What’s That Sound I Hear?

posted by on 22nd September 2008, at 11:09pm

It sounds like a wall crashing down. More specifically, the fourth wall, and it happens to be nonexistant in RuneScape.

For those of you that don’t have a clue what this is about, the fourth wall is a reference to old theater, and it basically involves “going out of character”. An example of this would be a webcomic with characters falling out of the panels or talking about being in panels. I’m not going to rant about realism (Seriously, sharks eaten in two bites can heal giant chops from an axe that you got from the grave of a famous warrior, who gets looted countless times daily?) or anything, so don’t prepare for a boring essay on “WE CAN’T SIT DOWN OMG”.

If you’ve ever been to a certain inn and talk to someone about a “computer game”, you’ll hear a little speech on how the world is just a game (and all the men and women are merely players?) being controlled by someone else. Does this really keep with the game’s medieval theme? I’ve played games that won’t even let their players mention the modern music they like. It’s not just the players (who are almost completely role-play free, but I’ll get to that in a moment), the NPC characters are guilty of fourth wall vandalism as well.

I previously mentioned the lack of in character role-playing in RuneScape. Face it, how often do you see players interacting as if they were actually adventurers of many talents? You’re more likely to hear “Omfg i hit a 20 with my whip” instead of something like “That was a solid hit!”. Part of it is related to the player base, as most of the younger players aren’t interested in serious role-playing or they simply don’t feel like removing player lingo such as “lol” or “pwned” from their vocabularies.

Call me a nerd that’s played too much Ultimate Assassins, but I think more role-playing and less detracting from the theme would be good for RuneScape.

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