[MUD-Dev] The Relationship between pkers and monster AI?

Adam Wiggins adam at angel.com
Wed Sep 22 19:12:21 New Zealand Standard Time 1999

On Tue, 21 Sep 1999, Matthew Mihaly wrote:
> On Tue, 21 Sep 1999, Greg Miller wrote:
> > Caliban Tiresias Darklock wrote:
> > > There is no BENEFIT to roleplay except that it is FUN. And when nobody 
> > 
> > And here we have a key problem. Getting back to the subject of player
> > punishment, a role-play based solution only works if either [1] people
> > are cooperating and you never had a problem to begin with or [2] you
> > fall back to a brute force "behave or I delete you" system. Roleplay has
> > no benefits normally for people who don't enjoy it, and few seem to
> > enjoy it.
> Then make some benefits. In Achaea, we encourage, but don't mandate
> roleplaying, except on public forums (aside from the meets board). We have
> a system of rolepoints. If shout out of role things, or post out of role
> things on the news board, a God is likely to become annoyed and deduct
> rolepoints from you. As your rolepoints go down, you lose more xp from
> dying, and gain less from quests, killing, or doing anything else. You get
> rolepoints back at the rate of one each day, provided you log on that day. 
> I think both of you (Greg and Caliban) are arguing absolutist positions,
> neither of which is likely to be enjoyed by a great majority of people, as
> they are the extremes. In my experience, players like roleplay, but don't
> want it enforced upon them. They make up descriptions for their characters
> that aren't anything like what they look like irl, they act in ways they
> wouldn't irl, etc. Most aren't going to bother with that fake medieval
> brogue that people seem so fond of, but they love pretending to be a
> paldin or a ninja or whatever providing they aren't forced to do it too
> strictly. There's no reason that ooc and roleplay cannot co-exist.

Very much agreed.  RPGs on computers are very different from P&P RPGs; in
some cases, muds exist whose only purpose is to try to simulate the P&P
experience online (where playing partners are easy to find), but barring
those, I think that role-playing on a mud is necessarily different from
role-playing in a 'true' RPG.

I always try to step into the role of my character, even on the staunchest
of dikus.  This does not necessarily mean speaking with thee's and thou's
and refusing to answer OOC questions.  It means causing your character to
behave in the way that fits their personality, rather than (necessarily)
what fits yours, or even what is truly best for the character.

This can be small things, such as choosing to wield an axe instead of a
sword because your character tends towards the barbaric - even if you know
that the best weapons in the game are swords.  Or if you're a ranger/druid
with a charmie aquired through the 'animal friendship' skill, taking care
of the creature as if it were a pet, and letting it go free later on in the
same place you found it.  By the same token, if you're an evil wizard and
you've summoned a demon to do your bidding, you might want to cajole it
as it fights for you, and then finally send it to its death, laughing.
If you're a thief, you might find yourself trying to steal from your
party members "despite your better judgement"; if you're a burly warrior,
you might disdain wearing 'a delicate crystal tiara' even if it's +2 dex.

I also enjoy doing bits of role-acting to amuse my group members and
otherwise justify my characters actions.  For example:

% l
The Master Mage's Labratory
The Master Mage stands here.
% say Ah, I've searched long and hard for you, oh master!
% say Will you teach me the mighty spell of Frooboz?
% say Answer me, damn you!  I have searched for many a year, the least you could do is reply!
% say Very well then, I shall be forced to challange you to a duel for your disrespect, and I shall take the spellbook from your corpse once I am through!
% cast 'fireball' mage

Obviously I could go on and on, but I think this proves my point - this
is hardly traditional, rigid roleplaying, but rather a blending of
roleplaying elements with normal game-oriented play.


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