I was a little worried that Patterns might be sort of like Geometry homework -- and it might be -- but I like the sparky little avatar guy made out of triangles and I like the idea that you can gather/mine stuff.
I love doing that in games -- that was a feature of Animal Crossing, of course (I never played that much but my kids and relatives did), gathering and going to Tom Nook's store. And in Tale of a Desert, where you got to gather mud, wood, etc. and build things -- I loved especially the first part of that game, and it felt so freeing after being in the Sims Online, where you couldn't run over geographically contiguous land -- in Tale, you could -- although later the game just got too hard to follow.
I'm wondering if I can go in Patterns, mine the stuff, and then instead of building, give it or sell it or trade it with other people. And really, that's the only developmental direction I'd insist on. If they are going to make it multiplayer, and you can't do those things, then it's communism and will fail.
People don't want just creativity, they want creativity and socializing and a market. The three all go together, as c3 discovered ("Community, Creativity, Commerce is his slogan).
So give that little triangle dude a pouch and an exchange box like we had in the Sims Online -- remember? I'll never forget when they first instituted that in beta! It makes the world! Towards the end of TSO, we could gather stuff to make things, but they were lame.
People need not just creativity, but creating in routines and patterns that stay the same and lend themselves to socializing better (that was what was so wonderful about the build objects in TSO -- the preserves or the gnomes made you feel you were working individually and collaborating with other people; meanwhile the map and the publisher and pizza were too collectivized, although the pizza could be fun, especially if you ran hedge bets on the side on the outcome of each pizza and tied payouts to it lol).
What's funny about Patterns is that the Lindens claim this is going to be a "your world, your imagination" thing where you get to "develop along with the developers". Uh-oh. Will there be a JIRA? Will the forums be truly open? Without openness of speech, you can't have true creativity.
Will only the skilled beta testers get listened to? Will the Lindens replicate the FIC? I don't see how they can do otherwise, and this game looks like it is set up to separate the rubes from the masters pretty quickly -- to be able to make a rolling object out of triangles with workable physics, you need a sense of space and spatial imagination and manipulative ability and not everyone has that.
Meanwhile, the IGN journalist dutifully validated Linden's new concept of itself, calling it a "studio" that "makes creative games" as if they have been doing that for years.