I have been through more than my fair share of tutorials in MUDs lately as I have been scoping out the competition. I have been to muds with tutorials that take hours to complete. One took me over 12 hours the other day. That is INSANE!
I am not putting the players through a generic newbie school that takes hours of frustration to complete. I want my players to be killing mobs within 20 minutes of connecting to the game and earning their first sweet, sweet quest reward.
To get the player into the game as soon as possible I am taking a Passive Tutorial approach. The player will receive hints and information about the game but they’re free to do as they wish as soon as they get into the game.
Step One – Planning Out The Storyline
I wanted a variety of quests including a kill quest, a fetch quest, an investigative quest, and a delivery quest.
Mage Class Quest – Chapter One – The Candidate Apprentice
- Prove yourself by killing ten library bats.
- Retrieve The Scroll of Indication
- Optional – trap rival in the basement (evil)
- Learn about The Omens
- Optional – kill rival (evil & chaos)
- Related Task – kill soul leeches in the graveyard
- Prepare for a journey
- Deliver a McGuffin to Lamorth
Step Two – Writing the Script
I wrote out a dialog in Word using a black page background and text colored close to the ansi colors from the mud. This was a great way to visualize the text that would appear on the screen during the tutorial quests and see how the experience would start to look.
Step Three – Writing the Mud Progs
This takes a while. I format the text first by making sure that no lines are longer than the standard text wrap length of 80 characters. I copy paste dividers from the help files to act as section dividers and as rulers to make sure my text doesn’t scroll past where it should wrap.
The next step is to add color codes and give it an overall final visual pass-through on the text.