You misunderstand. I don't propose "fame" as a replacement for
"gold". What I think the game needs is a diversification of goals.
Gold should be good for some things, fame should be good for other
things, and there should be as many other goals as we can think of.
And these goals should be as orthogonal as possible, i.e., pursuing
gold won't net you fame, and vice versa. (Wrt gold, this is quite
difficult. You can't ignore the need to balance the economy.)
As another example, suppose that learning magic required travelling to
places and studying there. To learn "Summon Dragon" you have to
travel to the Utgo Mtns, ancestral home of dragons, and study dragon
spoor for three months. To learn "Control Weather" you have to go to
an ocean province and study. And so on. Now becoming a top-flight
wizard doesn't depend upon having lots of money (as is currently the
case) but also upon your ability to travel around the country and
protect yourself from the inherent dangers.
-- Scott T.