[MUD-Dev] Depth of realism

Joe Kingry jkingry at uwaterloo.ca
Thu Nov 18 01:34:19 New Zealand Daylight Time 1999


Most modern M*'s strive towards some greater achievement of realism then
their predecessors.  There are arguments to what is the "right" degree of
realism.  Too much realism gets in the way of what one would think (I at
least anyhow) MUD's purpose were, that as a source of escapist
entertainment/mental exploration etc.

I mean if the time on a said MUD progresses at 30 times faster then RL, then
one couldn't expect players to log on for 4 hours everyday to make the cross
oceanic journey they are on.  Well feasibly this could be dealt with by
allowing characters to persist after a player logs out.  But to take another
example, what of sleep? Characters hardly ever sleep while being played and
then, only when wounded, totally regardless to the time of day it is. How
does one deal with this?

Then there are the question of resources and a real economic system.  If a
player has to chop wood, then feasibly the forest could be depleted at some
point.  Though it is a given that forests in medieval settings tend to
greatly outstrip the land area used up by civilisation.  As some one pointed
out though, if the level of detail is there in which a player could farm for
instance then there should be also the option to join legions of the army
etc.

Which got me to thinking, can a MUD really handle a battle on the scale of
two armies?  I don't just mean in pure processing time, but in the
organisation and handling of multiple groups and units etc.  It would seem
almost an entirely different system. Which is what I suppose most people
would argue with the modern movement of M*'s seems to be away from the
heavily combat reliant DIKU base. Large scale battles are not the realm of
M*'s.  For example, AD&D really isn't designed for large scale battle, and
it survives myriad adventures without it.

But then, isn't this a limitation of scale? Isn't that saying, at such and
such size of a thing, it's not feasible or practical to include in a virtual
world.  So should we then have anything else in our world that is on that
scale? If we can't have a working army then should we have working kingdoms?
Should we have a geographical area which would suggest kingdoms/provinces?

Just some thoughts,

Joe




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