[MUD-Dev] historians

Philip Loguinov -- Draymoor fibhufky at erols.com
Mon Aug 30 18:21:17 CEST 1999

>Excerpts from muddev: 1-Nov-99 Re: [MUD-Dev] historians by Matthew
>Mihaly at best.com
>> Sure, historians disagree, which is why I kept making sure I said that I
>> wanted people reasonable objective rather than completely objective. The
>> problem with encouraging history that is explicitly from one, very biased
>> viewpoint, is that you end up with an unfocused history of the world,
>> which confuses people.
>Right. I was just saying that it might not be a bad idea to have
>multiple very biased viewpoints, since that happens in the real world.

I believe that having many viewpoints of history is a very good idea.
But there are a couple facts in the real world i'd like to point out.

A: Historians are historians, they're opinions are as varied as there
origins. But history books are written by the winners.
If you were to take a look at the accounts of a war by two opposing sides,
each would make the other out to be evil and wrong. But who gets there
opinions known? The side that wins.

Take for example WW2.
Hilter killed over 10 million people with his holocaust.
We all know that. He was a monster.
Well, how about Stalin? He killed as much, no MORE people, the SAME people,
as Hilter.
Now, Who gets more publicity as being a monster of murder? Hilter. Stalin
gets sheltered.
Why? He is on the allied side, the winning side.
Later on, Stalin is made to look evil anyway, but thats because of the Cold
War, not WW2.

Today, it's not as bad, but it's still true.
I bet you learned/are learning in school about the holocaust and Hilter's
I bet you aren't learning about the greater holocaust in Russia :)

Another point: Propoganda.
Every faction uses propoganda.
Continuing with the WW2/Cold War example:
Hilter and Stalin used propoganda with their people.
And we bashed them for it.
Guess what we did? We also used propoganda.

It is natural for any side in any conflict to try to make the people think
they are good and just and the opponent is a pile of crap.

What i am trying to say is, history should be dealt with on a faction by
faction basis.
Each faction records it's own history. If you join a faction, you learn it's
history, on a purely
biased basis. History, throughout the ages, has been convoluted, partially
for this reason.
Factions would never expose there members to information contrary to their
beliefs/good standing, and they shouldn't be forced to.

Note, this doesn't mean that people couldn't stand up against a powerfull
nation that spreads its beliefs and history through the realm.
It gives a reason for agitation, which i believe is the key to factions.

Factions (Or clans if you prefer the term) don't really accomplish much if
noone does anything.
Muds work on events and action. A mud where there isn't any conflict in any
form doesn't really accomplish the goal. Now, history is a very good tool.
History adds forms of conflict other then warfare.
And reasons for warfare other then greed/insult.

To summerize: a biased, split history gives these benefits,

-Pride and Patriotism inside factions (Team Spirit)
-Points of Conflict between factions, possibly leading to interesting events
(Crusades anyone? :)
-A sense of mystery about the distant past (Events because cryptic)
-Which leads to legends (Hmm, was there really a wizard that single handedly
destroyed our city?)
-And finally, Quests! Legends mean legendary items, which may have been lost
to the ages.

    Or, even better, Quests to find out the truth.
It would be a good idea to keep an unbiased history. No mortal access to it.
Then once some epic event has aged enough, perhaps the subject of which is
longer playing, bring it up again.


Real event: Extreamly powerful mage gains leadership of a weak faction,
recruits a lot of members, occupies the main city. Later, he is slain and
banned from the mud from breaking tons of rules. The wizards
powerful restrung Quest staff is siezed "For Posterity"

Legend: A long time ago, an evil wizard raised an evil army of dread. He led
an assault on the world, in an attempt to rule all. Finally, he occupied
most of the known world, but he was not happy and tried to oppose the gods
in heaven. A battle ensued and sundered much of the realm. In the end, the
wizard lost, his soul was captured and is now being tormented by the gods.
The gods, however, where not totally successful, for a part of the wizards
mind was in his staff, and it now tries to free the soul and resurrect the

Through simple exageration and biased views we now have these possible
-Find the staff and destroy it before the wizard can ressurect himself.
-Ressurrect the wizard
-Find the staff and use it to gain the wizards power (Reincarnate wizard
into self)

Or whatever. Basicly, biased confusion is a wonderful tool. If players know
all the truths of the world, then it looses a lot of pottential mystery.

Another example of actual usage:

My mud has gone through at the server, corruption of main source code, a bad
time as a smaug mud in a 2 year alpha, and finally a change in
administration, and a return to a backup of the original code. Also, durring
the open alpha, we made a tradition of Avatar Killing dragons with really
nice stuff, which led to a whole art of killing them.

Story derived from it.

Really good world, A god arises and challenges the current gods, battle ends
with a flood that destroys the world and leaves a barren waste. Slowly, the
gods return to there world and try to fix it. While they struggle, The race
of dragons gets more and more powerfull and eventually takes over the world.
The now oppressed world is in terror. There emmerges a hero. A powerfull
druid named Bryant. The druid opposes the dragons, but is slain. In his
final gasps, he curses the dragons, and the gods hear him. He is resurrected
as a vampire. He leads an assault on the dragons and kills most of them.
Eventually, the great Bryant is defeated and the dragons become stronger.
But two of his disciples, the ranger Jake and the Mage Haplo still fight on.
Eventually, the two form a clan that opposes the dragons, but they are
corrupted by power. They call themselves Chaos, and the world is ruled by a
new terror. Eventually, the two assend to power as gods and the world is
once again sunderred and time/space is distorted.

There really was a playe named Bryant, a Vampire Druid. He developed a way
to kill the superpowerfull dragons. He taught me and another longtime player
on the mud how to kill them. Eventually, he didn't have time to play. When
we started putting clans up, Jake and my character, Haplo, where the most
powerfull players on the mud, and I especially. I knew every nook and cranny
of the mud, and every possible exploit in the smaug code (Lots of them, i
love the stock Polymorph spell, it lets a player use MPCommands :P)
Anyway, eventually the head imp gave up on the mud and we took over.

This is biased, mystic, and full of possible uses (Quests).
The continuation of the Haplo and Jake characters could be used (Name would
be changed).
and the dragons are still arround.

Hope this helped, even if it wasn't all that terse and to the point.

Philip Loguinov.
    -Draymoor Spellcleaver, Archmagi of Demas Court.
  The opinions expressed in this email are mine and should be taken as
undeniable fact.

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

More information about the mud-dev-archive mailing list