Monday, August 30, 2010

Online gaming - Persistence in worlds

So the first few posts here will be in varying formats until I find one that seems to work well for me.  So anywho, persistence.  For those of you unfamiliar with this term, it means a game world (usually online) where events have lasting impact upon said world.  A good example of this would be if once you killed a unique monster, it never respawned, or if you failed to escort a passenger they died and no one could interact with them again.
this would give almost every player in the game some way of making their mark upon the world.

I'm somewhat torn about this mechanic myself.  On one hand, I think it would be an interesting idea allow players the ability to radically change the game world.  This opens up the opportunities for a player to actually feel like they are taking a part in the game.  You could point to a specific instance, location or monster and lay claim to claring it, destroying it or making it safe for travelers.  This could also lead to alot of problems for new players though.  You would join the game, and unless the developers had a way to keep generating content at a rapid pace, or find a way to limit how much players could do, you would find yourself with almost nothing to do, always following behind the players who made it there before you.  Just some late night food for thought and such.


  1. Persistent worlds can be viable, but only if there is a governing way, as you elude to late in your thoughts of creation. But why does this creation have to be developer driven. Provide rewards for players who "create" content and you'll have re-generating quests, missions, etc. Also, while often a touchy subject with moms letting their kids play games, why can't NPCs (NPC/NPC, or Player/NPC) and players have children and thus create more NPCs to escort?

    I know of one game that tried - and did not know how heavy a system they unleashed upon themselves. That game did not last longer than a few hours in Beta. It then vanished in the night like vapor. It was called WISH. Perhaps someone else with the funding will remember that ghost of a game, and do it right, because persistence is a great thing if it's done right. It's immersion and interaction of the highest order.

  2. How do you classify EVE, specifically the player driven areas with regards to persistence.

  3. games such as second life come to mind as well. My own 2 cents on this concept is this: How would you take this concept and apply it in such a way that a player at any level can jump into this world and have things to do that would affect the world?

    there could be 2 ways. one way would be if the players could affect the world in the way described above. change anything and everything in it. but that presents it's own problems.

    Another way could be towards a global goal. taking over of a sector of the world or defending a sector of the world. where every few hours an event can happen that would clear the sector out. or have player controlled sectors such as eve online but have leveling sectors separately so that new players have a chance to do something instead of be bored.


  4. To answer the question about Eve, I would classify Eve has having player persistance outside of the developers. The players wholly determine what is and is not permanent in their world, such as claiming whole systems for certain corporations within the game. So it is a good example of persistance.