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Author Topic: Food preference (coupled with happiness)  (Read 1014 times)

Merry76

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Food preference (coupled with happiness)
« on: January 06, 2014, 03:35:09 AM »
Currently, gnomes eat up all they can get, and have no preference whatsoever in what they actually want to eat. I thought a bit about how a food preferrence could be implemented without having the gnome that likes alpaca sandwiches beelining for alpaca sandwiches all the time - that, in my opinon would be the status quo with different means, and not add terribly much. It would force us to keep a diverse inventory of food though.

Now, what I would suggest requires storing a bit more data in each and every gnome: A gnome should remember what he ate/drank, and how recent that was.
Now everytime a gnome needs to eat, he gets what types of food are available, and selects the food he prefers from this list based on what he did not eat for a long time.
Lets say he goes for a alpaca sandwich, which adds 50 to his food "need", but 100 to his "apaca sandwich" "ate recently" list. If the next time he is hungry again he has only alpaca sandwiches to select from, he might not be as satisfied with it - the ate recently just decayed to 50 (along with his need for food) which now sets his new value to 150 meaning the food variety is rather bad. His "ate recently" list climbs and climbes, until he starts to complain that there is only one type of food to eat, and he finds this rather unsettling.

Some tweaking might apply. Lets say below 100 before consumption makes a gnome happier, and above 300 makes a gnome unhappy (500+ makes him right down angry). If you just add 100 to each meal, a gnome will be happy with just 2 kinds of food to select from. if you bump it up to 150, it would be three, etc.

Now you might think: wow, so much work to just force the player to keep more than one food? Such a waste of RoboB0bTime(TM). True, to a certain extent.
You could now work this system into the gnome moods in a way that the current system never could. Say a gnome dislikes strawberries (that happens). He would get double the value to his "ate recently" value if he had to eat something with strawberries in it. If he hates them (or is allergic to it) he would have a permanent 300 lower cap for strawberries. Meaning he could eat it (better than starving?), but it would make him unhappy. In case of an allergy, make even more fun results possible.
Now if a gnome likes something (lets say strawberries again) he would only get a part of his "ate recently" value from it. He might munch away happily at raw strawberries, upsetting the brewer (and/or player) because those strawberries would be for the brewery....

One last thing of course: what should be the level of stuff that gets tracked? I am not really sure about that. I would go for the base ingredients of food: emu eggs, yak milk, mushrooms, all 5 kinds of meat, all 4 kinds of fruit, and wheat grain. Problem is, if you have someone who hates wheat grain, it becomes awfully hard to sustain him, especially in the beginning. You could practically start on a bad roll, and with the fixed starting loadout have cranky gnomes by day 3.

Sooo, is it a bad idea? I dont think so (I wouldnt have suggested it), but maybe it needs to wait until we can select our loadout. Take a bit of mushroom seeds, and 3 different kinds of food with us or something. It could be a stepping stone to give the gnomes personality, especially if it doesnt disable a gnome outright (being cranky about food should NOT send a gnome into a homicidal murder spree, thank you very much. At least not alone. There should be a few extra factors that cause this).
« Last Edit: January 06, 2014, 03:37:35 AM by Merry76 »
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tubs

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Re: Food preference (coupled with happiness)
« Reply #1 on: January 06, 2014, 08:47:42 AM »
Starting with a bad roll doesn't seem too bad - there is usually an abundance of (strawberry | apple | orange) from day 1 (with wheat shortly after).

You'd have to get *really* unlucky with a roll to have too many problems!

If people think it's too much, make the "satiation level" (and perhaps number of unique dislikes) a function of difficulty, so you can opt-in to a more !!Fun!! experience?

RedDagger

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Re: Food preference (coupled with happiness)
« Reply #2 on: January 06, 2014, 09:43:42 AM »
Now, what I would suggest requires storing a bit more data in each and every gnome: A gnome should remember what he ate/drank, and how recent that was.
Now everytime a gnome needs to eat, he gets what types of food are available, and selects the food he prefers from this list based on what he did not eat for a long time.
Lets say he goes for a alpaca sandwich, which adds 50 to his food "need", but 100 to his "apaca sandwich" "ate recently" list. If the next time he is hungry again he has only alpaca sandwiches to select from, he might not be as satisfied with it - the ate recently just decayed to 50 (along with his need for food) which now sets his new value to 150 meaning the food variety is rather bad. His "ate recently" list climbs and climbes, until he starts to complain that there is only one type of food to eat, and he finds this rather unsettling.

Some tweaking might apply. Lets say below 100 before consumption makes a gnome happier, and above 300 makes a gnome unhappy (500+ makes him right down angry). If you just add 100 to each meal, a gnome will be happy with just 2 kinds of food to select from. if you bump it up to 150, it would be three, etc.

If the game considers only food type X primary ingredient, then that list of "food eaten frequency" isn't very long per gnome, so I don't think could be a concern.

Since I'm a big fan of diminishing returns, instead of arbitrarily defined stages of satisfaction I would suggest that either fulfillment or happiness per eaten meal to be decreased by a sub-linear function based on the food eaten frequency value. It is hard to speculate on the later before having a base implementation to build upon.

ddd

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Re: Food preference (coupled with happiness)
« Reply #3 on: January 06, 2014, 04:56:39 PM »
very well put idea, i think i like it in all its components

even thouhg i would like to see a lot more food diversity in the future an upgrade in the feeding system and "happyness" is really a high priority imo in the game