[MUD-Dev] List rituals

&lt &lt
Mon Jul 2 23:02:37 New Zealand Standard Time 2001


J C Lawrence <claw at kanga.nu> said:
> On Sat, 23 Jun 2001 09:35:30 +0200 
> Ola Fosheim <=?iso-8859-1?Q?Gr=F8stad?= <olag at ifi.uio.no>> wrote:

>> Discussing:

>>   * what a character really is, is a bi-annual MUD-Dev ritual.

> We've certainly hit it before and quite hard, but not from the
> current direction.  Mihaley's insistence on mechanical definition
> and dialectic logic for the topic has driven it in a few new
> directions.

What's been forgotten and reinvented: Character vs. Player vs. Account

    Character as a seperate entity (in terms of data structure) from
    a player account - you hate this, J C, but the form is valid,
    and it has been a recuring theme/thread that could use
    referencing with regard to the current discussion: characters
    may not be *entirely* under player control; players may be
    viewed as a conciousness inhabiting a somewhat
    instinct/acculturation/emotion influenced body (with the mud
    itself as the character's endocrine system et al) as a means of
    controlling some aspects of behaviour.

>>   * in-game mail and the lack thereof is a ritual.

> Off hand I recall only one prior thread that went this way, and it
> did so only cursorily.

Back in '95 or so, there was a pretty long thread on the topic.  I
can also remember a technical thread in the bug.be days on mail
protocols.

>>   * UDP vs TCP is an annual ritual.

> Recurrent, never has been a deep, long, or particularly content
> full thread, just an arm-waving assessment and comment on the fact
> that there are differences and you should be choose wisely.

'95, mixed in with Texas Free Store discussions.  Extensive details
on UDP as a protocol, on Firewall issues, on error checking.

>>   * level vs skill systems is a ritual

> It used to be common, especially on the "Levels are BAD!" side.
> Been a while since we hit there with more than yawns or a
> dismissive "It all depends really," assessment.  I think this is a
> shame.  There's raw meat still left in scoping and defining the
> basic structures of MUDs in terms of player goal determination,
> acquisition scales and approaches, player value perception, ROI
> etc etc etc yada yada.  We've not really backed out much to try
> and look at a meta level beyond a few dismissive hook and cherry
> models of advancement scales.

Now *this* was a part of the MUD-Dev I grew up on (sic).

>>   * rollplay vs roleacting is a ritual

> Yup.

Always was, always will be.  So... what about that character as a
semi autonymous entity?

>>   * what this list really is about is a ritual.

> Its rarely been a full blown thread, but there's a steady stream
> of side notes on already extant threads, yes.  Arguably I've
> encouraged this (I've a fondness for parenthetical expression),
> and my moderation style has sustained the mystery and its
> surrounding hubbub.

So... you're the high priest?

>>   * rituals is a ritual.

> You bet.  Earliest example: MUD-Dev is a MUD.  Second earliest
> example: Even non-roleplayers roleplay, they just don't know it.

>   ObNote: Actually there is an even earlier ritual, but none of
>   the people who were active on the list at that time are still
>   active, and the ritual died ~4 years ago.  Careful archive
>   readers might find it tho (I haven't checked).

Invitations and the seeding of rec.games.mud.admin with discussions,
meant to ferret out the talent for importation?

(What, am I chopped liver?  I was here, I was...)

>> In a sense these discussions are good, because they are general.
>> You don't have to be a commercial game designer to have a say,
>> and thus they bridge the gaps across the MUD-Dev population.

> They serve other purposes as well.  On the one side they serve to
> develop and establish concepts of "common wisdom", and on the
> other side they serve to challenge those same assumed orthodoxies
> and get the zealots to admit that it is a judgment call.  There's
> also a second order value in educating new members who haven't
> learned from the archives and need live repetition to grok.  We've
> gone through waves of messages with URLs from the archives on that
> score.

Yup.

> MUD-Dev is repetitive in these regards.  I've been fairly pleased
> in most such repetitions there has been some new new ground
> covered, even if it proved barren.

>> These discussions are never conclusive...

> Are ___ANY___ topics or threads on MUD-Dev ever really conclusive? 
> And, in fact sre any of the topics usually discussed capable of
> being conclusively answered?

> Is the field deterministic?
 
No, and thank goodness, or there would be no room for the likes of
thee and me.

--

Nathan
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