Any advice for a first-time MUD player?

TheograthTheograth Member Posts: 60 ✭✭✭
edited March 2018 in The Cantina
So Starmourn will be my first MUD experience, and I was wondering if some of the more experienced players had any tips/advice for a newcomer? What kinds of things did you do in the beginning when you played your first MUD that sucked you in and made you feel a part of the game? Did you join a guild right away? Or stick with some of the newbie vanilla stuff to get your bearings first?

I'm sure everyone will have their own ideas on how you should start off, and I'm open to all of it!


  • CenCen Member Posts: 49 ✭✭✭
    I remember being overwhelmed the first time I went through an intro and got out on the other side. Everything was fast-paced, I didn't know what to do, and felt a bit lost. I was approached by two very helpful players, who were respectful in the way they corrected me, and taught me how to do things. I read some help files, but far from all of them, because it was just too much. My suggestion is to ask questions, without being afraid that they will sound stupid. How else will you learn? This kind of post, for example, is something I wish I had done before stepping into character the first time. I was not, however, aware of forums. I was the noobiest noob of all noobs.

    When it comes to RP, make yourself open and available. Speak to people, learn about the emoting system to have new ways to express your character's actions. See if you can set up some general idea of your character's personality. Below are some things to consider (don't get overwhelmed, no need to have everything set up, but it can help/make things easier to at least consider).

    Strengths: positive aspects of your character
    Weaknesses: negative aspects of your character, things your character is not good at, either knowingly or not.
    Attitude: arrogant, helpful, aloof, follower, leader, mediator, innovator? What kind of person is this?
    Morals: What would it mean to cross the line? Ends justify the means? Do no harm? Anything is fair in war?
    Pet Peeves: what is annoying? Someone using a nickname instead of the full name? Sucking up?
    Best way to piss me off: is it to point out that your left ear is bigger than the right? To always try to better you?
    Best way to get on my good side: is it to buy you a drink? Do you a favor? Laugh at your bad jokes?


    Rival/best friend: 
    Secret dream: 
  • AspieAspie Member Posts: 30 ✭✭
    edited March 2018
    Learn to use the help system and explore help files. They often have a lot of useful information.
    Take the time to figure out how aliases work in-game and on your client of choice.
    Take the time to figure out triggers and the basics of scripting.
    The above two can help you greatly by allowing you to make your own features, which can make the game more fun.

      example alias: a basic alias might be to hand in a commonly acquired quest item to a specific NPC.
      example trigger: a basic trigger might be something like highlighting a person's name or particular items you're interested in when advertised on a market channel.
      example combination: a more complex script and combination of the two might allow you to use less commands while fighting to do more appropriate actions, which allows you to quickly send them and focus more on strategy than syntax.

    I'm not sure what other clients can do for their command history, but try to figure it out. I like Mudlet, and here are some things it can do:
      press up to access previously entered commands (pretty common amongst most clients)
      tab completion lets you type part of a word and complete it by pressing tab, it will cycle through recent game history to find the closest matches, which is great for typing long or complex names
      command history completion lets you do similar to tab completion, except by pressing up instead, you can cycle through commands that match your input

    That's all I have time for at the moment. I focused mostly on accessibility, which help facilitate playing the game. Don't underestimate these features, I've used every single one of them from day 1 of playing text games, except for when Mudlet didn't exist, of course!

    Also, one last tip: take note of useful help files you find as you may want to find them later and you might forget how you got there.

  • AspieAspie Member Posts: 30 ✭✭
    Learn hotkeys! Moving around by typing every move command is slow and tedious, and learning how to hotkey things, especially movement to a numpad, will save you time and again, make the game easier and more accessible.

    Think of your numpad like this:

                         In         Out          Up
       Northwest   North   Northeast Down
       West                       East
       Southwest   South    Southeast

    Or, you can do something that is more comfortable or sensible to you. I've ran that scheme for over 11 years now and it works great for me.

    Hotkeys can also let you bind attacks or target selection if you have a script setup for that kind of thing, or just about anything you can think of if you have the technical ability.

  • TheograthTheograth Member Posts: 60 ✭✭✭
    edited March 2018
    Wow, thank you both so much! I’ll definitely do all of that straight out of the gate!
    Cen said:
    I remember being overwhelmed the first time I went through an intro and got out on the other side. Everything was fast-paced, I didn't know what to do, and felt a bit lost.
    Well, if I were to be completely transparent, I did set up an Achaea account the other day while browsing the Starmourn forums to try to get a sense of what it will be like, and this exact feeling you mention came over me. On top of that I was like, “Oh no! Do I not like MUDs???!”

    I love roleplaying in pen and paper games, and I have a soft spot for text adventures, so I imagined it being like the perfect marriage of the two. I was blown away at how complex it was, and kind of just staggered away from it thinking there was no way I could do it.

    I sort of wrote it off as not being a huge fantasy guy, and that the sci-fi setting of Starmourn will be the missing element to pull me in, but finally I admitted to myself that I may be setting myself up for disappointment unless I get some solid advice. So I made this thread!
  • CenCen Member Posts: 49 ✭✭✭
    Don't write it off too quickly. I had never tried anything but normal pen and paper RP before someone suggested I try MUDs. It took me 5 days, and by then I was hooked and pondering what to learn next, and what my character should focus on. I had no plans, I just rolled with it. That was quite a few years ago. I have tried some of the other IRE games, but only managed to stick around Imperian and Aetolia long enough to establish some RP. All games are different. Don't despair!

    Another tip!
    Learn how to move around and get from place to place. That way you can easily bump into people to interact with. There is usually one special spot in every city that serves as a hub for RP or meeting up. If you are interested in RPing, heading there gives you a good chance for some interaction.

  • TectonTecton Administrator Posts: 686 Starmourn staff
    • Don't be in a hurry to reach the end, enjoy the journey. MUDs aren't like MMOs that the game only begins when you hit max level. There's very little of the game that you can't do at any level.
    • Don't be afraid to ask for help/advice - MUD communities are by far one of the most caring and helpful that I've been involved with. Everyone generally wants you to succeed and stick around!
    • Explore all of the avenues available to you, but don't feel pressured to pursue them all - do what you enjoy!
    • Don't be afraid to take risks and die, playing it too safe will probably have you shy away from many fun and interesting opportunities.
    I'm sure I've got dozens more, but that's all I can think of right this moment!
  • MalashMalash Member Posts: 259 ✭✭✭
    Yeah, never be afraid to ask. In this community, somebody who just blew you to subatomic particles will often as not be happy to explain how and why you got blown to subatomic particles, and if not there's always somebody who is. Very friendly people, for the most part.
  • TheograthTheograth Member Posts: 60 ✭✭✭
    All great advice! Thank you guys a ton.
    Tecton said:
    • Don't be afraid to take risks and die, playing it too safe will probably have you shy away from many fun and interesting opportunities.
    This is probably the biggest problem I have in any MMO, I played Eve for the better part of two years and never did any PVP...a big regret of mine.

    Aurelius said:
    Never leave your home planet without a towel.

    This frood has never been sassed without one!

  • IndiIndi Member Posts: 206 ✭✭✭
    Read up on how to use the in-game aliases to simplify the commands you're entering.
    Even using mudlet and being good at scripting in mudlet, I still find the game aliases useful.

    Also, the web client is excellent, and if I wasn't used to mudlet and the language (lua) it uses, I'd use the web client instead. Especially starting out - less time spent configuring stuff and more just playing the game. 

    My advice - definitely try Achaea a bit more - being familiar with mud concepts will make Starmourn's release more enjoyable for you. Instead of spending the first month figuring out what muds are, you'll be out there being the first to explore, build, kill or whatever it is you find the most fun.

  • MinionMinion Member Posts: 162 ✭✭✭
    Also worth checking out are Lusternia's Aethership stuff as well as Ships from Achaea. From the videos of Starmourn they're going to be similar. Might be nice to get a feel for them. Don't feel obligated to buy them though. You should be able to find people who are more than happy to show you the ropes in both games.
  • ArcherArcher Member Posts: 80 ✭✭✭
    In addition to everything posted here, which are great suggestions, I suggest the following:

    1. Use a client and join the relevant clan/group in game. Ask lots of questions.

    My very first MUD experience was logging in to Achaea because I wanted to play something at work while I was bored that didn't look like a video game.  At the time, I only used Telnet from the command prompt.  I played Achaea with telnet for nearly 6 months until someone in game asked me what client I was using.
    If you have coding/programming background then start with Mudlet.  If that is also new to you, start with Nexus.  Do not take this advice lightly.

    You'll find that Nexus will serve your needs aplenty for a lot of things, however, you will likely find there is more community support and customization available with a client like Mudlet (probably the most popular, followed by MUSH client).

    2. Do one simple thing at a time.

    I was blown away at the depth of Achaea. I was expecting a very simple "go west, pick up sword, kill demon" experience.  IRE MUDs had more depth and complexity than I could've imagined.  This is what really got me hooked. 

    My suggestion is to learn a basic task, for example, find the snarfrats and squanch them until they're all in small particles.  Learn to do this and become comfortable with it.  Experienced mudders will be like "Snarfrats squanched! What's next?!" but the newbie will need to learn how to follow the map, which direction they're in, what to do when you get lost on the way, writing the alias for future re-squanching, where to sell their tails, etc.  Do this until you're comfortable with the process, then move on to the next thing.

    There's a lot involved in an IRE game and I highly recommend taking things one step at a time.  There's a temptation to jump off the deep end with everything but you'll find yourself stretched thin and not sufficiently learning any particular facet of the game.

    3. Learn some basic code, or be open to learning to code.

    MUDs by their very nature lend themselves to coding.  You can get away with A LOT without having to be a coding genius, and the mods have indicated they're trying to lighten the coding load with Starmourn.  However, learning something basic like creating an alias or a simple trigger is invaluable.  It can also be fun and interesting if you approach it with the right mindset.  I knew nothing of lua when I first started with mudlet.  I watched youtube videos to learn how to create and call a variable.  This was many years ago now, and today I feel comfortable putting LUA down as one of my known languages on my resume for work, all thanks to Achaea and mudlet.

    4. Don't buy artefacts immediately, or without fully understanding what you're getting.

    I often see newbies buying the wrong artefact first, or spending their hard earned credits on the less optimal option.  If you want to support the game please do so, but be very sure of what you're buying.  Ask around a lot and do the math on your own (where relevant).

    I spent my very first credits I got from leveling on buying a pipe because I thought it'd make me look cool and fit my personality.  Little did I know that I needed to use those credits for lessons.

    5. Play an existing IRE game if you want a leg up or have the MUD itch.

    This will help you get the basic mechanics, and you'll spend less time fighting with your client on Starmourn release.  As an example I already have a lot of aliases, scripts, and my GUI that I'll be taking from Achaea and transporting to Starmourn.

  • AureliusAurelius Administrator Posts: 467 Starmourn staff
    Qitorien said:

    The wall of text soon becomes broken down in chunks that your mind automatically learns to filter as "IMPORTANT READ EVERYTHING" or "I can skip this safely without worrying that I'll die or my ship will explode" and many steps in between.
    Yeah, I think that's really important for people new to MUDs to understand. I think of it just like when people started learning to read. You watch a small child learning to read and they look at a word letter by letter. With experience, we just glance at a word and we see it as a single chunk rather than a bunch of letters that we have to parse individually.

    You start recognizing MUD output as a chunk eventually, with the individual words not mattering for many things in a very similar fashion.
  • TravelerTraveler Member Posts: 132 ✭✭✭
    Achaea does have very comprehensive help files!

    One thing I did when I first started, was read through the help files, one by one. Not just searching for what I was looking for, but reading every one of the first... I don't know... The first 12 categories? The "basic" ones. I skipped or skimmed the more advanced ones, like about housing or artefacts. I actually did this for the first two or three days (real life days) after I discovered the game (keeping in mind I don't have a lot of free time). 

    That may or may not be everyone's cup of tea, and certainly isn't strictly necessary, but I found it both interesting and incredibly helpful, and I'm sure is part of the reason my newbie experience was perfect.

    I started with no coding experience, and I started on Nexus, but due to some players' willingness to help, I learned how to set up Mudlet and make my own triggers and aliases, both game aliases and Mudlet. I've since learned how to do a little with Nexus as well, just simplified stuff though. Aliases really are a life saver, triggers can be so QoL, and I'm very proud of myself and really enjoyed my accomplishments in coding, although I'm nowhere near being able to put it on my resume. :awesome: 
  • SairysSairys Member Posts: 237 ✭✭✭
    With the number of IRE veterans that seem to be coming across for this, it's probably a safe bet that within days, if not sooner, there will be people putting up guides and setting up some stuff to help out newbies. For some of us helping out newbies is actually pretty fun particularly because it helps keep them and give us more people to play the game with.

    Also, even if coding's not a thing for you, a lot of people are also happy to share their scripts around or just help people get to where they'd like to be.
    Avatar by berserkerelf!
  • KhargalKhargal Member Posts: 104 ✭✭
    Well, my advice is not connected to MUDs, but don't forget 0 rule of all RP communities: "Don't be a dick". Make sure that there is a fun for others too
  • bairlochbairloch Member Posts: 373 ✭✭✭
    heh, don't be me. I spend more time reading the backstory, in-game writings, help files, etc. etc. etc. than I actually do playing the game. :) don't forget to actually play!
  • MalashMalash Member Posts: 259 ✭✭✭
    Well, you can always roll with that and play a reclusive, scholarly type, but yeah, don't be a total hermit.
  • VillanoxVillanox Member Posts: 112 ✭✭✭
    You can probably do this with Nexus, but I only have experience with mudlet doing it.
    Highlight anything that's important to you.
    If you can't change the colour in the config (Which has a lot of variability) highlight it. That way if you're not paying complete attention and you suddenly see a splash of yellow in the sea of grey text you know 'Oh hey I need to pay more attention now"
  • annysannys Member Posts: 66 ✭✭
    I am actually rather intensely curious what brings you to Starmourn. If you've never tried one before, what leads you to a commitment to try this one (which isn't even released yet)?
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