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The arc of the Steem MMORPG


5 months ago7 min read

What I enjoy being part of on Steem is the complexity and variety of a system that provides many paths and a range of potential outcomes. What works for one, might not work for another and what fails miserably today, could be a roaring success tomorrow. While far from the largest, in my opinion Steem is the best online multiplayer game there is and provides a massive amount of points of approach.

Success in the game depends on the player, not the game and while some people tend to do better than others, a lot of this comes down to factors that are not actually Steem related, like skill levels and economic resource availability off Steem. Because many people see Steem as some kind of closed ecosystem, it makes it difficult and unwieldy to handle various aspects of the system that are influenced by off Steem interactions.

I mentioned economic availability and this often comes up in various conversations concerning investors and many have the belief that because they bought in, they can do what they choose without the ramifications of consequence to their action by others in the system. One argument I heard was about having a million Steem invested into stake and this argument is often heard in regards to the success of Steem being to attract stake or, not scare stake away.

The argument is shallow because while the value of Steem long-term will require investors putting demand on STEEM by buying and powering up, the larger part of the success of Steem requires having stake that empowers the ecosystem. Personally, I would much rather have a whale with a million, two million or ten million Steem sell now than undermine the value of Steem through abusive practices that devalue the ecosystem, not just the price.

The future value of Steem is becoming a place where creators and consumers can align their talents and interests through applications and processes that empower them to do so. It is from this aspect of Steem that investors will get their true returns on their investment, not out of the pool and off to the marketplace. Losing the wrong kinds of investors in order to pick up more of the right kind of investors has an immediate cost, but a cost that should course correct for real returns on investment by developing the ecosystem and economy into a well-rounded and well appointed home for a wide variety of users.

Investing is part of the game and no person who is looking long on Steem should be concerned about losing abusive investors who are thinking short-term returns, and instead should concentrate on finding investors who are looking to build short-term for long-term outcomes. While this might hurt price initially, Steem can only be sold once and that means that as healthier investors with behaviors that support the ecosystem buy, the place and therefore the price will start to move consistently upward.

What is a good investor? Well, one that spend their stake developing for attention attraction, not Steem extraction. This can be through supporting applications that are building end user use cases, communities that are supporting users or users directly who add value to Steem either directly or indirectly in various ways.

Working out how best to play the investment game on Steem means finding a balance between maximization of the coin and maximization of the value proposition that underlies the coin. Too much maximization of the coin will undermine the value proposition, too little will mean that one might not earn stake and feel that the work was not worth it. This balance is what every investor needs to consider when playing the Steem investing game.

There are obviously other games out there to play also.

  • There is the curation game where one has to again balance what is going to offer the best return for the vote and what value the vote is going to have in building the ecosystem.

  • There is the contribution game where one has to develop skills required in not only producing content, but being able to draw attention to that content and if it is value adding, the curation game will reward it, of not it will subtract from it, or ignore it altogether.

  • There is the development game where one can build tools for others to utilize and whilst doing so, find ways to finance and maintain the user base and economics of it so it can survive.

  • There is the community game where one can work toward adding value through engagement and interaction and can add value by closing knowledge gaps and presenting concept frameworks that others can build upon.

  • There is the FUD game where it is possible to spread negative perspectives for attention from this point and while some criticism is necessary, I think these people are generally those who aren't good at playing the other games well enough to satisfy their wants.

Each one of these points has many complexities within and there are other points to consider also.

As I see the Steem MMORPG, we are all players who have opted into the game and we all have the ability to opt out. When it comes to investors who are abusive, I see it like having talents like Ronaldo or Messi who instead of adding value to their team and by default increase their own worth, they punch their own teammates on the field of play. Is it a loss to cut them from the team?

Over the last few weeks there has been various activities ongoing that have removed a lot of the high-noise abuse that sat in trending and as a result, the mid-range abuse is floating to the surface and rather than a few individual peaks, these are much more abusive as they do it on volume across a small network. Yes, they have been playing the game of maximization of their stake well, but the rules of the game have changed, and these rules will continually change over time.

While the rules have changed and brought more attention to some parts of the game that had laid in the shadows, the rule change also brought some additional tools to deal with these at a community level. This is an attention economy and that attention comes in various forms with stake offering one way to raise it.

Again, the value of the ecosystem is that a place is developed where contributors and consumer can meet and both add value to each other, and in so doing, the worth of investors who enable the process increases. Enabling the process is not through maximization of personal resources only, it is through the maximization of personal resources whilst simultaneously maximizing the value factors of the ecosystem.

This makes it a complicated game because the actions directed to maximize the self will inevitably draw more attention than that of maximizing the ecosystem because there is a much stronger emotional bond. This also is apparent when those who go out to improve the ecosystem by curbing abuse stir up emotional reactions from those who believe that punching their teammates in the face makes them a good football player.

But regardless of where we are today, where we could be tomorrow may be a much better position where even those who were abusive yesterday could be adding a great deal of value to the ecosystem and themselves to build a place that is not only empowering, but a healthy model of how an economy of humans can interact.

In my opinion, Steem has a very long story line arc and because we are writing it as we go from decentralized sources, no one knows how it is going to progress. what will be the most interesting aspects of the ecosystem is when the MMORPG moves from the digital into the analogue world to attach to our lives off Steem. Maybe instead of the O for online, it will be replaced by IRL.

Can you imagine what value that holds? How the game is played today will impact on where the game goes tomorrow.

[ a Steem original ]


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