[MUD-Dev] DGN: Reasons for play [was: EmergentBehaviorsspawnedfrom...]

Sean Howard squidi at squidi.net
Fri Oct 7 03:34:58 New Zealand Daylight Time 2005

"Michael Sellers" <mike at onlinealchemy.com> wrote:

> You know you're proving Amanda's point, right?  We might all agree
> here that "The Seven Samurai" is a good, even great movie, while
> "Dude, Where's My Car" is puerile nonsense.  But these are
> *opinions* -- they're inherently subjective.

But some opinions are worth more than others. There's a difference
between liking cheese just because and thinking The Seven Samurai is
a better movie because of technical, emotional, compositional, and
visual merit.

> So, does $58M+ in sales make a "good" movie?  At the very least,
> it's a clear indication that many people saw and enjoyed the movie
> (as is its time in the top ten).

We've been through this before - in this very thread. You can make
someone buy anything with the right marketing. It is no indication
of the innate value of the product being sold.

> The point is that there is no "we" to judge -- unless you want to
> go by the box office and rental revenues, in which case "we," the
> people seeing this movie, think it's pretty dang good after all.
> > Outside of that though, there is no "we" to judge whether a
> movie, or game, is "good."  We each know what we like, but no
> matter how well-formed our opinions, they're still subjective.

You're basically saying that there is no chemistry because "we"
don't know the difference between Borium and Carbon. We don't need a
consensus from the people out there that just play football
games. We need a sort of set of philosopher kings to define an
objective quality and successfully hold each game up to the
light. We just need a few critical, intelligent, logical people to
set this standard, not the entire population.

This whole "it's still subjective" crap is the same reason why
people don't "believe in" evolution. I mean, you have to have faith
in science right? Science is based on a VERY complex philosophy that
has been hammered out over centuries of debate. Scientific theory is
used to predict, not explain. It needs to be falsifiable. It has to
be observable.  It is not held to the flismy standard of whether we
think its nifty or not. The same holds true to what constitutes a
"good game". We don't have to like it for it to be good, which means
that's something more substantial there.

> Sometimes good games (or movies) don't do very well and sometimes
> horrible games stay at the top of the charts -- for various values
> of "good" which are going to differ by person and vary over time,
> due to their inherent subjectivity.

There you go again, confusing the market place with the quality that
can not be named...

> Informed, articulate, insightful opinions are worthwhile (even if
> they are still subbjective) because they help others understand
> more about a game and try ones they might otherwise miss.  But
> don't mistake this for some form of objective or inherently
> trustworthy commentary that will somehow raise the quality of
> games that get made.

You make it sound like subjectivity is the catch all escape
clause. Don't agree with an opinion, no matter how informed,
articulate, or insightful - for any reason, not matter how stupid,
shallow, or self absorbed - and it's okay because it's just
subjective anyway. Not all subjectivity is created equal. Some
opinions are WORTH MORE than others, and some opinions are worth so
little as to be embarrassing (like those guys who think the moon
landing was faked).

You are saying that all opinions are equally worthless. There's no
good opinions or bad opinions - It's all the same to you because you
just can't tell the difference.

- Sean
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