Free Ranged Gamers

 

Every living thing has a habitat.

animalhabitats7

A place for everything, and everything in its place

This includes humans.

A human's habitat is his computer. Take this to heart, children.
The human habitat is his computer. Take this to heart, children

 

At least, this is probably the logic Lucasfilm used when naming their MMORPG Habitat. Coming even before the granddaddy of all MMORPGs, Ultima Online, it was the first (graphical) MMORPG with its Beta release in 1986. It was played via the Commodore 64.

commodore64setup

What's the 64 stand for? The number of Kilobytes this thing has.

As I said, it was the first graphical MMORPG- there had been other, textual games released earlier.

screenshot

Apparently, pantsuits are all the rage online.

Though this was a looooooooooong time ago in video game years, the lessons learned from this foray should be remembered by all developers.

Many developers want to control players, forcing them to do exactly what they want for a particular situation. This seldom works out as players are always on the look out for an easy solution to a tough problem- all well and good when you’re at home away from the studio’s watchful eyes.

eyeball_bush

Or so you'd think...

But when you play online with your friends, enemies, acquaintences, drunken college students, creepy no-lifers, small man-children, and possible aliens, the game developer is always present, always watching.

66363_aa-eyesonly-425

When Blizzard says they keep an eye out for cheaters, they mean it.

This gives the creators urges… strong urges. “No!”, they cry, “That’s not what you’re supposed to do! This is what you’re supposed to do!”

Sometimes, the urges win and the game gets changed. Sometimes it really is for the better, other times it’s simply because the developer is unable to sit back and watch emerging gameplay. Which is a pity.

Good studios soon realize that, regardless the game, players are going to do things never conceived by the makers. And they let them. After all, it’s futile- controlling gamers is like herding cats.

Herding_Cats

Ur doin it rong.

So smart developers don’t even bother, except to fix things that are truly broken, and the gamers are pleased.

And God looked upon it and said:

“Good enough.”

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Published in: on November 11, 2009 at 10:58 pm  Comments (1)  

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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. You could’ve done my presenation for me! haha 😉

    I liked the “Everything has a habitat” section, even humans. I guess some humans want more than one however….


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