[MUD-Dev] Moving toward Massive Multiplay (was Congratulations Horizons...)

Mike Shaver shaver at off.net
Fri Jan 16 19:11:52 CET 2004

On Jan 15, Paul Schwanz wrote:

> A major gripe I have against current MMORPGs is that, although
> they are billed as massively multi-player, they don't really offer
> much in the way of massive multiplay.

Not to disagree with you in the large, as I concur wholeheartedly
with the sentiment that the games should focus more on the "game
capabilities" they get from 10K players in a world, but some of
these things have indeed been tried.  I'm not a real expert on these
cases, but I suspect other readers are (the devs in question have
been known to follow this list, in fact).

>     MMP: Here, the quest flags are attached to a larger entity.
>     It could be a server-wide quest, a quest for a particular
>     race, nation, city, guild, or whatever other large entities
>     your design might support.

ATITD did this for the majority of its technology-tree research:
players from literally miles around a given University would come
and bring things to help with the research of a new technology.
Once it was unlocked, I think the second phase of "activating" the
tech could be performed at any University in the world, but that
doesn't feel like a perfect recollection.

>     MMP: As in the Horizons example, the server may gain the
>     ability to play a new race.  Or a guild might gain the ability
>     to build a better guild hall.  A town might gain the ability
>     to build a blacksmith shop where weapon repairs are
>     discounted, or a forge where citizens can craft armor.  Your
>     city might gain the ability to build a space port.

Shadowbane added certain "contracts" to its mob-drop tables, which
could be used by any city to spawn a special NPC craftsman.
(Contracts could be traded, stolen, taken off the corpse of an
opponent, etc.)

>     MMP: Your town adds Odin's Hammer to its display case in the
>     town hall and all the blacksmiths in town learn how to craft
>     weapons with increased magical properties.  Perhaps you
>     quested for the item. Perhaps it was the spoils of war with a
>     rival town.  Perhaps you bought it from a distant
>     civilization.

>     MMP: Your village gathers the resources and skills needed to
>     construct a perimeter wall and gate.

SB's city-building metagame permitted a fair bit of this, as did
DAoC's relic warfare, I believe.

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