Do you MUD?

MUD is an acronym for Multi User Dungeon, it’s essentially a text-based MMORPG. They’ve been around ever since the 80’s, first only at universities but when the interwebs spread in the 90’s it became available for most of us.

MUDs are heavily inspired by traditional pen-and-paper role-playing games like Dungeons & Dragons. The MMORPG Everquest (released 1999) drew a lot of inspiration from MUDs. I’m sure the evolution will continue when we’re all inside the Matrix, hacking down ogres and looting treasures.

There is a particular charm to text-based gaming, you use your imagination a lot like with books and you can essentially play it on anything that connects to the internet.

I’ve been mudding for well over a decade now and they’re the only games that I repeatedly come back to after lapses. I play a couple of different MUDs (usually one at a time), none is like the other with their own worlds and challenges.


Even though there are games like Call of Duty and the next big WoW-killer coming out every other month, MUDs still have a decently sized community. There are hundreds of MUDs out there, many are empty, some have a handfull of core players and a few have hundreds of players. The MUD 3K has about two hundred daily active players on average.

Most MUDs have their own theme, usually it’s based on some work of fiction, such as Tolkien’s Middle-earth. The game and combat mechanics do come in a couple of different flavours depending on which codebase the MUD has been developed for.

There are a few pay-to-play MUDs but most are just free entertainment. Maintaining and developing a MUD is a hobby done by players for players.

I’ve barely scratched the surface here, the rest that is MUD is up to the adventurous reader to find out. For anyone who wouldn’t mind giving it a go, I recommend The MUD Connector, an excellent site for everything MUD related.

Until next time, adjö.

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