[MUD-Dev] Death of a game addict

Brandon J. Van Every vanevery at 3DProgrammer.com
Wed Apr 17 03:46:33 New Zealand Standard Time 2002

John Bertoglio:

> While I have some personal sympathy for the "Think of it as
> evolution in action." attitude of some of the posters on mud-dev,
> the fact remains that game producers have some ethical
> responsibility to their users. A game should warn its users that
> the possibility of addiction exists.

I think MUD industrialists should get money and lawyers to fight
your kind tooth and nail.  My Dad did it for Big Tobacco and MUDs
aren't even tobacco!  What's next, warnings for TV?  film?  books?
amusement parks?  candy?  shopping?  Go be healthy in a little
antiseptic box.  Warning: being alive and enjoying things is
addictive and hence hazardous to your health.  Learn detachment
today!  Move to a land of no sun and practice your skills!  And I
have such a land for you, for days now, by gum...

> Final point: From a business point of view, it makes no sense to
> intentionally try to make your game addictive. Everquest make the
> same money if a user plays for 200 hours this month, or 15
> minutes.

Nonsense.  That 15 minute player isn't coming back next month.  The
question is, how many hours of addiction do you need for
month-to-month player retention?  Or in other words, how much
service do you actually have to provide to be worth people's money?
Note: SERVICE.  Not addiction, SERVICE.  Does anybody complain about
a film festival being too addicting?  No, they complain about
whether or not they saw enough good films.

The only reason we put up with all of this addiction-and-violence
crap is we don't have the financial clout of larger, established,
mainstream entertainment industries.  We need to grow the mainstream
markets so that MUDs the game industry doesn't become politicians'
whipping boy of the month.

Cheers,                         www.3DProgrammer.com
Brandon Van Every               Seattle, WA

20% of the world is real.
80% is gobbledygook we make up inside our own heads.

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