think "just gigantic overall" in a description indicates the biggest, but I'm not sure. I've looked for that on the wiki before but I couldn't find anything.
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NW_Kohaku

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Re: "Compare Animal" Feature and Observed Habits
« Reply #5 on: May 29, 2015, 08:48:25 am »

The problem on the size side of things is that animals are described as "huge", "massive", "giant" etc but there's no indication to the player as to what hierarchy Toady has put those terms in, if any. Is a massive frog bigger than a huge frog, for example? I think "just gigantic overall" in a description indicates the biggest, but I'm not sure. I've looked for that on the wiki before but I couldn't find anything.

It's not even a reliable indicator, either.  I've seen someone doing science on the issue of slaughter, and they found that weight was the best indicator of butchering yields, and that those verbal descriptors were not good indicators of what their weight would be.  (Weight as measured by putting them in cages whose weight was known, and seeing how that weight changed.) Sometimes a gigantic creature was larger than an enormous one, and sometimes they were smaller than an enormous one. 

(It seems like gigantic and enormous might even have to do with being large in different dimensions, like taller versus wider...)
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Personally, I like [DF] because after climbing the damned learning cliff, I'm too elitist to consider not liking it.
"And no Frankenstein-esque body part stitching?"
"Not yet"

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EPSIL0N

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Re: "Compare Animal" Feature and Observed Habits
« Reply #6 on: May 29, 2015, 08:54:52 am »

Seems logical and makes me realize I have been away from DF for too long, I had no idea animals weren't standardized units.

Now it will probably bug me to no end trying to pick which to slaughter and which to leave as breeding stock.
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