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Thread: A Thought
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September 4th, 2007, 18:48
Originally Posted by Bar Tec View Post
Very interesting thread.
Take for example classic orthodox Christian ethics, which says that "good ends could never justify evil means", that is, you should not kill innocent human, even if, by doing this, you are saving thousands other lives. Christianity assumes that the most important thing is one’s salvation, not any mundane deeds, and you should not sacrifice your soul for saving the entire planet from destruction etc.
This is a topic of another forum but its founder did exactly that. To be fair I think you are talking about taking the life of someone else here to make such a decision. Christians, and I would think all major religions, deal with all sorts of moral dilemmas. The one you mention here I don't know if its a realistic example of one, but dealing with things bring growth.

In some cases someone can do this if the are given the authority, such as a military commander or a political leader, and it wouldn't be a violation of their faith because they have been empowered. And I think there's the matter of taking initiative if you aren't officially.

On the other hand even if you don't believe you have the right and don't do it there's the belief in a greater and better reason for this to happen. But you must always be careful that it's not a cop-out for making a decision that you could have controlled.

This does relate to the topic on hand as moral dilemmas were a theme in later Ultimas. In Ultima 9 they had a similar one to the one above about the little girl demanding you to kill her. I thought it was poorly written because the whole situation was not only not realistic but it was more of a tragedy and a catch-22 than a real dilemma and it had anything to do with your character as an avatar.

Someone brought up about the difficulty selling ethics to todays gamers but I think Garriot took a risk himself at the time. I don't believe gamers back then were too much different than today.

Most of them played arcade games and ports and on their early consoles if they still had one. RPGs, CRPG's and even his own Ultimas were by and large hack and slash and U3 was the best selling new game out there. Garriot went and did something very different and brought a whole new element to gaming and did it in a way people are still talking about today. In the past there were very likely games based around ethics but none had been this successful. The target audience was much different than it is today - its the risk involved with $10 million on the line that's the problem.
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