Many in the Myst-Uru community are thrilled that Cyan Worlds, Inc. (original creators of the Myst series) has ported the original Myst to the iPhone (7 minute trailer there). The active fans are now supporters and buying the App for their iPod Touch or iPhone (As I write this Myst iPhone App is forth in the Apps Store Games Section). They are also supporters of the open source development of Myst Online or Uru. But will fans take advantage of the opportunity the iPhone is giving them?
The Myst series of games has a bit of an addictive quality about them. They are an attractive escape for many players. No violence or leveling grinds are an appealing game choice for many. Once a Myst game is finished many are looking for more. That ‘more factor’ made the Myst series a long running hit with many fans.
Now that Myst iPhone is becoming a top selling iPhone App many people will be finding Myst for the first time. That creates possibilities.
People will look for walkthroughs, hints, technical support and we know that once they finish the game those that enjoyed it will likely look to see if the developer has more games like Myst iPhone. That likely means searches and that means Google.
The Myst Online Open Source (MOOS) fans have an opportunity to build a Myst iPhone presence in Google. They can take advantage of it and offer support, hints, walkthroughs and camaraderie for the Myst iPhone players or let it pass. I’ve posted at the “official Myst Online Uru Live” (see link below) web site where the most active fans hang.
If they let opportunities pass by, will there be others that take advantage of that? I suspect so. We have a community in SL that is easily found (D’ni Refugees). They are building new Myst-Style games and regions. With SL being adapted for iPhone use (yes there are alpha version iPhone viewers out) those in SL have an opportunity too.
If fans take advantage of the opportunity, we will at least have a chance to attract new players we would not have otherwise.
Additionally while the timing is not ideal for MOOS, it is what we have been given to work with. Many will see it as favoring the Myst-Uru-SL regions more than the open source folks. It is in SL that most of today’s Myst-Uru game style MMO play is found. The MOOS crowd is still waiting for the open source licenses to be released and have no servers up yet. But, much of the SL building is incomplete and many of the builders are still new and learning. It is really not ideal for either group of fans. But, it is the opportunity we have. At least parts of the Myst-Style games are working, sparkly hunts, KI missions and more. (See previous posts for SL links)
I am hoping that Myst iPhone is a long term thing. If so, for some time to come there will be people looking for support for Myst iPhone App. Building a presence on the web for those people to find and using it channel people to MOOS and Myst-Uru-SL will likely bring more fans to both of them than anything else going right now.
It is a question of whether Myst Online is to continue to be plagued by poor marketing and missed opportunities or whether the fans can do things that Cyan, Ubisoft and GameTap could not. Time will tell. It is now a matter of where each fan chooses to participate and whether they will.
So, what can Myst-Uru fans do?
I encourage people to visit the thread at the MO:UL forum, Myst iPhone Support and write their ideas and offer support for the creation of a Myst iPhone Support Section. When you write please use the words Myst, iPhone, support or help in your post.
If you twitter or Plurk, make a daily entry and link to MO:UL or whichever site decides to support the effort. Be sure you use the words Myst, iPhone, support or help in the twitter. We might even build a ‘trend’ (I can hope). Contact your friends and ask them to do the same.
If you blog, blog about this and while I would love for you to link here, linking to MO:UL (provided they take advantage of the opportunity) would be a better choice. If they don’t… well… pick your favorite Myst Community or blog and link to them. Just do something each day. All the small, easy things eventually add up.
All of these efforts will build a presence in Google. That is going to bring peole to the Myst series of games. Whether they join MO:UL, visit SL or THERE, or buy Myst games from Amazon it will introduce more fans to Myst. That is a positive.
Will you help?
Cyan has added a new section for Myst iPhone support to the Myst Online forum and linked to it from their Cyan iPhone Support site. See: Myst iPhone Support and Help