The everyday blog of Richard Bartle.
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8:11am on Tuesday, 9th February, 2016:
George Orwell wrote an essay published exactly 70 years ago entitled The Moon Under Water. In it, he discusses the ideal qualities of a pub.
I thought it might be an idea to write something similar for an MMO, The Underwater Moon. What would my ideal qualities of an MMO be?
I didn't even start making a list: as soon as I thought about it, I concluded that although pubs have matured over centuries so that there's some notion of what an ideal pub might be, MMOs haven't reached anywhere near their potential. There's so much more to come from them, once we've got over the WoW clone effect, the pay-to-win effect and whatever effects come after to drive players away and fail to attract new ones until we get a reboot.
The Moon Under Water didn't exist, because it looked to the past. The Underwater Moon doesn't exist, because it looks to the future. Orwell knew what he wanted, because he'd seen every component in existing pubs — he just wanted them to come together. I don't know what I want, because not every component has yet been invented — I just want to see what they are.
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