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Old 07-29-2010, 10:03 AM   #1
KaVir
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Proposal for new listing options

Top Mud Sites currently provides the following section for mud listings:

Mud Connection:
Supports ANSI Color? Yes/No
MUD supports MCCP? Yes/No
MUD supports MSP? Yes/No
Graphical/Web based MUD? Yes/No


I think it would be nice to see this section expanded. Here are some thoughts:

MUD offers a soundpack? Yes/No

I've seen a number of muds that support MSP, but don't actually have a soundpack. Putting together your own soundpack can take quite a bit of effort, so I think it would be nice to differentiate between the two. This feature could also be used to identify muds that offer sound but don't support MSP.

Optional customized client? Yes/No

I'm not sure what exactly the "Graphical/Web based MUD" represents, but I've tended to assume it was for muds that could only be played through a special graphical client (like MMORPGs) or web client (like browser games) instead of through telnet. Applying the entry to optional clients wouldn't make much sense, as there are a number of public web-based clients that can already connect to almost every mud.

However many muds offer their own custom or customised clients, while also remaining fully playable through other telnet clients. Whether these are customised MUSHclient plugins such as those used by Aardwolf or my own mud, or fully custom clients such as those used by Maiden Desmodus, Primordiax, IRE or BatMud, a customised interface tailored specifically to one mud seems to have a big impact on the way the players view that game.

Another alternative would be to simply rename the "Java/Web Client" section at the top of the listing to "Custom Client". Mud owners could then add a link to a webpage describing how to install their client/plugin/script.

Supports XTerm 256 Color? Yes/No

XTerm 256 colour codes work just like ANSI colour codes, they're just a little longer. They're supported by at least 15 mud clients, and are very easy to implement within the mud, particularly if you already support ANSI colour.

MUD supports MXP? Yes/No

MXP is a markup language that offers some nice features for muds - for example, Lithmeria recently demonstrated its OLC which makes extensive use of clickable MXP links, and I've seen Slothmud do some clever things with it as well. MXP also supports 24-bit colour.

MUD supports out-of-band scripting? Yes/No

I know of various protocols for transmiting out-of-band data, including ATCP, GMCP, MSDP, ZMP, 102, 94, NEW-ENVIRON - even MXP if you're using the latest version of CMUD. The protocols vary, but they can all be used in much the same way, making it easier for players to write scripts for maps, energy bars, etc. Such scripts and plugins are becoming increasingly popular.

MUD supports MSSP? Yes/No

MSSP is a protocol primarily aimed at crawlers, allowing them to collect data from muds, which can then be used to update mud listings, generate graphs, or whatever else you fancy. MudStats already uses MSSP to generate graphs of playerbase activity, while MudBytes uses it for a search cloud. In theory, MSSP could even be used to automatically generate and update TMS listings.
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Old 07-30-2010, 03:58 AM   #2
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Re: Proposal for new listing options

I like these categories, but can I just confirm that the words "Currently/Already" be included in block, underlined capitals in each of them.

There's no reason a MUD like Maiden Desmodus or the God Wars II ones that have taken the time to actually develop the criteria should be lumped in with MUDs that "will totally do them one day but for now I'm just learning to code." I also think there should be penalties (such as removal from the listing) for misrepresenting the content of your MUD.
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Old 07-30-2010, 05:31 AM   #3
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Re: Proposal for new listing options

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Originally Posted by Elvarlyn View Post
I like these categories, but can I just confirm that the words "Currently/Already" be included in block, underlined capitals in each of them.
I'm not sure it's necessary to repeat that for each option, but I guess you could include a general comment stating that the options should reflect the current feature set and not just things that are planned for the future. Perhaps also mention that the protocols should be actively used and not simply supported, as I've seen a few muds claim support for certain protocols without actually using them anywhere - in some cases I suspect their codebase came with the protocol built in, and the owner knew they supported it, but didn't really know what it did or what they could/should do with it.

I did also wonder whether MXP should be split up into "Supports 24-bit MXP color?" and "Supports MXP links?", as those are the two main advantages of MXP (at least in my opinion), and not everyone implements both. If it was done that way there could even be a little section for colour support, listing ANSI, XTerm and MXP. However I figured it would be simpler just to stick to one option, and a simple proposal is more likely be added than a complex one.
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Old 07-30-2010, 06:19 AM   #4
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Re: Proposal for new listing options

I was exaggerating when I said it should be included in every category. My point was, as you said, that these should be active things in play already, not pipe dreams you have scheduled for implementation in 2043.
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Old 07-30-2010, 12:53 PM   #5
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Re: Proposal for new listing options

Does TMS support the Mud Server Status Protocol? Would also be nice if it was able to remove old listings of MUDs that aren't online anymore.
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Old 08-26-2010, 08:09 AM   #6
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Re: Proposal for new listing options

After reading KaVir's post I began ponder. Some of the current search options aren't clear what they mean. For example what is the difference between a MUD that accepts roleplay and one that encourages it - and do you actually care about it? It doesn't seem you can search for both options at same time which means you get less games in the search results. E.g you might want roleplay but do not care as long as it exists in some form.

It is same problem when searching with "avg players". Do I really care to find MUDs with 76-100 players? Maybe I am happy with 40 players avg and everything above. As it works now it feels like you're forced to enter too exact data. The same problem exist with other search options, too.

Also perhaps it should be possible to associate a list of keywords/tags with the game. That way the games could advertise features that the search doesn't have check boxes for yet. Didn't Mud Magic do something like that?

When looking for new MUDs I noticed that the list doesn't appear to be sorted in any meaningful way. This is how parts of it look right now(top to bottom):

SW:Galactic Horizon - 17th October, 2009
Primordiax - 5th August, 2010
DBNU: Hopes Beginning - 16th July, 2010
CJN MUSH - 15th March, 2009
Warriorx Adventure - 18th February, 2010
Static Chaos - 29th December, 2009
Forbidden Lands - 4th April, 2009
A: Hollow World - 2nd February, 2010

There is no obvious way to know which MUD is the latest added one, without opening each link and check. It could also be nice if it was possible to subscribe to new MUD list entries using RSS. That's something TMC supports.

Last edited by Aeran : 08-26-2010 at 08:45 AM.
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Old 08-26-2010, 01:01 PM   #7
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Re: Proposal for new listing options

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Originally Posted by Aeran View Post
Does TMS support the Mud Server Status Protocol? Would also be nice if it was able to remove old listings of MUDs that aren't online anymore.
This has always been debatable. While I don't like the 100's (if not 1000's) of MUDs that are completely inactive being listed, they do provide some historical value. I also have a hard time with the # of players check box since I think under 10, under 50, over 100 is good enough.
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Old 08-26-2010, 01:48 PM   #8
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Re: Proposal for new listing options

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This has always been debatable. While I don't like the 100's (if not 1000's) of MUDs that are completely inactive being listed, they do provide some historical value. I also have a hard time with the # of players check box since I think under 10, under 50, over 100 is good enough.
KaVir suggested that a separate list for inactive MUDs could be used. I think that is a pretty good solution.
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Old 01-20-2011, 10:50 AM   #9
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Re: Proposal for new listing options

I just noticed that the Codebase field in the TMS listings has options for both "Custom" and "Custom Code". At first I thought the latter might be for custom muds that incorporate stock areas, but that seems rather redundant when there's also a World Originality field. If these fields both mean the same, I'd suggest removing one of them.

Of more immediate concern, the Year Created field only goes as far as 2010.
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Old 01-29-2011, 04:20 PM   #10
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Re: Proposal for new listing options

Thanks for this note, I removed 'custom code' and set the 3 muds that had it to just 'custom'.

Expanded the years drop down to 2020, remind me again in 10 years
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Old 01-30-2011, 12:10 PM   #11
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Re: Proposal for new listing options

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Thanks for this note, I removed 'custom code' and set the 3 muds that had it to just 'custom'.

Expanded the years drop down to 2020, remind me again in 10 years
Sure, if we're around in 10 years.
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Old 01-30-2011, 01:23 PM   #12
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Re: Proposal for new listing options

You'd have posted the same thing in 2000
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Old 01-31-2011, 11:10 PM   #13
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Re: Proposal for new listing options

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You'd have posted the same thing in 2000
Heh heh, probably.
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