About death penalty... well I think the problem with death penalty cannot really be answered without answering a much bigger question first. Death penalty is one of a bunch of popular topics we always discuss here, and each of these topics have hundreds of solutions that some like and some dont. However, the question I think needs to be answered first is:
What type of game should Genesis be?
Without knowing what type of game this is supposed to be, there's really no way of answering questions about death penalty, or stat caps, or quest XP or PVP systems, etc etc. What should Genesis be about? and who is our typical player? Thats two questions I would like to see answered. And posted everywhere for everyone to see. Always. Then we could start discussing the details. Without knowing what the game should be about, or what type of player that should enjoy playing it, we really cant say what type of death penalty we should have.
And who should answer that? Well... it really comes down to someone, or a group of people, stepping up and deciding what type of game they want Genesis to be, and then go all-in on that vision. Currently I think we are somewhere in between everything. Genesis is a patchwork of different areas, styles, ideas, and game structures and nobody really seems to have a clear idea on what type of game Genesis should be.
Hm, I think it's time for a ship metaphor! I think Genesis is a drifting ship without a captain and/or crew currently, and for it to start sailing again I think we would need a very strong and motivated captain who clearly knows in what direction to sail, and a crew who's completely in on it. I am not sure if we lack a captain or crew or a little of both, but it goes both ways, a captain can do nothing without a crew, and a crew without captain is pretty useless too. And by captain I dont mean it has to be one person in charge... a council would perhaps have been a better metaphor... but that didnt work with my ship theme.
Anyway, you get what I mean, we need strong leaders with a clear idea about the game, and a bunch of coders who's interested and motivated to make these ideas happen.
And now dont get my wrong, I am not trying to complain on Gorboth, Petros, Cotillion, Mercade and the others in the crew who keeps this ship floating, (I just love ship metphors!) they all do what they can, and some even more than that, and without them we probably would not only be adrift, but rather on the bottom of the ocean. And Gorboth has been/is a good captain and there has been alot of good changes under his command, but the wizard community is tiny and needs new people. With fresh ideas and lots of energy. And not only regular wizards who wants to code, we need people who want to lead too. Maybe especially that. Gorboth cant do everything himself, and he really did try.
Without a bunch of strong motivated coders and leaders who all agree on a vision and a goal for Genesis, I think the game will continue to drift in different directions until it's eventually forgotten and only mentioned in sentences like "Do you remember that old text game we used to play?" And that would be too bad. Considering how old the game is, it has the chance of becoming the world's oldest still active multiplayer game. Maybe it already is? Genesis is almost, or is it over(?) 20 years old. Can any game beat that? I for one would love to see it hit 25, and beyond.
And dont say a text game could never be popular again. If crappy games like Farmville and the likes can get hundreds of millions of users, our game can get a few hundred. It's just a matter of making it happen. And thats the hard part, but it should probably be easier for us since we actually have something worth selling.