[MUD-Dev] Player generated quests

Talanithus Tarant talanithus at mindspring.com
Tue Mar 16 04:22:37 CET 2004

> achacha at hotmail.com wrote:
>> wcoles at reflectionsinteractive.com wrote:

>>> Just throwing this out (partially as an extension to the
>>> previous discussion about fed-ex quests). Although I'm sure it's
>>> not a new idea. Giving players the ability to provide quests for
>>> each other and provide experience gains for completion.

>> This leaves a huge hole for exploits unfortunately.  There is
>> nothing preventing someone from leveling one account, then on
>> another machine starting another account and giving quests to the
>> lower level which are trivial for huge xp gain.  Minimal xp gain
>> for a high level player is a gigantic gain for a low level
>> player, and vice versa.

Why does there have to be ANY experience gain at all?  Why can't the
reward of completing a player developed quest simply be the quest
itself, or whatever items the player seeded into it from his own
adventures?  If we look at the history of player "volunteers" in
Quest Creation in the MMORPG and MUD genre, I think it is safe to
assume that many of the players simply create their own quests
because they ENJOY it, not because of a presumed reward.  Similar to
how much as I enjoy being a Gamemaster in a pen and paper RPG

I am a firm believer that the "pitfalls" of allowing player's to
create their own quests are considerably smaller then most Developer
Houses assume, and that their fears lie more squarely on the
possibility of diluting the existing foundational fiction of their
worlds then exploits or abuses.  It would be a simple enough
programming job to remove any form of tangible reward from player
created quests, and allow the player's themselves to provide any
"loot" for them...  and I guarantee you there enough retired Dungeon
Masters waiting in the player base to grab that ball and make a run
to MMOG Stardom.

As for the fear of diluting their fictional consistency, I consider
that a dead horse.  No matter how "RP strict" you want to be,
players are going to muddy it up somehow.  Even in MMOGs as strict
in their foundational approach as SWG and MEO, there are GOING to be
players who do whatever they want...  be it a Klingon "Elf", Vampire
"Hobbit", Mecha "Wookie", whatever.  Beyond only allowing players to
have access to art resources that are "correct", and possibly naming
conventions, what else can a Developer do to enforce that the player
stay within the fictional guidelines of their world?  Not a heck of
a lot, in my opinion.  At least, not much that seems to work!

Anyways, back on topic...  I say let players create quests just for
the fun of it.  The "immortality" of their creative efforts, and the
appreciation from fellow players for a well told story, should be
more then enough of a reward.

Talanithus Tarant
  UO Lake Superior - http://uols.net
  Tel'Mithrim - http://www.grey-company.org
  UO Powergamers - http://uopowergamers.com
  Unknown Player - http://www.unknownplayer.com
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