In her sandbox column
a week or so ago, Massively's own MJ Guthrie brought up an MMO feature that's fallen by the wayside in recent years: player-written books. Ancient sandboxes like Ultima Online
and modern classics like EverQuest II
give players the ability to write their own books, which then populate player-run libraries, serve as tavern menus, explain quests, and mark the memory of friends who left the game. Later games, however, have sadly passed over the mechanic.
I can't say that player-written anythings
have no potential for abuse and inanity. There's a guild in UO
, for example, that uses books as advertising spam, and the game's designers were forced to implement a system to lock-in text to circumvent the "Dudebro was here" graffiti that miscreants would otherwise inscribe on other players' masterpieces. But the potential for cool outweighs the potential for abuse for me, and I miss writing and reading in-game books so very much.
What about you -- do you miss player-written books in MMOs? Or do you think they're a niche idea that was retired from MMO design with good cause?
Every morning, the Massively bloggers probe the minds of their readers with deep, thought-provoking questions about that most serious of topics: massively online gaming. We crave your opinions, so grab your caffeinated beverage of choice and chime in on today's Daily Grind!