[MUD-Dev] Expected value and standard deviation.

Ola Fosheim Grøstad <olag@ifi.uio.no> Ola Fosheim Grøstad <olag@ifi.uio.no>
Tue Dec 16 18:09:29 New Zealand Daylight Time 2003

(old thread)

"Koster, Raph" <rkoster at soe.sony.com> writes:

>    Players will do the boring thing rather than the fun thing, if
>    they advance faster that way.

If they feel crippled or fear ending up gimped, or think their peers
are doing much better than them, obviously. Virtual worlds do not
provide a sense of ownership or a multiplicity of niches for players
to settle with (although some do, I know several players that hardly
level, myself included), and they provide unidimensional overtuned
rewardsystems, thus designers pretty much get what they ask for.

There is no reason to believe that humans in online worlds are
significantly different than humans in the physical world. Is there?

Which of course put player-theories in an odd light... Isn't there a
large chunk of self-fulfilling prophecies in the MUD design

>    There's no way to get rid of the "boring" way to play your
>    game. Players can always choose to play conservatively to
>    maximize return while minimizing risk.

Many players think death and being ganked is more "boring"... It is
fun though, how designers complain about players not taking risk and
still want them to play strategically. Slightly contradictory... :D

Contradictions in MUD designs are easy to spot. For instance, it
should be obvious that twink-friendly designs without reset is not
really going to work with PvP. Designers still mysteriously believe

Maybe these worlds would provide better experiences if one did not
go for extremeties, which tend to rule out heterogeneity and make
the world newbie-unfriendly. I haven't seen many worlds that justify
retaining players for more than a few months in terms of
content... Let them go. (granted, you would need more marketing)

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