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Mar 04, 2011

Comments

1.

I thought that while EvE is an open / libertarian game CCP have always maintained a a hard line on anti-RMT.

Hence you can like steal and cheat other pilots out of every credit they have.

To bang on about my Goffman'esque post on play - the rougher the game the more we tend to signal it is a game, hence you would expect CCP not only to be ant-RMT but to be seen to be anti-RMT.

2.

Is there a link to today's talk? The 2009 talk is interesting, but I've love to hear the results since then (and not at GDC).

3.

I don't know of a link, sorry!

4.

It's not really giving a complete picture of CCP, to talk about RMT and not mention the ways in which they offer legitimate (and monitized) outlets for it - the buying and selling of game time codes for ISK and a secure market for buying and selling characters. These are just as important to combating the unwanted RMT (macro miners/farmers) as banning them. Someone looking at this out of contact might leap to an over-simplistic conclusion.

5.

Is RMT universally bad, or is it only bad in terms of preserving a level of interration implied by the product creators?

What about, for example, Item Shops? Do you consider those RMT, even though its basically a trade with the developer? To me the fundamentals of RMT are evident in Item Shop mechanics, at least in how the transaction affects the game experience.

How about products like Entropia Universe, that are wholly based in the existence and embrace of RMT, and where there is virtually no interration between the game world and real life?

6.

Heh. I remember arguing this and getting shouted down by the second life fans a few years ago.

To me this is self evident. People play, in my view, MMOs as escapism from the day to day humdrum of real life. Most of that humdrum involves working for money, followed by having not enough of it, followed by being stressed out over the lack of quality life this ensues.

Thats not to say having an ingame economy is bad. On the contrary ingame economies critically provide an organic means of regulating success targets and payoff. In short providing rewards for gaming.

But thats it. The economy , even in a game like Eve which is heavily invested in its economy, is not the end-goal of the game. The end goal must be FUN. When that stops being the end goal, well its a pretty boring game isn't it?

So for me, that made Second Life a very limited proposition. Sure I could explore around and look at some cool artworks, but even then, it seemed like every man and his dog had built *realistic* looking houses. Um, I can get in my car and drive around a rich suburb and see pretty mansions IRL all day. What else was there? Well there was , uh, making stuff , and selling stuff. I can't make shit, so that just left buying stuff, like with real dollars. BORING.

Even on EVE Online, my personal enjoyment of the game plumetted when it over time became clearer that my main existance in a 0.0 guild had to do with protecting some other players assets so HE could get rich. Then when I found out that the guild leader of one of the other teams had allegedly (and with all these things, who knows?) found himself in strife IRL with organized crime elements in the Ukraine the whole thing got dramatically less fun. Especially when trying to fight enemies which had seeming limitless access to top end ships with no apparent base to earn that money. It got very tiring. In the 2-3 years since I've logged on maybe once and rapidly lost interest again.

Take Minecraft as an interesting counter example. As far as communities go, meh, whiney kids mostly. But the creative side is fun as heck, theres absolutely no intrusion by any form of outside or internal economy (although I've heard of economy server plugins being deployed to ration resources like diamonds, I've never actually seen it) and theres a degree of actual game play. The thing has skyrocketed where SL is seemingly ,but in my view always predictably , bleeding to death. The game is somewhat limited by content, and will likely fade in time, but its success seems to have a lot to do with the fact that its a genuinely fun thing to play with, especially in groups.

As for entropia universe. Good luck with that mess!

7.

Also, Edward, is there a link to the paper somewhere for those of us who have left (for now!) academia and don't have access to journals no more? I can't find much beyond the abstract, so I'm assuming its paywalled.

I can ask you offline if you don't want such a thing floating around the open internet? (or just forget it, if your not allowed/dont want to)

8.

Yes, it is here:

http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=917124

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