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Even though there are hundreds and thousands of MMOs spanning several decades, only a small handful were so incredibly influential that they changed the course of development for games from then on out. DikuMUD is one of these games, and it is responsible for more of what you experience in your cur...

1 month ago 0 Comments
January 3, 2015 at 12:00PM
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In 1996, Richard Bartle published a study of MMO gamers that eventually led to his 2003 book Designing Virtual Worlds, which was at the time the de facto MMO genre's design bible. Of course, this was before World of Warcraft hit the scene, but many of the principles Bartle laid out still hold true....

2 months ago 0 Comments
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A fascinating piece over on Eurogamer about MUD1 and Richard Bartle traces the history of the modern MMO back to this game and this man. Bartle said that he and his partner "wanted to change the world" with his game, although he says that the modern MMO has yet to reach its full potential. "I am...

4 months ago 0 Comments
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Free-to-play as a business model stirs a lot of passionate opinions in both gamers and developers. According to Richard Bartle, well-known gaming researcher and co-creator of the first MUD, free-to-play as a business model has a certain half-life and is going to hit a point when it's just not viabl...

7 months ago 0 Comments
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MUD1, the first online virtual world, was originally released in 1978. Thirty-six years later, Stanford University Libraries has acquired the project's source code and has plans to provide public online access. Details are forthcoming, according to a university blog. MUD1 is a text-based multi-u...

10 months ago 0 Comments
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The end of the year is nigh, and as I promised, I will give you my final thoughts on Star Wars: The Old Republic and its achievements for 2013. I wanted my assessment to be based on something other than squishy feelings. Of course, opinions are extremely subjective, but that doesn't mean they canno...

1 year ago 0 Comments
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In July, I took the famous Bartle Test and pitted it against the state of Star Wars: The Old Republic at the time. The test, based on the research of Dr. Richard Bartle, measures the types of activities within an MMO that players find fun. Of course, there is plenty of crossover, and very few peopl...

1 year ago 0 Comments
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This past weekend, a friend of mine came up from Texas. Not only did we talk about our families and such, but we also spent some time talking about Star Wars: The Old Republic PvP. We have both been following the game about the same amount of time, and we are now in the same guild. I argued that...

1 year ago 0 Comments
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In our last installment looking at PLATO, the educational computer network that linked a thousand terminals across the US together, I don't think I stressed enough how awesome this system was for the time. In the 1970s, most universities had computers that required punch cards for input and spat ba...

1 year ago 0 Comments
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I will freely admit that I do not have all the answers. I also admit that I believe that BioWare is trying to change the face of PvP in Star Wars: The Old Republic. But I think it's safe to say that the vast majority of the efforts so far have failed to the point that I said it would be more worthw...

1 year ago 0 Comments
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It's history lesson time. In 1996, Dr. Richard Bartle, who earned his PhD in artificial intelligence from the University of Essex, wrote a paper analyzing the different types of gamers who play massively multiplayer games. At the time, these games mostly consisted of MUDs (a genre Bartle helped cre...

1 year ago 0 Comments
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By now, everyone's probably heard the strange story of Manti Te'o, the football player who had an online relationship with someone who wasn't really that person. The question that people keep asking is whether or not he was in on the hoax, but I think that's irrelevant. The real question is why p...

2 years ago 0 Comments
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It was the mid-'80s, and I was just a kid in love with his family's IBM PC. Not having a wealth of capital at the time, I relied on hand-me-down copies of software that rolled in from friends and family and probably the Cyber-Mafia. Practically none of the disks came with instructions (or even la...

2 years ago 0 Comments
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Guild leading is often as much about managing personalities as it is about managing the nuts and bolts of the game. In previous columns, we've looked at all sorts of issues that guild leaders have to solve, and at the root of almost all of them is some sort of personality clash. Show me a nice bl...

3 years ago 0 Comments
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You know what I love about the end of each year? The lists. Man, but I'm a sucker for lists, especially when they come in "best of" varieties. In the lull between Christmas and New Year's, there typically isn't a lot happening in the world of entertainment, so it's a good time to look back before...

3 years ago 0 Comments
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If you're looking for a reasonably short video primer on the history of MMOs, look no further than a series of clips recently uploaded to YouTube. According to some genre heavyweights, though, you shouldn't take all the info presented at face value. Former sandbox (and current social games) devel...

3 years ago 0 Comments
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Readers of the ever-so-humble Game Archaeologist will recall that earlier this year I had the opportunity to exchange informative words with Dr. Richard Bartle, the creator of MUD. Since he was -- and is -- a highly opinionated designer, I asked him what he thought was the most innovative MMO fro...

3 years ago 0 Comments
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This is the end, my only friend, the end. Of our elaborate plans, the end. Of everything that MOOs, the end. No safety or aggro radius, the end. Man, listening to The Doors early in the morning does not put you in a happy state of writing, let me tell you! In any case, we've extended our MU...

3 years ago 0 Comments