Suggestion:20080616 Scent Fear Buff

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20080616 Scent Fear Buff

SIM Core Map.png Swiers 00:58, 16 June 2008 (BST)

Suggestion type
skill improvement

Suggestion scope
zombies, scent fear

Suggestion description
Similar to how the "Scent Death" mapping ability makes it easier for a feral zombie to find a mass of zombies to join (even if those zombies are inside a building) this ability would allow zombies to figure out the locations of nearby survivors who are wounded or dying (as defined by Scent Fear). Such survivors are already shown (using a * next to thier name) on the minimap, and so can be smelled at range. This suggestion extends that range, and potentially allows such survivors to be detected (via the "scent map" effect) if inside buildings.

Zombies with the Scent Fear skill would have access to a "Scent Fear" action that works similarly to the "Scent Death" action. When used (for 1 AP), a small grid-map (3 block radius, for a total maximum size of 7x7 blocks if not near a city border) would be shown to them (along with a message along the lines of "You pause, sniffing the wind for the scent of fearful survivors"), similar to the scent death maps. However, instead of green / red / yellow color values, there would be only one color- blue. The brightness of the blue value in each block would be calculated as follows:

  1. Generate a random number from 0-25 by taking the square of a random number 0.00 - 5.00.
  2. Add 10 for each "wounded" survivor in that block, and 15 for each "dying" survivor. It makes no difference if they are inside our outside a building.

(note: the calculation above is designed to produce roughly 50% "false positives" if the user assumes any value over 10 shows a wounded survivor, and also roughly 50% "false negatives" if the user assumes any value under 10 means no wounded survivors. It also would produce occasional (roughly 1 in 10) false positives when zombies assumed a value as high as 20 was worth checking out. The exact numbers / procedure used would be up to Kevan- the goal is to produce an attractive (mostly dark) map that would both serve as a "tutorial" for zombies who eventually buy and use the more complex, longer-ranged Scent Death mapping ability, and has a moderate level of uncertainty / noise to the information it conveys, while still being generally reliable when there are multiple wounded / dying survivors in one location.)

Persuasive Arguments:

Q: Isn't this X-ray vision?
A: No more so than the current Scent Death ability is; that ability allows zombies to detect zombies and dead bodies that are inside buildings. The information conveyed also has a fair degree of uncertainty- you may think there is a wounded survivor where none exists, and (unless there are several wounded survivors) you can't be entirely certain one is actually present where indicated.
Q: Isn't this a huge buff for zombies?
A: Its a buff, but don't think its huge. Organized zombies would rarely ever use it, and the information would often be redundant with feeding groans, or simply with what the zombie can already see / guess at. The effect it has on survivors is probably just as significant- it would likely encourage healing.
Q: What about recently revived survivors?
A: They might be detectable via this means (unless they have body building), but even if infected they should have 40+ AP to heal up out of the "wounded" range and get to shelter. If they aren't able to do that, they likely were zombie chow anyhow.
Q: Doesn't this nerf Hiding in Plain Sight?
A: Not for reasonably healthy survivors. If you aren't wounded, the zombies can't figure out where you are. And the "noisy" information would mean there's a decent chance they might miss you even if you are wounded, as long as you stay away from other wounded survivors.

Voting Section

Voting Rules
Votes must be numbered, justified, signed, and timestamped.
# justification ~~~~

Votes that do not conform to the above may be struck by any user.

The only valid votes are Keep, Kill, Spam or Dupe. If you wish to abstain from voting, do not vote.

Keep Votes

  1. Authors Vote - I'll try to get an example image up on the talk page ASAP. SIM Core Map.png Swiers 01:01, 16 June 2008 (BST)
    Example Image now posted Example Image now posted. SIM Core Map.png Swiers 19:25, 16 June 2008 (BST)
  2. Keep - Those poor zombies. --Heretic144 01:39, 16 June 2008 (BST)
  3. Keep - Scent Death lite! --Aeon17x 01:47, 16 June 2008 (BST)
  4. Scent Bear Fuff - I couldn't care less what the suggestion mechanics are, I just enjoy misreading the name. Homeny. --Karloth Vois DR News 02:13, 16 June 2008 (BST)
  5. Keep - Cool idea. --Blake Firedancer T E RNL? P.I.S.I.T. 02:17, 16 June 2008 (BST)
  6. A keeper with a caveat - Logical and reasonable that zambahz can "sniff out" their prey. The specific details (%'s etc, map effects, etc.) are up still for grabs IMO, but the basic idea rawks. One perhaps unforeseen consequence of this is that -- while it's not a game-breaking buff for zambahz at all -- it is a huge buff to death cultists! You just need to injure a group of survivors in a safehouse and let the ferals come an' get 'em... That and that alone seems a tad powerful, and makes me hesitate to support it unequivocally. --WanYao 02:59, 16 June 2008 (BST)
  7. Keep - Because keep. And it's good. --The Hierophant 03:25, 16 June 2008 (BST)
  8. Keep - Keep. Ioncannon11 05:26, 16 June 2008 (BST)
  9. Keep - Useful and balanced. --Sir Bob Fortune RR 10:26, 16 June 2008 (BST)
  10. Though consider some things down below. --•▬ ▬••▬ • •••• •▬ ▬•▬• ▬•▬ #nerftemplatedsigs 11:02, 16 June 2008 (BST)
  11. Keep - Can't hurt.--Jamie Cantwel3 TalkAll glory to the Hypnotoad! 13:02, 16 June 2008 (BST)
  12. keep(ish) Sounds good in theory but frankly I would never use it. Scent death already messes with my colour-blindness making it vague at best... putting this in shades of blue would do me no good at all! Still others might use it and my cultist might benefit (if I wake him up)--Honestmistake 15:34, 16 June 2008 (BST)--Honestmistake 15:34, 16 June 2008 (BST)
    Since its a mono-color map, I didn't think color blindness would be relevant. However, I did find that blue makes for a mostly un-viewable map, so in my example image I went with shades of grey instead. BTW, if you have a problem with the Scent Death Map, I have a GM script that can help; it displays the actual numeric values for the colors in the cells, and could easily be adapted to NOT show the colors, show (two) values of gray, whatever you need. SIM Core Map.png Swiers 19:25, 16 June 2008 (BST)
  13. Keep----Secruss|Yak|Brahnz!|CGR|PKA|800px-Flag of the United States.svg.png|EMLN|Templates|RRF|RFTM|Crap|WHOZ|Evil3.gif|MU|GN|C2008|Chippy.gif|20:44, 16 June 2008 (BST)
  14. Keep -- As WanYao, including his caveats. Also for the sheer comedy value of the pro-survivor perfume suggestions that would inevitably follow. (Go on, folks, rub some perfume in your open wounds.)--Jiangyingzi 23:32, 16 June 2008 (BST)
  15. Keep Its vaguely useful. Plus it again makes me chuckle about the question on your talk page about how your massively survivor biased.--RosslessnessWant a Location Image? 17:12, 17 June 2008 (BST)
  16. keep Useful for zombies in red suburbs--Z1nk666 17:37, 17 June 2008 (BST)
  17. Keep Would help new zombies hiding in red suburbs. I know I faced the decision of hunting and headshot against safety and no XP. --Atticus 18:29, 18 June 2008 (BST)
  18. Keep - It would probably better fit under scent blood/death, but it still is a great idea. --ZsL 21:45, 18 June 2008 (BST)
  19. Keep - Good plan. - Grant (talk) 06:49, 19 June 2008 (BST)
  20. Keep - Vote keep if you like it- Chances are slim for suggestions as they are... --BoboTalkClown 18:46, 19 June 2008 (BST)
  21. Keep - Would be great for finding a breakin, no? Zombies are attracted to the wounded, disabled, helpless survivor, so in genre. Scent Fear is also inferior to Diagnosis. --  AHLGTG 03:51, 20 June 2008 (BST)
  22. Keep - Some of the maths here is a bit fishy, but AHLG makes a good point. --Toejam 21:10, 20 June 2008 (BST)
  23. Keep - Great concept - would add some additional interest and fun for both survivors and zombies. Could lose the random element though - that just sounds annoying. Smaller map size instead (3x3?) might be better and more believable way to balance it if reqd. --Mad Dog Munro 07:34, 26 June 2008 (BST)

Kill Votes

  1. Change - Cause a keep/change is contradictory. I like the idea, however it should be tacked onto Scent Blood not Scent Fear or Scent Death.--Karekmaps?! 03:11, 16 June 2008 (BST)
  2. Kill/Change - As Karek, except that Keep/Change isn't contradictory. It means you're fine with the suggestion as it is, but would still like it to be a bit different. --Midianian|T|T:S|C:RCS| 10:18, 16 June 2008 (BST)
  3. Kill - Zombie hordes with the recent buffs can destroy survivor populations easily when they "find" them, by removing the searching aspect I can see groups using zombie spys to injure a surviver in every safehouse that is populated to "mark" them.It may also encourage more zombie spy use and death cultists acts which I am against, this also can weaken surviver tactics like the "river tactics" as zombie spys can catch survivers in retreat further nerfing surviver abilities to "survive". --Pvt human 11:04, 16 June 2008 (BST)
  4. Kill - *Maybe* as another skill. Not as a new power for an existing skill. Even so, though, seems pretty overpowering. - Fred Fredfredson 14:07, 16 June 2008 (BST)
  5. Kill - Good enough to not vote spam, not good enough to vote keep. I can't get past the whole increase in x-ray vision for zombies. Sort of as WanYao, but I came to a different vote conclusion. --Tselita 15:09, 16 June 2008 (BST)
  6. Kill - Doesn't feel very realistic. --Pgunn 23:04, 16 June 2008 (BST)
  7. Kill - as Pvt Human. Also, Keep/Change isn't really contradictory, it means you like the spirit/general aim of the idea but would prefer if numbers were tweaked or whatever.--CorndogheroT-S-Z 02:21, 17 June 2008 (BST)
  8. Kill - I reckon this would result in less food for bahbahz and ferals, as it would discourage survivors from hiding in ruined burbs. Also I wouldn't want injured survivors in my safehouse as they would attract zombies, but if you're down to 10HP or less it's cheaper for me to kill & dump you than to heal you. --Explodey 19:25, 17 June 2008 (BST)
    Just to clarify that last point- killing a 10 HP survivor takes 10 AP with a knife, 8-9 with an ax, and 2-3 AP (plus ammo) with a pistol or shotgun. Healing them up to an unwounded state takes takes 2 AP (and, obviously, 2 FAKs). In AP terms, healing is cheaper- if you have the FAKs. Perhaps the net effect would be to encourage survivors to carry more FAKs instead of maxing out on ammo? SIM Core Map.png Swiers 20:59, 17 June 2008 (BST)
    Yes, I'm including 4AP to replace 2 FAKs, so it's around 6AP altogether, whether you heal them or shoot them (the ammo has to be replaced too.) --Explodey 23:44, 17 June 2008 (BST)
  9. Kill-This kind of dkill would almost completely nullify most survivor's evasive tactics. (River, HIPS, etc...) It would also incourage zombie-spying and cultist activities, 'marking' safe houses by shooting at the people inside.--Danny lee 05:11, 18 June 2008 (BST)
  10. Kill - I don't even like Scent Death, let alone this. As everybody else too. --Vandurn 13:47, 20 June 2008 (BST)
  11. Kill - As Grim.  Billy Club Thorton  T!  RR  02:56, 21 June 2008 (BST)

Spam/Dupe Votes

  1. Spam - X ray vision violation. Given the size of the false positives thing, it would do more harm than good for a newbie zombie simply because they have a pretty good chance of nothing. Even then almost any food they detect will be behind cades, which they can barely dent and behind doors they cannot open (Which is why the x ray violation is bad in this case). If they did use it they run into the (50% according to you) possibility of no or little reward for the effort of walking to a building, tearing it open (If he's extremely lucky and has MOL), and finding its empty, or worse still, full of headshotters and hes low on ap now They would be better off following the groans and using their undeveloped scent skills there to pick an already wounded target. There is no need for this skill, and all this will dfo is get generation after generation of new zombies to waste hard earned exp buying the skill early before finding out its crap, and wasting piles of AP in the process. In essence, its so vague as to be useless but little zombies will try anyway because thats what they do. Its just not worth the ap drain on zombies. The payoff is vastly smaller than the costs and risks. In economic terms, the opportunity cost is higher than the expected profit, especially considering groans. --The Grimch U! E! WAT! 03:48, 16 June 2008 (BST)
    Maybe for some, but I figure I'd use it this way; log in, see if there's any easy food (survivors I can see, groans that are obviously worth following). If not, THEN I'd take a sniff, and would follow my nose to bright blocks that are NOT buildings, because that means there is likely a survivor stranded outside. You have to move at that point anyhow, might as well move in a direction that has a decent chance of having food at the end. So really, the "cost" (if used wisely) is less than 1 AP a day, for what I expect would be a decent boost in food finding abilty. Attacking barricades is dumb for a low level feral, with or without this skill, so assuming they will do something dumb is... well, don't blame the skills for that. Also, keep in mind it costs nothing if you do not use it; Scent Fear in itself is a very good skill for low level zombies to have, as it really helps them score that 10 XP kill bonus. SIM Core Map.png Swiers 06:53, 16 June 2008 (BST)
  2. As Grimch --Officer Dick Trickle 05:01, 16 June 2008 (BST)
    DUPE LINK--Officer Dick Trickle 01:11, 26 June 2008 (BST)
  3. Spam - X-Ray Vision. (It's possible to make the game better for zombies without making it worse for survivors.) --Funt Solo QT Scotland flag.JPG 00:40, 21 June 2008 (BST)
    Sure- I think this does that. Making the game more dangerous for wounded survivors does not make it worse for them. Danger != bad. SIM Core Map.png Swiers 18:28, 21 June 2008 (BST)
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