Just an idea, this would just be adding to the harder modes for those who desire to have them, because this is honestly just something of an extra challenge for players who want one.
Now, I realize that minecraft is not bound to reality, but something I feel could be integrated would be a sort of shock value when a player is hit without anticipating it. When a human is scared, or at least I know I do, we have a tendency to drop everything due to shock, this being literally if you happen to be holding something. I think this could be an interesting challenge in minecraft. If a player is hit by something not in it's field of vision, something the player cannot anticipate there would be a maybe 15-30 percent chance that they would drop whatever item they are holding, adding a little more inconvenience to fighting.
This means that to avoid clumsily dropping an item you need to face your foe head on, and if you run away you may just lose your sword. Tell me what you think, again this wouldn't be in easy or normal, just hard.
Well, I understand what you're going at. You want to add more challenge to fighting mobs, right?
However, this is a realism suggestion. Realism suggestions typically fail because Minecraft is not realistic. The core mechanics cannot support realistic features.
Think of it this way: In real life, it takes effort to hold an item. The item doesn't just magnetically attach to your hand, you have to use energy by gripping it. In Minecraft, there is no such thing as gripping an item. You just hold the item out and, well, that's it.
Now, we understand that there is no gripping in Minecraft. But how does this relate to your suggestion?
Since you need to consciously grip things in the real world when you're holding something, when something genuinely scares you, you may forget to hold it. It sounds stupid, but that's essentially how it works. Now, in Minecraft, when there is no need to actually grip anything, why would you ever have something like this? If you get scared, it makes no sense that you would drop an item when said item literally attaches magnetically to your hand. Therefore, you have to add a random element. However, this makes it cheap and unnecessary.
Having a random element for something like fear is more unrealistic than realistic. Fear is an emotion, it can be measured and maintained. The random element of dropping a weapon when you can't see a mob has absolutely nothing to do with fear, and will make the game extremely inconvenient for players.
You see, combat is skill based. As basic as it is in Minecraft, it still requires skill. Maybe it's boring, but you can really distinguish a good player from a bad player. Making combat so inconvenient is unnecessary. What if you knew the mob was behind you, but it hit you? Oops, you dropped your sword. What if you saw the silverfish, but you're too busy killing the creeper? Oops, you can't kill that creeper anymore because you have no sword. What if a player circle strafed you? Oops, no sword.
Yes, your suggestion is to add inconvenience to fighting. But does Minecraft need such an uncontrollable inconvenience?
This doesn't sound fun at all to be honest. Plus, I cannot think of a single time I have seen someone drop something from being startled that wasn't in a horror/suspense movie or done for comedic effect in TV or film. I don't know if people really lose all control of their fingers when scared.
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Zombies have a tendency to pick up items. What if one comes up behind you, punches away your diamond sword, and then starts wailing you with it?
Reminds me of Giant Scorpions from Dwarf Fortress. Those are Fun.
Anyway, this mechanic doesn't sound very fun, only annoying. Rather than implementing this to increase challenge for those who want it, why not suggest a new structure or something designed for late-game players?
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Did something happen to you in your childhood to give you this unreasonable fear of rutabaga?