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Games Entertainment

Storytelling in Computer Games 131

Posted by michael
from the kill-troll-with-rusty-knife dept.
Cosmicbandito writes: "The latest issue of XYZZY News features transcripts and audio downloads of a 2 hour panel discussion titled "Storytelling in Computer Games Past, Present and Future". Scott Adams, the celebrated designer of classics like "Adventureland" and "Pirate's Island", described his experiences in the early days of the home game market, offered his opinions on the current crop of games, and made predictions about games of the future. Scott is credited with writing and marketing the first commercial computer game. Of special interest to Slashdotters, he is also an avid Everquest player. And no, he doesn't draw "Dilbert"." Think "pre-Infocom".
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Storytelling in Computer Games

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  • why?? (Score:5, Funny)

    by geekoid (135745) <dadinportland @ y a hoo.com> on Wednesday September 05, 2001 @05:54PM (#2257557) Homepage Journal
    special interest to Slashdotters, he is also an avid Everquest player.

    why is this of special interest?
    personally it tells me his mind has turned to mush as far as story telling in games go. But hey, thats me.
  • Maze (Score:3, Funny)

    by jmoriarty (179788) on Wednesday September 05, 2001 @06:10PM (#2257616)
    You're in a maze of twisty little Slashdot comments, all alike.

    I miss the storytelling of those games, and the hours upon hours spent trying to figure out what the exact word the CENSORED parser was looking for. I guess that frustration has just been replaced with lag time in the new games.
  • Re:why?? (Score:2, Funny)

    by nion (19898) <nion@gee[ ]st.net ['kfe' in gap]> on Wednesday September 05, 2001 @06:11PM (#2257624) Homepage
    You travel down the windy road towards the Lair of the Giant Bugblatter. As you approach, you see that another group of adventurers is camping the Bublatter spawn point. You can:
    • Shrug and go find the Lesser Bugblatter
    • Invoke PnP and *make* the other group share
    • KS the Bugblatter when he spawns

    ...Sounds familiar for some reason.
  • by Snowfox (34467) <snowfox@nOSpam.snowfox.net> on Wednesday September 05, 2001 @06:21PM (#2257665) Homepage
    why the hell did you guys stop making pinball games/parts then :P and go on to casino games :P

    I anticipate that Spy Hunter Craps, 5 Card Blitz, Baseball poker and Mortal Roulette are going to knock your fucking socks off. That, or one of us is confusing Midway and Williams.

    The very same guys that were doing arcade games are now creating a whole new suite of console titles. Real Midway developers doing next gen console instead of relying on 3rd party arcade-to-console ports equals serious gameplay.

  • by Illserve (56215) on Wednesday September 05, 2001 @06:24PM (#2257673)
    Because I hate to see legends of old corrupted by those too lazy to do their fact checking (shame on you Adams), here's what happened with Rainz, the guy who killed Lord British, as told to me by the thief and filtered through 3 years of memory.

    The crowd had assembled, or part of it at least. British had just started addressing the crowd when someone in the crowd was peeking around in backpacks of those around him using his thieving skills. He found a firewall scroll, handed it off to Rainz, who threw it at Lord British for the hell of it, he didn't think it would hurt him.

    I'm not certain, but I think at this point, British may have mentioned something to the effect that this firewall couldn't hurt him, thinking that his invulnerability flag was on (not a ring, a GM power). Unbeknownst to him, someone had forgotten to turn it on and his life bar was dropping quickly and he fell over dead even as he gloated about his invulnerability. End of story. Rainz was banned, but the thief was never fingered.

    Thus was a gaming legend born.

    Interestingly, it was probably as a result of this incident and the screenshots circulated of it, that people were able to easily create UO comics depicting a dead Lord British.
  • by smirkleton (69652) on Wednesday September 05, 2001 @07:09PM (#2257794)
    You left out the best part.

    After British died, his 2nd-in-command, Lord Blackthorne panicked. He summoned 4 daemons to the scene, who promptly slaughtered many of the innocent bystanders who had gathered simply to be addressed by their virtual monarch.

    "Now we see the violence inherent in the system!", as it were.

    Read the Village Voice [villagevoice.com] account of the event, and keep the memory alive. Truly, for fans of videogame folklore, the assassination of Lord British is Grade A stuff. Golden.
  • Piaget (Score:2, Funny)

    by Nightpaw (18207) <jesse.uchicago@edu> on Wednesday September 05, 2001 @07:28PM (#2257834) Homepage
    Yeah, computer games are no fun because as soon as a bad guy goes around the corner, I forget that he's there and I always end up getting clobbered.
  • by D. Mann (86819) on Wednesday September 05, 2001 @07:31PM (#2257838) Homepage
    Rainz was a notorious exploiter, both in the pre-alpha test and the beta. At the time he killed Lord British, he had millions of hit points (whereas the max for your average player is 100).

    I dislike that history is being skewed in his favor, making him out to be a good guy. My friends and I used to go out and hunt him with (literally) a dozen people, surround him, and beat on him for 15-20 minutes until he died.

To err is human -- to blame it on a computer is even more so.

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