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I was thinking of perma-death and what it symbolize in an mmorpg. And it seems to resemble the atheist view that death is the end and that's it, nothing more.
And so, since afaik there aren't any mmorpg's out there that has total permadeath where you lose items, character and all progression for that character -
That means every mmorpg out there has an idea about life after death one way or the other. But i don't see many that are really based on it -death is just an odd thing that the devs don't quite know what to do about, it's kind of inconvenient since you don't want your playerbase to die (unsurscribe).
That's why I've had this idea to have an mmorpg that STARTED on the "other side", "death-realm" or what you want to call it.
You would start out as nonphysical being, some kind of energy being with a desire to improve in the physical.
But the thing is that you could also improve skills in the non-physical area, anything mental. so you could improve your strength in there as well. Then take some of those and use in the life area.
One way it could be done is like the game Soulreaver, where the main character shifts between physical and spectral world
Or one could make the non-physical world not visible and you'd have to train yourself somehow to "see" it and others in it. that means you'd start out in a pitch black world, and work your way towards "enlightenment"
So the core of the game would'nt be in the physical alone, but divided more or less between these worlds. Depending on how well you do in both worlds you'd be able to sustain your stay in the physical.
Ofc you couldn't die in the non-physical.
One cool thing is that you could i.e. learn to communicate with the "living", so someone in the physical world would suddenly hear a voice in their head. You could perhaps also train to interfere from the non-physical, to the physical. So a group in the life world wouldn't see or hear you but could see the effects of your actions.