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RoninMUD Newsletter #4

Hi Folks, this is the very first edition of the "new" RoninMUD newsletter.  I apologize for the time it took to get this darn thing sent out, but due to certain circumstances, it was beyond my control. But, anyways, here it is, and all its glory.  This edition of the newsletter contains articles on Subclasses,  Time and Aging, and various other topics as well.  This newsletter is still being constructed, and I am planning a detailed layout, that in the future will possibly include a "Hall of Fame" section, and a section where you can advertise if you have something cool to trade, or a general announcement, for a small fee of course.  Anyway, on to the goodies!


Subclasses or the Project
Formerly known as Ranks by Ranger

Any player thats been around for the past few years knows that we've been working on a rank system.  The familar Acolytes, Evil Minions, etc were the beginings of that system and due to various reasons, the project stalled at rank number 1.  The main reason for this stall was that Ronin didn't just want another typical ranking system where you kill over and over to achieve small bonuses.

Instead, we wanted a system where you gained new spells, new skills and other really cool things.  We also wanted a system where not just the player with the better ability to kill would be able to gain ranks, but also the players that had some decent knowledge of the mud. This made the rank project extremely complicated, time consuming and has almost sent ranks into never-never land.  It took nearly a year just to compile enough decent ideas to give all classes enough skills and spells, then it took another period of time to decide that we didn't want a ranking system like the old one.

This has brought us to the subclass structure. Basically each class will be able to specialize into one of two distinct sub-classes.  With different spells/skills in each subclass.  I know this is old news but its good to be reminded. To gain a subclasss players will need to collect subclass points.  Points will be earned in a number of ways.  One way will be to complete a minor quest provided by a questmaster mob.  That might include running off and finding some particular piece of equipment hidden in the mud, etc.  Knowing the mud will be very important for this.

So, whats the status of this mega project?  Well, what every subclass gets has been defined, discussed, redefined and will probably get redefined again before implementation.  There is small "elite?" team of coders working on skills and spells and many of these new skills and spells are already built into the mud you play everyday - you just can't access them yet.  So, it is progressing - even if slowly.

I'm sure everyone wants a date that this will all be available. However, I'm sure you all know that your admin is extremely busy and we are juggling many things with a limited active god-base.  So I'm not giving a deadline that will surely be broken.  However, I will say subclasses will be here in the not too distant future.


New Character Housing/Clan Hall
pricing by Blink  

We have been informed by the admin. that the character housing or clan hall systems prices have been reduced, so that now you don't have to spend hours and hours of time working and slaving to build that special place just for you and your friends on the MUD.  The price system for various components has been reduced to the following:

starting two rooms - 80 million coins
receptionist - 50M
vault guard - 50M
each additional room - 20M
club flag - 50M
metaphyscian - 50M
shopkeeper - 50M

Also, take advantage of our new package plans, these come at an even better deal than previously listed!  This is the most affordable way that you can build a small little cottage, or a tremendous castle.  The following is the price system for these packages has not yet been done up yet, but expect a 10%-20% reduction on the previous cost.

Time and Aging
by Ranger

Time passes too fast on Ronin.  Every tick is one real life minute and that is fine.  However, the mud day is broken down into 24 hours and each tick is considered a mud hour.  So the days in Midgaard cycle every 24 minutes.  I'll complicate this by telling you there are 35 days in a mud month and 17 months in a mud year. Confused yet?  Well in summary, a mud character ages 1 year for roughly every 9.91 real life days since birth.

This aging rate is great if your a new player.  You jump from 17 years to a respectable regen age in a few short months. However Ronin has a very large number of players that have played since early 1995. Roughly 3.5 years of play means an age of 145 years.  Even someone playing 2 years has aged to 90 years.  Age metas help, but players that are not power players or have taken months off usually discover age a real problem that they can't keep up with.  These players then either stop morting and move on to godhood, or stop playing the mud altogether. After all, trying to take 40-50 years off your characters age would take nearly 100M exp and 100M coins and you need to do it in a fairly short period of time.  That sounds too much like work and certainly isn't much fun.

A solution is in the idea stage at this time.  We're basically looking at making a mud hour be 4 ticks.  Then the Midgaard day would cycle every 96 real life minutes.  We'd also lower the mud month to 28 days and the mud year to a standard 12 months.  This would slow the aging process by a factor of 2.25 or roughly it would take twice as long to get old.

What would this mean for the players? Well that 90 year old character would suddenly be 53 years old, the one 145 years old would become 81 years old. You'd also have twice as long to get your age meta. Which are also going to be reworked into a scaled system instead of the flat 10M/10M price. There are going to be side-effects.  Players at the ideal age of 50, will become 33, it would take 4 times as long for daylight to come and a shop reopen, and it will take new players twice as long to get to a decent regen age. We may possibly add a meta to increase age to help offset these young age problems.

I'm not finished yet.  We're also considering a method where age has more importance than just regen rate. Being older and more experienced should give players benifits like better practice rates, less loss of concentration, less mana to cast spells, that little extra hitroll and damroll addition.  On the flip side, being really old should bring on forgetfulness, more loss of concentration, etc.  However, this part is a little in the future as other more pressing tasks need to be done.

In summary, in the very near future we are considering making it take twice as long to age, globally reducing everyones age by roughly half, and doing a scaled age meta for both increase and decrease of age.  In doing this we hope to attract many of the older players and increase the usable life of current characters.


Tragic Incidents  

This is the section of the newsletter I have decided to add, that will inform people of various damaging incidents that have happened to Ronin players.  This is still in its experimental stages and I have not done enough research to add very many of these incidents this week.  However if you do have anything tragic to report, please MUDmail Blink, or let me know directly.  This column will tell us the players that may need help, after a death trap, or loss of gear in rent, or some other type of incident.

This week: The most recent incidents to report, all beling to the poor soul Havoc. After Havoc was carelessly running through the swamp he soon found himself up to his neck in mud, and never recovered his corpse.  Also, Havocs companion Seizure soon found himself in trouble, after a very sad bout with the Baron Von Kugelshitzel, poor Seizure was trying to destroy the evil creature when the Baron decided that Seizure was just one level too high, and drained him down too level 29.

Thats all to report this week folks, remember: If something bad happens to you, let Blink know, He'll make it public :)

When is a mob YOUR mob?
by Blink  

When can you actually call a mob on Ronin your own mob?  The admin. has never wanted to make a policy on this, but due to recent events something may have to be done.  Basically, it is all based on opinion. As there is no official rule as to who owns a mob, there tends to be people on the run, and they are all after the same mob.  Now, I feel that we should not have to make a policy on this issue.  It all boils down to ethics.  There are many different situations you can put yourself in to determine how to give ownership of a mob.  Some people say that if you hit it, the mob is yours, others say that you must kill it fully. Lets try and decide.

When players connect at a reboot or a crash, there is usually an item or two that everyone wants to get.  Obviously, each person will try and get a group together or whatnot, and go kill the mob.  It is normal that more than one person would want the piece of equipment that is loaded. However, this is where the conflict begins.  Two or three people can get on and mention over gossip that they want whatever it is loaded.  And all three will eventually go off and try to get it.  However, if someone makes it to the mob before you, is it right to try and steal the mob from them? recall them? or take the corpse?  Before we make a descision, we must ask ourselves what is the ethical thing to do?  Place yourself in the opposite sides position for a moment and ask yourself how it would feel.  Then, try to make the better call.

Though, there will always be conflicts within the MUD, this is a very normal thing, and at times it can make it more interesting, afterall if we all got along it would be an awfully strange place.  But there is a difference between disagreements, and when you just get down and dirty. So i write this article in hopes that we can all see that the MUD is placed here for fun, if you make it a contest or battle, then you may end up ruining it for yourself.

HIA's mana boosting cheating.
by Rist  

It all started when my self (Rist) and Loke had started out HIA clan and had just reached level 30 with our chars.  We had traded some kgozt bracelets (we were still too small to have lotsa BoM's at that time) and we were killing in swamp, I remember.  It was me that first lost one bracelet, I remember it said that it exploded in a bright dust.  We didn't think to much over it and just put on another and kept going. After a while I told Loke that i had a bunch of mana more than i used to, 120 more to be exact.  Strange thing we figured.  So I decided to make a test or two. I threw alot of spells (which the spec on the bracelet triggers on) and after a while it blew up and I got 100 more mana. Then we knew what happened and this is where we went wrong in our choice. This was of course very fun for us, suddenly I had 220 nat mana more and I was getting BIG.  It Felt good just after I had hit level 30 to get big right away.  We had one more bracelet and Loke said that he wanted it.  I didnt argue and he blew one up too.  From that point we often regretted that we didn't tell the IMP's, but it was to late.  We were afraid of the punishment.  So after a while our clan grew bigger with Nagfy. We let him in on the secret and he used them as well.  We kept it on a low level.  Never did more than it was fully possible to meta.  We traded some black bracelets for BoM's I remember.  Just to be nice we said but it was really to gain on it ourselves and so noone else would figure it out. I feel bad about it still. Sorry all (Know i did this to Dazzle at least once.....sorry). After a year HIA clan grew with more people and 2 of em (Acid and Erik) was living in the same house as the other 3 of us so we let them in on the secret as well.  The two of them had a bit harder way of mudding, and I felt often that they did to much on their own.  Thats why they got out of HIA clan a while ago.  We didn't agree on how to act.  I felt bad about the bracelet using and so did Loke and Nagfy, but the other two used em alot and way more than it was possible to meta (they metaed str instead while I talked to newbies and stuff) They had chars with 6-700 mana nat and never even once made a mana meta. I told em (since I  was one of the creators of HIA clan) that if they did it one more time T'd tell.  Enough was enough.  Thats why Acid mailed me and asked if i had told about it. Well i hadn't, because they are all my friends and I couldn't risk my friends getting their chars deleted over something I feel is MY fault. If I had told about it right away then noone would be in this mess, and since the others couldn't tell and not risk me getting deleted, well they figured they could do it as well. A bad loop there.

The 3 HIA's wich I speak for (Rist, Loke and Nagfy) are very happy that we finally got caught so we can get on with our lives at Ronin and not have to look over our shoulder all the time.  Rist,  Loke and Nagfy are still Gods but all our mortal chars demoted to level 1. We could keep our equipment too. That means that 4 years of building a char is gone. But still they were built on cheating so i figure its a fair punishment. Acid and Erik got deleted since they had several other things on their record.  They were outta chances while the rest of us had been nice other than the mana boosting case.

I just want to let you at Ronin know that we are sorry for what we did and that we have all accepted our penalty as fair. Hope you all can find it in you to forgive us.


Yep, its here, Quest Week, it started earlier this week, and should continue on for a little while, so be on the look out for quests, check the boards and stuff.  Also be ready for pop quests, because you never know when they'll be!  Have fun, play hard, and who knows you might just win something! Good Luck!

Well, Thats it for this edition!  I hope you've enjoyed it. There is many more to come, and hopefully, it will only get better. See you all playing, Blink  

If you have any question or comments on the newsletter you can E-Mail Blink at ''.  I am constantly looking for new suggestions that we can add to the newsletter, so if you think of something interesting that you would like to see here, just drop me a line and let me know