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Old 01-10-2009, 01:44 PM   #21
Kleothera
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Join Date: Apr 2007
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Re: Looking for Suggestions

Bah you tempted me to reply again by hitting on another point about which I have a bunch of pet theories- votes on MUD sites. Yes I agree with Lasher, it takes a good MUD to get the core group of committed players voting consistently, which in turn attracts new players. It applies for a MUD of the size of Aardwolf (it was interesting to hear about the origin of the MUD- was new for me), but it also applies for smaller indie games. My hunch is that it probably takes building up a core committed base of 10-20 people whom you are able to convince that yours is the game they want to return to regularly. Once you have that core, it takes consistent effort to channelise them into getting others. Once you are able to get the snowball rolling and dont do anything fundamentally stupid (especially self destruct through MUD politics), you are on track to be in the top 50-100 of the prominant MUD sites. If you get a committed (read self driven) team of atleast one builder, one coder and one PR-RP person (who actually get along with each other and appreciate the need to maintain PR with the players), you are on track to the top.

I guess my spirited defense of teaming up comes from my own background. I am not a coder and know that I cannot run a game on my own- I dont have the skills for it and dont have the time to learn coding while holding onto a challenging, rewarding and very time consuming RL job. However, seeing the dynamics of MUD development effectively from the sidelines and as someone who knows that she cannot impact the fundamental design aspects on her own, makes me place greater value on team work. The other part is my experience before joining DE (hmms 1999 I think) of discovering text based games and falling for them HARD. In the first year of MUDing I went through oh 7 MUDs I think... anyway, I could go on and on about unprofessionalism of now defunct tiny MUDs that never got to release, but the point I am making is, as a builder it was a PAIN to find a project that didnt disappear in a few weeks and where the rest of the staff actually did anything. I remember going down the Yahoo MUD list looking for a MUD I would like playing while working on my first MUD... and then I reached D... and have stayed in DE for a decade because it seemed to be a place I wanted to contribute to. In the years in DE, I have seen a large number of players get excited about their own projects, disappearing, only to return a few years later to say that they didnt work out.

My rambling point is, no I am not saying there is no reason to start a new game, just that a majority of new games dont work out. Yours may be one of the few that DO survive and thrive, but that depends on the willingness to put consistent hard serious work over a long long time into the project. A typical MUD doesnt get very far these days because of all the competition out there (especially outside the MUD community)); the solution is NOT to make a typical fly-by-night MUD.
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