[MUD-Dev] Re: Black Snow Revisited

Ola Fosheim Grøstad <olag@ifi.uio.no> Ola Fosheim Grøstad <olag@ifi.uio.no>
Sun Apr 14 19:20:26 New Zealand Standard Time 2002

"Dr. Cat" <cat at realtime.net> writes:

> Joe any time I want to?  It musta been mine and then been his and
> become his because it was my thingie and I decided to give it to
> him when I damn well felt like it 'cause as an owner of stuff
> that's my decision to make so what are you nutcases talking about
> telling me I don't own that Magic Axe?  Are you guys crazy?"

I think this depends on the culture. If it is a _game_ then most
people assume it should be a closed system. You are not allowed to
sell your position in the Olympics. In some games you don't even own
the prize token, you get to keep it for a year or something...

The problem is of course that some people are of a somewhat narrow
mind set, or they don't respect the virtual culture, or they assume
that the virtual world is a valid world concurrent with the

> with regular ordinary individual consumers.  Do you really expect
> them to buy into "You can give this away but you can't sell it"?
> I don't think they will.

Does it really matter as long as those on the border are
discouraged?  It is a matter of defining the border of the main
culture of the game. There will obviously be diverging sub-cultures,
but as long as they don't skew the balance or ruin the game's
reputation (Fraud, unfairness etc)...

> them to respond in some way?  I wonder how often such transfers
> have been made specifically in exchange for sexual favors?  I bet
> that's

So, what you basically are saying is that a girl is a hooker if you
give her flowers with the intent of seducing her? :)

I think the difference between transferring and trading your items
in a context of affection and friendship (which is what largely
constitutes MUD play) and those of running a business is rather

> They can carefully study the various contradictory and
> complementary desires players have in that big, complex web of
> desires, and carefully craft game mechanics, business models, and
> customer service policies that are in harmony with those desires
> more often, and in conflict with those desires less often.  That's
> where I feel the pot of gold lies.

I also silently note that any service in which there is a tangible
reward to be made from participating in something game-like is
likely to be covered by lottery laws. Thus your system may become
ILLEGAL in several countries.

Ola - http://folk.uio.no/olag/
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