Brand Loyalty (was Re: [MUD-Dev] Requirements for MM(wasComplexities of MMOG Servers))

Damion Schubert damion at zenofdesign.com
Sun Jan 19 23:43:25 New Zealand Daylight Time 2003


From: Rayzam

> Investment - a casual gamer enjoys the game, but doesn't care
> about 'winning'. The casual gamer is not as personally invested in
> the game.

Perhaps they are not as emotionally invested in someone whose whole
life is played online, but I know of few people who don't care
whether or not they win.  In fact, one of the greatest challenges of
making games aimed at the casual gamer is giving them a chance to
win.
 
> A casual gamer fulfills one or more of the above, in my
> definition. To me, a powergamer fails all 3 of those. To me, your
> mom's understanding of every nuance, etc makes her a powergamer,
> and fails on the effort check above.

Perhaps that's a more apt description of 'casual gamer' than what
the marketing guys come to me to try to capture.  But when they come
to me, they are usually talking about getting the people who turned
Myst, Solitaire and Hearts into blockbuster titles.

>> 'Powergaming' is merely a moderately derogatory way of saying
>> 'optimizing one's play experience'.  For many, many people, its
>> not just one way of playing games, its _how_ you play games.  Its
>> _much_ more mass market than its purported MMP opposite
>> roleplaying.
 
> I'd suggest that powergaming is the new word for min-maxing. It's
> not about optimizing one's play experience, it's about optimizing
> one's ability to play the game and to win it, even open-ended,
> 'unwinnable' games. And there is an important difference between
> those 2.

I'd actually suggest that 'powergaming' is more akin to 'Achiever
gaming' - i.e. finding the optimal path up the ladder.  If this
happens within the bounds of the game, this is quite fun for both
the game designer as well as the player.

--d

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