[MUD-Dev] Virtual machine design

claw at kanga.nu claw at kanga.nu
Sun Apr 18 10:09:39 CEST 1999

On Sat, 17 Apr 1999 05:07:32 +0000 
Ben Greear <greear at cyberhighway.net> wrote:

> In other words, at least the players I have seen, can barely write
> decent english (or any other language) or hold a thought long
> enough to write an entire zone.  A few simple scripts have been
> attempted by others, but nothing like conditional branches or
> anything...

As you have suggested in your leading caveat this is entirely
dependent on your player base.  Consider: LambdaMOO and many
Tiny-*'s have the problem of stopping and/or limiting players from
programming and extending the game.

Base questions:

  -- What function, from a player perspective, does
programming/scripting serve in the game?
  -- What are the costs/benefits to the players to use those
  -- Are there other ways to achieve the same, or sufficiently
similar ends that the player may already be familiar with (eg
client-side scripting)?
  -- Is your solution sufficiently more useful and motivating in
real game terms, over the 3rd party solution competition, or just
continueing to work manually?
  -- Are your player demographics or game culture supportive of user 
  -- Can players trivially exchange and extend each other's scripts
within the game?

There are games in which scripting is used exteremyl heavily.  Its
worth examining why, and by whom.  UOL barely supports any level of
scripting, but there's an active culture of scripting and script
exchange based around various third party tools -- why?

Back in the days of asynch terminal comm programs (Procomm, Telix,
QModem, {COMMO}, XTalk, etc) there was significant competition on
making the most capable and useful internal scripting language.
Some users then did incredible things with those tools, some even
emulating entire BBS'es.  Did most users even touch those scripting
languages?  No.  Many begged, borrowed, or stole other's work to
minimise their phone costs, but most just continued to do it all

> I doubt that anyone will put forth the effort to learn a new
> language to write mud code for your server.  If they are the kind
> of person that will, then they really want to write the server
> instead :)

Tiny-*?  LambdaMOO?  ColdX?  

J C Lawrence                              Internet: claw at kanga.nu
----------(*)                            Internet: coder at kanga.nu
...Honorary Member of Clan McFud -- Teamer's Avenging Monolith...

MUD-Dev maillist  -  MUD-Dev at kanga.nu

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