A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z ?

macro mode
1. noun What results when players are on auto-pilot.
2. noun To perform detailed, yet stereotypical toils by using keyboard macros or F-keys. So complex were some of these in their heyday that in one celebrated case a MUD1 player pressed one key and 16 seconds later was standing at the NRBL holding the LS and three wafers, having fed the dragon as well! This kind of activity was curtailed by the addition to the game of numerous macro traps, however it still goes on to some extent. Generalisation of this specific meaning led to the present everyday (1) usage.
macro trap
noun A random event or activity designed to cause problems to the users of keyboard macros. Examples include the roots on the Dragon Isle, the way mobiles sometimes block movement, and the multiple versions of the LS. People still build macros to facilitate play, but they tend to be shorter and with less exception handling, eg. a single key to get from the swamp to the entrance to the Dwarf Realm. It is reported that some people have macros to perform specialised tasks such as sipping up an 800pt persona at the spring then touching the TS, repeating the exercise the fifty or a hundred times necessary before actually succeeding in getting a lowlife muser. However, solid proof of the existence of such macros has not been forthcoming.
magic train
noun The legend (3) prevalent in BL that a magic choo-choo train sometimes appears on the railway line and knocks you down. You never know when it will happen, as it runs on dwarf time.
main persona
noun The persona that a player habitually uses or is best known as. See stoneface.
make <level>
verb0 To accumulate enough points to rise to <level>, eg. make wiz, make necro. See level.
noun A persona in the game which is of gender male. Some humanoid mobiles are also males. In order to avoid possible trauma, most male players behave as though all the other players were heterosexual males, a situation to the liking of many female players who are happy to avoid the hassles they would get if it were known that they were real females. NB: this is in the UK, where despite the fact that 50% of personae are female, only around 10% of players are; in the USA, around 40% of players are real females, so a lot more flirting goes on between the sexes. See female, real female.
marathon session
noun A very long session, normally stretching deep into the night and early morning, normally with the implication that a great deal was accomplished during it.
noun A persona willing to stand in the swamp for 30 minutes following long sequences of directional commands provided by someone else who is seeking the crown. markers are a rare commodity. See string (3), maze.
verb0 To play a persona while pretending to be a player other than who you really are. It is common for wizzes to masquerade as mortals to gather intelligence, and for mortals to masquerade as guests (or, more probably, puests). Some players build up quite detailed 'lives' which they claim to have in the real world, keeping style notes and biographical information in weighty files. Much grief can arise when people masquerading as individuals of the opposite sex are found out. The persona which the player is using to masquerade as is usually called a secret persona. See female, real female, male, style, incognito, undercover, secret.
noun The contracted form of 'mausoleum', a mini-area of half a dozen rooms.
noun Mazes are collections of inter-linked rooms with similar or confusing descriptions, basically empty except for a central location which contains an item of worth. Mazes often have some wrinkle which makes them hard to map. Most players hate mazes, no matter easy to solve they are - they always make maps look messy... Large mazes in MUD2 are: the Graveyard; the swamp; the scriptorium; the Maze of Hedges.
<level> meat
noun That which killers intend to eat; usually mage meat for alliterative reasons (although BL still has its legend meat equivalent). See necro nuggets, dogfood.
verb0 The 'meditate' command, essential for obtaining the icons.
"3... med!"
noun A face-to-face gathering of MUD players. These used to be called MUDmeets, but the longer form has fallen into disuse. Meets are where you find that you're the only person who pronounces FOD as "eff oh dee". They can be traumatic, on account of how you encounter personae in the game but it's players that turn up at meets... See bash (2).
1. noun A term meaning much the same as BB/BS, although with overtones of a more mature relationship between the individuals concerned. Someone who has been a wiz on one incarnation of the game who then makes wiz on another might say that they have a mentor on the second one. See BB/BS, perm, wiz bit.
2. verb0 To be under tuition to a mentor (1). "If I make wiz here, will I be mentored again?".
noun A database written in MUDDL, popular at Essex University from its inception at Christmas 1987 until the DEC-10 upon which it ran was switched off 3 years later. Mist was an incredibly anarchic, entertaining and breakneck game: personae rarely lasted longer than half an hour before meeting with some heroic demise (it allowed the berserk command), but this didn't stop the players from having bundles of fun! The game itself conspired in the permanent atmosphere of hack and slay, with suitably unfair puzzles and impressively dangerous weapons. It was, nevertheless, possible to make wiz in an evening, for those who could survive that long.
Mist was written by several undergraduates at Essex University, all avid players of MUD1. It was subsequently added to by other players, until eventually there were around 20 or more people who could claim to have contributed significantly to its code, primarily David Barham, Paul Goodjohn, John Medhurst, Dave Morris, Shaun Plumb, Paul Friday, Michael Lawrie, Bret Giddings, Richard Thombs, Adam Bird, Simon Smith and (for the core MUDDL libraries, which it shared with the MUD1 database) Richard Bartle. The general historical verdict on Mist is that it was of unparalleled bloodthirstiness, but highly original and inspired, with some excellent puzzles. See also Rock.
verb01 To complain, as perceived by the person making the complaint. "I think I'll moan to a wiz about that..." Sometimes used as a noun. See whinge.
noun A class of MUD-controlled inhabitants of The Land which (usually) wander around. Most can be killed reasonably easily, but some are very nasty. The worst are the dragon, vampire, wolf, goblin10, dwarf king and guards, thief, wyvern and the skeletons. A small percentage are friendly. Some objects are pseudo-mobiles in that they do mobile-like things but can't actually move independently, eg. Valetant. Players new to MUAs may use terms like 'critters' or 'NPCs', but the MUD tradition is mobiles. Together, mobiles and players can be described as creatures.
mobile bash
noun An event whereby the players involved attempt to kill all the mobiles in a single reset. It is traditional in a wiz-overseen mobile bash that all personae are safe from attacks by other personae, although in spontaneous mortal-organised ones there is no such guarantee. Sometimes, the term is shortened to bash when the context is unambiguous.
noun A nigh-perfect legend (3) from CompuNet MUD, reproduced here in full exactly as it first appeared so as to illustrate the legend (3) concept in general. All the classic legend ingredients are there: the warning of risk; the casual reference to a non-existent object (the strawberry); the inclusion of a wiz-only object that the victim may actually have seen (the mousse); mention of a conveniently useful bug; the helpful asides concerning common pitfalls to avoid; what to do when (utterly spurious) warning messages appear; the growing implausibility of the instructions; the plain, matter-of-fact vocabulary used; the fearsomely attractive reward. A beautifully-crafted example of a real legend (3).
" How to reincarnate the moose
by Grobble and Ash
You will need:
moose head
First of all, you must get the moose head. If you don't know where that is then you are not skilled enough to turn it into a living moose, as this technique is very risky and often results in death. When you have got the moose head, go to the pantry with the strawberry (which everyone knows you get from the bronze strawberry tree in the Pine Forest - s,ne,sw from the sundial). Type MIX STRAWBERRY WITH PANCAKE, and the ingredients will become strawberry mousse. Take the mousse and the moose to the shrine. You must hurry, as the mousse soon goes off and gives off poisonous fumes which permanently cripple you; if you get the message, "You are beginning to feel a bit heavy", then drop the mousse and run away, as it is about to give off the crippling fumes. When you get to the shrine, type SMEAR MOOSE WITH MOUSSE, and drop the moose head. Don't worry if its eyes fall out - this is normal and they turn into gold when the moose comes back to life. Next, go to the beauty and sacrifice her. Her spirit will flow into the moose and bring it back to life. This is the critical moment. You have to get back to the shrine as fast as you can, as the moose will move towards the wolf when it comes to life. If the moose meets the wolf, it will turn into a mad killer-wolf instead, and chase after you. If you manage to get to the live moose in time, type TAME MOOSE WITH MISTLETOE. There is a nice bug in MUD that you don't actually have to be carrying the mistletoe to tame the moose. When the moose is tame, you can pick it up and dump it in the swamp, scoring about 1,000 or so. If you get chased by the mad killer-wolf it is advisable to quit, as it is almost as nasty as the dragon. Don't blame us if you die trying this method - it is very risky."
noun A contraction of mortal; interchangeable with mortal in most places, eg. "a mort is a mort...", real mort, mort wiz. Prevalent in BL. See wizmort.
1. noun A player who does not run a wiz (ie. not a wizard or witch).
2. noun A persona which is not a wiz. See wiz mortal.
1. noun The condition (or, less frequently, the position) of being a mortal. "I like mortaldom's freedom from responsibility". Compare mortalhood, wizdom.
2. noun As the word has the same ending as 'kingdom', soemtimes mortaldom is used as if it referred to a place where all mortals lived. "One more unnecessary FOD, laddie, and you can pack your bags for mortaldom!".
mortal FOD
noun A FOD performed by a mortal. Such FODs have a very low chance of succeeding, but if they do work there's no effective protection against them. If someone really awful is close to making wiz, sometimes their enemies will chance a mortal FOD, preferring to die dead dead than play in a game where said person is a wiz. Noble though such kamikaze tactics are, they rarely have the desired effect unless large numbers of musers are prepared to risk all or nothing.
noun The position (sometimes the condition) of being a mortal, as opposed to being a wiz. "I enjoyed my mortalhood, but I'm too used to power to start from scratch again". Compare mortaldom (1), wizhood.
"A mortal is a mortal..."
interjection The philosophy that wiz mortals should be treated in exactly the same manner as mortal mortals. It is usually invoked when a wiz mortal has done something wrong which a normal mortal would have been let off punishment for, but which a player who has a wiz ought to know better about. The phrase is more properly used when wizzes who are playing as mortals claim they should get special treatment because they're wizzes, eg. not being hassled by other wizzes. In full, the phrase is "a mortal is a mortal is a mortal". Mainly used in BL, almost always quoted.
mortal mortal
noun A mortal persona being played by a player who hasn't made wiz. Almost the same as real mortal, but less fussy about whether the persona is a wiz masquerading or not. P1: "There are a lot of mortals around tonight". P2: "Yes, but only a few are mortal mortals", ie. to all intents and purposes only a few can be considered as mortals. See wiz mortal, real mortal, real player.
mortal wiz
noun A wiz who is not yet fully empowered. Chiefly a MUD1 term. For security reasons, when a player makes wiz with a persona there is usually some flag that has to be set manually to inform the game that it's OK to give the appropriate persona or account the relevant privs. A wiz not having these privs can theoretically be killed dead dead, which gives rise to the name. See perm, frig up, wiz bit.
noun Acronym for 'Multi-User Adventure'; what MUD is. There are three terms in common use to describe MUD-like games: MUA, MUD and MUG. MUA is the most technically sound, but it suffers from being unpronounceable; MUD predominates in the USA, but in the UK confusion can arise as to whether the user means the specific game named MUD, or MUDs in general; MUG is the province of computer magazine writers who like to have words in headlines that they can make silly puns on. The term MUA correctly identifies such programs as being multi-user versions of the class of games called 'adventures'. MUAs are also MUGs, but saying MUGs when you mean MUAs is sloppy: MUGs encompasses all multi- user games, ie. all games with more than one player ('Air Warrior'? 'Pong'? Chess? Soccer?). Increasingly, non-acronym terms like 'text-based virtual reality' are being floated as alternatives to MUA, but not have yet fallen into general acceptance.
Historical note: the 'Dungeon' in 'Multi-User Dungeon' refers not to underground areas of incarceration, but to a program named 'Dungeon'. When MUD was named, there were two single-player games around which could be considered archetypes of the genre: 'Advent' (ie. 'Adventure', 'Colossal Caves') and 'Dungeon' (ie. 'Zork'). Of these, 'Dungeon' was the better by far, so it seemed reasonable at the time to assume the whole category of such games would be called 'Dungeons'. However, as 'Advent' predated 'Zork', the term 'adventures' was adopted instead, and 'Dungeon' (as a name) forgotten. The acronym MUA is therefore closer to what MUD was intended to mean than any of the other alternatives for this species of computer game. See MUD (6), MUG, IMPCG.
interjection The BL way of laughing maniacally. It may be extended by an indeterminate number of HAs. Its usage is as in MUD2's HAHAHA, although sometimes BL killers will shout it simply to announce their presence.
1. noun Abbreviation for 'Multi-User Dungeon', a CAT (although 'Dungeon' was actually the name of a Fortran implementation of 'Zork' around at the time the first MUD was written). MUD is the name of a series of programs dating from 1978 which share a common scenario, were conceived as an adventure game to allow more than one player, and were successfully designed as such.
2. noun A particular version of MUD, usually apparent from the context. Normally, it will mean MUD1 (MUD version 3) or MUD2 (MUD version 4). See version.
3. noun A particular incarnation of MUD, eg. Essex MUD.
4. noun The scenario used by MUD, ie. The Land.
5. noun the game. "I feel like some action. See you in MUD".
6. noun The category of computer games of which MUD is a paradigm. This is what MUAs are called on InterNet, although the term is often written in lower case there.
7. verb0 To play MUD. "I'm going MUDding now".
8. adjective Of or relating to MUD. "She's a MUD addict if you ask me".
1. noun version 3A (sometimes also 3B) of MUD, from which most other MUAs are directly descended. Incarnations include Essex MUD, CompuNet MUD and (as version 3B) BL.
2. noun The particular incarnation of MUD1 at Essex University; the first MUD to be played by externals. It may sometimes be called MUD-1 by users of Internet.
3. noun The MUD1 rooms of MUD2's database.
MUD1 rooms
noun The rooms west of the stone wall. The largest and oldest section (1) of The Land - indeed, the Cottage and surrounding area formed the initial database of MUD1 (the Cottage is based on the house in which Roy Trubshaw used to live). Trubshaw left lots of hooks upon which to hang other areas (the beach, the cave, the swamp, the forest north of the road, the Graveyard) and these were later fleshed out by Richard Bartle, who subsequently added the rest of the MUD1 rooms (plus Valley). The additional areas arrived in roughly in the following order: Under the Yew Tree, the Cave, the Foothills, the Sea, the swamp, Behind the PC, the Ship, the Goblin Lair, the Pine Forest, North of the Road, the Mine, the dwarf Realm, the Dragon Isle, the Isle of Woe. See The Land, section (1).
1. noun version 4 of MUD, in all its sub-versions. Incarnations include that on the VAX, that on the MUDbox, and that on The Wizards' Guild Ltd's Unix system called 'Dragon'.
2. noun The MUD2 database.
1. noun The ill-fated M68020-based system which BT bought so that MUD2 could be taken off its VAX and run on Prestel. OS9 was chosen as the operating system for compatibility with CompuNet's (then) new system to replace the DEC-10 they had been using, however the contract that bound MUSE and BT at the time gave BT a veto over placing MUD2 anywhere in the UK outside of BT. Working on the MUDbox directed resources away from making changes to MUD itself, and (not unreasonably) led players to believe that MUD2 would eventually make it to Prestel, thereby gaining national access at local call rates. Unfortunately, higher management in BT had other plans, and when MUSE and BT terminated their agreement by mutual consent in 1991, the MUDbox was returned to BT to be dismembered and sold in pieces.
2. noun Any computer entirely dedicated to running MUD and its associated programs.
noun A CAT for 'Multi-User Dungeon Definition Language', serendipitously punning on MDL, the language in which 'Zork' was written. MUDDL is the definition language of MUD1. It was designed by Roy Trubshaw with hacked-on additions by Richard Bartle, and is based on the data file used in 'Advent' (the first adventure game of any kind, SUA or MUA - it gave its name to the genre). MUDDL is more general, however, able to cope with direct and indirect objects, and extended to have limited function-calling abilities and parameterisation. It has only a single-level class hierarchy, though, so lines are often repeated, identical but for the name of the objects affected. A database is defined by a set of sections (2), namely rooms, vocabulary, classes, actions, demons, objects, the travel table and text. Much of the work is hard-coded into the interpreter rather than lying in MUDDL itself, so changing basic operations is difficult. Deep, limiting distinctions are made between objects, rooms, mobiles, players and containers. On-the-fly text generation has to be hard-coded, and the language is interpreted asynchronously so any changes are always messy to make.
That said, a surprisingly large amount can be done with MUDDL - much more than in many of its immediate descendents. Indeed, by adding mainly features (2) that are showpieces of the language's abilities, the impression is conveyed that MUDDL has more up its sleeve than it really does. A tolerant, but basically stupid parser completes the system. The limitations of MUDDL were well known to Trubshaw when he designed it, but he never had the time to do the rewrite he was hoping for having got the rest of the system working. This was left to Bartle, with MUDDLE in 1984. Many databases were written using MUDDL by students at Essex University, the most well-known being 'Mist, 'Rock', 'Blud' and 'Uni'; although vastly inferior to MUDDLE, it can be seen that MUDDL is nevertheless quite versatile! See action for an example of a MUDDL definition.
noun A CAT for 'Multi-User Dungeon Definition LanguagE', the definition language of MUD2. MUDDLE is a 'proper' programming language, rather than the glorified table-lookup system of MUDDL. It was specifically designed (by Richard Bartle) to be used for writing MUAs, and as such comes with a built-in mechanism to handle a class hierarchy. Its interpreter was written in a hurry in Turbo Pascal, and was soon converted to VAX Pascal; much later, it was transformed from there (partly via a translation program) into immensely confusing C (2). However, since DB changes should no longer involve changes to the interpreter itself, this will not be a great problem until Bartle is hit by a fast-moving train. MUDDLE comes replete with macro facilities, and is not split into sections (2). Currently, it has two significant limitations: for speed, the class hierarchy is fixed at compile-time, so although objects can be added to it, classes cannot be removed or links in the hierarchy reassigned; there is no facility for separate compilation, so if you change one line of one component file, you have to recompile the lot. See function for an example of a MUDDLE definition.
noun A now rather antiquated term which refers to the language used by MUD players among themselves. Not as rich as it once was, due to much of its being superseded by emotion commands: few people are going to type "<laugh>" as a message when there is a 'laugh' command, for example. It's still complex enough to warrant this rather substantial dictionary, though!
noun Abbreviation for 'Multi-User Game'. Although this has a distinct technical meaning - (usually computer) games that allow more than one player - it is often used incorrectly to mean only MUAs (such as MUD). Generally, using the term MUG this way implies you are one... See MUA, MUD (6).
verb0 To communicate game-specific information with someone in the real world while both are playing in MUD; playing two or more personae at the same time. multi-lining is usually illegal. It's OK to be in the same real-world room as another player, or indeed to play two personae personally, so long as all game-related communication goes through the game. For example, if Fred gets attacked, then suddenly from out of nowhere Joe comes to his aid without either of them uttering a word, it's a fair bet that in a room somewhere in the real world the player playing Fred is screaming at the player playing Joe for help. If Fred had shouted in the game, though, it would have been acceptable. Basically, if someone snooping can tell you're multi-lining, you are, and if they can't you're not..! Note that all out-of-game communication while playing counts as multi-lining - people have even been caught using CB radio to cheat this way! The reason multi-lining is outlawed is because it gives a huge advantage to the players who are doing it: multi-lining killing teams can off virtually anyone, and certainly make the game unplayable. Sometimes, observant wizzes may think they see multi-lining when it's not there; it might be that you have arranged prior to playing that you will meet someone in a certain room at a particular time, or you've agreed on a system of hidden meanings to stylised phrases (like bidding systems in Bridge). If you try any of these tricks, don't be surprised if you get hassled!
noun CAT for 'Multi-USer Entertainment'. MUSE Ltd is the company which owns MUD.
noun A magic-user, ie. a persona which has touched the touchstone and lived. Sometimes written as m-user or muser. Playing a highlife without magic is very frustrating, indeed some would argue that a persona is not highlife at all if it isn't a muser. There are minor disadvantages to being a muser: musers get increments of 5 on their stats when they go up a level, whereas fighters get 10, but by the time a persona becomes a muser it will usually be on maximum stats anyway so this makes little difference; musers also have less magic resistance than fighters, but again this is not too important as they can undo most spells anyway. You have to be a muser to make wiz. See stream (2), LS.
noun The variety of atmosphere which real addicts consider best for a fantasy-oriented MUA. It is characterised by a 'magical' feel, coupled with a carefully-crafted uncertainty about what could, might or will happen. Any mention of the real world is a Bad Thing, because it shatters the illusion. role-playing (3) is considered a Good Thing, but hard to enforce without turning everyone into plodders. See also baloons, mystique-rending.
adjective The standard way of describing something which is liable to stop a game having mystique, eg. baloons.
noun Another term for legend (3), although with connotations of age and coherence. Myths are frequently invoked, and work well. Sometimes, a myth can be a collection of related legends, eg. the B-29 myth.