[MUD-Dev] Requirements for MM (was Complexities ofMMOGServers)

Caliban Tiresias Darklock caliban at darklock.com
Sat Jan 4 18:59:11 New Zealand Daylight Time 2003


From: "Ted L. Chen" <tedlchen at yahoo.com>
> Caliban Tiresias Darklock writes:

>> Ten million registered members and over a million messages a week
>> on several thousand forums isn't massive? Explain the logic. Did
>> you even look at the site?

> Yes I did.  But I'm not saying that delphiforums doesn't have a
> lot of members.  Instead, I'm saying that the world encompassed by
> delphiforums.com 'seems' small.  Each place on delpiforums.com is
> connect by two degrees of separation (namely through the master
> directory).

Relatively few people view themselves as members of Delphi as a
whole, in my experience; they view themselves more as members of
individual forums. From that view, Delphi's world is immense; it's
perceived more like a news server than a web forum, and there's a
distinct barrier to entry from one forum to the next.

>   Buffy, who's reading posts in a Hobbies & Crafts forum, can pop
>   out, jump into Religion & Spirituality and effortlessly talk to
>   Bubba in much the same way as she did in Hobbies & Crafts.

Not really. Both Buffy and Bubba are welcome to participate in
either forum, but generally speaking the subculture of each forum
expects to see conversation which is either on the subject, or
provided by people who are "known" to the forum -- which is to say,
people who have posted on-topic messages of general value to the
community for a suitable period of time. So if Buffy wants to
discuss Bubba's choice of crochet supplies, she had probably better
stay in H&C rather than go to R&S... unless she's known to the R&S
community and they've decided to tolerate side conversation on her
part.

It's really a pretty fascinating dynamic, and reminds me of most
RP-focused MUDs: a new player is expected to play "by the book" for
a period of time before he becomes part of the larger community in
which OOC interactions are practiced. Entering OOC discussions
before then is something of a faux pas, except in designated areas.

> Granted, she can send Bubba a tell, but then that is not the same
> as being there next to him.

Likewise, you can jump into any forum and post a message, but that's
not the same as participating.

> Physically, both are big worlds.  But whether it seemed Massive -
> for me at least - came down to whether it actually seemed big from
> a player's perspective.  On forums, players (users) are given
> god-like omniscient powers, thereby reducing the apparent size of
> the world.

But you're not playing. Trust me, the first time you log into Delphi
and go to the *first* forum you frequent to find 3500 unread
messages and 300 to you, it will seem pretty damn massive. You
*have* to ignore most of them; you simply don't have the time to
read them all.

>> You *have* real-time interaction on Delphi. You post, and it's up
>> in a matter of a few seconds. I've had several discussions there
>> which involved four or more people simultaneously posting in
>> response to one another for an extended period of time.

> And I could play Tradewars on a large BBS that had multiple
> dialins.  I doubt anyone here would label Tradewars as a MOG
> (maybe a close cousin to a MUD).

I would. But then, I think MUDs *are* MOGs.


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