The Game Game



  • It has been mentioned on more than one occasion that one game is in competition with another game. I have never really seen it that way. I look at them as just a different book. It might catch my eye or not. What are the thoughts of the hive on the topic?

    So we won't derail another topic.



  • Two games on the same theme are not competition. They are two variations on the same theme. The admins will be different, the implementation will be different, the playerbase will be different. Claiming that they are in competition is, to me, similar to claiming that only one person is allowed to write fan fiction for each franchise.



  • @L-B-Heuschkel

    I think some people look at those two games as being in competition with each other, but that’s a reasonable misunderstanding. It is more accurate to say that they are producing two choices for players.

    Business majors can’t tell the difference most of the time because they don’t appreciate what their theories are based on. But I don’t expect them to either.



  • I don't believe that competition is the right word, at least not in the way it's generally used. They should be in "competition" for things like... being interesting, or good places to go to, etc. Some faux-competition to keep them trying their best to be better doesn't sound like such a bad idea to me.

    They're not directly competing for a slice of the community, we can play on multiple games just fine - though we would be more inclined to spend more of our time at a place that strives to be interesting, supported by sound policies, and the like.



  • I've never looked on another game in the same genre as competition. I want it to be interesting and do well. In fact, I'm likely to play there if it is as playing on a game you're not staffing on can be relaxing.



  • it’s like Highlander rules games have to cut each other’s heads off but then they wake up in the far future and it’s confusing so i didn’t watch it all


  • Pitcrew

    @Prototart said in The Game Game:

    it’s like Highlander rules games have to cut each other’s heads off but then they wake up in the far future and it’s confusing so i didn’t watch it all

    I do not believe that someone who likes early Image comics gave up on Highlander in the middle of it.


  • Admin

    @Seamus said in The Game Game:

    It has been mentioned on more than one occasion that one game is in competition with another game. I have never really seen it that way. I look at them as just a different book. It might catch my eye or not. What are the thoughts of the hive on the topic?

    So we won't derail another topic.

    It's a naive way to see it. Look at it this way; the golden age of MUSHing was when there were more games around. It drove everyone to improve the code, the command interface offered to users, innovate around the notion of a grid, CGen, etc.

    The only 'competition' I can see is when a game is explicitly created to disrupt another. Say you're running a WoD game in New York and I fork it, asking your players to come play the same characters in mine.



  • @Arkandel said in The Game Game:

    The only 'competition' I can see is when a game is explicitly created to disrupt another. Say you're running a WoD game in New York and I fork it, asking your players to come play the same characters in mine.

    I think this kind of competition is relatively rare.

    A good example of how MUSH culture collaborates and spreads like this is akin to a local entertainment district where there are multiple restaurants, bars, and clubs. You would think that they would be all "competing" and hating on one another; however, the successful enterprises to the contrary collaborate and support one another by providing different experiences catering to different crowds. As a result, you get more foot-traffic and more new customers walking in.

    So it is that MUSHes generally collaborate and differentiate for the purpose of providing more choices for gamers, and thereby more activity and enjoyment.



  • Of course there is competition.

    Every MUer has seen a MU where players trickle away to other games in the same genre or staff on one game finds event participation to be low because the new game in the same genre is causing players to be "too busy" to play. It doesnt necessarily mean a player will abandon a game for the new game where the grass always seems greener, but it does mean that one game will suffer a sag in participation.

    I think it's very polite to say that it isnt competition, but each game wants to be a player's MAIN game and the only way to secure that is to compete with other games.



  • @Ghost

    I can obviously only speak for myself but the one thing that tends to convince me to leave games isn't that the grass is greener somewhere else but that somewhere else might offer me an opportunity to actually get involved. That, to me, is the problem with most games that have run for a while -- they're impossibly hard to get into as a new player.

    I have literally had a story teller on one game tell me not to bother. That the plot was far too complex and detailed to get into after the game had run for over a year. As a newbie I'd never be trusted and included. All but openly told me to not even bother to app.

    It's obviously not the -only- reason a game may lose players to a similar game but it sure as heck is part of it. If only the core group of players really have much to do and feel entertained, then yes, everyone else is going to be looking for alternatives and rush over to that new green field.



  • @Ghost said in The Game Game:

    I think it's very polite to say that it isnt competition, but each game wants to be a player's MAIN game and the only way to secure that is to compete with other games.

    I have literally never staffed or run a game where the main purpose was to become a player's main game.

    I have rather staffed or run a game with the purpose of providing players with an enjoyable experience.

    If my game is providing an experience so enjoyable that players are deserting other games, that's out of my control and was never my purpose.

    I really wouldn't call that "competition."



  • @L-B-Heuschkel said in The Game Game:

    @Ghost

    I can obviously only speak for myself but the one thing that tends to convince me to leave games isn't that the grass is greener somewhere else but that somewhere else might offer me an opportunity to actually get involved. That, to me, is the problem with most games that have run for a while -- they're impossibly hard to get into as a new player.

    I have literally had a story teller on one game tell me not to bother. That the plot was far too complex and detailed to get into after the game had run for over a year. As a newbie I'd never be trusted and included. All but openly told me to not even bother to app.

    It's obviously not the -only- reason a game may lose players to a similar game but it sure as heck is part of it. If only the core group of players really have much to do and feel entertained, then yes, everyone else is going to be looking for alternatives and rush over to that new green field.

    Right, and there will be a myriad number of reasons to leave a game. I'm not saying that games being in competition has anything to do with poor decisions or that it's wrong for players to leave one game for another because the grass seems greener. This is the nature of seeking something, entertainment in this case, and the competition factor isnt at the player level.

    What truly kills games? Low attendance/involvement making it so that the time/money spent to keep it going becomes less worthwhile.

    We have seen...

    • Players threaten to "steal players" to other games that are allegedly better
    • Former staff taking code and opening up a new place in the same genre to "lure players" to their new game
    • Games shut down because another game in the same genre opens up at the same time and population suffers for it.

    What do games need to thrive? Player investment of time and effort. Time an effort is a finite resource.

    So in the "not using pretty words" sense of things...

    Competition isnt a bad word. Players dont want to waste their time and neither do staffers. Game selection/involvement is a matter of trying to determine if putting effort into a game is worthwhile, and staff of games has to capture that to keep the game going. This is done by trying to create an environment that makes players feel like it will be less worthwhile to focus on other games.

    Arx has thrived because it is competitive. People are playing it because it's crafted something that people find rewarding that other games dont offer.

    Simple as pie to me.



  • @Ganymede said in The Game Game:

    I have literally never staffed or run a game where the main purpose was to become a player's main game.

    Neither has anyone else.

    Saying "each game WANTS to be a player's main game" is not the same as saying "the whole reason people open up, staff, and maintain games is to be the primary game".

    No. People open these games because they want to make some creative/fun sandbox and it's boring if the other kids dont wanna play in it.


  • Pitcrew

    @Ghost said in The Game Game:

    I think it's very polite to say that it isnt competition, but each game wants to be a player's MAIN game and the only way to secure that is to compete with other games.

    Gotta beg to differ. I want my game to be a player's MAIN game if it's where they're having the most fun RIGHT NOW. If they find another place to have fun RIGHT NOW, that should be their main game.

    Honestly, the lack of "competing" games - whether in the same genre or a completely different one - is the opposite of awesome as an admin. It means players are stuck square-pegging it on a "good enough" game rather than being excited and energized on the RIGHT game.



  • @krmbm Really?

    Not being rude here (so please don't read it in that voice), but are you saying a game owner/staff is fine with being "the backup" game and missing out on attendance on events to another game because they're just happy people are having fun?

    If so, I think that's a very charming thing to say and be seen saying, but I have a hard time believing that any game that is aware that their events aren't being populated because people are so busy on Arx are like: "This is great."

    I'm also gonna double down and say that in these situations staff start talking about ways to inspire people to populate their events despite other available options, which is no different than McDonalds bringing the McRib back when sales are low.

    Because: it's competition


  • Pitcrew

    @Ghost said in The Game Game:

    @krmbm Really?

    Yes. Really.


  • Pitcrew

    I think the trampling rush of people to a game when it first opens is almost never about that game itself but:

    1. People are obsessed with getting in I'm the ground floor due to obsession (justified or not) that they can advance faster there than on where they are playing because it's a blank slate.

    2. Novelty and the ability to get to play around thinking about new characters, esp if it's being pumped up here or amongst friends.

    3. The hope that this time staff will "do it right", whatever that means for that individual person.

    4. A hope that the new place will allow them to recreate something they really enjoyed and aew probably looking through rose colored glasses about now.

    I think The Surge tends to be more harmful to the new game than the other ones, esp if staff doesnt plan for it. It is a normal enough problem that I have noticed a lot of them /do/ which is fantastic. I don't believe you really know a game's stable population and base until 3+ months in if not more, which is why I am happy to see staff more and more not killing themselves to keep up at the height of The Surge and then being burnt the fuck out because probably at least half if not more of the people drift away/park in the ooc room/wander back to other places once the novelty wears off and what they wrte expecting does not fall into their lap.

    I think it's most healthy when there is diversity in games around a theme. That sometimes IS competitive but most of the time it is not--the only drawback is the solid number of people who sit and whine and complain that the game isn't run the way that they like, even when its very clear the structure and scope is super different from what they like.


  • Pitcrew

    @Ghost People are busy on Arx but it's a different kind of busy than say a game where there are a ton of events where you get to fight bad guys and play it out on screen.

    But someone who expects the same kind if busy on arx as they get elsewhere or vice versa is probably going to be frustrated and look for something to blame, sure.



  • @mietze said in The Game Game:

    I think the trampling rush of people to a game when it first opens is almost never about that game itself but:

    1. People are obsessed with getting in I'm the ground floor due to obsession (justified or not) that they can advance faster there than on where they are playing because it's a blank slate.

    2. Novelty and the ability to get to play around thinking about new characters, esp if it's being pumped up here or amongst friends.

    3. The hope that this time staff will "do it right", whatever that means for that individual person.

    4. A hope that the new place will allow them to recreate something they really enjoyed and aew probably looking through rose colored glasses about now.

    for comic games there’s also The FC Gold Rush