[MUD-Dev] code base inquiry

Matthew Mihaly diablo at best.com
Thu Feb 17 20:17:27 New Zealand Daylight Time 2000

On Thu, 17 Feb 2000, Justin Rogers wrote:

> The codebases that are currently out and that have
> protective licenses have them for a reason.  Somebody
> spent their time and their effort to create that code and
> though you may come along later to in turn put in your
> time and effort I had the original idea and thus I get to
> set the limits.  So griping about existing codebases isn't
> the issue.  What we should be doing is griping about new
> codebases and the lack thereof.

I, for one, wasn't disputing the right of the codebase authors to place
those restrictions. I just would like to see them more concerned about
seeing more quality, which I think would happen if codebases had no
commercial restrictions at all.

> New codebases should be created with the allowance that
> future developers are allowed to accept donations on the
> part of their continued work.  These codebases could also
> ask for a donation of say 5% of the donations received so
> that they can continue their work.  Kind of like an MLM for
> MUDs, but it is all performed via donations...  My crowning
> idea for making money on a MUD isn't asking for donations
> for playing, but asking for players to pay to achieve certain
> things.

This already exists. The Vortex engine/scripting language generally
has licenses issued that require a percentage of gross revenue to be paid
to the copyright owner (which is Achaea LLC...we also use vortex to run

> For instance:  a house...  To get a house a player would have to
> design the house on paper and all objects in that house.  They
> would then submit that to the mud designers who would in turn
> build his house in the db along with the objects and that player
> would be charged for that item.

> If a player wanted a unique weapon created and then added to
> his player then he would describe the weapon, give its stats,
> and finally submit that to the MUD designers.  The only nexus
> on this would be that the designer gets to choose the level.  So
> a newbie paying for a big custom weapon doesn't always work.

We make a fair amount of money this way already. We have auctions now and
then at which we sell custom items. It's a great way to bring in money,
and this sort of thing allows us not to be pay-to-play. A note
though: it's MUCH more efficient to make money by selling magical items of
which multiple copies can be sold, than houses or anything requiring
tailoring things to individual users. We do both, but I prefer the magical
items. So far our record is about $650 for an item (a pair of Atavian
wings). Of course, when you do this, you have to try not to upset users
who can't/won't shell out thousands for items. You  have to make sure you
aren't creating any unstoppable killing machines, for instance. I'm
posting a list of the items we auctioned off at our most recent auction
(couple weeks ago) at the end of this e-mail, in case anyone is

> I even think some other things that might be neat would be a quest
> that you have to pay for to enter, but that has a purse of say 50%
> of all entry fees.  The quest would take approximately two weeks and
> the winner would receive say $100 and so would the MUD developers.
> Why wouldn't players pay for this kind of stuff.  I think they might.
>     - Justin Rogers, CEO DigiTec Web Consultants

Simutronics makes extensive use of pay-per-quest, though I don't think the
winner of the quest wins anything, as most storylines don't really have a
'winner'. People will absolutely pay to just participate though, providing
the experience is good enough. As I understand it (I've never participated
in one), they tend to last from about 4 hours to a weekend, and are very
intensive in terms of the admin-to-participant ratio during that time
(with the admins involved in playing NPCs, etc). 


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