[MUD-Dev] Attracting players

Matthew Mihaly diablo at best.com
Mon Oct 4 12:57:45 New Zealand Daylight Time 1999


On Mon, 4 Oct 1999, Koster, Raph wrote:

> Been a while since this thread saw any activity, but I came across this
> article at Mud Journal and thought it relevant and interesting.
> 
>    The MUD name: This should be easily readable. Lots of nice ASCII
> characters are nice but if you can't read the welcome screen it gives the
> impression of the immortals attitude being, "This is my MUD, I made the
> login screen look good to me, who cares about you." Color: Color is good to
> use on a welcome screen if you put in the correct code to check if the
> person can actually decode it. There are still many terminals out there that
> cannot decode ANSI codes and displaying color to these will cause weird
> symbols to appear. Again this gives the same appearance of the immortals
> saying, "I coded this mud for me and I don't care about all the players."

Hmm, I wasn't aware it was possible for a server to determine if a
player's client can decode colour. How is this done?

> their MUD and are willing to help others. It's hard to control your players
> and not much can be done if you get a bad bunch. We have a rule of "no
> harassment" which we have only had to use twice in two years. With this rule
> we can ban anyone who is found harassing another player. With new MUDs you
> can't be afraid of deleting 5 players who all know each in real life and are
> causing problems on your MUD, even if those 5 players are 80% of your player
> base. Get rid of them or you will lose many more good players by their
> actions.

This is so true! We started off with a bunch of players mainly from Avalon
who, unfortuntely, knew me mainly as the God of Pain there, and who seemed
to think that what was acceptable there would be acceptable in Achaea.
I've ended up driving off or deleting many of these players, as their
attitudes were poor. It's so important to establish a good "culture" in
your game, where supporting newbies is de rigeur, and where mature
behavior is expected and enforced not just by the administration, but by
the players themselves. 


> These are just my opinions anyways, and they seem to work since we hit over
> 50 players at peek times every day and we are relatively young still. One
> last note out there for all MUDs, avoid newbie schools. Sure they are
> somewhat helpful to clueless newbies, but you have to remember that most
> people who log on will not be newbies and a stock newbie school immediately
> shows you haven't put the effort into creating something original.

I'm not sure what you mean by a newbie school (I don't play stock muds),
but we have an automated newbie introduction that the newbies seem to
quite like. They are given the option of going through it when they begin
(it's a series of quests that they are led along, like going into a
dungeon where they are attacked by goblins, and saved by a Paladin, etc),
and can end it prematurely at any time. They can also be sent back through
it if they didn't do it originally and wish they had. It's atmospheric,
which makes all the difference I think.
--matt




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