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awiiya

A Short Letter To The Council

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Although I'm not involved or affected by the recent ruling on Lifeline, there are a couple of things I personally find troubling. I might be alone in this, and if I am, you should feel free to say so in a post.

I'll start by saying that I agree with the removal of Lifeline's summon spell. He used it in an inappropriate manner, and although others like Jester have used it with questionable motives, Lifeline's use was to me unforgivable. Regardless of whether or not there was an explicit rule prohibiting entrance to the lair, as a King he should have known better, and if he isn't accustomed to reading in between the lines in Mur's announcements by now then I can hardly see how he expects to succeed in the highly nuanced job of King. My suspicion is that most vets, if given the time to consider the morality of such an action, would have chosen not to use the spell in such a way. It might be unfair to consider Grido the norm, but he certainly seemed to know that going into the cave would be wrong.

The problems for me started when I noted the attitude taken towards others who possess the chase spell without an "administrative role." Historically, regardless of the danger certain items and bugs have Mur has never been one to go to great lengths (or in most cases ANY lengths) to protect the general public from themselves, and the decision to remove something on the chance that it might cause problems later is to me a red flag that something is changing. The change towards seemingly-dictatorial meddling is precisely what I am vehemently opposed to.

Danger, risks, and generally unsteady systems have always had for me a certain attraction, most of which comes from the heightened creativity that is a natural product of such systems. Of course there is more risk of failure and even a chance of complete annihilation, but it is rare to see genuinely artistic and creative thoughts coming from a world that is concerned only with peace and stability. My thought is that the more spontaneous experiments (Heads, Torch, Tomabala, Spells, Illusions, etc) the more interesting and (dare I say it? the word that is fading so fast in MD) FUN.

It might just be that by protecting us from ourselves the the council has made MD an ounce more dull, and by guarding us you might actually be killing us. A few years and a couple of like-minded decision down the road we might find ourselves stripped of all such items that "may" cause later harm.

A world without flaws is one that has crumbled to dust, and I would beg the Council to think of this in future decisions.

Awi

P.S. I am unsure if the spells were actually removed, due to the line "only [Lifeline's] punishment will be changed," but I find more problem with the attitude than the actuality.

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Actaully i dont think anyone except Mur know has the spell now, Since the previous announcement said it would be removed from all inactive accounts, and now lifeline has once more lost the spell.

However im not entirely sure it the game has lost anything from losing it.

Lifeline must have at least had it for months, nothing intresting or suchforth has been done with it, unless it indeed has been secret. Perhaps it some other people who had a greater intrest in the game and fun suchforth had use of the spell then it might have been used better. But for a spell to be removed, that hadnt been used much, i dont see much a loss.

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I find it more weird that the removal of a spell went ahead with a giving of WP, rather-

Not that I want to complain, but when RPCs got removed, lost their dangerous access or spells, there was no "compensation" either.

Maybe this is because of what Lifeline said, he didn't have any criminal record previously, but as usual I find these candy and whip punishments an odd thing of MD.

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Shadow, it is basically Murs way of saying ,"I'm taking away your toy, but here is a sucker so don't whine."

He isn't rewarding them, he's doing it to stop then from causing him more headaches. It's not perfect, but don't question it either. Mur has his reasons for doing things a certain way.

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I cant find the words to say what I want to but I will later on post what I mean to say. For now I will only comment one thing: I had the chase spell for almost 2 years ...its all written and documentated in the announcements. Only jonn, mrd, possibly renavoid (not sure if his "spaceship" was chase and summon or a complete different spell) and me had it. And people like mur, knatty, ect. Since knatty and mur still have it (according to announcements) the game lost no spell at all. jonn is long gone and mrd is retired as well so nothing was really changed only 1 person lost it while knatty (i guess so because he wasnt mentioned in annoucnements) kept it. Edited by Lifeline

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[quote name='Chewett' timestamp='1291012662' post='73659']

However im not entirely sure it the game has lost anything from losing it...

...But for a spell to be removed, that hadnt been used much, i dont see much a loss.
[/quote]

I believe that awiiya's point wasn't to lament the removal of one particular spell, but rather to examine the broader implications of such a show of power and, perhaps, overly conservative decision making. It's the same argument that anyone in favor of individual responsibility and personal liberty will make against a growing bureaucracy. Today they've taken "X", so what's stopping them from tomorrow taking "Y" as well?

awiiya isn't even suggesting that it will be so overt, but simply that, in an effort to reduce risk, the council may eventually remove ASPECTS of the game that make the world interesting. Perhaps not even interesting features but mere ideas or elements of risk that appeal to some.

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[quote name='Malaikat Maut' timestamp='1291047162' post='73697']
awiiya isn't even suggesting that it will be so overt, but simply that, in an effort to reduce risk, the council may eventually remove ASPECTS of the game that make the world interesting. Perhaps not even interesting features but mere ideas or elements of risk that appeal to some.
[/quote]

Ah, then its merely another "mur i dont like what you did" topic basicly? Mur/council will do stuff that we may not like and also do things we do like, but i would hope that it would be for the best intrests of MD.

I dont really see that we should draw upon this point, since this spell is pretty useless unless you want to abuse it. And i would assume since the council (hopefully) play (assuming these guys arnt some faceless suits helping mur) then surely they will also try and do stuff for the better?

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[quote name='Chewett' timestamp='1291052058' post='73703']
Ah, then its merely another "mur i dont like what you did" topic basicly? Mur/council will do stuff that we may not like and also do things we do like, but i would hope that it would be for the best intrests of MD.

I dont really see that we should draw upon this point, since this spell is pretty useless unless you want to abuse it. And i would assume since the council (hopefully) play (assuming these guys arnt some faceless suits helping mur) then surely they will also try and do stuff for the better?
[/quote]
Any change will be met with friction. I always considered debate an essential part of MD and thus it is only logical that changes to MD are discussed in the forum and naturally those who like the change the least will be most prone to start the discussion. Perhaps this negative discussion bias is impeding MD development, yet I'd like to believe Mur is capable of distilling the useful information.

MD's current development [b]seems[/b] to be focused on automation and regression to the mean. RPCs are gone and clickies have become available to anyone with enough WPs. WPs will soon become common. One privilege has been taken now and several privileges have been taken before. On the other hand we have kings, the woodcutters and the lair keepers. Afaik, all three of those are still waiting until all features related to their tasks/privileges are implemented.
Thus on one side of the scale we have little to no new special things and on the other hand we have a reduction of some special features and a vulgarization of others. With an emphasis on automation, it seems unlikely that many truly unique features will be added. Such is a contradiction in terminis anyway; a personal touch cannot be automated - unless we assume Mur will manage to create the first true AI. For many of us, this personal touch is what sets MD apart from other games. Whenever [b]we consider[/b] it to be threatened, we will speak up.

On this particular issue: afaik it's the council's decision, not Mur's. If the particular spell is only useful for abuse, perhaps we should ask why Mur implemented in the first place? Certainly, Mur can make mistakes, but removing an entire spell because one person abused it and without it having met its original purpose, seems very wasteful to me.

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Ok this is not how I wanted it to sound but I cant come up with a better way to say it:
First of all I agree with what Awiiya said and also with what Fyrd said in my trial topic.

@ Mur:
I believe you created MD as a place for people to develop and grow in. But with your godly interventions you shrink the cube more and more instead of expanding it. I see that I am not alone and that others have picked a much more peaceful road than me but a similar path. You should be proud on the community in MD because it only means that life is no longer content to live in the little cage you have made it lately. You have protected life from abuse and death but that is not the same as living. What do you expect of us? Should we sit back and let you take care of us like babies? You have been leading your „children“ by the hand and gave them a world to live in but still see us as infants. We have grown up, have more faith in us we are stronger than you think.

The god has to step back, if he is to present and intervenes to much all it creates is a prison for the minds of the life he means to protects. And protecting turns into drawing the essence out of that life. Humans are meant to evolve, not to sit down idly and being taken care of by a divine god. Edited by Lifeline

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oh you mean i should step back and let people do what they can? ...Like taking away GODLY POWERS SUCH AS CHASE and let them walk allover where their tiny mortal feet can take them? Yeah, its exactly what i did.

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I find it amuzing (i am sorry i find it so when it actually hurts me), that you forget the cause of all this whining and cries and you take the opportunity to complain about a more conceptual thing that never happend. Don't worry, i still remember the initial cause. Its been an abuse, its been punished, and an admin spell that i allowed was taken back for good this time. thats all.

I am shrinking the cube? I am limiting your freedom and i am taking away what makes md special? Customizations as opposed to AI?
I am at the edge of flipping and losing my nerve here.

You considered this a "show of power" as malaikat said? It was a show of weakness or mercy of me and still is.
I should have done much much worse just because of all this offtopic crying.

I give you an example Lifeline, or anyone considering this incident to be a lowering of MD "special" flavor, or your liberty.
Consider this and be very honest withyourself. What would have you invented if i were to take your spell and give it to someone else? heh?

You try to make it look as if THE GAME has to suffer, "oh my", but..face it, its you not md. If you want to have a decent talk about concepts and md development trend, i am always open, just don't insult my intelligence and pretend its about this incident. A crime is a crime.


I always leave open opportunities for people to abuse, or customize things based on individual, look around, or kingship blinded you? Oh or wait, maybe if it is not a player that deserves your royal gaze upon him you won't consider it part of MD existance?

I've been around more than any of you, and i see this pathetic story every time. Remember the spell casting panel? those very few of you that had it started to cry that md is not playable without that panel, cried and whined about it in the same way, trying to point out how much damage i did to their role or to md by removing their toy... imagine the horror, they had to gain heat to cast spells, oh my, how could i do such a horrible thing to them.

And back to reality please ... you are wasting my time with all this shit because of what? because an overpowered spell? because a kingship point you don't even care about? because being inactive in jail instead of a cave?

The rule restricting the cave was there for ages, you had plenty of time to complain about conceptual things if your opinion was that closing the cave is a bad thing to do. You just reacted when you account was affected so don't get me more angry than i am.

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@ Mur:

The point isn't Lifeline. Awiiya voices a legitimate concern about a direction this could lead to. You concentrated on lifeline's post because it was offensive towards you.

My take: I really don't care about any of this (spell and lair related), but I do care about the direction of MD, and I agree with Kafuuka on this one. Making the game more automated and focusing on that part has made it less "special" lately.(I haven't been around for long, but I've heard stories about the past...might be exagerated, but the Knatty quest gave me a taste and I really liked it) We (the players) are partially to blame for that... partially it's the lack of people who stay in MD, partially the stars... partially the chickens...

Now, it's easy to point out the problems, but how do we fix them? :)

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so let me get this right, you are blaming me for not playing with you from characters like knaty or ss or whatever? because otherwise i don't see where i am hindering your creativity in play, or how i make things automated.

Please detail how i make things automated or whatever you wanted to say. Please give examples so i understand in what you see this trend you fear of. I am serious, maybe i don't see it as you do.

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@ Mur:
I am talking about something entirely different here... Why would I waste my own time whining about a character that died yesterday? Lifeline is gone the only task left for him is to actually officially die. Please understand that I neither mean offense nor anything bad with this. I just wanted to point out a fact that made a king die. Was I offensive in the death/life topic of yours or in the shrine keeper decision? no, and the same goes for this topic. I have moved on; Lifeline is gone and I certainly do not have time to whine about a lost cause and a failed character. I am not angry anymore I just try to leave something behind that might help.

Please forget about who Lifeline was or what he did for now, actually don't even look at the name at all. Forget chase and the whole incident in the drach lair and what followed and read my last post again. That is an honest statement with no ill will intended at all. Please just think about it you said something very similar a few days ago. With every piece of knowledge/information you give us you limit our own freedom of thought. Its the same with what I call "godly interventions" here. Of course a god has to shape and create a world that can preserve itself but if he interferes with the life and decisions in that world to much it limits their life greatly. It takes away their responsibility. You can take care of "your children" a lot and give them a safe place and everything needed to grow up but at one point they will want to evolve freely and not constantly be guided around at the hand of somebody else. They will break free sooner or later to experience life outside their safe home. They seek self realization and they will crash and burn but that is what life is.
I never had the chance to read your book maybe I would be able to come up with a better example then. All I can do for now is hope that you get the message I am trying to send here.

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[quote name='Ravenstrider' timestamp='1291070856' post='73734']My take: I really don't care about any of this (spell and lair related), but I do care about the direction of MD, and I agree with Kafuuka on this one. Making the game more automated and focusing on that part has made it less "special" lately.[/quote]
I have to say: I reject this line of thinking absolutely. You say MD is less "special" but you admit you weren't around to know what it was like before, and you provide no evidence at all, for example by citing similarities in other games, to support your opinion. And Kafuuka seems to be attacking a "straw hat man", to use his words, by claiming that WP for days (which I can only assume is his basis for saying this) will soon make Wish Points "common", and thus MD is "regressing toward the mean".

From my perspective, MagicDuel has improved steadily in almost every way since I joined it in the early fall of '08. No, not everyone has liked every change. No, not everyone has benefited equally. But this is a fairer and more open game than the one I joined. Don't talk to me about the good old days, which had different and in many ways uglier problems: the appearance of favoritism, the dominance of very exclusive cliques, and a far less balanced and more exploitable combat system.

I'd like to hear more constructive criticism from people who wish to raise problems. Don't merely say "this needs to be fixed" and append an emoticon - give a concrete suggestion so we can subject it to the relentless and wholly pitiless peer review of the forums.

One thing on which I can agree with you is that it is the fault of the players if the game has seemed less special. Mur has gone [i]out of his way[/i] to try to clue people in to what he is trying to do. The experiment of MagicDuel is as audacious as it is crazy. If conceiving and playing quests in a world of allegory sounds difficult, it is. Rise to the challenge.

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I cannot think of a single part that had an "emphasis on automation". Please be so kind as to elaborate on how the player's experience is being automated.
Even on the level where decisions are made it is still entirely reliant on human choice.
The only part that could be seen as automated was the execution of said decisions, which frankly, is a waste of time to be done manually.

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I'll restate my arguments in numerical format:

1. My issue is that the Council in their desire to protect the MD that Mur has created will be overcautious, and less willing to step out on a limb with something that may later be exploited. Concern with destruction cripples creation.

2. The chase spell has a few constructive applications - meetings, personal summonings, travel, etc. I believe it can be used responsibly, but its loss is not something I greatly feel. The spell itself means little.

3. The Council is relatively new, which is why I hoped with my post to offer a possible outcome of conservative rulings - do I keep silent now?

And responses to what others have posted:

1. I do not think MD is becoming more automated - in fact the trend has been away from a single ruler and towards a more oligarchic system. However, the more people that are associated with decisions, the less polarized they are. A single man in power may follow his every whim, while a council must find support from the majority of members.

2. On the whole, I do not note a significant degradation of the player population. Less puzzle quests, more debates and stories: I'm all for it. In fact, my caution was not to players or Mur but to the Council (hence: A Letter to the Council). I agree with Tarquinus; I've never been more pleased with the new people I see.

3. Mur's characters (SS and Knaty) are to be played when and if he feels like it. I've never seen much of a presence from them, so their inactivity is hardly a burden on my experience.

4. Your anger, Mur, is understandable given the amount of junk this has caused. Regardless, this topic was not meant for you. You've passed the power to the Council, and although you still reign supreme, that power is less centralized.

5. "you take the opportunity to complain about a more conceptual thing that never happend." - If the last three words are true, then it is I who is paranoid and conservative. But these are words from you, and not the council, so I keep some of my reservations.

Awi Edited by awiiya

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The meaning of the word itself is about a group of people, not an individual able to debate in any talk. I did not and I will not assign a public voice for the council. All you will ever see are the announcements they will make. Just so you know such a topic goes one way not both and i am the most appropriate to reply considering I assembled the Council.

You say they are fairly new... hmm.. let me put it this way, do you really believe I would allow such a decision power to exist in a world i care so much for, if i wasn't 110% sure of its capability to judge things? I became increasingly subjective, i want to be so, but for that to happen i need an alternate option. This option is a group of people that will always remain anolimous, regardless if they will be the same or not over time. They understand how things work in md, what things are valued and what things are not, but lack my recent instability and subjectiveness. Council will never get angry on players, retaliate like i do or pardon people just so and brag about it. The council is that final voice behind the courtain that decideds things. And I made it clear already, it is not negociable. Maybe i didnt made their authority clear enough, but its not like they are my hounds that i use to scare you or anything like that, no, they have access to everything i have in md, and are allowed to take any administrative decision regarding game politics, funds, and development trend.

Finaly i will be a spectator, and i will afford to care less about the things i say as seen official or such. Also, regardless what happens to me, md is now able to move one because of this council.

Same like i picked rendril as a programer and things stopped to be a "one man show" with me doing all, in the same way i picked the council to sustain and complete the authority part.


I guess you should accept it as it is or leave (not that i want to!) but things are as they are.

In my opinion things are far better than before.

I know I am asking you to obey blindly an authority that you do not see or know...but what do you think, you know me? you just see me thats all. In essence it is not big difference, it is just different flavor.

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@point 1
again, i am not playing dice with md destiny. Council is not just fair and "blank" but understands these way of "allowing abuses for creativity". I am training them well, maybe one day they will be able to predict things as well.

I cant give you examples from the council for obvious reasons, but i can explain you a similar thing regarding Rendril. In requires certain understanding that no regular programer has, its why it took me five years to find one, and it was not his experience that i selected, but his understanding. What programer will understand why to use certain numbers even if it makes no apparent sense, or to allow certain bugs instead of fixing them ? none. The more perfect they are the more useless they are for me. It requires things that are commonly not seen in other programming work.

Of course i take care of such things. Neither the council nor rendril are just a bunch of assigned people to manage a site. No, they learn to play with same things i did.
Sadly, some things in md future will not be as i intended, but maybe this is what md needed. Consider all projects i did so far died, so my perpetual intervention is not something to desire too much.

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i understand what lifeline posted like this: the event at the drach lair should have been solved by the kings of the lands implicated in the counflict, like it was intended in the first place..the council/mur should have stayed out IF none of the kings requested their assistance..what is the pourpuse of kings and lands personality if this said kings cannot solve a conflict between themselfs...in this essence one may see the limitation

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Okay, let me see if I can fix my "very wrong" post....

1. Mur wishes to be player (with unusual powers) shaping the culture of the Realm.

2. Game-level issues are to be dealt with by the council and/or Rendril(code) and/or Chewett(forum).

3. In-game civil issues are to be dealt with by the Kings and other community organizations.

Have I got this correct now?

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I under stand Awiiya post in regards the council
i can also understand the frustration of the outcome.
All i can say is from my point of view the council was stopped from enacting a punishment they
wanted to put forth in the first place.

But any ways i like this council and what they have done so far. No offence Mur but they do seem to
be a bit quicker in responding but then again that's no surprise as Mur is only Mur and the council
is a team of some sort.

I am sure there will be many things they do that we wont like but then again they will do much we will like
all i can say is role with it :D


[quote]
i understand what lifeline posted like this: the event at the drach lair should have been solved by the kings of the lands implicated in the counflict, like it was intended in the first place..the council/mur should have stayed out IF none of the kings requested their assistance..what is the pourpuse of kings and lands personality if this said kings cannot solve a conflict between themselfs...in this essence one may see the limitation
[/quote]

I feel i have to respond to this even though it is off topic

The king in this case ME had one of 2 choices,
1. Go to war
2. let it pass.

Netheir option was one i was willing to take

1 is far to aggressive and i do NOT want to have another fecking war

2 is far to light handed and would just show us as a week land (this was so not going to happen)

As it is myself and lifeline did speak and we came to an agreement
In the matter of dealing with the offender i have done the only action i can as per the king statement on the forums
The main issue is i could only do one of 2 action in game and both were not suitable. As the issue was seen to happen while i was around
that would say that i caught them in the act. but that does not matter as i don't have the ability to trap them or jail them as they are
not a land citizen.

I am annoyed that you all say the kings should have dealt with it. The king would do if we had more option to do so
more option compared to what i had. I am not moaning that i dont have more option i am just stating that i didn't and
from topic regards the issue you can see how heated the debate got over it and the assumptions of some over what i was
going to do.

If you feel strongly enough abut the king should have dealt with it. I can suggest tools to Mur and see if he like the
evilness of them as a kings ability to hurt players NOT of his land. :D

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