[MUD-Dev] "The gaming situation" by Markku Eskelinen

Jussi 'Sulka' Haro sulka at sulake.com
Fri Aug 3 16:12:02 New Zealand Standard Time 2001

Below follows a quote from article "The gaming situation" by Markku
Eskelinen, from the the aforementioned Game Studies mag.

I'm dumbfounded by Mr Eskelinen's statements, to the point I don't
know what to think really. Good thing he's saying MUD's are possibly
different, although I'm not at all sure he includes anything with
graphics in his definition of a MUD.

Bad part is I'm apparently supposed to talk about "virtual world"
projects with him in television in a week. <shudder> I guess he'd
accept our (Sulake Labs) current projects as possibly having
storytelling aspects as they're not really games.

<begin quote>


  The old and new game components, their dynamic combination and
  distribution, the registers, the necessary manipulation of
  temporal, causal, spatial and functional relations and properties
  not to mention the rules and the goals and the lack of audience
  should suffice to set games and the gaming situation apart from
  narrative and drama, and to annihilate for good the discussion of
  games as stories, narratives or cinema. In this scenario stories
  are just uninteresting ornaments or gift-wrappings to games, and
  laying any emphasis on studying these kinds of marketing tools is
  just a waste of time and energy. It's no wonder gaming mechanisms
  are suffering from slow or even lethargic states of development,
  as they are constantly and intentionally confused with narrative
  or dramatic or cinematic mechanisms.


  Note 3. Despite occasional references I'll exclude MUDs from
  consideration in what follows. MUDs and MUD adventure games may
  very well turn out to contain situations, events and functions too
  complex to be fully or adequately conceptualised by the scheme
  presented here, or perhaps within any one traditional scheme, be
  it narrative, performance, or games. See Tronstad 2001."

<end quote>


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