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Gamasutra Member Blogs: From Automated MMOs To Future Industry Trends

In highlights from Gamasutra's Member Blogs, our bloggers write about diverse topics, including how to design around bots in online games, and how current industry trends may influence platforms of the
[In highlights from Gamasutra's Member Blogs, our bloggers write about diverse topics, including how to design around bots in online games, alternate endings, and how current trends may influence the games we will play years from now.] Member Blogs can be maintained by any registered Gamasutra user, while invitation-only Expert Blogs -- also highlighted weekly -- are written by selected development professionals. We hope that our blog sections can provide useful and interesting viewpoints on our industry. For more information, check out the official posting guidelines. Here are the top member blogs for the week: This Week's Standout Member Blogs - Bots: It's Not Me, It's You. (Jonathan Jou) Jonathan Jou examines the use of automated bots in MMOs, and argues developers could eradicate these programs altogether by designing game systems that satisfy and properly reward players for taking part in the action themselves. - What Is “The Experience”? (Eric Schwarz) The industry often describes games using buzzwords like "experience" to convey ideas about a given title, but what does "experience" really mean? Eric Schwartz picks apart this element of industry jargon to determine what people mean when using this sort of jargon. - Alternate Endings (Dylan Woodbury) Dylan Woodbury takes a look at alternate endings, examining the ways in which games present choices to the player, and how a the degree of player agency leading up to a game's conclusion can wildly change the effectiveness of these branching paths. - A Proposal: Mandatory Company Gameplay Sessions (Rom Domerson) QA tester Rom Domerson suggests developers strive to set aside at least an hour per week to play the games they are working on in hopes of solidifying a team's vision and more easily identifying problems and bugs with the project. - What Will The Next Generation Of Gamers Be Playing? (Jamie Mann) Using survey data regarding the demographics of platform owners, Jamie Mann considers how the sales trends of today will influence the future of the industry in terms of the most successful games and hardware platforms.

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