MUD anyone?

jim bell jimbell at
Sat Sep 7 15:05:05 PDT 1996

At 10:06 AM 9/1/96 +0000, Rev. Mark Grant wrote:
>On Tue, 27 Aug 1996, Jon Leonard wrote:
>Protection Agencies
>Escrow Agencies
>Private Law Courts (probably controlled by players rather than the computer)
>Reputation Agencies
>> What am I missing?  Should there be direct support for Jim Bell's
>> assasination markets?  It'd provide a means of demonstrating its
>> ineffectiveness as a means of social control.
>I think it should be incorporated, but I think that people can set them up
>easily themselves. Perhaps we should have an NPC-run 'Assasins Inc' which
>would run the lottery, and then players could do the actual 'wet work'. 
>But yes, I'd really like to see how this would work in the game. As I 
>said I'm thinking of this more as a semi-scientific experiment than a 
>pure game. We have some idea of how this stuff should work in theory, but 
>little of how it works in practice.
>I do think though that we'd have to enforce some kind of rule against
>'disposable characters', otherwise people could simply create a new
>character every time they were killed trying to assasinate someone. There
>would need to be some disadvantage to just going in guns-blazing and being
>killed ten times in a row. 

Wouldn't it be more realistic if instead of representing individual 
characters, you created composites which had a "weight" based on how many of 
them exist in the country/world?  For example, the character "buggy-whip 
maker" in 1900 would be weighted in the thousands, while his number would be 
drastically reduced a few decades later.

This would avoid the "going in with guns blazing" scenario, or at least it 
would put it into perspective:  the number of assassins would drop by "1" 
(or some proportion) if that happened, although correspondingly the number 
of targets would also drop. 

With this system, a character would never die, but his number would simply 
drop to an insignificant quantity. ("Government-thugs" comes to mind...)   
And that's not the only reason the number of characters would drop:  If it 
suddenly became "unhealthy" to accept a public paycheck, and thus the risk 
wasn't matched by the rewards, presumably people would shift professions.  
Again, this would all be part of the simulation. 

Jim Bell
jimbell at

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