[MUD-Dev] LTM article

J Todd Coleman coleman at wolfpackstudios.com
Fri Sep 21 16:34:32 New Zealand Standard Time 2001


----- Original Message -----
From: "Trump" <trump at vividvideo.com>

> This was posted on Lumthemad.net I thought it might be of interest
> to everyone here, I'm sure I'm not the only one who was both
> amused and apalled by this.

I'm sorry if the message upset you; obviously I should have done a
better job in explaining myself, because the point -- which is at
the tail end of the message -- keeps being completely overlooked.

>   I'm not going to demand royalties for you using my idea, because
>   I'm sure there were 100s of people who thought of it before I
>   did.  The lines between Strategy and RPG game are already
>   blurred by games like Birthright and Heros of Might and Magic.
>   Making a MMORPG with strategy elements is not innovation, it is
>   evolution.  Shadowbane is only the first to announce this AND
>   have a serious chance to making it to market.

Wow, you're actually giving us more props than I did -- I never
claimed to invent the concept, have the idea first, or anything
other than "we chose it as a niche."

My main question, though, was "Why PvP?"

Forget Shadowbane for the moment.  If you take the MUD community as
a model, there are hundreds of muds that differentiate themselves
through feature concentration (beyond, of course, the theme-based
differentiators liks WoT muds, Vampire muds, SW, ST:TNG, etc) in one
are or another : chatting, adventuring, quests, pvp, race/class
combinations, multiclassing, tradeskills, economy, etc etc etc.  Yet
lately it seems that many of the games coming that are being
announced play up PvP as one of their main strengths/feature sets,
when there are so other areas that are being (comparitively
speaking) glossed over.

If I were to announce a game today, I'd probably concentrate my
feature set on another area entire; something that everyone else is
overlooking.  Yet almost all of the games coming out in the next few
years have included PvP as an integral part of their overall game
vision (AO, DaoC, SB, SW:G, Atriarch, Darkfall, Jumpgate, Eve.. and
a boat load of others.)

Whether SB (or DaoC, or SW:G, or SimsOnline, or...) turns out to be
innovative or not is another question entirely (and one that no one
yet knows the answer to.)

>   2) Thinking of PvP as a niche concept really shows a total
>   denial of history. Many of the early graphical MUDs like NWN,
>   DSO, M59, Yserbious, etc had PvP, as well as many muds.  In
>   games where you could get to max level quickly and there was
>   little content PvP was the only thing that kept these games from
>   being chatrooms.  Many NWN veterans still cant be convinced that
>   you can have an endgame without PvP.

Are you kidding?  99% of the muds out there may dabbles with PvP to
one degree or another, but that doesn't mean they're all claiming it
as their key market differentiator.

> Implying that Mythic is encroaching on YOUR niche pure comedy.
> Darkness Falls (MUD from Mythic) + Magestorm (Team based 3D PvP
> game from Mythic) + current technology = DaoC

Mythic?  Who said anything about Mythic?

The rant was using Codemasters as an example -- primarily because
they just put out a press release claiming to "introduce the
concept" of PvP and empire building.  I just happen to disagree with
this claim, for pretty much the same reasons you listed, above. :)

J Todd Coleman, "Warden"
Wolfpack Studios, Inc - Shadowbane



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