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Old 05-17-2010, 09:12 PM   #1
Tristan1992
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An Observation regarding muds and country

The dozen most popular muds as ranked by this site are all in the USA. I believe this is a change from when I started mudding in the days when Dinosaurs still roamed the earth. I distinctly recall that most or perhaps half the muds were in Europe. Now there are very few anymore, at least at the top of the rankings here.

Odd no? Is it because when Uni's started kicking off muds the environment provided by US ISP's was better than in Europe or Canada/Australia? Just a thought.
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Old 05-18-2010, 06:17 AM   #2
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Re: An Observation regarding muds and country

When I started mudding (in the UK), the geographical location of the mud was pretty important - I had a superb connection speed when playing UK muds, a passable connection for European muds, and a really bad connection to US and Canadian muds. Even playing muds in Australia was faster than playing muds in the US.

This was in fact the reason I created a US mirror of my UK mud in 1995 - because the US players had so much lag that they couldn't viably compete. But even before then, the vast majority of my players were from UK Universities.

I remember frequently filling all three of my University's terminal rooms with players! Other people would want to join, and there'd be no terminals left, so they'd have to go upstairs and find a free PC. It was a similiar situation in other universities as well - one person would start playing, he'd tell all his student friends, and within a day or two you'd have a dozen new players.

A couple of years ago I caught up with an old friend from back then, and he told me that our University has banned muds. And thinking over it, I don't recall the last time I had a player connect from any UK university IP address.

But connection speed isn't really an issue these days - I don't notice any difference between a UK and a US mud, so there's no longer much need to differentiate between geographical location. A more international playerbase also seems to have given rise to a more international mix of admin - perhaps in part because admin are often recruited from the playerbase, but also because if you've got players online 24/7, it's advantageous to have staff living in different timezones.

It's also worth noting that most mud hosting services are based in the US, so even if you are based in Europe you might still host your mud in the US (I did this for a few years, until eventually moving to a dedicated UK host).

So in my opinion, the shift is more to do with globalisation and internet speed. These days, the geographical location of a mud is little more than a footnote for the curious.
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Old 05-18-2010, 10:35 AM   #3
Tristan1992
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Re: An Observation regarding muds and country

Yes connect speed is less of a problem now than it was. I recall playing Might and Magic in Australia (opposite end of the world to me) and the lag in the mid 90's was quite bad. Now it is a bit better but I can give an example of how it still matters.

MUME was located in Norway (now back in Switzerland) and is a full PK mud. Ping times to it actually matter. Norwegians could get times in the 20 ms range while North Americans suffered with times around 200 ms. It sounds small but it is multiplied by the number of packets. I recall PK situations where the opponents could initiate combat before my screen had even shown they were in the room.

Interesting point about how European muds are hosted in the US. Hadn't thought of that possibility.

One thing is for sure, the move from Universities to commercial ISP's certainly has hurt mudding. Dumbed it down badly. Quality of players is way down from the early 90's. Can't even have an intelligent conversation with other players these days unless they're oldies. :-(
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Old 05-18-2010, 11:47 AM   #4
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Re: An Observation regarding muds and country

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Originally Posted by Tristan1992 View Post
One thing is for sure, the move from Universities to commercial ISP's certainly has hurt mudding. Dumbed it down badly. Quality of players is way down from the early 90's. Can't even have an intelligent conversation with other players these days unless they're oldies. :-(
Perhaps in many MUDs, but on NWA, if anything, the quality of our players and numbers are up. We average over 100 players, all of them mature and all roleplayers. Many are brand new to MUDs as several have become disinterested in the non-existant or lame roleplay in graphic games out there, not to mention the millions of twinks and kiddies playing those games.
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Old 05-18-2010, 08:36 PM   #5
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Re: An Observation regarding muds and country

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...not to mention the millions of twinks and kiddies playing those games.
While I wholeheartedly agree that MUD players are a cut or three above MMORPG players on the whole — we tend to be better educated, better spoken, more sophisticated, and somewhat more mature, I find — there is no shortage of twinks in competitive MUDs.

Even in a role-playing environment, competitive persons nearly always choose their class, race, abilities and equipment in order to "min-max" themselves for PK or bashing.

That's my experience, anyway. New Worlds itself may be different; that, I have no way of knowing.
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Old 05-20-2010, 10:51 AM   #6
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Re: An Observation regarding muds and country

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I find there is no shortage of twinks in competitive MUDs.
Even in a role-playing environment, competitive persons nearly always choose their class, race, abilities and equipment in order to "min-max" themselves for PK or bashing.
That's my experience, anyway. New Worlds itself may be different; that, I have no way of knowing.
I agree with that completely. Every MUD I've visited, and that's a _LOT_, has had this type. In fact it's one of the 4 basic mudder types according to Bartle. The achiever type. It's all about being Numero Uno for this type. This drive colours all their interactions with others and some of them certainly do come across as "twinks" I suppose. Actually I should probably look that up before I use the term. Oh well. :-)
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