[MUD-Dev] Containing automation?

Dan Root dar at thekeep.org
Thu Jul 22 18:32:16 New Zealand Standard Time 1999


In message <37978179.A4D0601E at classic-games.com>, Greg Miller writes:
>Marian Griffith wrote:
>> I am tempted to say that, if you ignore UO  (which is a class of its
>> own anyway) the number of Mush/Mux/Moo players vastly outnumbers the
>> number of Mud players.  Even if it is not vastly,  it most assuredly
>> is not a small subset.
>
>I was always under the impression that mush/mux/moo players were
>something like 5%-10% of the players, at best.

I'd be very surprised if it was that low.  Many of the larger MUSH/MUCKs
(AnimeMUCK, FurryMUCK, AnimeMUSH, etc) host on the order of 50 to 100
players at a time, similar numbers to many mid-to-large Diku-derivative and
LP servers.  LambdaMOO regularly has 100 or more players on time, and at
one time was advancing the fact they had 1000 or more "active" players
(people who regularly logged in once a week or more).

And there are probably a similar number of MUCK/MUSH/MOOs that are used by
10 to 20 players as there are MUDs, though they tend to be far less
advertised.  Many are primarily closed social environments, often a group
of friends who just want something a little more flexible than IRC.  I've
been a part of at least three "private" MUCKs, and ran a Mux for similar
reasons as well.

I also suspect there's a lot less turnover in the MUCK/MUSH/MOO world than
elsewhere.  A lot of new players to a mud, especially the more stock
varieties, last on the order of a month, after which they get bored and
either find a new mud, or stop playing all together.  I've been through
that cycle myself.  Log in, poke around, get my character up high enough
that the game starts to get ridiculously hard, or ridiculously easy
(depending on the mud), and then never log in again.  At the same time,
I've got characters on MUCKs that are four years old now, and I still use
daily.  As I write this message, on that MUCK, well over 3/4 of current
players have been active for at least two years.  I can't say
authoritatively, but my experience has been that sort of regularity is rare
in the Mud world, outside of the admins and imps themselves.

Another big difference is that the MUCK/MUSH/MOO crowd tends to expand
solely by word of mouth, rather than the aggressive sort of newsgroup and
inter-mud advertising that MUDs occasionally indulge in.  If you watch
places like rec.games.mud.announce, you occasionally see an ad for a new
MUCK or MUSH that's just starting and needs feature players.  But once
those sorts of servers are stable, they tend to recruit admins and builders
from within, drawing new players from "friends of friends".  Some Muds, on
the other hand, will continue to advertise on a monthly or even weekly
basis, trying to draw in fresh players.

As a very rough guesstimate, since no one has anything resembling real
usage stats, I'd put that number at somewhere between 40% and 60%.

	-DaR
--
/* Dan Root   -   XTEA cipher */  static unsigned D=0x9E3779B9,l=0xC6EF3720,s;
/* t=64bit text, k=128bit key */  #define m(x,y) ((x<<4^x>>5)+(x^s)+k[s>>y&3])
void enc(int*t,int*k){for(s=0;s!=+l;){t[0]+=m(t[1],0);s+=D;t[1]+=m(t[0],11);}}
void dec(int*t,int*k){for(s=-l;s!=0;){t[1]-=m(t[0],11);s-=D;t[0]-=m(t[1],0);}}



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