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

Greg Miller gmiller at classic-games.com
Thu Oct 14 11:57:36 New Zealand Daylight Time 1999

Caliban Tiresias Darklock wrote:
> On 03:47 AM 9/21/1999 -0500, I personally witnessed Greg Miller jumping up
> to say:
> >I don't see the connection. Yes, muds and D&D involve social interaction
> >normally--but since when does social interaction require role-playing?
> Cause and effect confusion. Role-playing requires social interaction. While
> I can interact with others and not role-play, I can't really role-play
> without interacting with others.

Bingo! So what does playing D&D solo have to do with anything we were

> If you don't want to roleplay, go play Tetris.

You just said role-playing wasn't implied by multi-player interaction.
Which is your actual position?

> How does playing in character prevent you from socialising directly with
> other players? What, you want to log onto a MUD and talk about the football
> game? You want to discuss what CDs you listen to? What classes you're
> taking at college, what your boss is telling you to do right now, what a
> screaming fit your children are giving you?

Right, because those topics are about the players. In role-playing, the
player is not the character--so if two characters are socializing, their
players aren't.

> This is what IRC is for. This is what chat channels are for. This is what
> tells are for. This is what email is for. This is NOT what character speech
> in an online game is for. You want to talk about this on the server, that's
> fine, but it's not part of the game and you shouldn't be getting in the way
> of people who are involved in playing the game.

So only characters should socialize with each other, not players,
because you say so.

> If you don't want to roleplay, go play pinball.

I prefer multi-player games. If you want to roleplay, go enjoy something
that's not goal oriented (ie, not a game).

> >And why does this happen? Because most people don't roleplay. I believe
> >that, in turn, stems from the fact that they simply don't find it fun.
> I would say, rather, that they see no benefit to roleplaying. If you
> roleplay, will you level faster? No. Will you get cool items? No. Will you
> make lots of money? No. So what good is it? It's fun.

So what you're saying is that people won't do it unless there's
practical advantage, yet it's fun for them. Uhhh....

> >I can't speak for why that is for them, but for me it's because playing
> >a character means I don't make friends with the other players--to do so
> >would be acting in an OOC manner.
> There is a basic failure in many people's heads to recognise that
> roleplaying is not an all or nothing situation. It is perfectly fine if
> chat channels are OOC by default. If tells are OOC by default. If OOC
> comments are made through some method. If there are entire areas in the
> game which are considered OOC, so you don't even have to try to maintain a
> character.
> The key is to contain it. You put roleplaying over here, and socialisation
> over there, and then you put a wall between them. Some people will wander
> back and forth from one side of the wall to the other. Some will just hang
> out on one side of it. That's okay, provided the wall is there: the people
> who don't care about roleplay aren't disturbing the people who do, and the
> people who are roleplaying aren't disrupting the people who want to
> complain about their jobs. The wall does not have to be *enforced* (the
> playerbase will generally do that just fine), but it has to be *there*.

If everyone behaved, wouldn't the world be great? Do a few things
related things well, and you have a good game. Try to be everything to
everybody, and you make everybody mad.

> If you don't want to roleplay, go play chess.

Doesn't this contradict what you just said? "Role-players and
non-role-players can get along fine on muds, but if you're not a
role-player, get the hell off muds."

> A roleplay-based solution only works with roleplay-based problems. 

Bingo! My original point in my first reply to whoever first mentioned a
roleplay-based justice system. Seems we agree on that.

> your problem is people hacking the server, no amount of roleplay will
> address it. When your problem is people screaming profanity in public,
> roleplay can work. However, the very thing that makes roleplay-based
> solutions work makes roleplay-based problems possible: people must be able
> to enforce their will on others within the game to some degree.

Agreed, and that's true of any player run justice system. With a little
extension it applies to traditional systems as well, since admins have
to enforce their will if they run the justice system.

> Then why are they playing these games? I'm sure you've detected the theme
> here. If you don't like roleplaying, go play something else. If you 
> onto a MUD, you should *expect* others to roleplay, because that is a major
> part of these type of games. You should recognise the desire of others 

If it were, why do some muds feel the need to point out that roleplay is
encouraged and/or enforced? Because it usually isn't.

I've seen this attitude before, and antisocial role-players are at least
as problematic as antisocial pkillers.

> tolerated. You have plenty of places you can go talk about your job and
> your family and your midterm, and there are comparatively few places *we*
> can go to roleplay.

There are probably more people interested in the former than the latter.
Question: Do you log on various muds like Ancient Anguish (which has
several thousand non-RPers and maybe 40 part time RPers) and shout "Damn
it! You're all playing the wrong way!" I've seen people that do, they
all make the same arguments you are, and they're all wrong. The game is
for whatever people achieve a consensus to use it for (not agreement,
consensus). If a roleplayer logs on a mud and starts harassing people
and screaming on public channels because nobody wants to RP with him,
it's no different from a pkiller attacking people at random.

> >and few seem to enjoy it.
> I don't believe this is true. Go to a Renaissance faire. Look around. Look
> at all the people happily playing along to the best of their ability with
> the guys in costume. Roleplaying *is* fun. Everyone *likes* roleplaying.

And that's why so few people even know what a ren faire IS? It's fun for
some people. Gaming is fun for some people. There's even overlap, but
that doesn't mean that either one is playing their favorite environments
in a way that's just plain wrong.
Conspiracy theorists mistakenly assume others think before acting.
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