Wednesday 25 February 2009

Let’s go to Darkfall

There’s a short story that sticks in my mind, Google suggests it was “Let’s go to Golgotha” by Garry Kilworth (danger, spoilers coming up!). In it, time travel is possible and tourists can book holidays including a “Crucifixion Tour”. They’re togged up appropriately and sternly warned that they mustn’t change the course of history, so when the crowd are asked whether Jesus or Barrabas should be spared they have to shout in favour of Barrabas. The twist at the end comes when a tourist realises the bulk of the crowd are time travellers, all shouting for Barrabas, drowning out the few locals.

So, I gather Darkfall is released today (possibly, the website doesn’t say much and the forums appear to have melted as everyone looks for news). I wasn’t planning on playing it; it’s nice to see alternatives to the Diku-esque model of most recent major MMOGs, but I don’t think Darkfall is for me. Apart from anything else, the community have something of a reputation for being eager to engage in a full and frank exchange of views over the game. Seeing a quote from Ten Ton Hammer: “… what I experienced in the world is still the worst example of an online community I’ve ever encountered, without question.”, though… I’m a bit morbidly tempted to go in and see what it’s actually like. With the forewarning of the article, and the expectation that everybody would be out to get me, I imagine I’d adopt the persona of a paranoid sociopath, doing unto others before they got a chance to do anything unto me and generally being a bit of a git.

At this point you might realise that first paragraph is actually vaguely relevant rather than being a random copy/paste mishap. Perhaps the true Darkfall community is a model of politeness, courtesy and restraint but somehow it’s attracted a ferocious reputation, so the tourists come in and snarl and gank and teabag, believing it’s the done thing, while the locals roll their eyes and get on with a spot of topiary, or an honourable duel to the cries of “well played sirrah!” from an appreciative crowd. Perhaps…

No comments: