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PostPosted: Tue May 01, 2007 10:53 pm 
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See, I think this perspective on Cyan's design intent on 'story' is vital.

My interpretation is that the a lot of us players are on a different page than Cyan on what that means.

I think that when people expect 'story', and in that, they mean usually mean 'narrative'. There is a story arc, in which events and characters are tools which serve the overall course and purpose of the narrative. In that paradigm, there is acentral theme or message with an arc of exposition/plot point/conflict/plot point/resolution. In RPG theory, this is called Narrative style of gaming.

However, it seems what Cyan has provided is an environment and a set of personalities which exist solely within the boundaries of that environment. Nick isn't the plot element that exists to touch off in cavern conflict, he is a character who has a bit of a subversive side and is vulnerable to the romantic attentions of women. Cyan has set up these characters like setting up a field of dominoes. They react to players and to each other based off of the characteristics provided to them. This is called the Simulationist style of gaming. Cyan's characters are firmly in that paradigm of play.

I think, once again, the issue is expectations. Others have criticized the 'sequence of events' (as Zardoz explained it) instead of a coherent narrative. I think the issue is you won't see a lot of coherent narratives in Myst Online - that's not what it is designed to provide.

Rather, we develop a historical context based off of a sequence of events, one powered by our reactions to those events. In this respect, the game isn't an adventure game, it is a social sandbox game. A large chunk of what the game is comes from what the players bring to it.

I think if we'd really realized that as a whole before the game started, we may not have had a lot of the issues we have had.

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PostPosted: Tue May 01, 2007 11:03 pm 
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MikeFitz wrote:
However, I've had to seriously evaluate, on several occasions now, that if this is what I am to expect, then I might have to change the channel.


I can't disagree with your want to change the channel over the ADM situation. It's like watching a bad episode of Lost. JK :)

We will work on making changes to our "programing" to better suit the needs and wants of our "viewers".

With "sweeps" we hope you find what you want in Myst Online. More on that soon.

:)

Peace.

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Last edited by greydragon on Tue May 01, 2007 11:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Tue May 01, 2007 11:06 pm 
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Kolian wrote:
While the views of Hiro are not necessarily the views of NBC, the actions he takes are in fact a reflection of what NBC (by NBC I refer to the people writing the show) wants to do with the show Heroes.

*editted stupid grammar


Yes and Heroes is a very scripted show.

Uru has its scripts and "milemarkers" it has to pass through but at the same time it is very open.

I recall hearing that in Prologue Douglas Sharper wasn't supposed to be as big a character as he was, Sharpers actions formed the Great Tree and he became a big part of the Cavern.

I think the best way to look at the DRC is this

Cyan is the umbrella, DRC are just under it for shade, occasionally they will glance up to the umbrella, but are still at their own devices.


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PostPosted: Tue May 01, 2007 11:40 pm 
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BladeLakem wrote:
I think, once again, the issue is expectations. Others have criticized the 'sequence of events' (as Zardoz explained it) instead of a coherent narrative. I think the issue is you won't see a lot of coherent narratives in Myst Online - that's not what it is designed to provide.

Rather, we develop a historical context based off of a sequence of events, one powered by our reactions to those events. In this respect, the game isn't an adventure game, it is a social sandbox game. A large chunk of what the game is comes from what the players bring to it.

And I would respectfully but firmly - nay, fervently, disagree. I think that is selling Uru Live way short, as its backstory is just too rich to be merely the backdrop for a social environment. Why give the backstory at all, if that's all Uru is going to be? Why not let us develop that backstory and just make stuff up?

Giving up on a coherent narrative means depreciating the value of canon. There is then nothing to stop the splintering of the Uru reality into many different Uru universes, and I don't think that's what Cyan has in mind. I'd view the current style (but not the content delivered in that style) as one forced by the lack of resources. This means that as Uru Live gathers steam (and hopefully more resources), players will still have opportunities to participate in and initiate story arcs, but Cyan will then be able to manage, react to, and bring coherence to more of those efforts, as well as initiate and carry off more of its own story-telling.


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PostPosted: Tue May 01, 2007 11:55 pm 
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greydragon wrote:
bbainter wrote:
Not sure how believable it is though.


Please explain.

Do Sawyer’s actions on Lost represent the views of ABC?

Do Hiro’s actions on Heroes represent the views of NBC?

I’m not trying to go against your comment. I just want to understand the unbelief. To Cyan, Nick White is no different then Captain Nemo. Both are characters in an epic story. Both have a story to tell.


I think that this is Cyan's story. Cyan is behind Nick. Nick does not "act" out anything that is not in the script provided. Cyan is protecting themselves from those who do not like the story. But of course these are my opinions and may or may not have any basis in fact. My disclaimer. It just so happens that I am responsible for my comments though.

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PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 12:05 am 
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Pardon me while I take a moment to stare at GD's post about 'sweeps' in fascination and curiosity.


:shock: Ooooh.... :shock:


Mkay, I'm good now. :3


I'd also like to add one small thing about RPing. I roleplay extensively and have for years - and sometimes things happen that you could have never expected as the charcters take on lives of their own. Now, I don't mean this in a mystical "THEY'RE TALKING TO ME! I'M CHANNELING SOULS!" kind of way... but many people who roleplay and write can tell you that charaters have a way of defining their responses and reactions to things in ways their creators wouldn't have expected upon their intitial creation.

Sometimes in RP for me, situations I could NEVER have predicted have popped up, simply because of how the character is. If a character I'm playing is an arrogant twit and he's arrogant at you, this doesn't mean *I* OOC am being arrogant at you - it means the character is. And so on.

Maybe it's tough to explain if you've never experienced it, but none of GD's other posts on that subject have surprised me. It's... normal.

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PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 12:19 am 
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My only complaint is that, yes the ADRCM was interesting, but it had more of a schism effect than causing open dialogue.

If I might borrow the soapbox, I'm not interested in politicizing the Cavern.

I'm here to explore physically and intellectually; the most intellectually engrossing conversations I've had have been in relation to the work of the DZS, but I'm not going to don my hipwaders and slug through thirty skillion posts in the vein of a high-school catfight just to find out that it was the Smoking Man killing animals in the the Pod Ages.

If Cyan is in fact setting us in a sandbox-like social game, one can assume that they've observed that creating factional strife just spins us up and eventually gets on most people's nerves.

Yes, it's nice to have a bit of friction, but if the overarching storyline is reconstruction and exploration, perhaps the strife should be a bit more focused on the actual reconstruction or exploration, not backstabbing and kvetching.

I, for one, want the DRC to actually ante up a slew of info. Heck, if Cyan can create a book that needs translating by the Explorers, I'm sure there'd be a line of Explorers out to the Great Shaft to do as such.

Even if it's 'expletive and Jane's First Linking Book.' ;)

[Edit] This thread will now become a discussion of D'ni Childrens Books You'd Like To Translate.

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Last edited by Simon_Bitdiddle on Wed May 02, 2007 12:22 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 12:21 am 
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MikeFitz wrote:
Kolian wrote:
While the views of Hiro are not necessary the views of NBC, the actions he takes are in fact a reflection of what NBC (by NBC I refer to the people writing the show) wants to do with the show Heroes.


Wow! :shock: Something just clicked.
You summed up and changed my whole world view.

It's true you can't hold a writer responsible for a character's actions, but you can evaluate the writer for the subject matter.


Those characters have scripts, though, and a solid road map. Who and what they are is planned out by the writers, and the actors have a role to play.

What I see happening here, is, perhaps, is more like a self-guided tour. Nick-player, in this case, gets a area map, with some key locations that have to be visited, and perhaps in a certain order even... but how he gets from place to place is entirely up to him.

Which means, in essence, that the people behind DRC characters, and other NPCs, are MUCH closer in nature to PLAYERS, then they are to the GMs. They're like players who happen to have gotten a bit more data from the GM (in this case, Cyan) than others.

ETA:

Simon_Bitdiddle wrote:
Even if it's 'expletive and Jane's First Linking Book.' ;)


BBWWWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAAAAAA!
*gasp*
AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAA.

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PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 12:28 am 
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Briefly Translated


See D'ck.
See D'ck Link.
Link D'ck, Link.
Where Did D'ck Go?

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PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 12:44 am 
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I am far, far more interested in hearing from Cyan what lesson they have learned than seeing a defense of Nick and his portrayer to justify the means of their conceit about fomenting anger in the community for the sake of a story; how they would do things differently.

I hope that we do not capitulate so easily without words of substance and meaning and commitment from Cyan not to a future of manufactured divisions, but to a story that comes from the natural evolution of events in the core mythology with some guidance so we can understand how to play the game without feeling paranoid and manipulated.

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PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 1:23 am 
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Zardoz wrote:
And I would respectfully but firmly - nay, fervently, disagree. I think that is selling Uru Live way short, as its backstory is just too rich to be merely the backdrop for a social environment. Why give the backstory at all, if that's all Uru is going to be? Why not let us develop that backstory and just make stuff up?

Giving up on a coherent narrative means depreciating the value of canon. There is then nothing to stop the splintering of the Uru reality into many different Uru universes, and I don't think that's what Cyan has in mind.


See, I would argue that Uru canon is in no way a coherent narrative, no more than Tolkien's Middle Earth is a coherent narrative, or the history of the United States is a coherent narrative.

Why not let us develop backstory and make stuff up? To a certain extent, that's exactly what we are doing. We are just given a framework and a context in which to make stuff up. We make up our reactions in character - the sit-in, the Yeesha summoning, the creation of the Great Tree, your own responses to meeting Phil... those are all things we made up.

How we interact in that environment is as relevant to the game as how we interact with the DRC, or the baskets in Eder Gira. It's a social environment in the sense that all of our interactions in game form a part of the history of the game. The actions of Brian Fioca and his friends are a part of that history. So are the actions of Sydney and her crew of yahoos.

Zardoz wrote:
I'd view the current style (but not the content delivered in that style) as one forced by the lack of resources. This means that as Uru Live gathers steam (and hopefully more resources), players will still have opportunities to participate in and initiate story arcs, but Cyan will then be able to manage, react to, and bring coherence to more of those efforts, as well as initiate and carry off more of its own story-telling.


Some of our reactions are dictated by a lack of resources. And I agree, more Cyan overview and interaction in it will go a long way. But as there are maybe 40 of them and up to 10,000 of us and that ratio probably won't improve considerably, a significant amount of what happens in this game is going to HAVE to happen without Cyan-oversight. That means social interaction on a backdrop painted mostly by Cyan, but partially by the rest of us. Any other expectation is, I think, unrealistic and a losing strategy to boot.

bbainter wrote:
I think that this is Cyan's story. Cyan is behind Nick. Nick does not "act" out anything that is not in the script provided. Cyan is protecting themselves from those who do not like the story.


Cyan is behind Nick, yes. The actor that plays Nick encouraged another player to believe that the DRC was hiding things and that they should do something about it. This is pretty much the same thing that happened with Sharper and Brian Fioca.

However, Cyan is not behind Sydney or Prof. Overson, anymore than they are behind you. The actions of those characters are the sole responsibility of the people playing them. And the escalating response to them was the sole responsibility of those that responded.

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PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 1:54 am 
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BladeLakem wrote:
However, Cyan is not behind Sydney or Prof. Overson, anymore than they are behind you. The actions of those characters are the sole responsibility of the people playing them. And the escalating response to them was the sole responsibility of those that responded.

The Cyan employee portraying Nick tossed sparks in a tinder box. A well-known tinder box -- the overall result was predictable and was predicted by many. For his actions, he and those who directed him are responsible.

In the weeks of catfighting that followed, Cyan could have quelled it either IC or OOC. They chose not to. For their inaction, they are responsible.

The players are responsible for their behavior, definitely. But the ego-stroking encouragement they were given to behave in this manner -- indeed, the selection of which players were encouraged -- was and is the sole responsibility of Cyan Worlds, Inc.


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PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 2:33 am 
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tkwiggins wrote:
The players are responsible for their behavior, definitely. But the ego-stroking encouragement they were given to behave in this manner -- indeed, the selection of which players were encouraged -- was and is the sole responsibility of Cyan Worlds, Inc.

And for the number of vocal Explorers in the Cavern, they chose rather well.

[TINFOILHAT]Unless Sydney is one of them! :shock: [/TINFOILHAT]
:wink:

Conspiracy aside, it is rather amazing that the Cyanist NPCs were able to effectively wedge the Explorers apart with only a handful of In-Game chats.

Now, I just wonder if they're going to try to do something to bring us together... besides the GZ calibration. :D

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PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 4:30 am 
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I am heartened, for the first time in a month, by Grey Dragon's post.

Go sweeps! Go story!

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PostPosted: Wed May 02, 2007 4:45 am 
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The storyline (from the way i see it from clips online and discussions in the forums) seems to be a basic direction. Here is what I think....

Cyan has a basic outline of where they want to go. Every so often, they send in a DRC member to 'seed' the next phase of the storyline. I think the whole Nick releasing information to Sydney was intentional to start the arc we are currently in (Pro-DRC vs. Anti-DRC) They knew the reaction some people would have (why else would Nick say something to Sydney if she has, in the past, had the antiDRC movement (in prolouge i believe (from what i read in the forums). Cyan KNEW if the right people were seeded with a bit of story, the story would expand a certain way.

The only thing Cyan couldn't predict is the player reaction so such a story arc. The way i see it, Cyan saw how much tension there was so Cate appeared to quell the ADRCM. notice how close we were to a breaking point with the ADRCM tension.. is it any coincidence that Nick was "put on leave" and Cate decided to show up not once but TWICE in the past few days, and both times confronted or talked to Sydney directly? The story is around us all the time... WE ARE THE STORY!

As for the naysayers about the tension... Remember:
Quote:
"..The Cavern lives and grows... there are friends.. and enemies... laughing and waiting....."
~Myst Online Yeesha Intro

These enemies can be fellow explorers or Cyan characters.

/me steps off soapbox


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