Rewarding PvP interaction, penalizing loners

In another game I came to realize that one thing that stagnates games is isolation from other players. Some games solve this by allowing players to chat with each other regardless of distance, or to send private messages. However in a game where people are separated by vast distances, it wouldn’t make sense that news could travel faster than a person. Another problem is that if buildings count as separate locations, either you will have to shout to reach those outside or you will be restricted to communicating with people in the same building. It doesn’t work like that in real life because people don’t spend the whole day cooped up inside, let alone multiple days. In historical societies, people would work together in the fields, occasionally go to the market to socialize and trade, and have communal mealtimes and celebrations.

This leads into the requirement that it should be assumed that characters move during their daily routines and for example eat and sleep in different places than where they work. This movement needs to be automated and people will need to be able to communicate with other people who have matching routines, even if they weren’t technically in the exact same location at the same time.

People would have routines that cover a day at a time, 6 day periods (which correspond to a real life 24 hours) and longer periods of time such as a month or a year.

During a single day, a normal character will wash themselves, eat on at least two separate occasions, work on things such as foraging, hunting, fishing, farming or crafting, rest and sleep. It is also assumed that they go to the bathroom and larger societies will need to organize sanitation somehow. Characters might also have to travel long distances to gather things such as firewood. It should be encouraged to match your routines with those of other people or at least take NPCs along.

Characters will have some sort of a mood trait and doing things like talking to people, massaging others or receiving massages, getting their hair cut, brushed or braided; bathing; rubbing mud on their skin or hair, applying makeup or face paint, dancing, singing, playing musical instruments, praying, practicing things such as calisthenics, yoga, pilates or taiji and what ever people can come up with will improve their mood, whereas doing the same thing for hours in a row or being socially isolated will lower the mood. If a character’s mood goes so low that their mind breaks, they will either go catatonic or become a mindless automaton, in other words, an NPC. It will be possible to break a person’s mind by locking them in jail and depriving them of human interaction and comfort, but acquiring help from NPCs should be so easy that intentionally forcing a PC to convert to an NPC should be unnecessary.

 

Ilona Ward

 

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