Blood of Dragons

The 'A Song of Ice and Fire' MUSH


3. For Newbies

3.1. What is a MUSH?

A MUSH (or a MUX) is text-based roleplaying game where the primary goal is interactive and co-operative story-telling. It is a little like writing a story together with several other writers where the writing is done on-line and in real-time. Depending on the MUSH, there can be more or less of a competitive gaming element, which may or may not include the characters having stats and skills assigned and using coded commands to test if they succeed with certain actions.

To play on a MU* (short for both MUSH and MUX) you connect to a server on the Internet using a telnet client. Once logged into the server you take on the persona of a character living in the world that the MU* recreates and you play out various events in your character’s life together with the players of other characters. Plots and storylines on MU*s are generally smaller in scale than in many other roleplaying games and they tend to focus on personal drama and character development rather than epic save-the-world storylines. In contrast to table-top RPGs, MU*s generally depend much less on storyteller-guided plots. Because of this, MU* players need to be able to take their own initiatives and to create roleplay for themselves, because most of the time they will not have anyone guiding them.

While MU* roleplaying does have some things in common with writing a story, you only control the actions of your own character and you always need to keep in mind that each character is the hero of their own story and that the purpose of the game is to co-operate to produce the best possible story. MU*ing is not about ‘winning’. Examples of MUSH roleplaying can be see on the Logs page.

3.2. How is a MUSH different from a MUD?

MUDs tend to focus on going on quests and fighting mobs or other players to gain experience points. MUDs also offer players options for both solo and group play, so that players can have something to do even when no one else is around. MUSHes, on the other hand, tend to focus on co-operative story-telling. Given this, there’s generally no solo playing on a MUSH. The most important activity on a MUSH is roleplay and it is almost always enforced. For example, if a MUSH has a combat system, it would not be considered an IC (In Character) action to just type in the command for attacking someone. To make it IC, you would also need to write a pose describing your actions.

It is also quite common for MUSHes to have very little in the way of coded systems, and even when they do exist, they are often considered optional enhancements. It is not unusual for players to OOCly (Out of Character) negotiate the outcome of a fight instead of using code to determine who wins.

Even MUDs that enforce roleplay tend to be quite different from MUSHes. MUSHes do not have pre-set ‘emotes’ and the ‘say’ command is used very little for roleplay. Instead, MUSHers use the ‘pose’ and ‘emit’ commands, which allow for much greater variety in describing one’s actions. Examples of typical MUSH roleplay can be seen on the Logs page.

3.3. How do I connect to the MUSH?

If you are looking for a way to connect as Guest character to see if you might like to play on the MUSH, we recommend using our web-based client. The client can be loaded in any modern browser and allows you to either make a Visitor account (using Register) or connect as a Guest with the Guest button.

The web-based interface can be used for playing the game as well, but you may want a stand-alone client to have access to more features. The client is a piece of software that you download and install on your computer. Once you give it the address to the MUSH, it connects you to the MUSH server itself. You can think of the client as a web browser and the MUSH as a webpage. There are many different clients out there with different features, just as there are many different web browsers with different features, but they can all be used to connect to the MUSH. Below are some examples of clients that we recommend:

Once you have downloaded and installed the client of your choice, you should setup a new world and enter as the address and 3000 as the port. You should then be set to connect to the game, and you will find yourself at a login screen that will provide you with further information. If it is your first time connecting to the game, you should then type connect Guest Guest to connect to one of the Guest characters.

3.4. Do I need prior MUSHing experience?

The preference of the Admin is for the players to have at least some prior MUSHing experience. However, Open characters are available to players with no experience at all, provided that they have read at least A Game of Thrones as the game is not setup to cater to players who lack both MUSHing experience and thematic knowledge. Though we strive to help out newbies with any questions they may have, Blood of Dragons is not designed with brand new players in mind. In particular, the setup of the game is most suited to players who are able to be proactive about finding roleplay for themselves.