Bitcoin Forum
June 18, 2019, 06:24:34 AM *
News: Latest Bitcoin Core release: 0.18.0 [Torrent] (New!)
   Home   Help Search Login Register More  
Pages: [1]
Author Topic: Virtual Wars in the World of Abundance and Shut-ins  (Read 523 times)
Offline Offline

Activity: 1218
Merit: 1011

View Profile
December 13, 2012, 07:34:49 AM

My thoughts'll be jumping all over the place here. While pouring coffee and after months of not thinking about it, I suddenly thought of EVE releasing a game within its game. It sparked all sorts of other thoughts. Bear with me.

The developers of EVE Online (complex MMO/trading-simulator in space) announced they were going to be releasing a kind of MMOFPS to go along with EVE. This MMOFPS takes place INSIDE the game of EVE -- both are live at the same time, and can dramatically affect each other, keeping in mind it's fairly rare for player corporations to lose or gain territory (corporations with "land" tend to take the game pretty seriously and aren't constantly waging high-risk wars with each other). The "spaceship EVE" becomes a kind of meta-game, where pilots control soldiers and where battles will happen and under what conditions. On the FPS side, they actually play the battles created by the pilots in the "spaceship EVE" game.

In our world of abundance, many pay for video-game-only currency. There's even enough of a market with EVE where it may unfair to call it "video-game-only currency." Though it's against the developers rules and *can* result in penalties, it isn't particularly difficult to buy or sell the in-game currency called ISK or "time cards" called PLEX (PLEX allows an account thirty days more on their subscription). In fact, there are many individuals trading BTC for PLEX and ISK, as well as ISK and PLEX for BTC (USD, etc, too, ofc).

EVE has frequently been called a "job pretending it's a game." In many cases, the best way to make large sums of ISK is to either become a trader (look for opportunities to buy low, sell high - and the marketplace UI is probably the most advanced and complex of any MMO), a miner (larger corporations routinely organize times when everyone's expected to show up and either mine or haul minerals), or they might be a hauler (players with spacious vessels carry large quantities of ore back and forth, typically from a trading hub to a more remote area where a particular good is needed by a player or corporation). Even in combat with PvE, it's mostly grinding with the hope you can change the meta-game or earn a ship good enough to stand up in PvP combat. There are even (a lot of) professional scammers, many with pretty clever methods of getting unwitting users to hand over their currency.

Anyway - it is possible to have a self-supporting job playing EVE. But with the complex PvP aspect users take fairly seriously, it's much more than something like WoW or D3, because in EVE, ISK can buy just about anything, and for ISK revenues on a tier far above what casual players and corporations can achieve, corporations need to control, maintain, and defend their territory. Corporation-owned territories in "null-sec" have dramatically higher-value PvE targets and much higher-value mineral deposits, among other perks. Player-controlled corporations effectively own land, similar to Second Life, and this land is both valuable (in a "real-world sense," not necessarily just a "video-game sense") and can be fought for.

Pilots of serious corporations are rigorously trained (sometime expected to attend training sessions or be booted) to defend their own territory, deal with pilots, and conquer others'. It is not too big a stretch of the imagination to assume these video-game skills and knowledge have real-world value insofar as ISK can be traded for USD, BTC, etc. Thus, it is not too long a stretch, I think, to say "virtual soldiers" could actually be salaried positions, in the future if not already. A corporation could pay a "squad" of pilots, say, 10m ISK per hour they patrol their territories or defend mining operations. The corporation profits by retaining their land and through a split from miners' operations. Perhaps it would not be unreasonable to assume that because ISK has significant "real" value, and that the FPS game affects the "meta-game" of the EVE universe, FPS players could be paid in something like USD or BTC, if not ISK, and could possibly obtain a salaried position.

With all that in mind, let's go back to look at player-vs-player war in EVE. When a war between one of the few galaxy-controlling corporations occurs, those corporations may either gain or lose land. This land, ultimately, has real-world value, whether each individual player recognizes it or not. Ignoring the loss of life (yeah, I know...), is a "real" war that much different from a "virtual" war? In either, soldiers may either be enticed to join for ideology, experience, or pay (direct or indirect). Both result in a total net loss of value (ships, pilots, cargo, stationary-shooty-space-shit), but one corporation may end up with higher ISK generation as a result of a successful war.

I guess, what I'm trying to write out in as many words as possible.... How convergent can video games and real life become? If player corporations in EVE were to regularly convert ISK into gov't-recognized currency (or perhaps BTC one day).... what if they rented a real office with the money? What if they bought real apartment buildings? What if they housed members of the corporation in that apartment building? What if they not only provided members housing, but also wages? Or Hell - what if someone rented out their apartment for ISK? I'm not arguing ISK is superior to BTC, but if you can already rent for BTC, why not ISK?

It's been reported that the economy in Second Life rivals that of many countries... What happens when the stakes are so high in a video game war, player corporations contemplate violent raids against other corporations' housing and office facilities? What happens if a game were to become so widely-used, unregulated by devs, and taken so seriously, video game wars effectively were real-world wars? What happens when a video game war can cost individuals their houses or food? Is it truly impossible for someone to view a group of players declaring war in a video game as an actual war with severe real-life consequences? Is it too soon to wonder if video-game corporations may hire not only in-game soldiers, but real-world soldiers? Beats the Hell out of me... I've gotta go frost some cookies.  Tongue
Pages: [1]
Jump to:  

Sponsored by , a Bitcoin-accepting VPN.
Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.19 | SMF © 2006-2009, Simple Machines Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!