[MUD-Dev] Do players enjoy farming?

Chanur Silvarian chanur at guildsite.com
Fri Jan 9 14:39:11 CET 2004

From: Paul Schwanz <pschwanz at comcast.net>

> When I talk about camping and farming, I'm referring to *any*
> low-risk activity that produces predictable gains, not just the
> normal paradigm for camping and farming monster spawns.  I think
> players like these sorts of activities much more than what we
> typically attribute to them.  They aren't always the adrenalin
> junkies that we make them out to be.  The problem, as I see it, is
> that monster-bashing is typically the only real route to success,
> both for those who are looking for an adrenalin high as well as
> for those who are looking for a low-risk, low -committment, highly
> controlled activity.

> So why not introduce something like real farming?  Those who are
> interested in farming-like or even mining-like activities can be
> the major producers of resources in the game.  When you add
> monsters to this mix, you can get something very interesting.  The
> farmers don't want to be killed.  That's not really their game.
> However, the monsters have a nasty habit of ruining their crops,
> killing their sheep, or otherwise making a nuisance of themselves.
> So, the farmers hire monster killers (those who like high-risk
> activities) to help keep the nuisance to a minimum.  Or maybe they
> hire builders to construct a better wall around their property.
> In any case, you avoid the very strange case where the game is
> about seeking out monsters to farm, camp, or otherwise harvest as
> the major source of game resources.  You can make monsters bigger
> and scarier with less thought given to balance, since the entire
> game is no longer based on harvesting them.  Best of all, you can
> evoke emotions that are much more in line with how monsters should
> be viewed.  Not as something like corn or wheat, but as big,
> scary, dangerous things that we love to fear and love to hate.  >
> It is a very different approach, but one that makes a lot more
> sense to me than does the current one.

Ahh, it seems that you have a fundamentally different definition of
farming than Rayzam and I.  We are referring to any activity that
requires performing a repetitive action in order to achieve some
gain.  In our definition the concern of whether that repetitive
action is of a high or low risk is irrelevant, just that it is
endlessly repetitive.

I really like your idea of implementing real farming, in fact I was
already working on that.  My wife used to love to harvest wheat in
UO when it first released and a good friend of mine always said that
all he wanted to do in UO was be a farmer and he wished they had
included real farming, so I want to give that to them in very much
the manner that you describe.

- Chanur Silvarian -
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