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The Whole Picture

So as to make it easier to describe, I've partitioned the virtual world design process—however, it's actually holistic. You can't treat the individual aspects of design in isolation: They impact on one another in ways that may not be immediately obvious.

Example: Crafters complain that their towns are lifeless. You determine that this is because crafting (unlike combat) is a solo activity. You introduce manufacturing processes that entail several characters' working together. Players build houses in close proximity to one another so they can get to and from the crafting centers quickly. Towns become more vibrant as a result. However, now that people spend more time in the towns than in the wilderness, adventurers complain that the wilderness is lifeless.


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