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Virtual Shakespeare
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 17.0932  Monday, 23 October 2006

From: 		David Kathman <
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Date: 		Friday, 20 Oct 2006 13:17:39 -0500
Subject: 	Virtual Shakespeare

The MacArthur Foundation just gave a $240,000 grant to Edward Castronova 
of Indiana University to create a virtual world, of the type found in 
online multi-player video games, based on the works of Shakespeare. 
Here's a link to the story on CNET:

http://news.com.com/Shakespeare+coming+to+a+virtual+world/2100-1043_3-6127294.html

It will be called "Arden: The World of Shakespeare", and according to the 
article it will allow players to "trot around in 17th century regalia, 
buying ale in Elizabethan taverns and joining guilds aimed at toppling 
dukes and earls."  However, the article also says the game will be build 
around the theme of "Richard III", which would suggest that it's set in 
the 15th century. I'm not sure whether it's the game developers or the 
author of the article who's confused.

This part also sounds interesting:
-------------------

He said one of the more unique elements of "Arden" is that the game will 
be seeded with Shakespearean texts, many of which will be the most 
valuable treasure players can find.

"If you collect the 'To be or not be' speech and then take it to a lore 
master or to a skilled bard, he can then apply the magic to your broad 
sword or you (could) utilize the magic in a battle situation to give you 
this massive (advantage)," Castronova explained. "So there (will be) this 
intensive competition to get the best speeches of Shakespeare in your play 
book.

"You've got to know your Shakespeare, but...if you do, collect these texts 
and you can just playfully kick butt the way wizards do."

------------
I've never played one of these online role-playing games, but I might be 
willing to give this one a try.

Dave Kathman

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