[MUD-Dev] Re: Issues from the digests and Wout's list

Adam Wiggins nightfall at inficad.com
Fri Apr 25 20:33:55 New Zealand Standard Time 1997

> The plan was to make the majority of people oriental in appearance and
> mannerism, the mud is set on a colony established during the early
> expansion period.  I figured that if there was a 'gold rush' to set up new
> colonies on other solar systems, there *will* be ethnic colonies.  I
> wasn't going to give the characters any advantage, well, possibily less
> chance of being discreet if you're a minority.  The thing is, I remember

Cool.  Yeah, this is pretty interesting when you have character memory
vs. global names.  If you just find that every one tagged as 'a tall
hispanic man' is really rude to you, you'll start to have an inherent
dislike of hispanics.  When you have a name already tacked on, you usually
just pay attention to the name and forget about the race/whatever else.
And of course, racism is actually *fun* on muds, unlike real life.

> reading somewhere that the Chinese are possibily the most racist nation.

Actually I'd say most Asians (from Asia, as opposed to Americans of asian
descent) are extremelly racist - both to other 'major' races (blacks etc)
and within themselves.  A buddy of mine at work grew up in Korea, and he
still considers all Japanesse people scum-sucking assholes for no particular
reason he can think of, other than that he was just raised to believe that.
In a mud, this is only natural - having Sindarin elves hate dark elves,
for example.  More sublte racial hatreds can be interesting, too...for
instance on a mud I play regularly the shopkeepers in one town simply
won't serve minotaurs.  Another town won't allow kender (who are dubbed
the 'thief' race) into their town, and in fact will attack kender on sight.
Simple, but this adds a lot of flavor to the world...as well as making you
very aware of your character's race, as opposed to "uh..dang, what race was
I again?  Like elf, or something...maybe high elf.  Or was it half-elf.
Yeah, that sounds right."  If you were constantly being haranged by
elves about being a bastard child of two races, you'd be very 'aware' of
just what race you are.  I believe this is very important to role playing;
seeing the world in a very different way through a different character's

> For stat differences, I was intending on the stats depend pretty much on
> lifepath, though appearance is everything in social standing.  A character
> who grew up in the slums would be more likely to have a good physique than
> someone who was born with a silver spoon in her mouth.

Well, with humans, I think that any world based on the one we live
in would have to taken into account that Asians are typically much smaller
than any other race, hispanics and polynesians are usually very stocky,
blacks are generally tall and lanky, whites have the most bodyhair, etc etc.
But the different between sub-species of humans becomes pretty insignifigant
if you start bringing in completely different species altogether, which is
what we've done.

> As for other species...  Could have fun with those. :)  I've decided I
> won't force people to rpg but doing so would lead to rewards.  Imagine
> aliens, the players will have a helluva hard time trying to act out one.
> Especially as I intend to go into quite some detail on the aliens (I hate
> it when aliens are really humans with a bucket on their heads and one
> trait exaggerated to stupid proportions, I suppose it works commercially).

Agreed.  All of our races are pretty human-like, befitting of a fantasy
setting.  Dwarves and elves aren't too far from human, or any of our original
races either.

> Sounds like Aliens, everyone love that film but very few people will want
> to be the Marines.  It's too subtle and intellectually stimulating on your
> average mudder (which to me means: 13, acne ridden american; or penniless
> british student).

Hmmm, well.. not too sure.  One of the funnest muds I ever played required
a group of around 10 people to take out any critter worth killing past
level 10 or so.  Really nasty creatures took 20, 30, or 40 *extremelly*
well-equiped characters to defeat, and usually resulted in a dozen or
so deaths.  I always envisioned this in my mind as being something like
Gullaver's (sp?) Travels, where you've got this swarm of insects overruning
some behemoth.
Actually, the idea of making really weak players might be interesting for
an HP Lovecraft setting, ala the Cthulu RPG...there's no hope of actually
*defeating* any of the tough demons, you just try to stay alive and
sane for as long as you possibly can.  Of course, I'm not really all that
fond of this, which is why I probably prefer the writings of Lovecraft's
contemporary, RE Howard, more.  But still, it would certainly be something
different, and I'd probably like it for the same reason I liked the above
mentioned mud.

> Anyway, the point is that I've always liked the idea of the player not
> being the centre of attraction.  To be just one unit in a battlegroup, to
> attack the enemy singlehandedly would be foolish, my games tended to
> orientate around getting the CPU friendlies to act as sacrificial decoys.

Yeah.  Even if I don't necessarily like the idea of being incredibly weak,
sort of a mortal running around between the feet of battling gods, I
absolutely like the idea of being at best only even with those around me.
The difference between going into battle with a group of 5 other
fighters and you get 10 times as many kills as the others put together,
and most of them die but you come in unscathed.
This just leaves you feeling like your wingmen are total dolts, rather
than that you're anything special.  Versus you getting a kill or two more
than the average wingman.

> Hope that's not how the mud turns out. ;)  (I'll have to employ lots of
> NPCs wearing red uniforms who'll get beamed down to the planet and die.)

"Hey Captain, I think I've fond something.  It's--AAGGGGH!"

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