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

Greg Miller gmiller at classic-games.com
Fri Oct 15 16:30:55 New Zealand Daylight Time 1999

Caliban Tiresias Darklock wrote:
> >Just for clarification... are you saying that any game that isn't
> >completely abstract is promising roleplaying?
> You have a distressing habit of taking *everything* to extremes.

Indeed, it's necessary to figure out where you draw the line, so I ask
about the extremes first.

> Most roleplaying games begin with a specific process. This process involves
> generating statistics, selecting your persona's type (race and/or
> profession), naming your persona, and acquiring initial equipment. After
> this process, you are placed in some location and -- turned loose. Some
> direction may be provided, but no goal is expressly dictated.
> When you duplicate this process, you have for all intents and purposes
> written a rather detailed contract with your players that you will provide
> a roleplaying game. When you don't, you're breaking that contract. It 
> not reasonable to ask your players to detail and personify their
> characters, and then play them like faceless pieces on a game board. 

Except that most muds don't really ask you to "personify" the character.
They ask for a race, roll some random numbers and dump you in a temple,
inn, or some such.

> If characters are intended to be faceless (as, in my own game, they more or
> less are), then don't give them faces. Make all of them the same. Make the
> process of acquiring one painless and quick. Then the non-roleplayer 

As most muds do, since muds in general aren't implicitly about

> into the game faster, and the roleplayer is pretty well aware that "soft"
> character development won't mean squat on this game.

It's been my experience that most role-players figure that out as soon
as they log in and don't find anything explicitly referencing
role-playing anywhere in the game.
Conspiracy theorists mistakenly assume others think before acting.
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