[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.
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."
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