[MUD-Dev] Harry Potter

Michael Tresca talien at toast.net
Thu Jul 13 19:17:19 New Zealand Standard Time 2000


J C Lawrence wrote:

> Given the enthusiasm for the Harry Potter books (and their inventive
> and not necessarily linear world) is there a well publicised and
> educated (in the game world) market for a MUD sitting there for us,
> much ala all the WoD based games all copyright and trademark issues
> aside?

You mean these two (search from MUDConnector)?

Harry Potter MUCK
	Site: TWU.NET 5555 [63.97.42.127]
	Admin Email: hp at twu.net
      Harry Potter MUCK. Based on the Harry Potter Book series.   Harry
Potter MUCK is a fairly new MUCK but is growing fast. We started in
mid-april and now we have over 3000 objects. RPG is encouarged in all of the
IC areas. We have good staff and programming, also a very simple MUCK
interface.

Hogwarts MOO
	Site: hogwarts.twu.net 7500 [63.97.42.127]
	Admin Email: gideongoldman at yahoo.com
	Hogwarts MOO is based on the Harry Potter series by the popular British
author J.K. Rowling. The theme is set roughly one hundred years before the
first book; Voldemort has not been born, none of the characters of the books
appear on our world.

They're not MUDs, granted, but they're capitalizing on a trend.  I'm afraid
to do a search for Pokemon MU*s.

> Further, is this possibly an entrance point, if not a lever,
> to access otherwise largely untapped sections of the market
> (sub-teens, women, etc)?

There is something that fundamentally irks me about the fascination with
Harry Potter.  While I've only given the books a cursory inspection myself,
part of the problem is that this is, essentially, "fantasy made palatable."
Not only have there been other "fantasy lite" novels in circulation for a
very long time, Harry Potter is presented from one reader to another as
patently NON-fantasy, as if to do so would be to make the book a dirty thing
that should not be read.

I suspect the genre itself is not the draw in this case.  I doubt it would
make a valid entry point, because the appeal of the books (near as I can
tell) is due to the growth of the characters, the seriousness of some very
dangerous personalities that are dealt with by a youngster, and the unique
and often creative twists (like Quidditch) that the author throws in.  In
other words, Harry Potter's universe is very much tied to Harry Potter's
development as he ages from book to book.  It seems to be Harry's age and
his personal growth that makes it so appealing to an otherwise
non-traditional audience.

This bugs me like the Goosebumps series bugs me, in that I'm 1) jealous of
these authors' success, 2) irritated that an established genre is suddenly
"discovered" (it was horror, now it's fantasy) by a large market for reasons
that have less to do with the genre itself and everything to do with timing.

I'll spew more venom once I actually read the books.  Or maybe I won't, and
will join the starry-eyed masses in adoration of this monumental fantasy
achievement.

Michael "Talien" Tresca
RetroMUD Administrator
http://www.retromud.org
telnet://retromud.org 3000




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