Avatar MUD is celebrating its 10th anniversary – complete with multiple HoGathons (it’s a MUD thing), area building quests and trivia contests!

So, what does a bored Immortal do when the announcement about the area contest comes out? Write the core of a nifty little area in 2 hours. It draws some inspiration from the Death-Gate Cycle series, as well as my general interest in all things steam powered. Got my copy of the builder guide and my vnums (virtual numbers – another MUD thing) via e-mail last night, and I’ve already spent 30 minutes this morning putting in some of the technical markup required to turn my wads of text into something the MUD will parse.

I, of course, have a slight advantage over the other builders who are competing – I can boot a test port on the server and make sure that my area flows nicely 🙂 I suppose it also means I should get off of my rear and put together a cross-platform area editor and run-through tool. DaWiz put together a tool that validates the area, but beyond that builders are stuck with either a text editor, or the ancient AvMZF. I’ve pondered Ruby and Perl so far, but cross platform GUIs for either language seem to be few.

I will have to revisit the text later on – I merely have the first draft, and I’m not too happy with some of the sentences. I’ll probably take a look at some of the work by Nadreck – a fellow member of staff, and a fairly good writer – for inspiration on how to clean my area up.

Area contest time!
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