Landsknecht is on the right track. The problem is, people expect a game to mimic modern real-life too closely. They think, "oh, you can do a job" so they choose to be a blacksmith or miner, and they seem to think blacksmithing or mining is all they can do all day long. And come home at 5:30pm to watch medieval tv, or something...
Now, I''ve already explained how mining (for example) can be made more interesting. But the fact is, it was very late in history before human society had someone for every task you can imagine. Often, with some degree of overlap, the man did a lot of the physical work in a family and the woman did a lot of the creative and intricate work (in western medieval societies, that is: other cultures varied). You had to know more than just 1 trade to get by. You would grow your own food, make your own furniture, fix your own clothes, etc etc.
Where am I going with this? I am trying to say that, in the context of a fantasy game in a pseudo-medieval setting, forcing players to be both blacksmith and miner is not unreasonable or unrealistic. Make the skills interesting enough that someone will want to specialise in more than just combat, but don''t pretend that 1 skill family should be any given player''s entire game.
Funny you mention that, Kylotan.. i was thinking about the same People in medieval society had to be a small jack of all trades. They needed to be able to make as much as possible, since back then you wouldn''t use money so much as goods to barter with. Yes, it''s true.. many people didn''t forge their own swords, etc.. but they wouldn''t just go out and buy 5 broadswords at any given time. Their father might buy one and pass it down when he''s too old.. things like that. Not many people had their own swords that they went out and bought on a daily basis. "oops, my 2000 gold longsword just snapped, guess i''ll go buy another" never happened. Even the rich who had the ability to do so would not buy weapons like that! It''s true that it''s not unreasonable to expect people to be able to do multiple jobs. It wasa fact of life then. But.. many people specialized in one thing, while they had several secondary skills that they also performed. Too many MMORPG games are based on modern economy, which has only existed for like 50 years at most. Classical economy was much different in theory and practice.. and most of all, the government has taken a constantly larger role in the economy, especially in america. Back in the old days, there was no real system for currency exchange. People went to a banker or someone who would give them a good deal for it. But people wouldn''t buy the currancy if they had no use for it. The banks in dragonrealms all exchnged any currancy.. that''s like today''s banks, but not back then. People stored their money in their homes, not in a bank. And yeah, many people had to do their own hunting, etc.. in order to eat. But forcing people to eat has always been a big issue. Since the game time cannot pass like real time, you''d have to eat like every 2-4 hours depending on number of game days to real days! That would deffinately suck. It''s just another point i''m trying to make about how people used to live. They learned to hunt and fish and such, not kill goblins on a daily basis. True.. there are some who explore, try to seek adventure, etc. But the point of this topic was how to make an MMORPG fair in this sense.. since the single-player RPG CAN feature the whole "you''re a blacksmith and something has come up that requires you to fight it!" theme. In real life, that wouldn''t happen because someone else would have already fought them. And you can''t technically have them be there for every adventurer.. that goes back to the whole monster regeneration theme. But.. you can have parties of adventurers go out and seek to kill things like this. That way you take away the ability of people to simply all run round killing all they see. It''s true that one skill shouldn''t be the whole game for someone.. it should be part of the game. The skills are in familys for a reason. But you can have secondary skill sets and tertiary skill sets. We''ve also got an option that I think will help to even out and balance the world so you don''t have people doing all one thing! It''s still under wraps though.. but trust me.. it hits right on the point about people not doing just one "specialized" job. It falls close to D&D''s "dual-class" where you can be a fighter/mage and so on. But one thing to remember.. blacksmiths were often fighters who were living at home and not adventuring anymore. They learned how to blacksmith by learned what weapons worked best, how to fix a weapon and how to balance them correctly. You never had an 18 year old blacksmith unless his dad had him appenticing! Just some more food for thought..
Um... Just another idea. I play Cyberpunk 2020 - by R. Talsorian. Tabletop RPG. The characters in that game can be or evolve into just about anything they want. There ARE, however, 'classes'. Basically, each character chooses a class - the benefit of that class is a single - very specialized - skill. The rest of the skill bank is very general and across the board. The blacksmith in our example could have a special skill - FORGE - or whatnot. Mind you, in Cyberpunk, just cause you do not have any experience in a skill, nothing prevents you from trying. You would just suck very, very bad. Specialized skills are not to far off the mark.Let's see you forge a sword - I've tried in the REAL world, got a so-so butter knife.
Edited by - Landsknecht on May 11, 2000 12:27:12 AM