Games like OtherSpace aren’t for everybody.
They require the sort of person who:
* Likes to read.
* Likes to write.
* Likes to experiment with cause and effect.
* Likes to fly by the seat of their pants, crafting dialogue in real-time.
It’s like a LARP – live action role-playing game – in that participants assume roles that evolve over time. It’s like a tabletop game in that the game’s staffers act as referees or “dungeon masters” for the participants. It’s like theater in that the participants are actors performing roles – sometimes dramatic, sometimes comedic, and sometimes tragic.
But LARPs may meet once a month or so. Tabletop gaming groups might get together once a week. Theater groups may put on one or two shows a season.
OtherSpace is online around the clock every day. Our participants come from all over the world. Events occur in real-time. One day in the real world equals one day in the game. When major story arcs are in progress, missing a few days might result in returning to find the universe fundamentally changed or, at the very least, embroiled in some kind of crisis that potentially affects where your character can travel. So, above all else, you’ll find that OtherSpace differs from all these other forms in that it requires a commitment of attention, creative effort, mental flexibility, patience, and time.
That makes it an acquired taste for a rather limited audience.
However, if you’re willing to make the commitment, it can pay off in the satisfaction of creating a memorable character who experiences epic space opera adventures while making friends with strangers from across the globe.
Well, it’s back to work at the apocalypse tomorrow. Time to reflect on what I’ve accomplished during the past week or so now that I’m rapidly running out of time to slack about. Here’s what got done during the vacation:
* Visited with the folks, my brother, my adorable nephew, my grandparents, and my second cousin for a few days after Christmas. It was a very concentrated sort of visit – two full days of driving hundreds of miles in a rented Shoebowl on either side of a couple of days of hanging around the homestead and gorging myself on turducken. I also owe a visit to some folks in Fernandina Beach. I’m hoping time will allow in the very near future!
* Added about 100 pages to the new OtherSpace Wiki.
* Tweeted a bunch.
* Picked up a new iTunes FM transmitter for the Juicebox and the second season of Babylon 5 at Best Buy.
* Got No Son of Hekayt, Book I, online for free download at http://www.jointhesaga.com – a move that I made because I’m more interested in drawing newcomers to OtherSpace MUSH and the book’s a more tangible hook than a plain old invitation to explore the abstract concept of an online roleplaying environment. I also tweaked the main website a bit, adding buttons to link to the Facebook, Twitter, and WordPress pages – as well as the new forums, the Wikis, and the old community site. (If you’d be so kind as to become a fan of Jointhesaga on Facebook, that’d be great! And if you want to follow me on Twitter, that’s also cool.)
* Scored the Loremaster of Outland achievement on World of Warcraft. That’s Kalimdor, Eastern Kingdoms, and Outland finished. Now to wrap up Northrend so that I can claim that Loremaster tabard. Also, got Stamp much better geared and statted for the DPS role that I intend him to play, thanks to a lot of pick-up group runs. (Got the Perky Pug pet too. Best virtual pet in the game, if you ask me.)
* Leveled in Fishville and Mafia Wars, but Farmville is slow going. I may be losing patience for the farm. Feels like such a grind.
* Got Huck a full dental workup, grooming, and a blue kerchief. He looks great, but will be on antibiotics for a couple of weeks to clear up some skin issues.
* Saw Sherlock Holmes – twice. Once with my brother in Orlando; second time with Karen at Southpoint in Durham. It didn’t seem as good to me on second viewing, gotta admit.
* Saw Avatar, again, but this time in IMAX 3D. Big pretty is still pretty, although the story’s definitely very formulaic and simplistic.
* Watched Terminator Salvation, finally, on Movies On Demand. It wasn’t great, but it wasn’t as bad as I had expected.
* Watched UP again, on Movies on Demand. Sad part is still sad, but the movie’s still very enjoyable. Classic work.
* Wanted to watch O Brother, Where Art Thou? again, but discovered that the DVD is SCRATCHED. HOW DID THIS HAPPEN?! Must get a new one ASAP.