Insanity by Wizard Games

Do MUD’s and ASCII Graphics Provoke Insanity Part II


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It is May and outside the sky is so dark that if someone told me that Shenron was being summoned I might believe them.  To me at least I find it comforting, because when it’s too sunny out I don’t want to work on anything.  I remember thinking this exact thought about a year ago when I began working on First Paradise, an ASCII game. Since then I now like to consider myself an amatuer astrologist or at least better at programming than I was when I started this whole fiasco, and I’m still not done.

Consider it madness, but staring at static keyboard characters for extreme periods of time stimulates my imagination in ways that only my fellow brethren (& sister..en?) can understand. I wrote an article awhile back about how ASCII graphics might provoke insanity.  My stance was neutral then but now I know better.

So straight off the top, give me an ‘@’ symbol, place the letter ‘D’ next to that sucker and I got: “The beast stood tall and imposing, it’s teeth like sharp yellow knives against gums dark as night. My sword grew heavy, threatening to abandon my grip as only a heart made of cold steel could. Perspiration dotted my forehead, I began to dread what came next for I knew now that I had grossly underestimated this capital letter ‘D’.”

Grandpa Rogue

I always knew I wasn’t alone, multi-user dungeons were after all multiplayer games.  If you’ve played Dwarf Fortress then you know how deep the rabbit hole goes, and how intense and vibrant that community is.  Hell, I could get lost in Simutronics’ Elanthia for days. I can be run down by zombies for knocking over a teapot in Cataclysm: Dark Days Ahead. I can be anywhere and be anything. Sometimes I can die and do it all again and if I’m lucky the game world continues on without me if I don’t.

I think it’s funny that Einstein’s definition of insanity is “doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. Dude, that sounds like a really good roguelike, matter of fact, it exists! Do i think we’re all nuts? No. We’re just a special breed who’s definition of insanity means almost always getting different results.


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