[MUD-Dev] Reusable plots for quests

coder at ibm.net coder at ibm.net
Wed Oct 22 22:44:08 CEST 1997

On 20/10/97 at 09:54 AM, "Travis Casey" <efindel at polaris.net> said:
>Brandon J. Rickman <ashes at pc4.zennet.com> wrote:
>>On Sat, 11 Oct 1997 22:58:39 PST8PDT "Travis Casey"
>><efindel at polaris.net> wrote:
>>>Brian Price <blprice at bedford.net> wrote:

>IMHO, a mud should not have a "steady-state" position -- if it does, then
>the players can't really change the world in any significant way, and all
>their actions are for naught.  While this might be realistic, it's
>not fitting in the heroic mold.  (Of course, if your mud isn't supposed
>to be in the heroic mold, it may be appropriate for the actions of the
>PCs to never have any significant effect.)

<<Much of what follows is of course, obvious, but I think it bears
spelling out as it allows concetration on the internal wrangling of the
steady state.>>

I don't think this is possible if there is any form of game continuity
(echoes of the evolution threads that ran a while back?).  Consider, if it
is possible for players to fundamentally affect and change the game, and
the game does not have a steady state, then the game will progressively
mutate over time until it becomes utterly alien to its initial
incarnation.  Ignoring all the really interesting aspects and problems of
this, the game design problem is that your inital game design is now no
longer applicable, and you have little to no (I suspect guaranteed no, due
to the character of the changes players will attempt to effect in attempt
to better their positions) probability that any aspect of your initial
game design will pertain to the new game world.

Consider: Could you make a game which was playable in Flatland but which
was also equally playable in out RL world, __and__ in the interesting
warps of time and space about a black whole, __and_ in a high magic world
etc etc etc?

Much more tempting I think is to attempt a game world which interally
strives to maintain a macro steady state.  Sure, there can eb major
upheavals and changes to the internal structure and minutae of the world,
but the bnasic pattern remains unchanged, and left to its own devices, the
game world will internally conspire to return the minutae to their
default-ish characteristics.

Thus you can have a game which is set, perhaps, in the Rebel Alliance
against Darth Vader, The Rebel's are never totally defeated, and Darth
Vader never actually dies.  The game then occurs within the defined steady
state of the war.  What particular planets are on what side, who lives,
who doesn't, and what the curent power balance is, is all in flux with the
curves asymptotic on both sides.

J C Lawrence                               Internet: claw at null.net
----------(*)                              Internet: coder at ibm.net
...Honourary Member of Clan McFud -- Teamer's Avenging Monolith...

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