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Author name (Administrator) #1
Member since May 2011 · 2485 posts · Location: Brisbane
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Subject: Online games and addiction
On another forum a conversation had started about online text games.  A logical progression of the text adventure game (think Zork, or Leather Goddesses of Phobos).  Here's what I posted:

These games were my first real exposure to game addiction. I had hacked an internet account with my local university, and had internet access long before you could just buy a dialup account.

LambdaMOO wasn't a 'game' per se, it was a place where you could build your own house and make scripts and do all sorts of mad things.

Via modems me and all my roommates would hang out together all day and then get on LambdaMOO all night. In real life we'd talk about the MOO, and online we'd talk about real life.

This went on for several months, basically living online and on four hours sleep a night (work, moo, sleep <repeat>). I had to give up the game, completely cold turkey, when I had a conversation and couldn't for the life of me remember if the thing I was talking about was real or had happened in the game. The same people were there online and off, and the line between fiction and reality had completely dissolved.

The power of the written word was never so clear to me. This 'game' engaged my imagination so much more strongly than any video game ever could.

Fuck WoW, that shit got weak fast. LambdaMOO was where the real MMOG action was.

As an aside, an old BBS 'door' for the Atari ST tried to replicate the online gaming thing by having NPCs enter and leave the room you were in all the time. It was so frustrating 'cause they didn't stay long enough for you to type anything to them. I forget the name, but it completely sucked.
Author name #2
User title: The Russian
Member since Oct 2007 · 10 posts · Location: Hobart, Tasmania
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This sounds like a earlier version of second life.

While I have never played second life, I have heard a lot about it, and disagree with most of the principles behind it, especially the merging of the real world and the e-world in matters such as theft, discrimination etc. The internet should stay on the internet.
Not Tasmanian
Author name #3
Member since Oct 2007 · 316 posts
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I used to play on MUDs and MUSHes a lot back in the day. When a 33.6 kbps connection was state of the art, you needed to maximize your data throughput. Conveying information by plaintext in a terminal window was better than any compression algorithm. To this day I still read my mail with pine and view most web pages via lynx.

MUSHing wasn't all that addictive to me, mostly because I observed that very little gameplay occurred. Like modern MMO games, the majority of a player's time is spent standing around and chatting, standing around and flirting, and standing around waiting for the actual game to occur. Even now, the MMO games I play I generally play solo, with only infrequent team play occurring with people I know in real life. So while I understand the addictive properties of these games intellectually, I've never been a victim of them.
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