[MUD-Dev] The Future of MMOGs... what's next?

Frank Crowell frankc at maddog.com
Fri Jun 14 13:39:53 New Zealand Standard Time 2002

From: "Amanda Walker" <amanda at alfar.com>

> User content does remain a very large design and implementation
> challenge, though, even if some of us think it's more feasible
> than others.

In the future, the MM-whatever will be dead -- at least in the form
that we know them today.

In my original 24 by 7 always-connected concept (pre-www), you
started your day with your virtual world up on the screen.  No
loading, no waiting.  Everything you did and experienced came
through that screen.

At the time I was convince that the real converge for all the
technology was to make this 24/7 vworld happen.  I didn't see the
WWW freight train coming.  I also had a twisted view of
communication.  I thought that all the Internet lag would be cleared
up with better technology.

For the PC evolution I used my HP 28C as my daily reminder of where
PCs needed to go although my initial inspiration came from the first
HP scientific calculator list price around $600.  For virtual worlds
I have used (mumblemumble) game machine as the model for the vworlds
system.  But it is not, never has been MS Windows running a vworlds

Ok, skipping all that virtual world stuff aside, you are still left
with a multiuser entertainment system with a key function of
providing game-like experiences.  There are no central game servers
any more and there is no monoply on content.  If fact, there is a
very energetic business on content creation, content modification,
and content selling (probably stealing too).  Content will be
transportable and transferrable.

By then too, someone will figure out that there needs to be a
methodology to content development and that morphing and generative
techniques can be used to eliminate a lot of the hand crafting that
goes on today.  In fact, the content morphing will be done inside
the virtual world instead of some external software.  Did I mention
that the stores are inside the vworlds too? In vworlds not only can
you buy a troll, model 16A, but you can get your guts squashed by
one in the demo room.

Your characters will not belong to some other system; they will
belong to you.  You may still "rent" time on some systems, such as
Everquest 5, but everything that EQ knows about you is determined by
a secure EQ transcript (that is transportable too).  Oh give me a
break-- I am sure we actually can come up with a secure transcript
so that some 12 year old won't be able to break in 15 minutes.

The connection model will be some form of P2P, not because I am a
fan of it, but because it is the only model that can support an
adaptable and flexible virtual world.

You will still have game sites, but they will sell their time more
like Disneyland. Your own system will also be able to act as a site
or a node, and you will be able to live 24/7 in your own world that
you created, modified, or bought -- live and have visitors, and even
create mini-adventures.

As a great philosopher once said:

  given two propositions with equal likelihood, always pick the one
  with the greatest "sizzle".

Full color displays have sizzle.  Pocket-PCs have sizzle. Cell
phones have sizzle. CDs have sizzle.  Green text on black have Ugh.
IBM 370 VMS has UghUgh. Those old car phones that were the size of a
lunchbox have Ugh.  Eight inch floppies have Ugh.

A small, slightly larger than a palm box that allows you do to
anything and be anything,and share your experiences with anyone
anytime anywhere, is sizzlesizzlesizzle.


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