I was watching Peter Molyneux speaking online and something he said about persistence and being able to show your child what you were doing at 12 years old (I'm actually not completely sure what he was talking about except maybe for example stuff you've done online that persist like writing in a journal and being able to go back in thirty years and see it still there, but not sure if thats what he meant)
But Persistence is interesting, my mind went immediatly to RPG's. I'm trying to think of an example of a game to illustrate my thought but I'm not sure if I can think of one right now on a Sony system.
People do play in game worlds for years for sure, and maybe if its an MMO (I don't play them so don't know a lot about them) they probably evolve a lot over time, and they maybe exist for a few years, or for much longer than that for the extremely popular MMO's. So MMO's do play an impotant part of some poeples lives, and its probably the most persistent type of gaming world that exists right now. Since because of the nature of them and asking for monthly fees, though free to play is becoming more popular, it needs to evolve to keep people coming back.
But a persistent world sounds interesting, a persistent world that truly changes and grows with you as you grow and change in life. So what I was thinking would be an RPG world of some sort that seasons change (if the world has seasons that is) the land changes, people age and die...or whatever. Maybe the world has nothing to do with earth and humanity and its all made up and they have their own method to show passing time, but things change drastically over time and new events and stories happen like in life.
So basically I was thinking about this, for one, how long could a person stay invested in an RPG like this? Could it become a sort of alternat world or companion that you go through life with? Things like this have been done on smaller levels like those artificial pets. But persistence, could an RPG game world be persistant? And could one be designed where its designed to be played throughout ones entire life. When your 80 you'd still have a character in this world and be tending the farm you bought for your retirenment to grow cabbages cause it was your dream to have as much cabbage as you wanted. I don't know. That would be more like an RPG sim if its a world you'd live in, I was thinking of not a sandbox exactly but more of a JRPG type thing, maybe mixed with a go anywhere do anything more known in WRPGs.
I am tired and am not saying what I want to say exactly, but I suppose I was thinking as intruiging as a persistent game companion world is, I couldn't imagine that being done without getting bored eventually. I'd stop spending time after a while in the world and be drawn to whatever new thing is coming.
So I'm wondering, do you think there is a way where an RPG persistent game world could transfer from platform to platform with all your data and become a sort of game companion? What could be done to keep ones interest in this changing persisten world for ones entire life? is that even possible to get so attatched to a game, where it would become an important part of your life? I don't mean gaming itself being an important part of your life but that specific game world.
To me it just seemed a slightly interesting thought, and what kind of RPG would it be that could achieve that if its even possible and what kind of world would it be?
Just a strange thought I was thinking, I'm not saying its something I want or even that its a good idea, just something Peter was saying about Persistent made me think about and I'm just curious as to the semantics of something like this.
theoretically, a constantly growing persistent world will eventually be too much for the server to handle, so I'm not so sure if it's possible to maintain such kind of world for 30, 40 or 50 years.
just an opinion on the side, I think Molyneux is overrated, just like half his games.
It's a nice idea and it would definitely interest me personally, but unfortunately the one thing that would probably hold it back is that technology with gaming is constantly changing. New systems come out every year or two and unless there was a way to move all of the data from one system to another, it wouldn't really be practicable. There aren't really a lof of "entertainments" that stay consistent over time. MySpace came, and everyone thought it would last forever... then it went under and is now a barren landscape. Now there is Facebook, Twitter, etc... they might seem as though they will last forever but likely eventually something new will come out to replace it.
So I guess what I mean is, an ongoing game like this would need to not only continue over time, but it would somehow have to change and adapt with the upgrading graphics, systems and technologies in order to survive. That's what I would guess, at least.
This reminds me of Animal Crossing. I know it's not a PlayStation game, but it's the closest identifier to the persistence gene. When it's 8 at night in your time zone it's the same in the game. As the seasons change around you, so does the game's. Aging isn't a factor for your person, however neighbors do come and go. If you don't tend to matters around the village then nature's rotten course will scare away someone you might care about.
PlayStation Home is another world that comes to mind, except this one revolves more around you. This social networking hub lets you be as interactive as you are or a big spender. You can tailor your character to resemble yourself, though the program probably won't capture every distinguishable inch that makes you who you are. It's doubtful the major population in Home normally walks around in such gaudy attire, but that's where Home is a virtual projection of who we venture out to be in our minds rather than who people see us as in our natural skins.
As others have said though, it's probably inconceivable that there would be a console technology that someone would utilize for more than 50 years. Maybe if there were a simulation/RPG program that were invented in one era and then passed onto the next, and the next after that, then I could see gamers possibly investing time in this artificial self. Looking ahead though, I'd be more worried about the current PlayStation 3 foundation and what would happen to our saves, our Home data, and our store's wallets when and if we upgrade to PlayStation 4.
Yes Animal crossing was actually kind of what I was thinking though thats more sim I guess than RPG, I think a SIM RPG would work best with this concept myself with maybe even some MMORPG in it, but i wasn't able to think of anything remotely similar spanning the playstation family.
So no it couldn't be on one platform it would have to grow and change throughout the years and jump platforms but be able to keep all your data and characters and decisions and whatever you've done, like with Mass effect decisions you had made went with you from game to game. So the world would have travel.
But thats just semantics. I was thinking more about would someone have a game friend through ones life? Could that be even remotly possible on an emotional level? Would one not get bored after a few months, a few years or a decade? The RPG Sim or whatever it is would obviously have to keep changing considerably to keep you wanting to spend time in this world, change considerably and grow as we change and grow as we get older, and move and travel or whatever we do in life, so would this game have to and also change platforms its on of course, and would maybe even be something you'd take with you on some device in some form or other, a game companion youd have for your life. Just a strange thought, I guess I was curious if something like this existed what would you think of it? Not how it could exist but if it existed, would it be something you could get emotionally attatched to, or would it be a fad in your life and quickly get bored. And what would it have to be, what would it have to consist of for you to become attatched to it and have it grow with you through life?
Oh and regarding Peter Molyneoux. I used to think his games were over rated too (though just from what I've seen I've never had the pleasure of playing them as the only games I used to play on PC were Monkey island and grimm Fandango essentially and the sierra Kings quest Games and then I didn't have a PC that could play games for a long time and played strictly on consoles and I've never had an microsoft console where he has worked for the last little while....but anyway his games from what I had seen seemed over rated. And then I heard him talk and he is a true artist through and through. Yes he gets over excited and ahead of himself but that is because of the sheer ammount of passion that man has. I mean when he speaks it almost explodes in a gory mess all over the place.
What I came to understand is his visions are far far far to complex and advanced for what current technology can do in a game or portray. And he ends up over promising because as it turns out they weren't able to manage what he wanted to do with the time and budget and technology available to him. But he can't resist talking about it. So maybe hes the great miss understood game developer who is just ahead of his time and ideas ahead of what technology can do I don't know. But I understand him a bit better and I appreicate his passion and that he strives forwards truly to do something different and isn't content to just make the same old thing.