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Naked War

 

Community Messaging Game

What do we mean when we describe Naked War as a Community Messaging Game or CMG?

A Community Messaging Game (CMG) is a video game which mixes the shared experience and community spirit of online games, with the flexibility and freedom to play anytime of traditional video games.

Playing online adds a whole new dimension to the video game experience. You can play with or against your friends, or make new friends online, compete or cooperate with real human beings, share experiences, and feel a sense of community with your fellow players.

In order to participate however, most online games require you to be online at the same time as the people you want to play with. Not only does this make it difficult to play with people in different time zones or who can only play at certain times of the day, the network of mutual obligations built up between players often leads to being online for longer than planned, or missing out on game events becuase they happened at an inconvenient time.

The time demanding nature of Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Games (MMORPGs) means that its virtually impossible to play more than one at any one time, locking you in to one set of friends, and one experience, for months or years at a time.

Traditional video games have none of the community and shared experience of online games, but you are free to play them and progress at your own pace and at the times which suit you, without missing any of the action.

A CMG like Naked War offers the best of both worlds.

The game is centred around an online community - you can play your existing friends, or challenge strangers and make new friends, form alliances and join teams, and compete against other groups. You can talk with the rest of the community about shared experiences, swap strategies or compare statistics with the best players out there.

The game itself is broken into short chunks which are played offline at a time which suits you. These chunks (in Naked War they are called 'turns') are then swapped between players via online messaging systems (in this case, email), and queued up for play at a time convenient for the player.

You can play and respond to turns as soon as they arrive, or at the end of each day, maybe just in a one big session at the end of every a week. You can play the game in 5 minute breaks at work, or on your lunch hour, or sit down in the evening for a long session.

There is no requirent for long uninterrupted blocks of online time in order to progress, unlike many MMORPGs. In fact, a CMG is the ideal game to be involved with whilst playing a MMORPG - it doesn't demand all your time, and you can play turns while you're waiting for your guildmates to arrive for a raid.

The subscription system used means that you pay for each game you play, not for the right to be online each month, so you don't need to play often to get the most out of your subscription, or get ripped off by paying for monthly subscriptions to keep your character alive if you want to stop playing for a while.

Anyone who's played a MMORPG will know the feeling of being left behind, or being considered a 2nd class player for not being online long enough or often enough to keep up with other players. A CMG has no minimum time commitment, and no set online time requirement. You can play perfectly well against people in different time zones, or who have different habits - in fact, playing Naked War is a great way to stay in touch with friends!

We don't claim that CMGs are a new invention. Turn based games are already familiar to all us as boardgames (such as chess or Monopoly), and as video games (such as the Final Fantasy series), and the idea of swapping turns between remote players will be familiar to anyone who's played a Play by Mail game. There have even been video game implementations of this system - Hasbro had a series of email games on the PC in the 90s, including Soccer and Chess.

We think that this genre has been overlooked in the race to make online games as high tech and exciting as possible. We love MMORPGs, and we love online frag-fests and realtime racing games, but we don't always want to commit the time and level of involvement these games demand. A CMG like Naked War is the ideal complement to other online games, and fits perfectly with the modern lifestyle.

 

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A game by the Pickford Bros.

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