Of Coins and Coals

Evoru's Blog on Valindir, Fantasy, and Suspicions Regarding the Sounds Coming from Behind the Mirror

To Those of You Wanting to Start a MUD

My birthday has come and gone. I’m another year older, and certainly wiser if I judge things by my experience with MUDs (which, being obsessed, I tend to do quite a bit).

Some of the Staff members and myself were looking over old notes and email correspondences pertaining to Valindir, some of them stretching back to 2009, some of them even further. It has been a long, arduous road. Along the way we’ve been fortunate to get some good advice, some great help, and a better understanding of what it takes to make a MUD (or anything, really) happen.

What really stood out to me, though, was that in all this time we never once heard the words “You’re not going to succeed.” Not from friends, family, nor people who wished us a merry death in a bathtub of battery acid. In that, I think, we’ve been very fortunate. There are so many sites out there that, while quite helpful with giving you pointers on how to get a MUD up and running, ultimately seem like they’re trying to convince you that it will never actually happen. That the people who can successfully start a MUD are few and far between, and you, very likely, are not one of them. To which I reply: horse hooey.

Take a look at the MUD Connector list of MUDs. That’s a pretty encouraging number. Still not convinced you can do it? Try looking up Herne’s Building Guide for Smaug. Now, I’m certainly no expert coder myself (I can turn on the computer, and so far this is my greatest technological achievement), but even I’ve been able to download all the programs Nick Gammon has given us and been able to alter SmaugFUSS code. It’s a lot of deleting one race and typing in the name of another, adjusting words and numbers to something you like more, and boom! Game!

What I’m getting at is rather than just giving up because it looks hard or because you don’t have a coder, start small. Build your idea and lore up, and then start editing some code in simple ways to get closer to what you’d like. Delete races, add new ones, read step-by-step guides on how to beat the code into submission. It won’t be custom, and it might look similar to a lot of MUDs out there, but what’s different is that it will be YOURS, and one day, someday, if you keep at it a little at a time, it will become what you see inside your head. It might take you years to get there, but it’s WORTH it.

Don’t give up.

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New Coder for the Game

Well, it appears as if we really do have a coder! Huzah!

Under my new favorite person, the game has been moving along at a speedy little clip. We’ve had our lore in place for some time, but now we also have a fully-functional game start up (complete with a Player Account to tie all your characters to), a wonderful range of says, and fantastic emotes! The Who List is behaving, aliases are functioning well, and we have a number of helpful channels for our use!

Over the next couple of weeks Staff is working on building a starting area for all new characters, a fantastic series of aids for Builders, and some weapons and armor for testers to help us perfect!

February will mark the purchase of our new server space (you certainly don’t want to trust MY connection to play on) and, shortly thereafter, we should begin accepting applications for Testers in our Closed Alpha.

It’s been a long time coming with a lot of hard times, but victory is in sight!

‘Twas the Night Before Christmas…

…and, well, I don’t know if this can rightly be called the “night before” or the “morning of”. It’s 3:47 a.m. and the sun isn’t up yet, which is good, but I have to be up at 9 a.m., which is bad. I’m kept awake because, out of all the things I could be pondering (how to beat code into submission, opening RP’s, amazement that it really DOES take years to build a good MUD), I am sitting wide awake wondering whether any pagans out there construct little shrines to Santa. Do they erect little statues of him (those of them that are more than happy to celebrate other people’s religious holidays because of family and being open-minded), or does leaving cookies and milk out suffice?

Sugar cookies and nonfat milk. Blessed be.

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