[MUD-Dev] [STORY] Story and population size

Jeff Cole jeff.cole at mindspring.com
Sat Dec 8 07:44:21 New Zealand Daylight Time 2001


From: "John Buehler" <johnbue at msn.com>

> I'm refering to something with a higher 'entertainment density'
> than current games.  Current games suffer from the model of being
> open 24 hours, being carefully structured for combat 'balance',
> for solo play, attempting to derive all their entertainment from
> simple animated combat sequences leading to the death of sprites.

> To contrast, chess is quite complicated, but it has a high
> entertainment density because of all the thought involved in a
> fairly short period of time.  The same can be said of the game of
> go.  I haven't hashed this out yet, but I'm wondering if there is
> are treatments of game content and player interaction that will
> give a higher entertainment density - more to do in a shorter
> period of time.  Players should be deciding to step away from a
> game because they've had enough, not pounding on the developers
> for more.

You must be careful, here.  You speak of "entertainment density" as
if it is some objective measurement when it is really a subjective
measurement.  Even in the second paragraph you define it two
different ways: "[quite a bit of] thought involved in a fairly short
period of time" and "[quite a bit] to do in a shorter period of
time."

You recognize that, then, that you are measuring to different
"types" of entertainment per unit time.

The question is, is one able to compare the different types of
entertainment in any way that is meaningful?

One who expects to find the same sort of entertainment in an MMO*
that they find reading a book, or watching a movie, is going to
encounter a very low entertainment density in the MMO*.

Yrs Affcty,
Jeff Cole

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