[MUD-Dev] RE: Storied Games

Marian Griffith gryphon at iaehv.nl
Tue Dec 4 20:35:04 New Zealand Daylight Time 2001

On Mon 03 Dec, Paul Schwanz wrote:

> Again, I am very curious about the writing techniques that can be
> used in this middle ground.  I'd love to hear some examples
> especially.  I'm afraid it is quite difficult at the moment for me
> to determine the potential for games that these tools hold, since
> I'm having problems imagining what they might look like.

One bit of advise, actually meant for writers but even more vital to
story telling in games is: Do not Tell but Show what is happening.
Players are characters in a story more than they are readers of one.
This means that their viewpoint is limited to the gameworld and that
information must be delivered to them through mechanisms that work
in that world.

If the orcs attack the village they must do so. If the evil overlord
is stirring again in his bleak mountain kingdom then the player must
hear of it from fearfull and barely accurate whispers of people who
flee the trouble. Similar to how Lord of the Rings opens with tavern
stories about strange creatures seen in the bogs, and border guards
having to repell more strangers than ever before.  Problem is that
all this requires *far* more intelligent monsters in games than the
typical cardboard figure that is prevalent today.  It should be so
that simply activating the evil overlord in his remote corner of the
world has this effect of wars starting, people starting to flee
their homes, and eventually the rumours reaching the remote outposts
where the players live.  All without further interacttion of the
game staff.

Yes - at last - You. I Choose you. Out of all the world,
out of all the seeking, I have found you, young sister of
my heart! You are mine and I am yours - and never again
will there be loneliness ...

Rolan Choosing Talia,
Arrows of the Queen, by Mercedes Lackey

MUD-Dev mailing list
MUD-Dev at kanga.nu

More information about the MUD-Dev mailing list