The Joy of Gaming (Or what do games do well?)

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Harlequin
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The Joy of Gaming (Or what do games do well?)

Postby Harlequin » Mon Aug 04, 2014 11:08 pm

I realized I spend a great deal of time here discussing the negatives of SL RP and my and Tamar's experiences there. I don't apologize for that, but I do think that it's only part of the solution.

I also see a lot of people making the claim that "Male players just prefer MMOS"... which is false. Sort of. Instead it's that players prefer games that give them something in return for time spent, in a ratio that makes them feel that they spent their time well. This is something that I think is dimly understood, and I believe that there's a lack of understanding about what actually interests players, that SL RP lacks.

To that end, I've decided to kill two birds with one stone. I play a lot of online games of various types (And single player ones) and so I figure... I may as well discuss what I found fun. I'll keep it interesting, try to make them as fun to read as they are informative, but sort of present a digest of what other games do really well to keep the interest of a conflict oriented gamer like myself. It'll also serve to kick my butt back into writing.

I encourage others to do the same. What're you playing, why are you playing it, and what really awesome thing happened that made you go "Wow. That was really fun"? I think it's time to stop just discussing the same old thing, and start injecting new ideas and experiences in.

I'm working on a first post now, focusing on EVE online and some events that occurred in short spans, but were -immensely- fun.
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Harlequin
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Re: The Joy of Gaming (Or what do games do well?)

Postby Harlequin » Tue Aug 05, 2014 12:18 am

A simple event... our EVE corp lives in wormhole space, which means we don't connect to other star systems directly like good, decent folk. Instead, various "holes" pop open in our space to connect us to random locations.

Earlier today, I'd logged in to find that we'd had a hole to another corp's wormhole open. Totally random event, we'd never met these guys before... and very likely never will meet them again. We'd sent a scout through, and he did something that tweaked that other corp off... and suddenly we had a small fleet in our system, massing for a fight.

The next hour was spent getting ships ready... we massed our capital ships, they massed their battleships, I hopped in my new stealth bomber and hoped I'd get a chance to wtfpwn someone. Plans were hatched, they attempted to goad us into an attack, and in general both sides sat and plotted for the best time to hit. It was beyond tense, especially after they moved a capital ship into our space.

After... about an hour or so, no one moved on each other. They weren't confident they could take us in a head-on assault, and we didn't have the logistic ships to keep an assault on them going, so we stared at each other and the other corp backed down through their hole again.

Even without firing a shot, it was intense. I was zipping around cloaked, watching the other entrances into our system, we had a scout in their hole, and a scout just off their fleet, giving us updates on ship movement.s What they had. What was moving where. We made guesses as to their intent and did things to toss them off their game.

Had this gone sour we could have lost a lot of ships, and a lot of cash. A totally random event that was unavoidable put our corp (and presumably theirs) onto high alert and lead to some really fun headgames on both sides. It was more tense and honestly nerve-wracking than any SL RP I've had in ages.

Additionally, the sudden event caught us off guard and since we couldn't just tell them "Oh no, come back later" we had to make due. I'm the newest member of the corp, and suddenly I found myself in a combat scout position, flitting about and trying to dodge enemy traps, keeping an eye on movements and ready to murderface anyone I caught out alone. I got to show that I'm good at a job I'd never even considered, and now things in our own corp have changed just a bit due to the way people acted under pressure.

It really was -really- fun... and made me realize just how fun EVE can be. Random events putting people into such high alert states with real chances for loss generated a major bout of fun.
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Re: The Joy of Gaming (Or what do games do well?)

Postby Allison Millet » Tue Aug 05, 2014 7:50 am

That sounds like a really awesome fun time...sorta like a mental chess game played out without ever really moving pieces. I've always wanted to get into EVE but just have never felt like I had the time or would have a chance to even get into it very well without getting pwned face stomped by a larger more established group.
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Re: The Joy of Gaming (Or what do games do well?)

Postby Dyce » Tue Aug 05, 2014 1:54 pm

I play EVE. I play Lord of the Rings Online. I play Diablo 3. I play Starcraft 2. I play (sometimes) WoW. I played Final Fantasy 14. I play Guild Wars (original).

I like each of them for different reasons. I also dislike each of them for different reasons. And none of them can take a part of one and put it into the other to make the "perfect" game. They are so very disparately apart.

I like EVE simply because of its setting and the potential it has. I dislike EVE because it is damn near impossible to find a good RP corp that is both effective at the game itself and makes the game feel immersive. Nevertheless, I like that it is a spaceflight game that is not twitch-action. I like that there are no character levels. And I like STARSHIPS!!! WHOO!!!

Lord of the Rings Online - love the story and background and the fidelity to Tolkien's legendarium. Hate the avatars. They need to update their avatars. Badly. I like that it is lengthy and there's no way to level up fast. And I love the ungodly amount of lore involved. When I play, I really feel like I'm in Middle-Earth. Downside is the social aspect. The Kinships (guilds) kinda suck.

...I could go into the other games I play, but maybe later.

Still waiting for a good Star Wars MMO that doesn't suck. I miss Galaxies. *sniff*
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Re: The Joy of Gaming (Or what do games do well?)

Postby Tamar Luminos » Tue Aug 05, 2014 2:02 pm

I think that's what I miss most from SL- that sense of tension, excitement, surprise- walking down the streets in Eammons (Obscure Reality) as a neko, tail twitching as I nervously glanced up at the full moon, knowing Ost's wolf pack could pop out and murder me at any moment if I couldn't get someplace safe quickly, or the general fear of Syngen's demon faction kidnapping you off the street, or even the fear of the unknown as we tried to find out what those glowing sigils were in front of the city hall and why we were all trapped in the small black and white little town in the first place.

Or the ongoing, almost gleeful faction wars in Erie Isle- when if the wrong faction strayed out of their "safe zone" they were fair game to hunt, and there was a sense of mystery, danger, mounting tension from events happening- people disappearing, monsters roaming the streets. Where the magic faction I was in trained to fight demons, and had to pack silver rounds to fight off the werewolves as well, and getting caught out in the open on the wrong side of town meant getting killed or captured. And political intrigue there meant jockeying for leadership of the faction, an opposing candidate got shot by a sniper, or attacked by lighting, chopping off people's hands, ghosts attacking to steal people's souls, bloody shootouts in the street, a mage (Harlequin's character at the time, heh) turning a rival's bodyguard inside out in what has to be one of the most intense, raw, bloody death scenes I've ever scene in my years in SL.

That's what I loved about SL- there was a sense of danger, risk, surprise, excitement, loss, around every turn, even for just walking down the street. There were monsters that would kill you or worse. Characters died, characters had bad things happen to them, raids/attacks happened between factions/sim groups and the rest of the sim was affected by the events. There was plenty of sex, plenty of violence, lots of intensity to be found and I couldn't wait to log in, check in, and see what action I'd missed overnight or however long I'd been logged out.

It had the action and excitement and unpredictability of GE but with the storylines, paraposts, and character complexity of BtB. There was more emphasis on simwide storylines and less on personal storylines and people tended to go out, cluster in public areas because they all wanted to get in on the action. Sure, there were asshats, you'd get ganked sometimes by some idiot who barely knew how to string words together in a post, or some dude who thought your av was hot and just wanted to get his rocks off, but on the whole- it was a great mix and a hellova lot of fun.
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Harlequin
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Re: The Joy of Gaming (Or what do games do well?)

Postby Harlequin » Tue Aug 05, 2014 9:16 pm

I admit it would be great fun to RP in EVE, but on the other hand I understand why almost no one does it. When you're in a universe where basically everyone is very, very dangerous and somewhat (Okay, very) homocidal... it's actually hard to RP.

More to the point, you don't often get the chance. I've got my little stealth ship which I intend to go pirating in, going into areas where people mine to murder them because I'm broken inside. Opening comms would ruin that, and really, in anywhere but safe space people are more likely to just open fire on one another than to talk. In a way, it's game theory. You're better off murdering the other guy first, lest he be hostile and decide to murder you.

Amusingly... I'm okay with this. I like this state of affairs. It's insane and psychotic and really fun. I feel a tension just going on an exploration run that SL RP could never (Or at least has never) matched.
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Harlequin
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Re: The Joy of Gaming (Or what do games do well?)

Postby Harlequin » Fri Aug 08, 2014 9:01 pm

Earlier, while playing Volgarr the Viking, I stabbed a lizardman in the face.

I really don't have an in-depth analysis of this or why it's good, or what's applicable to RP. I just really have always wanted to play a barbarian in an SL RP and stab a lizardman in the face.

It seems like it'd be pretty fun.
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