This is an article I meant to write years ago, back when Grimwell Online was just getting started. It was going to be an ongoing debate about the merits of “good” versus “evil” in online PvP gaming. Obviously I never wrote the article, but as MMOs came and went, I never stopped thinking about player conflict and how it was driven.
As I’ve mentioned before, my first online multiplayer game was Asheron’s Call. Logging in for the first time, a new player was allowed to choose one of three races – Aluvian, Sho and Gharundian, respectively based on the cultures of Western Europe, Asia and the Middle East, more or less. You then picked out a pre-made template or if you were daring, played around with stats and created your own template. A starting city was chosen for you based on your race and away you went, happily killing monsters by the dozens. Other than racial preferences (Aluvians preferred daggers, Gharus were spear and Sho used unarmed weapons), there were no real differences between the races or classes really. Picking Sho simply meant you got a +5 to your unarmed (UA) skill and your avatar looked vaguely oriental, but that’s it. Your character wasn’t classified as “good” or “evil” based on anything other than your actions in game.Continue reading