Expanded monster information that fills out during play

Inspired by thoughts from this thread: http://www.cataclysmdda.com/smf/index.php?topic=339.0

I’ve played hengband for awhile and one of the things I thought was cool about it was how your knowledge of a creature expanded as you encountered them. I would love to be able to view an extended description of a creature, complete with observed attacks, damage numbers, speed values, hp, stuff like that. Some information such as how big it is should be obvious of course.

High perception players gather that information faster than others. For example a character with low perception would have to see a zombie moving around for 10 minutes or so to know it has 70 speed, but a character with 10 or more perception could pick that information up in a minute.

This could potentially make hospitals and lab logs more useful as well. Hospitals could have vacutators, and a low security DNA Analysis computer that could analyze a monster sample in a vacutator and give the character fully filled out data for that monster. Maybe even making some information only obtainable that way. A character could know that a fungaloid releases spores from observation, but not be able to get beyond that by themselves. But the analysis computer would upgrade that information to that it gives fungal disease, and what the disease does. While lab computers can have that same kind of details for some of the sub-primes.

This of course would be more useful to new players, but I figure even some older players would find some enjoyment trying to obtain all the data in a kind of “gotta catch em’ all” mentality.

Thoughts? Complaints? Hate? Love?

A lot of people have been pushing for a “lore accretion system” in the place of, say, score or achievements, and I think this sort of thing is the perfect way to implement it, if it’s technically feasible. Basically, a character-specific version in game, and then a globally accessible one for the things all your characters have learned.

In addition, they could be paired with (relatively minor) bonuses, so observing zombies for long enough makes them easier to dodge (since you can predict their behaviour)or gives you a bonus to avoiding their notice.

Definitely. Anything to make you want to keep playing longer is a good idea.

Support. Hoping that lore-accretion would be persistent for an install, rather than a world (at least on Windows, where I understand deleting the world after every death is the way to go).

I like this.

An extra idea, although this is mainly concerning actual lore, and not gameplay stats. The lore accretion is split into 3 tiers. The first teir can be progressed through by just fighting the enemy, as well as examining the body in the field. It would mostly contain basic biological and behavioural notes.

The second tier would be , as said , using medical equipment in hospitals to get an indepth biological analysis. This could either be by collecting a peice of the enemy when it dies, or hauling the entire corpse over. There might be 3 or 4 different machines in the hospital, all capable of giving different information.

The third tier would be collected when reading some kind of ancient or mystical scroll or book in a location, such as a strange temple. This would give information related to the origin of the enemy, as well as supernatural data.

Once this information is collected it would be accessable either by an ingame menu, or through the main menu, the main menu giving the combined knowledge of all characters that are living/lived on that world. When the world was restarted or deleted, the lore would reset.

[quote=“Jaginun, post:5, topic:337”]I like this.

An extra idea, although this is mainly concerning actual lore, and not gameplay stats. The lore accretion is split into 3 tiers. The first teir can be progressed through by just fighting the enemy, as well as examining the body in the field. It would mostly contain basic biological and behavioural notes.[/quote]
Fair enough. First Aid might kick in when butchering a corpse (autopsy) to get better biological information, though Survival ought to let the player get some useful information by itself.

Perhaps the vivisection rooms in the Science Labs could contain some of those machines? I agree that the Hospital needs better reason to bother with it, but one reading the science-logs would expect the Lab to be have comparable, if not better (though possibly damaged) equipment.

From what I understand, the Strange Temple is a netherworld-facility. Terrestrial hostiles such as graboids or triffids might need different lore-repositories. I think the research-idea is a good one.

Well, that lets Windows out. Have fun, Linux!

[edited as realized I missed a paragraph-KA101]

Good idea. It’s strange that we ID monsters right off the bat at the moment. Military databases could be a goldmine, and autopsy (at varying skill levels) is also genius.

Absolutely loving this idea. anything that makes the game more interesting and increases the sense of accomplishment.

An idea that I just had; increased knowledge/lore of the creature could help improve the yield from butchering, or even allow the harvesting of things you couldn’t safely get before, or had no knowledge of. like venom sacs, for example

Excellent idea, this would make ProCamera’s FINALLY useful (and have a better menu for listing critters you’ve ID’d)

Instead of “Tiers” of data, a more flexible framework would have “paragraphs” of data that could be unlocked/upgraded separately. For long term modding this would be more complicated, but also more flexible (and make it easier to add new paragraphs without overwriting previous “tiers” of description). It would be a ton of fun just collecting monster info, but if analyzing them could also give a character a damage bonus that would be nice too.


Creature Name

[Appearance (spotted < camera < camera Pro)]

[Biology (butchered < butchered + survival < dissected + first aid)]

[Combat (killed 1 < killed 10 < killed 100)]

Jeez, is it just me, or has there been a real flood of good suggestions in this section recently? I’m lovin’ this one too.

I’m also for most of the suggestions posted by other people who aren’t the OP. More butchery yields from studied creatures does sound feasible, locating venom glands from some monsters, fluid sacs from triffids, more fat and bones in general, stuff like that.

Possibly harvest teeth or brains… Or eyeballs… Lots o nutrients in those there eyballs…

I love this idea. I’ve been playing some Witcher 3 lately and the Bestiary in that game works really well. I can imagine that as a new screen in Cata that lists all known creatures on the left, and lets you see a panel for each one on the right, kind of like the inventory or crafting view. Perhaps creatures are unknown until you pulp/smash them, or discover information about them through books/reading computers etc.

Edit: Bonus points if it gives clues on how to defeat them effectively.