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Old 05-16-2006, 08:14 AM   #1
Fifi
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I've seen players leave muds and continue to post. I always thought it was pretty strange. And in the case of people who were obviously angry (posting negative reveiws complaining in their posts ) I thought it was downright annoying.

About a year ago, I left the mud I played on. I didn't read the boards. I didn't post. Time went on and I'd look peruse the forums when I got bored. Next thing I know, I'm posting, I read daily. What is this?

I've left jobs and never gone back to visit. I've left men, I do not call them up to chat. Why are gaming communities harder to leave than lovers?

Do mud admins see a lot of this? Have any theories about why? Any other ex players current posters out there? What drives you to post?
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Old 05-16-2006, 08:23 AM   #2
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I haven't really seen a lot of this at our mud, which may be a good thing. We haven't had all that many people who played regularly leave because they were dissatisfied, though of those I don't really think I've seen any come back around to haunt our boards.

My first thought about why this might happen is that a lot of times people can really invest themselves in a mud, a lot moreso than many other types of games. Despite the fact that there are only letters on the screen and not pretty polygons, your average mud player spends a long time building up their character, be it rp or hack&slash as the setting. Having a hobby you've invested a lot of time in go sour because of the actions of someone else (even if they are fair, you might not see them that way) is the type of thing that can really tick someone off. At that point, some people will walk away and be fine, if disgruntled, some people will walk away and come back, and some people will walk away before coming back with an intent to cause trouble. They can be ****ed off because they didn't like how things were run, or because they don't think it was their fault, etc etc. So the slightly more petty ones will try to get back at someone, cause trouble, etc. See what I mean?

I have seen this once or twice, and that seemed to be the cause of it, though really it was before we had boards or such.
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Old 05-16-2006, 11:26 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by (Fifi @ May 16 2006,08:14)
I've left jobs and never gone back to visit. I've left men, I do not call them up to chat. Why are gaming communities harder to leave than lovers?
You can probably fill out countless pages with accounts of "personal experiences" on this subject, and I have personally experienced it a couple of times.

I think that the thing that brings me back, personally, is the people. You build virtual relationships, have a bunch of friends, people have some stories attached to their characters, etc. You come back to see how things are evolving, how things are going, maybe you (ie. me) ask yourself if you would be able to go back to the game and still kick some rear.

I believe once it has gotten to the point where you think about the developements in the game or the game itself while not actually playing, you are involved with the game at a different level, maybe not too different from when you work in a thesis project for a year and then find yourself going back to some of those old files half a year after graduation because something occurred to you (I hope I am not the only one).

In my personal experience, I have quit playing MUDs twice (yeah, sounds like the statement by an alcoholid). Once, I worked for 6 months in a school project which required full cocentration and I found entertaining (1 yr after I started playing MUDs); the project ended and I went back to play. The next time was a couple of years ago, when I deleted all my characters on the game I played (6 yrs after starting in MUDs) because I wanted more time to devote to graduate school; it lasted a week.

The difference between the two situations is that in the 2nd case my char was known around, was leader of a clan, I had dozens of people on contact list within the game, etc. Not only the thrill of playing but most importantly the people and the social acceptance/impact of/by my character drew me back.

I have been now over month and a half without playing at all, but here I am, hovering around the MUD sites, frequenting the MUDs boards, frequenting the clan's boards, etc. Not deleted this time, just frozen for a year hoping not to create an alt this time around
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Old 05-16-2006, 01:55 PM   #4
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Leaving a job and leaving a relationship with another person are far different from leaving a MU* - or any other social community. As was stated before, you make a web of relationships with other people on most MU*s.

It's more akin to being in a community theater troupe. You might leave one to join another, but it's possible you'll float back to the original troupe some day because of the friends you made there.
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Old 05-16-2006, 04:26 PM   #5
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We have a saying about our older, active and more hard-core players... "They always come back". So far this has proven very true. On Medievia we have many players who leave for months, even years, at a time and end up coming back, - especially the Heros (level 124). I have to agree with the previous posters on this thread, it's about the people. When I ask the players why they return, their response almost always are relating to people- friends made, enemies, fellow clan members, town members, etc. When the players get critical and say they hate the changes and I ask them why they bother to log in, a lot off the time they say it's about their friends. Other players don't even really play anymore, they just log in for their friends.

The bottom line is that it is hard to leave a place/community/family that you have invested weeks, months, years of your life in. It's someplace familiar where you feel secure and where you have fun. Why NOT go back and check it out?

Personally, after having been a part of Medievia for 11 years now, I can't imagine my life without it, nor do I want to. Some people in my RL think its weird and bizarre to have close friendships online and this whole world to be with them in, but I think its cool and something that is a good part of my life.
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Old 05-16-2006, 05:33 PM   #6
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Oddly when I mudded I mudded on an rpi. So, no one knew who I played. I didn't know who anyone else played. And the forums won't help me to get caught up on what's going on. Strange isn't it?
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Old 05-16-2006, 09:00 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by (Spoke @ May 16 2006,12:26)
I think that the thing that brings me back, personally, is the people. You build virtual relationships, have a bunch of friends, people have some stories attached to their characters, etc.
Ditto.

I've only ever sworn off one mud though, and it was actually precisely because of the boards there, so ...

And it wasn't long ago either, so God only knows if I will go back eventually, but I think not. I held off searching for a new mud Home for years because I kept going back to it and because finding and getting used to a whole new mud is a pain in the backside, but I did it and can say that I am much happier now.

For me a big part of the game is the community of people I play with. This incidentally is why I have a hard time enjoying Shadows of Isildur. It's a great game, with some truly cool features. I especially like how they pulled off weather. If it is raining, you know it's raining. You don't ever have this thing when you are rp'ing blue sky and sunny days and then look and it is actually raining on you.

But without the ability to chat at idle times, I end up poking around on the web and the next thing you know I am not playing anymore.

I have this whole flow of consciousness thing going on here... Sorry that last was a bit off topic. But yeah, community and familiarity, that is what draws me back when it happens.
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Old 05-16-2006, 09:02 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by (Fifi @ May 16 2006,18:33)
Oddly when I mudded I mudded on an rpi. So, no one knew who I played. I didn't know who anyone else played. And the forums won't help me to get caught up on what's going on. Strange isn't it?
Possibly you just like the community of people on that forum.

Specific chatrooms and web boards have the same effect on me as a mud's boad does.
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Old 05-17-2006, 05:19 AM   #9
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I see a lot of this in the mud I play.

Generally speaking somewhere after a few months have passed of them not playing, just posting, they either quit for good or start playing again.

That, at least, is what happened to me. Though I couldn't go back to my previous charecter, he was dead ended and the guild/city/game had changed way too much that his role was sort of obsolete.
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Old 05-17-2006, 11:42 AM   #10
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We have a lot of people stop playing, but still hang around in-game and just sit around chatting with their old buddies. There isn't any idle timeout so they're free to idle for days or months if their connection will allow them
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Old 05-17-2006, 02:28 PM   #11
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Sadly, when we see a farewell post of some kind, it's often either:

The Happy Farewell: A player gets a new job, moves, has a child, etc. and needs to make time in their life. They fade away for a bit, then decide a reluctant farewell is in order, so they can leave contact information, etc. They say they'll be back, but frequently their time dwindles and they just pop in once in a while.

The Unhappy Farewell: A player decides we're the worst. game. evar., run by morons and completely unbalanced. They loudly announce that they are severing all ties with us, call the remaining players fools for staying, and generally make as big a mess as they can. This player will rarely actually leave, and will almost definitely haunt our forums ad nauseum.

I don't have a good answer why the griefer-avenger types do what they do, but I've certainly seen enough examples of it.
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Old 05-17-2006, 02:41 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by (Valg @ May 17 2006,10:28)
Sadly, when we see a farewell post of some kind, it's often either:

The Happy Farewell: A player gets a new job, moves, has a child, etc. and needs to make time in their life. They fade away for a bit, then decide a reluctant farewell is in order, so they can leave contact information, etc. They say they'll be back, but frequently their time dwindles and they just pop in once in a while.

The Unhappy Farewell: A player decides we're the worst. game. evar., run by morons and completely unbalanced. They loudly announce that they are severing all ties with us, call the remaining players fools for staying, and generally make as big a mess as they can. This player will rarely actually leave, and will almost definitely haunt our forums ad nauseum.

I don't have a good answer why the griefer-avenger types do what they do, but I've certainly seen enough examples of it.
Hear hear to that. I've seen players do this for 5-6 years before finally burning out and quit for real.
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Old 05-18-2006, 10:16 AM   #13
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I'll give you another reason people come back.

Even when (especially when?) they leave a MU* because something good is going on in their lives (marriage, new job, baby, etc.), when that thing is lost, or taken away...

they come back.

Because...the Game is familiar, and though there may be a modicum of change since the time they played...there is a lot the same.

There is comfort in returning to the familiar when everything is falling apart around you. If there has been a substantial time-off period, there will be new people to meet, maybe new areas to play, new storylines to get involved in...but the basic background hasn't usually fundamentally "changed". Perhaps there is even a "legend" about the player's character, and the new generation will be in awe to be in the presence of such greatness.

This kind of homecoming doesn't always last long... often, they just drop in, play a while, and fade back out as RL gets sorted out. But I've seen this happen more than once on our game.
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Old 05-18-2006, 12:00 PM   #14
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I've done this with a few games. I usually do this because I'm either bored, or being nosy. I would leave game, then something happens to make me thing of the game. So, instead of logging into the game itself, I log on the forums just to poke around. Usually threads with new additions and such pique my interest, so I do go on to log in. Other times, I find its the same old stuff that kept me from playing in the first place.

I have noticed one thing that I don't like: Players that make a big "I'm hate this game, I'm leaving" or similar post, first. Then the actually leave the games and forums for a while, only to return and troll the board. When someone complains, they piggy back with "See, that's why I left...." posts and others that give a one-sided arguments because they haven't played the game in while and do not know anything about the other side. Stuff like that just makes me wonder why they even bother reading, as they don't even play the game any longer.
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Old 05-18-2006, 08:23 PM   #15
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You are all crazy!

K, had to get that out of the way. Thank you for your time and patience (you crazy buggers).



So, humm, anyway. I think that people return to post is that once time is invested you have a little place in your heart for that mud where your character resided. It could not have been all bad or you would not have stayed there for any length of time. I 'left' (i.e. didn't have telnet or internet access) gateway for a 10 year period and was ecstatic when I stumbled upon it again. I've been playing again there for around 5 years, give or take 1. If I ever left gateway I'm certain I'd pop back in to read the boards, do some posting, noogie everyone I could. I know what I'd love to do to my ex and it would be more fun than a noogie but I degress. The game we play for our hobby in a way is more stable than a relationship could be, I think, though I am not a phsycologist (sp?). That add any to the discussion? Hope so but then again you are all crazy so let the gods sort it out!
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