[MUD-Dev] Life

Jeff Kesselman jeffk at tenetwork.com
Fri May 30 23:19:31 New Zealand Standard Time 1997


At 08:28 PM 5/30/97 PST8PDT, you wrote:
>I am not arguing that the problem does not exist, but arguing with
>JeffK's concentration on a specific and rather specialised
>value-judgement on the killing and making it the only point of
>evaluation for the game.  

Huh?? I don't remember sayign this. I DO remember sayign that my own
project's goial is NOT duke-nukem with swords.  If thats what yo uwant to
build, go for it. i just think it has ultimately limiedt appeal.  Thats my
personal and slanted opinion.

My BIg thrust has been that WHATEVER yo uare going to do, yo uneed to
DEFINE it well and clearly to your users, and then design your game to
facilitate that kind of play.

>If you devalue the RP, for
>instance my moving towards a more "powergamer" centric game, then the
>problem as described fades in proportion.  There is a sliding scale
>here, an axis if you wish, against which games and game actions can be
>measured.  

I disagree here... you can't live in teh rgeys, you just confuse your
players.  It is a LONG standing understanding that power gamers and rpers
DONt mix well in pen and paper.  It has been rpoved again in live action,
and IMO we see constant evidence of the same dynamic online.  

I dont be,ive yo ucan live "somehwere in the middle", if t I have an
absolutel belief here ist that yo uneed to define your agme as one or the
other....
OR segment your game such that its really two sperate and spereated games
that DONt mix under one umbrella.

>>You have to do something about those players who don't want to play
>>even by this minimum of courtesy. Or worse, who enjoy upsetting
>>others for the power it gives over their emotions. Just saying that
>>well, you can kill the .... and that's it won't work. At least not
>>all the way.
>
>Agreed, and here we get into the problems of bad game design.  

You have made this point a few times and here we definately disgaree. I
find thsi naive.  Unless you restrict tyour game to the point where players
dont interract at ALL 9and thus dfeat the purpose we all agree, yes?), then
you WILl have destructive players wh oWILL find ways to annoy others...

Loo kat Duke Nukem.  Its a game thats basicly impossible to hack for an
yadvantage SO a certai nsegemnt of our user population foudn ways to hack
it just to CRASH OUT sessions to annoy other users.

Destructive peop lDo exist, in more numebrs then we wopudl like, and a few
of them can rui na GREAT many people's fun and they WILL find ways to do it.

T osay tht if ther is ANY way for oen player to rui nanother players'
evenign is bad game design IMO is putting too much onus  on the developer.
There IS sucha thing as an "administrative fix", for GOOD reasons.

>
>What I would like to see is constructive discussion of the game design
>issues on how to approach free PK in such a manner that the rest of
>the game remains balanced and slaughter-fests can be constrained.

Right. here you get to our real disagreement. Im not yet convicned you CAN
have free PK ina nything but as pure combat MUD. Convicne me otherwise...
show me how you can do it and not have the asshole-factor screwing with
other users who dont want to be screwed with?

>
>  I don't have a global naming system.  Thus a PK'er can't do a "who",
>and then track down the victim.  Instead they must first locate the
>other player without any implicit way to differentiate them from a
>mobile (there is no command which will return, "this is a mobile" as
>vs "this is a player body"). 

How about talkign to it?

How abotu attacking ANYTHIGN that come through an area where newbies
frequently walk?

>Then, ocne they have found them they
>must assign a name to them (body specific, not character specific),
>and then track them down from there.

Most Pkillers are psycho-kilers. they dont CARE who the victim is as logn
as they are weaker then they and can be upset by killign them off.  I thin
kyouve just solved the worng problem.

Again, Im talking about the Pkiller in an RP mud NOT a combat mUD where the
assuemd social contract is on a par with the one between Quake players.

>  Additionally as bodies are a fairly fluid thing, killing a
>character's body typically has little permanent effect on the
>character.  He has other bodies, or can easily get other bodies.  It
>is an incovenience and a disruption of the current action.

In other words, you've basicly given them free regen?  No real death? Thsi
IS one solution ,the one Nevre Winter uses.  It has other bad consquences,
luike immortal high level characters....


>The general side-effect I've concentrated on is to render individual
>PK's as inconvenient but not catastrophic to a player, 

AS I recall, I started out this thread withan diea We are playign qwith,
which is to not let players actually kill other players. Yo ugo to
unconcious but not dead.  Only monsters can kill you.

Seems to me this meets your design creterion.
  
>
>>... My
>>viewpoint in this may be different from that of the average player
>>but for me being attacked (or otherwise harassed) by another -player-
>>is emotionally very upsetting.
>
>And here is where the out-of-game values start to apply.  I

Sorry JC. I disagree entirely. i feel you are missing the point here.

The point, as I've refrerence before, is implied social contract.  The
author of the above Im sure does NOt fell harassed by someone killign them
in Quake.  Why not? because ther eis an implied social contract that every
Quake player subscribes to. They agree on why they are there-- to try to
kill each other.

In a combat MUD their is ALSO an impliued social contract that is similar
though a bit different, as the goal is to HURt the other time, to decrease
their effectiveness by takign away what they've gained in levels, items, etc.

Again, there is no problem with this because everyone there is AGREED to
what they are doing there.  Ist not MY kind of game, but as I said, some
people actually ENJOY boxing... **shrug**

The PROBLEM is when you try to MIX people playign doifferent games.  The
author of the preceeding clearly is NOT ina MUD to be fighting/runnign from
other people.  Theya re probably there to be social, maybe do some improv
acting, and engage in team problem solving, at a guess.  These are your
roleplayers, more or less and they have NOT enteredr into a contract to
have their work takien away by one random Pkillign asshole.

This is the environment where pkillign is a problem and wher IMo you can't
allow it.  It gets back to having a single CLEAR definitoion of what your
game is and what peopel can expect in it.

This is NOT "game system", thsi is basic social engineering and socail
enbginering is vital if you are buildign a social environment.

JK






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