RE: [MUD-Dev] Re: [MUD-Dev] Re: Fantasy clichés (was: Acting casual aboutcasualgamers)

Zak Jarvis zak at
Thu Jul 13 12:02:10 New Zealand Standard Time 2000

> From: S. Patrick Gallaty [choke at]
> Sent: Thursday, July 13, 2000 10:29 AM

> >From: Raph Koster <rkoster at>
> >Date: Saturday, July 08, 2000 6:17
> >
> >Just as a counterpoint--I've seen the argument advanced that
> >one reason why Asheron's Call isn't doing as well as the
> >other MMORPGs is that its fantastical elements are too
> >unfamiliar. To people other than the hardcore players, AD&D
> >fantasy is as fantastical as they are really able to stomach
> [ ... ]
> Well, I beta'd AC from the very earliest stages to the end - and I'd put
> forward that it is less a matter of the fantasy being unfamiliar as it is
> the fantasy just not being very compelling.  I won't criticize it here,
> mainly because it ends up seeming harsher than I intend but I feel it's a
> quite formulaic game, and exhibits little in terms of variety for the
> character or role to assume.
> It has little in the way of a hook to hold the player.  Unlike
> goal oriented play like EQ, or property oriented play like UO, AC
> has no clear penalty for disappearing for a day or week, so it
> does not reinforce habit.

Actually, this is exactly the reason why I've been playing AC for about 10
months now, and stopped playing EQ about a month after its release. I'm a
busy person, and I don't have the time or energy to devote to a game that
*demands* my attention. In fact, I resent games that do and avoid them. If
I wanted to play a game that penalizes me for disappearing for a day or a
week, I'd enroll in college or do regular work (the kind with desks and
bosses and all that nasty stuff. ;)

Of course, I've been around this whole turnpike a few times, and I've
developed a bit of an aversion to compulsive game mechanics. The question I
have is: is this a normal symptom of people who've been involved in these
games for ten or more years, or is it just because I'm stuck up? <shrug>

-Zak Jarvis

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