Psychochild's Blog

A developer's musings on game development and writing.

25 August, 2010

I’ll be at Dragon*Con
Filed under: — Psychochild @ 11:57 PM

I’m off to Dragon*Con next week. I’ll be doing three (!!!) talks on Friday, two about MMOs and one about the California violent video game law in front of the U.S. Supreme Court currently.

Unfortunately PAX is the same weekend, so I won’t be seeing a lot of people who might otherwise show up. But, if you’re going or in the Atlanta area and want to meet up, drop me a line!

23 August, 2010

The quest for fun
Filed under: — Psychochild @ 12:50 AM

A lot of people tend to believe that the only important thing in a game is “fun”. There are several problems with this, perhaps the most important being there is more to an experience than fun: self-improvement, information, understanding, and various other good things can come from an experience like watching a movie or playing a game. The hyperfocus on fun means that a lot of other important aspects might get overlooked.

Let’s look at some of the problems with finding fun in a game.

19 August, 2010

Cyberpunk as a setting for an MMO
Filed under: — Psychochild @ 11:30 PM

Over, I wrote a pair of posts about Cyberpunk as an MMO genre.

Cyberpunk is a terrible genre for an MMO
Cyberpunk is a terrific genre for an MMO

Since these are arguably about MMO development, I figured a few of you might find them interesting.

Some more developer-specific thoughts for the audience here after the jump.

8 August, 2010

Games as a mirror
Filed under: — Psychochild @ 1:56 AM

Games hard to really understand purely in terms of media that has come before. Games aren’t like a TV show or a movie except that you push a few buttons (at least the good ones aren’t). The role of the player is important to the process of enjoying a game since interactivity allows them some control. The exact role the player takes in creating the story is one that creates endless debate, but I think all sides agree that interactivity is a key element to games.

One of the most interesting things about this, however, is that it means players do tend to invest something of themselves into a game. In MMOs, this means that many people get heavily and personally invested into a game. What is really interesting is that this tends to hold a mirror up to the person looking at the game, whether they realize it or not. One’s actions and perceptions in the game tend to reflect as much if not more about the person as they do about the game or even the game’s creators.

Let’s take a closer look at this, shall we?

3 August, 2010

Blood Elf Porn
Filed under: — Psychochild @ 2:24 AM

Did that title get your attention? :)

Tobold wrote about this topic, looking at why MMOs don’t have more sexually-themed content. He points out that in the U.S., the porn industry is bigger than the MMO industry. So, why don’t we dip their chocolate in our peanut butter and get two great tastes that taste great together?

Damn, just about any metaphor I might use is going to sound dirty, isn’t it? Ah, well, let’s take a look at the problems of translating sex to games and MMOs.

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