[MUD-Dev] Mudpie

Matt Mihaly the_logos at achaea.com
Tue Jul 10 09:08:48 New Zealand Standard Time 2001

Red Herring has a fawning article (imagine that) about Rand Miller
and Mudpie, Cyan's upcoming MUD this month. There were three
interesting (to me) aspects about it that I wasn't aware of (maybe
you're not either, or maybe I'm just an ignorant hick, I dunno.)

  1) Mudpie is meant to be played over broadband connections with
  voice-over-IP tech. Rand sees himself as driving the sale of
  broadband in the same way that Myst helped drive the adoption of
  CD-ROM drives.

  2) The article says "The company's burn rate is only
  $350,000/month, but the 42-year-old Mr. Miller says he will need
  to spend a lot more to finish Mudpie........If this is truly to
  become the vision we expect, it will be the most expensive
  computer game ever." So presumably he's talking well over $30
  million, which seriously raises the bar. Hmm, maybe not. The only
  $30 million+ projects I know of are console ones, and possibly he
  wasn't including those.

Anyway, the reason I found that interesting was that in a 3 year MUD
developmenet cycle, a burn rate of 350k/month comes out to a bit
over 12 million. That seems like a lot, but Red Herring is really
quite right. It qualifies as an 'only.' That is very depressing for
small developers.

  3) He seems to be predicting millions of players. Rand says, "Myst
  reached a mass market. We believe we can bridge the gap between
  gamers and the mass market. We're talking about attracting
  millions of people."

Seems awfully unlikely that he'd repeat Myst's success, especially
without Robin, and in essentially a totally different medium, but
who knows. Interesting times.


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