Karma in computer games... no, not that again

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Mawkish1983
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Karma in computer games... no, not that again

Postby Mawkish1983 » Thu Aug 27, 2009 9:52 am

I thought I'd share a recent thought I had about one of my favourite computer games (right now). The game is Fallout 3 and is set in the year 2277, 200 years after the world is destroyed by an atomic war. The creators of this game were suprisingly insightful it seems.

In the game you play the role of a young adult who was raised in a vault (an underground sealed community, locked away before the war. The door of the vault had never been opened since). I don't want to spoil the story so I'm not saying more :)

At an early point in the game you are forced to leave the vault and face the remains of Washington DC and its surroundings. The place is known as the 'capital wasteland' and you find the humanity had survived, but it is in a bad way. With no justice or government system io place humanity had settled into small cities dotted around the wasteland. There are people trying to do good, and people trying to survive by doing bad things. A key theme in this game is that you have to decide what sort of character you play as: good, neutral or bad. This is measured in the game by 'karma'. If you do unskillful things (like stealing food or killing) you get negative karma, if you do skillful things (like giving clean pure water to someone who is lost in the wasteland) you get positive karma. What's interesting is the the karma affects how people interact with you.

In the game there are LOADS of quests, and you get to decide whether to be good or bad, or neutral. The outcome drastically changes the game and your karma drastically affects how people interact with you. I love it.

What I find strange is that whilst playing as a bad person is easier (just steal what you want and kill anyone in your way), I find it harder to do. I find it much more enjoyable to play as a good person. It's one of the few computer games I've found where you get that choice and, if you want, you can practice the brahmaviharas electronically :)

Anyway, relating this back to the old 'is playing computer games bad kamma' jazz, I'd love to see more games like this where we get the choice, just as in real life, to do the easy thing or to do the hard thing that offer more longterm enjoyment.

Yeah, I recommend Fallout 3

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zavk
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Re: Karma in computer games... no, not that again

Postby zavk » Thu Aug 27, 2009 10:14 am

I hear ya....

I haven't played video games in ages (except when I went on holiday recently and played on my friend's PS3)--the simple reason being that I don't own any game consoles. Well, I do have a PS2 but I got bored of that years ago. I'm thinking of getting a PS3. There's finally a price-drop and the new model will be released here on 3 September. I'd probably use it to play Bluray more than games. But Fallout 3 sounds like the kind of action-adventure/FPS games that I like.
With metta,
zavk

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appicchato
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Re: Karma in computer games... no, not that again

Postby appicchato » Thu Aug 27, 2009 10:40 am

...I'd love to see more games...


:shrug:

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clw_uk
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Re: Karma in computer games... no, not that again

Postby clw_uk » Thu Aug 27, 2009 8:41 pm

I'd love to see more games like this where we get the choice, just as in real life, to do the easy thing or to do the hard thing that offer more longterm enjoyment.



If you like games where choice determines outcomes then i think you would enjoy

Mass Effect

Star Wars: Knights or the Old Republic (one and two)

Fable (one and two)


However, on a Dhamma note, ive found computer games to be very distracting (and of course sensual pleasure)

metta
“The Great Way is not difficult for those who have no preferences. When love and hate are both absent, everything becomes clear and undisguised." Verses on the Faith Mind, Sengcan

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Ben
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Re: Karma in computer games... no, not that again

Postby Ben » Thu Aug 27, 2009 8:46 pm

This is a warning to you all...


World of Warcraft addicts to get in-game shrinks

World of Warcraft is so addictive that a psychiatrist is planning to send a team of counsellors into the game to treat players before they lose touch with the real world.

It comes after a report published by Sweden's Youth Care Foundation this year found World of Warcraft was the most dangerous game on the market and "the cocaine of the computer games world".

Richard Graham, a psychiatrist who treats adolescents at the Tavistock Clinic in London, believes that, just as casinos contribute to the treatment of compulsive gamblers, Blizzard, the creator of the online role playing game, should fund help for World of Warcraft addicts.

He said in an interview that the catalyst for his new project was a "disturbing" case of a young man who told him that, in the 3½ years he had been playing the game, he had clocked up 450 days of playing time.

Read the rest of it here: http://www.theage.com.au/digital-life/g ... -f0h6.html


Now, step away from your computer and go and play outside!
Kind regards

Ben
Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.

Taṃ nadīhi vijānātha:
sobbhesu padaresu ca,
saṇantā yanti kusobbhā,
tuṇhīyanti mahodadhī.

Sutta Nipata 3.725

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e: ben.dhammawheel@gmail.com

Mawkish1983
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Re: Karma in computer games... no, not that again

Postby Mawkish1983 » Thu Aug 27, 2009 10:06 pm

Ben wrote:Now, step away from your computer and go and play outside!

Yes sir :)


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