Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Virtual Worlds in The Black Desert: Better, Faster, Stronger?

          So among the comments on yesterday's post was a question about whether or not the perception of time would be accelerated for people inside virtual worlds.  My first instinct was to simply say "no".  The implications are simply to far reaching; school in a year?  Military training in a week?  That may work for a story or movie, but in an RPG, when character progression is a vital part of game play, the instant learning thing is simply a game breaker.

           That being said, it's only logical that AI would naturally work on an accelerated clock speed.  And if it's logical for AI, then it's also logical for Trans-Humans and NuApes, since their brains operate like computers most if not all of the time.  The consequenses of that, of course, is that mainline Humans would be hopelessly out-classed by the other species in The Black Desert.  This sucks as much as instant learning for everyone, if not more so.

          This is where an author of Hard SF and a Futurist must part ways.  A Futurist would leave the instant learning in place, and follow the machine-organic interface and Trans-Humanism to their ultimate conclusions.  A writer must out of necessity leave certain things about human life and nature the same, even if there is no good reason to do so.  Science fiction is about critiquing and illuminating the present by taking it out of context; post-singularity speculation removes the timeless issues of human nature from the equation.

             Obviously, a compromise is needed.
             With that in mind, I propose that it is possible for Humans to match the incredible clock speeds of computers and AI, but it is an acquired skill.   In gaming terms, it is a "power" that is gained when one adds dice to their Telepresence skill .  This means that I will need to develop "powers" (gad, I must think of a better name) that correspond to different number of dice.  It will be like, for example, a Character with one die in Telepresence can create an Avatar, with two dice they can access the virtual worlds' basic programming and enable flying or other stuff, and so on.

             It's gonna take some work and research, to develope this concept, so I guess that will be the next step.  Over the next couple of days, I throw out some ideas about how to game-ify these ideas.  PLEASE COMMENT AND OFFER INPUT!   This game design thing is harder than it looks; I could use all the help I can get!

             Anyway, now that we have a plan, we'll meet back here tomorrow and continue our discussion.

             Enjoy, RocketFans!

1 comment:

  1. OK, lets think about this for a minute. AI and transhumans are going to be like Miralaku (the blind force sensitive race from TotJ). Some major advantages, but attributes are going to be restricted (game balance, y'know?). Thus my comment about millions of years of evolution and all that.

    Now, telepresence as a skill granting certain special abilities - not bad. AIs and transhumans are going to see distinct advantages there, but a human who's trained in this can give them a run for their money, especially in his or her own VR where they have management ackles.


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