[MUD-Dev] Congratulations Horizons...

Brad McQuaid bmcquaid at cox.net
Thu Jan 8 01:02:17 CET 2004

From: "Lee Sheldon" <lsheldo2 at tampabay.rr.com>

>   2) Here's one for Brad McQuaid to chew on. His quote: "All
>   quests are FedEx." In fact out of several steps (5?) in Trials
>   of the Gifted only one step requires you to go obtain items and
>   return to the questgiver and that is if you solve a simple
>   riddle. The rest are not.

In fairness, I'm trying to think back to the exact context of that
paraphrase, yet I do recall saying something similar.

I believe my point was you are ALWAYS taking something from one
place/NPC to another place/NPC, hence it is like 'bringing a piece
of mail'.  Whether that 'mail' is in the form of an item or
something else (generically, a 'flag' on your character) was simply
my point that all quests can be boiled down to that -- regardless of
all the cool story and setting you can place on top of it, you still
need that fundamental mechanism.

In other words, you encounter an NPC; you kill the NPC or say or do
the right thing; the NPC gives you an item; you take that item to
another NPC; you get a reward


You encounter an NPC and kill the NPC or say or do the right thing;
the NPC 'flags' you somehow; you go meet and talk to another NPC;
you say something or just walk in vicinity; the flag is checked,
it's true, you get a reward.

You are Fed'Ex'ing an item or a flag or some sort of marker that
triggers a reward (finishing the quest), and then that marker
typically (but not always) is used up (item gone, flag turned off,
etc.)  Also, it doesn't have to be an NPC... You could make it some
other sort of event (arriving in a certain spot, for example, or
saying something, that triggers the flag and or reacts to the flag).

I don't believe I ever meant to imply that a quest flag had to be an
ITEM; rather an item is a type of flag.  The context that I recall
was me responding to an assertion that all EQ quests were 'merely'
fed-ex and replying that all quests were, when simplified
mechanically, indeed fed-ex, and that it was the cool story line and
setting that made them seem more than simple and boring.  I think I
also said that EQ could be doing a better job at layering context,
story, lore, and setting over that fundamental mechanism too.


That said, if my quote you are paraphrasing from several years back
implied otherwise, consider it revised and/or clarified.

Likewise, if Horizons has achieved some sort of paradigm shift
beyond the flag mechanism, do tell.


Brad McQuaid
President & CEO
Sigil Games Online, Inc.
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MUD-Dev at kanga.nu

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