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A Typology of Events

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A Typology of Events




This aims to be a critical analysis and categorization of all major types of events held in EL so far. It can then be used as a reference for the creation of future events. For analysis, I’ll also be using MUD Player Types to help analyse the events. You can click the link to read the full report, but I’ll include a quick summary below:

There are four main types of players that play online multiplayer games:

  • Achievers, who are primarily interested in beating the game and reaching the highest levels or rankings possible. (In the Hickman categorization used by the Events team, these would be Gamers)
  • Explorers, who are interested in finding out every little secret about the game and knowing all the little tricks and trivia within the game. (The Hickman categorization doesn’t mention these)
  • Socializers, who are mostly interested in chatting and making friends with other people through the game. (In the Hickman categorization, these are Talkers)
  • Killers, who are interested in beating/pwning other people and/or doing nasty things to them in the game. (Hickman calls these Fighters… however, as people can fight against each other in EL for actual battle or just to train, I’m using “Killers” specifically to refer to PKers, as opposed to combat-oriented Achievers who want to gain levels)



Events by Type


Now, as to events. There are several types of events in the game, and I’ll list the most common in no particular order. Various unique events have been created as a result of mixing and matching one or more of these basic events, or providing a fresh twist on an event category.

  • Giveaways involve usually one rich / experienced player giving away items to poorer / greedy players. Sometimes, these also happen when a player is leaving and wants to dispose of their storage inventory. These were also formerly called drop parties. However, recently they have been deemed to be bagspamming events, so are no longer officially supported. (It is still possible to run them, if no bags are created, I suppose…). Giveaways primarily attract low-level Achievers, who want to get better items/money in order to help them level up faster, and Explorers who want to complete their collection of rare items. They are usually hosted by either Achievers who have collected too many items and need to get rid of some, or Socializers who want to be seen as charitable and helping others.
  • Manhunts at their most basic form involve looking for a single person hiding somewhere in the world. Prizes are normally awarded to the first people who find the hider. There are usually clues provided to the hider’s location, though the level of helpfulness of these clues often depends on how difficult the manhunt is supposed to be. An example of a manhunt system already in-built into the game is the search for Joker, of course. Manhunts can also be chained together with other event types to create more complex events. Manhunts primarily attract Explorers, who like to put their knowledge of maps and pathways to use. However, if the prize is sufficiently great to outweigh the time spent on trying to find the person, Achievers and Killers may get involved as well. Socializers usually get involved if there is a large enough crowd getting involved in the event, as it provides an interesting topic of conversation among those participating. Manhunts are mainly hosted by Explorers, who again like to show off their knowledge of obscure places to hide and weird clues, and occasionally by Socializers as a way to stir up excitement on a boring day. Note that one of the main problems about this is that the manhunts organized by Explorers and Socializers usually don’t have big enough prizes to make it worthwhile for Achievers or Killers to take part, as the first two groups find it difficult to accumulate money without spending it on something else.
  • Treasure hunts are similar to manhunts, except that they involve finding an object instead of a person somewhere on the map. Again, usually cryptic clues are provided as to the object’s location. Classic examples of treasure hunts are Entropy’s hyperspace bag hunts. Just like manhunts, treasure hunts can be chained together with other event types to create more complex events. Everything said about manhunts with regards player types also applies to treasure hunts. However, treasure hunts are more difficult to organize than manhunts, because unattended bags can be picked up by Ants or the unwitting passer-by, whereas hyperspace bags and their keys are expensive, restricting the number of people who can participate.
  • Fetch-and-carry events involve bringing one or more items from one location/person to another. Very rarely are these organized to stand on their own. Often, they are integrated with a time limit to turn it into a race, with more than one player to make it a relay, or with a manhunt or treasure hunt and some riddles in order to make it into a more complex scavenger hunt / riddle quest. The types of players this event attracts depends on what it’s mixed with.
  • Storytelling and Performance events involve people taking turns to either tell a story or perform an act of entertainment (like stand-up comedy). Sometimes, this comes in the form of a contest, with judges voting on best entry. By far, Socializers are the ones most attracted to both attend and host these sorts of events. However, if it is in contest form and the prize is sufficiently great, other player types – particularly Achievers who are aiming to build a reputation in the social, entertainment or roleplaying spheres – may choose to attend as well.
  • Trivia contests involve a series of questions to which participants must guess the right answer to, with the winner getting prizes or points. These may be about the game, or about things outside the game. Examples of these are the EternalTrivia bot on channel 11, and the Eternal Lands Trivia Contests that Lord Vermor / Acelon used to organize. The hosters of these sort of events are mostly Explorers, as they are the ones with the esoteric knowledge of trivia and secrets about the game. Trivia contests will naturally attract Explorers, who like to be tested on their knowledge of the game. They can also attract Achievers if there are rankings or sufficiently great prizes, and Socializers if there are big crowds as there can be a lot of excitement generated after each question. Because the barrier to participation is so low (all you need is some knowledge about the game and a bit of luck), almost anyone can attend.
  • Riddle quests involve having a series of riddles about the game or objects within the game that participants will have to guess the answer to. They are sometimes used as standalone events, organized similarly to trivia contests, but more often mixed with other events such as manhunts or treasure hunts to form more complex events. Because of the scope of the riddles, they are technically open to all player types… though if the riddles describe in-game items or places, Explorers have a slight advantage. The type of players that are attracted to these events and host them are dependent on what other event elements are mixed in, as well as what the scope of the riddles cover. Riddles involving other players, or the intricacies of skills or combat may attract Socializers, Achievers or Killers respectively.
  • Celebration parties are social gatherings simply to celebrate something happening to one or more of the players. These range from simple drinking parties in a tavern to celebrate a birthday, to complex weddings on custom-created maps with feasting, summoning and full coordinated guild costumes. An upcoming example of this type is the First Annual High Society Gala. Obviously, the primary player type that both hosts and attends these events are Socializers. Other player types attend because of personal ties to the celebrating person, not by natural inclination, unless they want a break from their normal activities.
  • Invasions come in two forms – the automated small-scale ones generated by the system, or the scripted, large-scale ones designed by players. Hostile animals overrun one map or more, requiring players to band together to fight them off and destroy them all. Surprisingly, all four player types enjoy invasions. Achievers enjoy testing their skills against the challenges that the game is throwing at them. Honorable Killers do the same, dishonorable killers enjoy the bag-looting that comes afterwards. Socializers (those who can fight or heal, at least) enjoy being part of a large effort that involves player cooperation. Explorers like guessing what would come next and trying to get to the new invasion fronts before anyone else.
  • PK / fighting contests are perhaps the most common form of player-organised events nowadays. These involve one-on-one duels between two players, with moderators and judges, and usually some form of tournament, league, or ranking system. An example of this is the upcoming ~LE~ EL Seasonal PK League. Very obviously, these are largely organized by Killers, for Killers to test themselves against each other. Occasionally, Achievers will take part, as a means of testing their skills or proving their dominance. Socializers and Explorers hardly ever participate, though they may attend as observers or audience members.
  • Organized Wars are one step up from fighting contests in that they comprise groups of players fighting each other instead of individuals. These are usually incredibly difficult to organize and moderate, because of the sheer numbers of people taking part. Similar to fighting tournaments, these are attended primarily by Killers and Achievers, although Socializers with decent skills may also want to get involved because of the teamwork factor involved this time. Generally speaking, only those with high reputations or standing within the community (usually Achievers of some sort) will be able to host and organize such an event.
  • Contests of Skill involve activities in which players with compete with each other through a series of challenges testing one or more (non-combat) skills. An example of this type of event was the Glilin’s Recipe crafting contest. With the introduction of hyperspace bags, this type of contest has become significantly easier to organize (in terms of needing less manpower). This type of event is specifically designed for Achievers, and usually well attended by them. Achievers would also be the most likely people to host these sort of events, if you could pull them away from leveling. Killers, Explorers and Socializers are unlikely to find much interest in competing, though they could be part of the audience.
  • Games of Chance like lotteries are something fairly new, but look promising. Slightly different from the other events in that they are ‘played’ simply by purchasing tickets and waiting for an announcement, as opposed to something that requires constant active participation for a shorter period of time. Player types are fairly irrelevant to who takes part, though Achievers may think of it as a possible ‘get-rich-quick’ scheme, while Explorers just want to try their luck and maybe work out a system for beating the odds. But Socializers and Killers wouldn’t mind taking part as well, I suppose.






So ends a listing of all major event types or elements of events so far. Now, I’ll break it down via player types:

Achievers like: Contests of Skill, Organized Wars, Invasions, Fighting Tournaments, Giveaways, and Games of Chance.

Explorers like: Manhunts, Treasure Hunts, Riddle Quests, Trivia Contests, Giveaways and Games of Chance.

Socializers like: Celebration parties, Storytelling or performance events, Trivia Contests, Riddle Quests, and sometimes Invasions and Organized Wars

Killers like: Fighting tournaments, Organized Wars, Invasions, and sometimes Manhunts (if it involves killing).



Now, this can be useful. If, for example, we want an event to cater to as wide a bunch of people as possible, it's good to try and bring in event elements that will appeal to all four types of players. Currently, by my rough guesstimate, EL's population ratio is something like 50% Achiever : 10% Explorer : 30% Socializer : 10% Killer. Possibly, then, the reason why many players seem not so interested in events is because (1) the event doesn't appeal to them, and (2) the events that DO appeal to them are hard to organize well, or if done so, cannot be done in sufficient quantity to produce a self-sustaining movement.


Because the time it takes to create a good event is much longer than the time it takes to complete / consume it, there are generally two solutions to the problem: Either make it automatically-generated via computerized procedures (eg. automated invasions), or somehow massively increase the number of event creators. After seeing the dissatisfaction of players with regards to procedural generation of events, I'm firmly heading in the opposite direction - give the tools for good event creation in the hands of as many people as possible, and motivate them to create interesting events for the rest to enjoy. The great challenge right now is how to divert the 50% of EL's population that are Achievers AWAY from the levelling grind and into active event creation. The other challenge is how to empower Socializers and Explorers (who generally are interested in event creation but lack the resources because they don't get too involved in the rat race) to be able to create events that can draw attendance in spite of low rewards.


Any thoughts, opinions or comments? :icon13:


Edited by Lyanna

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Totally love the information you provided! Very useful, and written professionally!


PS; I am more in the Socializers but sometimes get tangled in Achievers (when I have no one to talk to :()

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I just read through your small article here and I have to say it's a very interesting - and as far as I can judge - very accurate observation! The question you raised in the last paragraph is certainly not solved yet.

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