Top Mud Sites Forum Return to TopMudSites.com
Go Back   Top Mud Sites Forum > MUD Players and General Discussion > Newbie Help
Click here to Register

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 01-23-2006, 10:48 AM   #1
Nearlyhugh
New Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 12
Nearlyhugh is on a distinguished road
Send a message via Yahoo to Nearlyhugh
I'm new to MUDs and have just brought my character to the stage where he won't get beaten to a pulp by the first creature he encounters...

I'd like to start a discussion of the various methods that players use to map out the worlds they play, so that I can make an informed decision on how to approach navigating a sparkly new world.

What are the predominant methods used? I imagine a lot of players rely on mental maps as they play, but surely most people use maps at some stage...

Do players carefully map as they go along, or is it more efficient and enjoyable to play an area out, and then return to map it later?

I'd greatly appreciate any input.


Nearly'
Nearlyhugh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2006, 12:22 PM   #2
Seberis
New Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 1
Seberis is on a distinguished road
Graph paper is your friend!! At least if you are going to do it the old fashioned way. Have a pad of graph paper (or just create some) by your pc as you explore. Plot it out as you go (pencil erases nicely ) if you are fighting mobs it makes something to do while you heal up besides finding new porn, of course.


After you think you have it, use whatever application you're comfortable with for getting it finished and looking nice!
Seberis is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2006, 01:10 PM   #3
DonathinFrye
Senior Member
 
DonathinFrye's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Name: Donathin Frye
Location: Columbus, OH
Home MUD: Optional Realities
Home MUD: Atonement RPI
Home MUD: Project Redshift
Posts: 510
DonathinFrye is on a distinguished road
Send a message via AIM to DonathinFrye
Graph Paper does work well - and you can also opt to use colored pencils(or hi-lighter if you're just that edgy ) to signify special rooms - you can create a key/etc/etc. Another option is just to Letter-code each room, then add a "Letter Key", but I prefer numbering the rooms and using color for the key.

I also suggest larger square graph paper as opposed to smaller square graph paper.

I also use a new page of paper for the same area any time you go in an "up", "down", or special direction(I.E. "stairs", "cave", "ship", etc), then putting them in a logical order and stapling them in the upper lefthand corner.

It's all about how OCD you are willing to get. : ) I'm OCD about mapping, but I don't always map on the first go around, unless I know it will help me figure my way out through a maze, or some other quirky part of an area. Then, I map the other stuff in large bunches when I don't feel like crawling, bashing, or anything doing else that's boring and makes me want to slit my wrists.

It's all up to you, though.
DonathinFrye is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2006, 03:32 PM   #4
Hajamin
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Lusternia
Posts: 35
Hajamin is on a distinguished road
The other common method, if your client supports it, would be to use your clients mapping system. Zmud has a decent automapper, though you may have to manually adjust it for some area's.
Hajamin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2006, 05:15 PM   #5
Earthmother
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Home MUD: GateWay MUD
Posts: 68
Earthmother is on a distinguished road
You can also make *very* slick maps, using MS Excel, and it's 'comment' ability. This gives many color coding techniques (borders, filled boxes, text)  and also the flexibility of the keyboard for dimension..." ] " works great for "up and down". Excel also lets you move large 'chunks' at a time, when area begins to overlap. This method is *highly* OCD, but you get some *incredible* maps out of it.
Earthmother is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2006, 07:29 PM   #6
Milawe
Senior Member
 
Milawe's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: USA
Home MUD: Threshold RPG
Home MUD: Stash
Home MUD: Archons of Avenshar
Posts: 653
Milawe has a spectacular aura aboutMilawe has a spectacular aura about
As a player, I map religiously. I usually just start out with a sheet of white paper and use circles (rooms) and lines (exits) to map. I've noticed that a lot of muds don't really follow any kind of a grid, so this usually works better for me than graph paper. (I do miss the old days of Might and Magic when everything fit on graph paper PERFECTLY!

I seriously hate making maps for areas that I code, though I love mapping areas that I'm playing in. It makes no sense!

----
Dalaena
www.thresholdrpg.com
Milawe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2006, 07:49 PM   #7
Drealoth
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Japan
Posts: 74
Drealoth is on a distinguished road
Send a message via MSN to Drealoth
If you can find it, isometric graph paper is great for doing a very 3d maps (such as a building with multiple floors).
Drealoth is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2006, 08:02 PM   #8
aegora
New Member
 
aegora's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: VAncouver, BC, CAnada
Posts: 23
aegora is on a distinguished road
I have tried many combinations of mapping programs, paper styles and the like, but so far i like graph paper the best
I have an old physics lab notebook i never used and it keeps everything nice and tidy, i even created a little table of contents! If you live near a college, you can get these books for around 7$ CAD, not sure what they go for in the states ...

I really like the idea of Excel though!
how do you add in the little connecting lines?
or do you use a seperate square for those as well?

and what on aerth is an isometric paper? <boggle>
is that like hexagon paper?

actually, the best i have found for making 3D maps is actually the gimp i just draw little ovals for the rooms, connect them with lines, and layer them on top of eachother with a slight offset so that when i adjust the transparency, i can see what is underneath... then i can draw little bushes etc, if i get reeealy fiddly with it ... <sigh> I love mapping ....

I mapped my entire mud once, it took me MONTHS then we went and rearranged everything <grumble>
aegora is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2006, 10:52 PM   #9
cowofjoy
New Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: The Dragon's Den
Posts: 9
cowofjoy is on a distinguished road
Send a message via MSN to cowofjoy
Like my darling friend Aegora, I too am a graph paper junkie. Not quite so organized. I've run the gambit with clients and mapping programs and I have yet to find one that I REALLY like. The only disadvantage to the graph paper method that I've found is the inability to do ups and downs adequately. Then again, that's also been a major issue with the mapping programs I've gone through.

And we didn't just rearrange everything! We added lots!!! So there!
cowofjoy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2006, 02:29 AM   #10
prof1515
Senior Member
 
prof1515's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Illinois
Posts: 791
prof1515 will become famous soon enoughprof1515 will become famous soon enough
Send a message via AIM to prof1515 Send a message via Yahoo to prof1515
When I map, I use MS Paint and create a grid.  Then, I slowly color in the grid to denote room types as well as barriers, adding the features by hand, pixel-by-pixel in many cases.  Then, I add more details (again, quite often pixel-by-pixel) like door indicators, fountains, etc. as well as a key.  It takes time, and the maps below each took anywhere from ten to eighty hours each to complete.  But, as I play a medieval-themed RPI MUD, the old-world craftsman approach (even if using modern tech, the parallel of a medieval world on a modern machine is there) seems fitting.

The results:
Map of the Heras-Trobridge region in Harshlands
Map of the city of Coranan in Harshlands
Map of the city of Telen in Harshlands
Link to the above maps and more on Harshlands' website

Take care,

Jason
prof1515 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2006, 02:34 AM   #11
Drealoth
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Japan
Posts: 74
Drealoth is on a distinguished road
Send a message via MSN to Drealoth
Isometric graph paper: http://www.mathsphere.co.uk/Resource...ts/blueiso.pdf
Drealoth is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2006, 05:15 AM   #12
Nearlyhugh
New Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 12
Nearlyhugh is on a distinguished road
Send a message via Yahoo to Nearlyhugh
With hindsight, it makes sense that people who enjoy playing text based games would also enjoy a pen and paper approach to mapping them. I think that Jason makes a great point - you can take real pride in a "hand crafted" map, and I suppose it adds to the experience of exploration.

In my experience the mapping facilities of MUD clients are often fiddly, and there is inevitably some awkward procedure for performing unsual edits that are quickly and simply implemented using a pencil and eraser! I suppose that if you learned the quirks of one particular "mapper" little intervention would be needed for the automatic generation of maps, but personally I'd rather be able to traipse about the MUD without worrying about things like "if I go down these stairs, what point am I on in the level below?". If only someone could write a mapper with an "autofudge" facility...

I have written a simple PERL script to convert "n, 2 w, s" style paths to ASCII HTML maps, with hyperlinks to move up/down levels, but it seems like the more I look at it, the more complicated it is to cover all the "corner cases" and force an inherently random navigation system onto a grid. Upon reflection, maybe it's better that way - surely it's more interesting to play areas with tunnels, pits, scalable walls,  magic portals and other navigational chicanery than to trudge around a simple grid...

I guess I'll stick to the time honoured pen and paper approach...

Thanks for the opinions and advice!


Nearly'
Nearlyhugh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2006, 09:07 AM   #13
Winddancer
New Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Posts: 9
Winddancer is on a distinguished road
I have been looking for suitable mapping tools for quiet a while but didn't find them. I need a mapping tool that can map in 10 directions (n, ne, e, se, s, sw, w, nw, up and down).
Anyone have any suggestions?
Thanks in advance
Winddancer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-25-2006, 01:01 AM   #14
the_logos
Moderator
 
the_logos's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: Mill Valley, California
Posts: 2,298
the_logos will become famous soon enough
I asked Achaea's Master Mapper how she does maps like the following example, hoping that she had some sort of Zmud auto-mapper mojo, but like many of you, she does it by hand, with pencil and graph paper, cleaning it up after in Photoshop. Apologies for the large size.



--matt
the_logos is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-25-2006, 05:21 AM   #15
Nearlyhugh
New Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 12
Nearlyhugh is on a distinguished road
Send a message via Yahoo to Nearlyhugh
Now that's a Map!


Nearly'
Nearlyhugh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-25-2006, 06:58 AM   #16
Drealoth
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Japan
Posts: 74
Drealoth is on a distinguished road
Send a message via MSN to Drealoth
Woah, yeah. That map's awesome. You've definitely got yourself some talented people Matt.
Drealoth is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-25-2006, 02:09 PM   #17
the_logos
Moderator
 
the_logos's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: Mill Valley, California
Posts: 2,298
the_logos will become famous soon enough
Quote:
Originally Posted by (Drealoth @ Jan. 25 2006,07:58)
Woah, yeah. That map's awesome. You've definitely got yourself some talented people Matt.
Thanks! I will point her to this thread so that she can bask in the compliments. She's awesome at maps I have to say.


--matt
the_logos is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-26-2006, 03:36 AM   #18
Hardestadt
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 84
Hardestadt is on a distinguished road
I am an avid zMud mapper user. The mapper program is pretty sketchy at time, but over the years I've learned how to tame it to do what I want using a combination of experimentation, persistence, and voodoo.

I like how it gives me a visual representation of where I am, and I'm honestly lost without it as a player. As a developer its not so serious, I don't need as quick a reaction time as you often do whilst playing.

-H
Hardestadt is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-26-2006, 05:59 AM   #19
nass
Member
 
nass's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Posts: 128
nass is on a distinguished road
Just a tip, since you're a newbie, to map mazes you can never seem to get out of and which have weird exits going onto other rooms, and where rooms look identical, use coins. ie in room 1 drop 1 coin, in room 2 drop 2 coins etc, that way you know which room is which and where it connects to.

And yes, Zmud makes very pretty maps, we've had them up on our site for several years: ie see http://www.wotmud.org/areas/tarvalon.html
nass is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-26-2006, 06:54 AM   #20
Nearlyhugh
New Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 12
Nearlyhugh is on a distinguished road
Send a message via Yahoo to Nearlyhugh
Thanks for the tip nass!

If I'm ever involved in developing a MUD, maybe I'll implement a "drop breadcrumb" command for newbies...


Nearly'
Nearlyhugh is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools


Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 04:00 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.6.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Style based on a design by Essilor
Copyright Top Mud Sites.com 2014