[MUD-Dev] Attracting players

Koster Koster
Fri Sep 17 09:40:11 New Zealand Standard Time 1999


> -----Original Message-----
> From: Adam Wiggins [mailto:adam at angel.com]
> Sent: Thursday, September 16, 1999 9:02 PM
> To: 'mud-dev at kanga.nu'
> Subject: Re: [MUD-Dev] Attracting players
> 
> 
> On Thu, 16 Sep 1999, Koster, Raph wrote:
> > Hate to bring up something so incredibly practical as this 
> topic, but it
> > relates back to Legend as opposed to UO, and is probably 
> relevant to the
> > majority of the list.
> 
> Very relevant.  I'd like to see more discussion in this area.
> 
> > Legend has been suffering from a lack of new players. It 
> was last mentioned
> > on a newsgroup in September of 1998.
> 
> Mentioned, as in, players discussing it or as in its admin 
> posting an ad?

As in, I did a Deja search for "LegendMUD" and that was the most recent
mention at all. :)

> > Mud Connector seems to be the primary means by which 
> players find muds these
> > days. That's part of the general trend of people moving to 
> the web rather
> > than more textual outlets like newsgroups or mudlists. If 
> you want to
> > capture existing mudders who probably already have a mud, use the
> > newsgroups. If you want new people, you gotta use the web.
> 
> Which also means that a nice website is crucial.  Back when I 
> first started
> mudding, I didn't even known what a web browser was.  It's a 
> very different
> internet now.

Back int he day, Legend had a very nice site. Now it is very dated. We're
working on an update at http://mud.sig.net/new/

> > Interestingly, whereas a year or two ago, the top 20 muds 
> listed on Mud
> > Connector (based on Telnet requests) were clearly a few 
> standout popular
> > muds (Medievia, Sojourn derivatives, the latest hot mud, 
> and a few stalwarts
> > like MUME) today the top 20 looks like a TV channel:
> 
> MUDs as a whole have taken a pretty hard drop-off.  You know, 
> of course,
> that it's partially YOUR fault, right Raph? :)  I'd say that 
> Ultima Online
> (among others) is siphoning off a LOT of the people who, four 
> years ago,
> would have become mudders.

Well, I haven't been paying enough attention to the text mud community to
really tell. But at the same time, it does seem to me that there has to be a
spillover effect to some extent. How many of these people then go looking
for a more complex experience, which many of the text muds can offer? How
many of them look for a similar but free game? There has to be an
opportunity for text muds to capture that populace, and it's not an
insignificant amount of people. And I think the top 20 connections listed
indicate that there is success at capturing people there via the use of a
hook (I disagree that these are "fan clubs." I think they are 14-18 year
olds looking for what they know).

> I know that AnotherMUD has gone from hitting their player cap all the
> time to barely 40 people on at peak time.  Arctic once 
> boasted 250+ players
> at peak and never fewer than 100, but nowadays seems to hang 
> out in the
> high double digits and is lucky to hit 150 at peak.  I'm sure other
> muds have seen similar hits.

Interesting. Legend was never a 100+ average mud. It has however remained
steady at 80 or so at peak times for the last three years. And we seem to
have very good retention as well. Which is part of the problem--we need
fresh blood to break up established cliques and reduce ossification in the
culture.

[snip good list of suggestions]

-Raph


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