[MUD-Dev] SOC: Will company sanctioned cheating hurt the MMO community?

Michael Hartman michael at thresholdrpg.com
Fri May 20 15:01:43 New Zealand Standard Time 2005

Jaycen Rigger wrote:
> Matt Mihaly <matt at ironrealms.com>  wrote:

>> How do I know?  I'm not just speculating, like you are.

> I do indeed have a great deal of experience with customer service
> and these games.  I've been a Game Master/Admin on 3 different
> servers over the last 7 years.

Since you did not list any specific games, I assume these were the
Usual Suspects. Since none of the major games out there have (as of
yet) officially supported/provided for the buying and selling of
goods, enhancements, etc, your experience with this subject would be
zero. Right?

>> Cheating is playing against the rules. Once a practice isn't
>> against the rules, it's not cheating. Guess what? You don't set
>> the rules. The developer/publisher does.

> That's where you are so very wrong.  If you're getting paid for
> what you do, then you have made a collosal mis-judgement.  Your
> CUSTOMERS decide what is cheating.

Um....... no.

The inmates do not run the asylum on any properly run game.

>> A fascist state. Well, if we were talking about states, that
>> might make sense. But since we're talking about games, let's drop
>> the hyperbole and stop pretending SOE announced they're going to
>> steal your children and sell them to gypsies shall we?

> In fact, Matt, we are talking about states.  The virtual world is
> a community, a state.  If you don't get that, and if you don't get
> that political ideals apply to those communities, you might be in
> the wrong business.

No, a game is not a state. One of the most crucial things that
defines a state is that it possesses the power to jail and/or kill
you. A game developer can only do things to your character. The
stakes are infinitely lower than a real state.

Furthermore, a game has a profit motive. You can easily leave a game
with effectively zero cost or negative effects to your real
self. The same is not true for a state.

Every game world SHOULD be fascist with the developer wielding
absolute power. In fact, that is one of the things I am paying them
for. I am paying a company to wield absolute power over the game so
I have some measure of certainty about what will happen in that

Michael Hartman
President and CEO, Threshold Virtual Environments, Inc.
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