[MUD-Dev] Proposed Law

Paul Schwanz paul.schwanz at east.sun.com
Mon Oct 22 09:29:47 New Zealand Daylight Time 2001

Matt Mihaly wrote:
> On Thu, 18 Oct 2001, Adam Martin wrote:

>> I think the point is that if you *do* destroy content as part of
>> your gameplay, then you have a major problem, which is typically
>> solved in say EQ by the grossly disbelievable system of
>> respawning. Yeah, the basic noughts and ones still exist, on the
>> server somewhere as a mob template (or whatever), but you've got
>> to come up with reasons why these things keep coming back to life
>> (or do as 90% of the stuff out there does and not even bother
>> trying to explain what is possibly the most [obviously - like a
>> sore thumb] unrealistic part of the games).

> It's no more grossly disbelievable than any system of magic I've
> ever seen. It's no more grossly disebelivable than the fact that
> you have to eat in many of these worlds, but never have to
> defecate or urinate.

> Is it believable in chess that the queen rather than, say, the
> knight is the most powerful piece? No, and it doesn't
> matter. Internal consistency matters, and the queen is more
> powerful in chess. In most MUDs, mobiles come back to life. So do
> players, for that matter. It happens every time, or nearly every
> time, and that's really what matters.

Not to me, it isn't.  To me, every game is not the same.  I play
them for different reasons, and with different goals in mind.

When playing chess, I have no goal for "suspension of disbelief."  I
am not looking to transport myself into another world.

On the other hand, these are prominent among my goals in a MUD.  And
I find that every time I am presented with a situation in a MUD that
can only be explained or understood as a "game rule," it is an
unwelcome reminder that I am only playing a game.

So I accept that, in chess, the knight is the only piece allowed to
"jump" over other pieces, but I don't like the fact that monsters
and other NPCs respawn in MUDs as a game convention.  My
inconsistency in approach is explained by the fact that I have
different entertainment goals for these games.


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