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Death of the Wildlands

Discussion in 'UHall' started by Llewen, Oct 20, 2010.

  1. Llewen

    Llewen Grand Inquisitor
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    Human game playing behaviour has roots that very likely go back to the earliest mammals, and perhaps beyond that. Game playing serves more than one function, but the function that interests me the most is it's usefulness in developing and honing skills and tactics which can be used in contexts that are less safe and more significant in terms of “real life” consequences. In other words, what interests me most about games is what they can teach us about “real life”.

    I just finished watching a documentary on Ernest Thompson Seton. He was in many ways the founding father of the American environmental movement, and one of his primary motivations was his witness to the death throes of the American Wilderness. He was there, and he was part of the story, when the last wilderness in the West was “tamed”, and witnessed the slaughter of the last of the great wild predators of the American West, the grey wolf.

    It occurred to me as I was watching this documentary that there was a parallel between what happened with the American wilderness and what happened when Trammel was created. When Trammel was created Sosaria was made “safe”, the wolves were muzzled and held captive in Felucca, and unfortunately the realms of Ultima Online lost some of their romance and their beauty, and some of their usefulness as an example of human game playing behaviour.

    I find it interesting that so much effort has been made to restore and protect the wilderness of America, and in a similar way the devs have tried to restore the wildlands of Sosaria, but there is no going back, something was lost when Trammel was created that will never be restored, no matter what is done. A “classic shard” may be a worthwhile “conservation measure” but there is no returning to those mad, magical days when Ultima Online was young, dangerous and beautiful in a way that she will never be again.
     
  2. Rotgut Willy

    Rotgut Willy Seasoned Veteran
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    If I'd read this post on Facebook I'd "Like" it.
     
  3. Babble

    Babble Guest

    *fires up a freeshard with rules even before T2a*

    Your point?
     
  4. Llewen

    Llewen Grand Inquisitor
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    I should add. This isn't meant as a criticism of the game as it exists today, although I realize in some way it is. I'm still a big fan of UO as it is today, and I enjoy UO immensely as I find it now. This was simply an observation based on one of those small epiphanies I am prone to.

    Perhaps there was no way of preserving the heart of the old West, maybe it was too dangerous to be allowed to survive in the new world that was being born? Maybe the same thing could be said of Sosaria? I would like to think I would have done things differently, had those decisions been mine to make. But the real question now is, how can we take what we have, and make it healthy, and make it grow?
     
  5. Babble

    Babble Guest

    *watches 'Deadwood'*
    Heart of the Wild West?
    There is a reason sane people don't want to live in such Territories.

    On the other hand British Aristocracy loved to fight the wild tribes from the Khyber Pass. or rather saw it as the last place where one could earn honour and such things.

    Thing is UO is agame. How much fun is monopoly if you could have an insurance that if you land on a hotel you only pay 20%.
    :p
     
  6. Evlar

    Evlar Guest

    Much more fun in the days those red injuns... were running around scalping people ;) :p
     
  7. Skrag

    Skrag Visitor

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    Everyone living in the Old West loved it so much that they changed and civilized it as fast as they could. The old did not give way to the new for no reason.
     
  8. Basara

    Basara UO Forum Moderator
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    And, this shows the wild-eyed deliberate ignorance of the past.

    Be it US history & environmentalism or pre-trammel UO, too many things get so romanticised as being "a more perfect world" when they were anything but.

    And both romantic myths are alike in another manner - if you dropped their proponents into those time periods, odds are they wouldn't last more than a few days.
     
  9. Llewen

    Llewen Grand Inquisitor
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    Oh I'm fully aware that things weren't perfect back then. I was there. All I am saying is, something was lost when Trammel was created, in much the same way that something was lost when the American West was "tamed". And the "Wild West" had it's incredibly ugly side as well, that in some ways also offers a valid comparison to the early years of Ultima Online - inasmuch as you can compare what happens in a game to "real life" historical events.