Monday, July 21, 2008

TE Goals

One of the things people would ask when I met them, new to Second Life, would be "how do you advance" or- more bluntly- "how do you win?"

But, Second Life is like First Life. There are so many things to do and see that 'winning' is mostly up to you to define. And Tiny Empires, the game within the game, is much the same way.

Tiny Empires certainly has an "up arrow" in it-- more land, more gold, more total acreage, more subjects, more rank... all of these indicate that you are progressing... but progressing to what? Just how do you define "winning"?

Winning is defined by everyone in a certain way- and some of the most common ways are in concrete terms. At that point, your definition becomes a goal to strive for. But what sort of goals can you set? Here are some, based on my personal experience:

  1. Become a Princess (done)

  2. Found the Kingdom of Caledon (done)

  3. Get a thousand acres of personal land (never achieved it- this goal was abandoned)

  4. Help a Duke under me become a Prince by giving land (still working on this one!)

  5. Get twenty thousand acres in total holdings (well, done, though that's ninety five plus percent due to others, not me)

  6. Get a billion in gold (all right, not really a personal goal, though I suppose I could have set it.)

  7. Help those under me have a successful TE career and a good time being with each other.

Whooops! How did that last goal get in there? That's not a concrete goal to achieve. True, it isn't, but it brings up an important point. All of those concrete goals are something to strive for, and can be good motivators, but what then? After you achieve the goal, there's only so much gloating you can do before it becomes boring. (If that's not true for you, then please seek professional help.) So you're always left with the question of... what next? That's not just theory, it's reality. I've seen people achieve their goals and then quit or drift aimlessly because they can't find anything else to do.

People who quit Tiny Empires often do so for one of two reasons: they decide they can't reach their goal, or they reached it and have nowhere else to go- nothing more to strive for.

As long as your goals are defined in concrete terms, you're always faced with this problem. Become a King? Great, you achieve it and have your own kingdom. Now what?

The goals that continue to inspire and interest are the ones defined less in a concrete number than in people- in others. Thus my last goal- helping those under me (and more broadly, within the Kingdom of Caledon) enjoy and succeed. I can develop projects, and pursue them... but it's the always new, what's around the corner, welcome to the party, that truly keeps one going and interested! (Or, as I put it to a subject of mine over the weekend, 'It's no fun playing alone!')

So, what are your goals in Tiny Empires? How do they help inspire, what sort of vision drives them... how do you define success?

One last note... speaking of goals, I'm setting myself a new one:

  1. Have at least one new post on this blog each week.

So keep an eye on things and let's see if I can succeed!

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