[MUD-Dev] Congratulations Horizons...

T H lazingtiger at yahoo.com
Tue Jan 13 21:17:44 New Zealand Daylight Time 2004


Just going to start with a quick hello, and hope I can add to some
of the discussion here.

--- Brad McQuaid <bmcquaid at cox.net> wrote:

> A generalization of where we've seen some games fail.  I've played
> MUDs and MMOGs where travel still takes time, is interesting, and
> doesn't require egregious teleportation.  The current trend to
> trivialize travel to make a game more 'accessible' is both
> unnecessary and damaging to the genre; but, I suppose, that's a
> different topic.

It is a different topic, but I hope I dont tread too far off course
here. I think its a trend that emphasizes community building over
the quests and a sense of world space. Being on the other side of
the world from a friend or group of friends is a major barrier in
sharing a gaming experience in a world with higher travel times, and
less of one that allows faster travel. Which is part of the issue
here at hand, which is that the way many players tend to experience
an environment isnt nescessarily one that is quest friendly.

>> What would be welcome is a way to preserve the 'unknown' part of
>> the quest between various takers. And perhaps rather than relying
>> on persistence make it quite possible to actually fail.

> Yes, putting in a random factor and/or decisions that can lead to
> failure or some other event is interesting, as long as some
> caution is applied such that the player doesn't feel 'screwed'
> when he 'fails' the quest he thought he'd earned the right to
> succeed at.

Frustration with failure tends to be fairly directly related to time
spent doing a quest. So for the more elaborate quests, which I think
are in many ways more satisfying and richer experience, including a
signifigant failure option would be more trouble than its worse, as
its likely to create a VERY angry player.

> Again, what you describe is very 'low content'.  One can't have
> many of these quests, and then, with what you described, you not
> only couldn't have many of them, but you'd have to limit how many
> people could become the champion of the gods, lest everyone is
> eventually a god, leading to godhood becoming trivial.  Putting a
> lot of effort into this kind of content is simply a poor use of
> your designer's time.

I think while having 10 "champion of the god's" running around above
exterminating mice is a bit much, I think changing NPC interactions
to a reasonable degree with players would create a more immersive
feel for the gamer. Upon completion of a quest where a dragon is
slain to save a town, havingall the town members refer to the quest
completers as "dragon slayer" doesnt particularly effect the game
signifigantly, but it does give the player a sense that persistance
is maintained in the world, and help to maintain suspension in
disbelief. The more elaborate and showy NPC interactions are, the
more rewarding the whole experience.
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