Wheel of Time MU(SH|X)


  • Pitcrew

    To fork this off of the High Fantasy topic..

    I may look further into creating a WoT game, but am curious about people's desires/appetite for a few things regarding it.

    Setting Time and Place

    Time: I have two thoughts on this. Setting the game 30-40 years prior to the books or concurrent with the books. Going before the books means you to benefit from the rich theme and world building done in the books with having to deal with the actual events of the books. No Feature Characters running about or any of that, focus is solely on the players and their actions... however, it also means the game would not have Seanchan, Asha'man, or Aiel.

    Place: The world of Wheel of Time is big. Too big for a MUSH with everyone geographically dispersed. It would make more sense to have the game centered around one geographic area with players able to make forays out into the larger world for Plot and other things. Pre-book time line this isn't too hard.. pick a great city and go for it. Caemlyn or Cairhien would work wonderfully. Book timeline makes this a bit harder to choose a spot, but not insurmountable. I have access to a large, beautifully build Wheel of Time grid from a now defunct MUD that I am certain I could get permission from its former owner to take a scalpel to and reuse areas, desc, etc so building will not be much of a burden.

    Codebase and System

    Codebase: I am a computer engineer by education, but haven't been by occupation for a decade now (jesus, when did I get old), and sadly no MUSH/MUX code seems to be done in assembler, or C/C++. So... probably leaning toward PennMUSH simply because its very mature, has lots of pre-written modules I can plugin to it (see System below), is pretty familiar to players and likely isn't too onerous to learn to code for. On the other hand... Evennia seems to be the new hotness, is python based which I've wanted to learn anyways... but damn. Lot of work. Doesn't seem to have a lot available tried and true systems to pull in and I think Apos would frown upon me kidnapping Tehom and chaining him in my basement to replicate some of the cool stuff from Arx.

    System: I am not big on crunch, I want narrative first. My first inclination is to use Fate pulling heavily from the Dresden Files RPG where it's largely just renaming things to make the system fit and a lot of the heavy code lifting has already been taken care of with Fate.Exe from the former Exeter, however its unfamiliar/unliked by a lot of players. Another option would be FS3 where its common place for MU but would need to figure out how to deal with channeling. A third option way out in left field is Burning Wheel. I'm not familiar with the system at all, have no idea how well it would translate to a MU, but when searching for systems people suggest to use when running a WoT RPG it comes to the top alongside Fate.

    Goal to Open: Not soon, but sometime. I'll give the concrete goal of.. before the TV show premiers.

    Thoughts on the above? If I build it would you come? More importantly would THEY come?


  • Coder

    @WildBaboons I don't know what your timeframe is for this, but I'm hoping AresMUSH will have its first public release by Christmas. That's my goal anyway - no promises! But it'll have FS3 and all the common MUSH commands. Actually several folks have been surprised to learn it wasn't PennMUSH underneath. So if you're considering using FS3 but are also interested in the newness of Evennia, Ares might be your thing.



  • Setting the game 'outside' of the timeline of the books is a nice idea, but yeah I think you run into the problem of no Aiel/Ashaman/Seanchan, but also the problem of "less going on". It has been a while since I read the books, but wasn't stuff pre-books pretty quiet generic slice of life type setting?

    "Place" in WoT is easily rendered a moot subject by making Travelling a thing. Most characters will either BE channelers, or probably closely tied to one. You could do small 5 room grids for multiple cities and the White Tower, etc rather than one big 30 room grid of Caemlyn. One city would work, but just a thought.

    As for 'system', I have no idea, TBH. But, related - I will say that from my stint on a WoT MUD, players all want to be OMFG GOD TIER CHANNELER (yes, we're all surprised, aren't we?). Almost nobody wants to be the person who 'isn't even strong enough in the one power to Travel'. On the RP MUD I played, I actually wanted my AS to be just strong enough to Travel, and still wound up being the 'weakest' person around.

    So there probably needs to be a way to measure that stuff, because otherwise it's pretty vague. 'Can you Travel or not' is the only real benchmark of power I recall off the top of my head.


  • Pitcrew

    @faraday I did look at Ares but hadn't included its work in progress state. If FS3 is the system I end up going with it'll be a contender, though its in Ruby if I recall correctly. Evennia had the scales tipped its way largely because python would be of more use to my day to day RL work than Ruby at the moment. And thank you for reminding me to include timeline above

    @Tempest Channeling is something that Fate/Dresden Files RPG does very well. Built in measure of strength, fatigue, power balance, etc. I envision the grid as RP focused in one area, but with those smaller handful of room mini-grids setup for other places. Spreading things out too much without a focal point would make it harder for RP to happen on a regular basis. On a 100 character MU that might not be a problem, but on a 20-30 character grid it becomes more of a issue.


  • Pitcrew

    @Tempest Cairhien/Caemlyn focus would still have the Great Game, pre-Aiel war shenigans. Borderlands dealing with the fall of Malkier. Arad Doman and Tarabon almoth plains skirmishes. Illian and Tear hostilities. There's stuff to pick from and given the timeline is before the books.. not too concerned if something gets mucked up with how the books would go.


  • Pitcrew

    I'd at least poke around. I haven't actually played anywhere since February/March, but I've still got the hankering.

    I did a brief stint (a few times) on Arx, and my main problem with their code was the total lack of usable help files. If you did go with Evennia, it'd be nice if you picked up a coder that was really diligent about documenting everything, and writing decent "how to" guides. I think a lot of people in M* are already familiar with @faraday's code, so - if you are willing to wait till Ares launch - that would probably be cool. Or even build your game on PennMUSH with FS3.

    That said, the code-base matters much less than the setting and plot.

    My suggestion would be, rather than worrying about the book timelines at all, do the Alt-U thing. If you want Aiel, Seanchan, and Asha'man, write in a back-story that allows them to be used (or a plot that opens them up).

    On the other side of what @Tempest said about powers, I played on Cuendillar for quite some time, and there was a wide range of power levels on PCs. I played my level 3 Channeler as long as my level 7 Channeler, and never felt like one got more traction than the other.

    It's like any other game: There will absolutely be e-peens on display, but you can attract people who DGAF about their numbers as long as their numbers don't exclude them from the cool stuff.


  • Admin

    @WildBaboons said in Wheel of Time MU(SH|X):

    Time: I have two thoughts on this. Setting the game 30-40 years prior to the books or concurrent with the books. Going before the books means you to benefit from the rich theme and world building done in the books with having to deal with the actual events of the books. No Feature Characters running about or any of that, focus is solely on the players and their actions... however, it also means the game would not have Seanchan, Asha'man, or Aiel.

    Divorcing the timeline from book characters and keeping some of the cool, popular factions is going to be very difficult.

    For example you could fudge some things to seperate some from the book characters (Aiel can have a different reason for being active and involved, the Seanchan invasion could have a different timeline) but to explain the Asha'man without Rand you might have an issue unless the assumption is that Mazrim Taim acted alone, and you obviously can't have a Rebel Tower. You could try to offer alternate justifications for all these factions' existence but at some point it'll be too hard to keep track for many new players.

    You could also do it for the day after Tarmon Gai'don ended? Rand's gone, the big names are dead or retiring... big power vacuum.... but then again you don't have the Dark One or all of those neat Forsaken to play with. Also a net loss.

    I suggest placing this around book 5-7 and then just not using the book characters. They're around, they're doing stuff, but they just don't have the spotlight.

    Place: The world of Wheel of Time is big. Too big for a MUSH with everyone geographically dispersed. It would make more sense to have the game centered around one geographic area with players able to make forays out into the larger world for Plot and other things.

    Agreed. But again, the place will need to let the Seanchan become involved, and that's a real pain in the ass due to their overall attitude. You might need to make some adjustments there if you want them to be involved.

    Similarly having the White Tower and Asha'man around each without it becoming a PvP situation every time... again, you'll need to figure something out for that.

    System: I am not big on crunch, I want narrative first. My first inclination is to use Fate pulling heavily from the Dresden Files RPG where it's largely just renaming things to make the system fit and a lot of the heavy code lifting has already been taken care of with Fate.Exe from the former Exeter, however its unfamiliar/unliked by a lot of players. Another option would be FS3 where its common place for MU but would need to figure out how to deal with channeling. A third option way out in left field is Burning Wheel. I'm not familiar with the system at all, have no idea how well it would translate to a MU, but when searching for systems people suggest to use when running a WoT RPG it comes to the top alongside Fate.

    I won't advise on systems but you'll need to make some design choices early. Can characters burn out due to a dice roll, for example? Are you going to allow angreal in the game?

    Thoughts on the above? If I build it would you come? More importantly would THEY come?

    I'd be tempted to play a good WoT game, but the series is old... so who knows. It used to be super popular for MU* though so maybe you'll get some players through nostalgia as well.



  • Hey, my favorite WoT MU* character was a hapless bookish shopkeep boy who ended up kidnapped by the Seanchan early into his training as a prospective Warder. Good numbers definitely make it easier to find story, but just being willing to screw up will get you there as well.

    Though, looking back on some of the stuff we put up with, I wonder if I'd have the patience for the type of game that required hundreds of real-life hours to learn to pose slashing at somebody with a sword exactly the right way, according to the 'blademasters'.

    With tests.


  • Admin

    @Collective said in Wheel of Time MU(SH|X):

    Though, looking back on some of the stuff we put up with, I wonder if I'd have the patience for the type of game that required hundreds of real-life hours to learn to pose slashing at somebody with a sword exactly the right way, according to the 'blademasters'.

    There's nothing about this type of game that makes people have to RP this in real time. In fact it's an absolute necessity that liberal handwaving takes place else you can never have fresh Novices become Aes Sedai in-game, which does take years (way longer than training a Warder up from a trainee).

    But that's no more a natural part of playing than having a medical student in a modern-day MUSH who eventually becomes a MD. Sure, it takes IC years, but the entire game doesn't need to age a few years so you can 'realistically' buy Medicine up from 1 to 4.


  • Pitcrew

    I'll play barring one of the few policy choices that make/break game for me; the setting enthuses me a great deal, and I'd certainly like playing it. Though if it's setup like the old games with tons of RL time invested...nope. :D



  • @Arkandel

    Eeeeh. (Imagine me making a 'maybe yes/maybe no' gesture here.)

    'Required' is kind of a slippery concept in this context. No, it wasn't strictly necessary to do so. But doing so made it easier to get bonded to an Aes Sedai and go out and have the big damned adventures, rather than the endless training and sparring RP back in Tar Valon.


  • Admin

    @Collective So do so. Spend as much time as a trainee as you think you should (and you're getting RP from those cute blushing nobices pretending to not watch the sparring), then when you are ready for your guy to hit the real world, grab a color-shifting cloak on the way out and graduate.


  • Coder

    @WildBaboons said in Wheel of Time MU(SH|X):

    @faraday I did look at Ares but hadn't included its work in progress state. If FS3 is the system I end up going with it'll be a contender, though its in Ruby if I recall correctly. Evennia had the scales tipped its way largely because python would be of more use to my day to day RL work than Ruby at the moment. And thank you for reminding me to include timeline above

    Sure, that's cool. Also there's much to be said about not having to wait.

    One FYI about Evennia: last time I checked - it lacked a basic set of MUSH commands with the standard stuff everyone expects - finger, where, bbs, jobs, census, etc. Someone (@volund?) was working on something but I have no idea what the state of it is. Maybe it's done now - cool - but if not, you should factor that into your development time when considering Evennia. Evennia is a MU* building framework; Ares is a MUSH in a box. You can remove FS3 easily enough and add your own skills system while still leveraging the rest of the platform.


  • Pitcrew

    @Collective said in Wheel of Time MU(SH|X):
    ....I wonder if I'd have the patience for the type of game that required hundreds of real-life hours to learn to pose slashing at somebody with a sword exactly the right way, according to the 'blademasters'. With tests.

    @Sunny said in Wheel of Time MU(SH|X):

    I'll play barring one of the few policy choices that make/break game for me; the setting enthuses me a great deal, and I'd certainly like playing it. Though if it's setup like the old games with tons of RL time invested...nope. :D

    Just... no. I am a filthy casual these days, I just don't have the time to be anything else and by and large this hobby is leaning at that way.

    I would likely not allow someone to start with a Heron out of chargen, but set the requirements for it at some attainable skill level and just require RP context to fit, not endless logs of RP. No heron-marked blade for a stableboy that just picked up a sword, but your veteran warrior? Sure. Example with Fate would be a Heron Marked stunt, set the requirement at something like Sword 6. I'd even let you get the stunt if you don't use the words pronate and supinate in your fighty emotes.

    I would likely allow Aes Sedai right out of chargen, but, again to use a Fate/DFRPG example, make it like how DFRPG allows Full Wizard, but uses all your points. There are those people that like to start low, the raising from Novice to Accepted and Accepted to Aes Sedai are big events in a characters life and folks love to PRP those out... but if you don't want to? Meh. Go for it.


  • Pitcrew

    @Tempest said in Wheel of Time MU(SH|X):

    /Seanchan

    Not at all relevant, but I giggled. SEAN-CHAN


  • Admin

    @Kanye-Qwest Nothing about the Ever Victorious Army is funny!


  • Pitcrew

    @Arkandel said in Wheel of Time MU(SH|X):

    I'd be tempted to play a good WoT game, but the series is old... so who knows. It used to be super popular for MU* though so maybe you'll get some players through nostalgia as well.

    The series is old, but then again so are most MU*ers nowadays. There is the supposed TV show in the works that could have a least some chance of not being awful and increasing interest as well, but not for a couple of years at the earliest.

    @Arkandel said in Wheel of Time MU(SH|X):

    .... the place will need to let the Seanchan become involved, and that's a real pain in the ass due to their overall attitude...
    ...Similarly having the White Tower and Asha'man around each without it becoming a PvP situation every time...

    This is something of a knot to figure out how to untie. Early early thoughts something along the lines of a small city being declared as neutral ground. The Dragon's Peace or something. Basically turn someplace in to Wheel of Time Babylon 5. Conflict in the city is bad! Don't do it (of course people do it)

    @faraday said in Wheel of Time MU(SH|X):

    ... Ares is a MUSH in a box. You can remove FS3 easily enough and add your own skills system while still leveraging the rest of the platform.

    Hmm.. has me wondering how hard it'd be to convert DFRPG style wizardry to FS3


  • Pitcrew

    @Arkandel Calm down Ark-chan!



  • It could be interesting to have a WoT game again, especially if it developed into having a solid playerbase and a variety of things to do.

    I had a good time with Cuendillar back in the day, but it just kind of fizzled out and even if the game is still up, it's been dead for years.



  • @Wolfs said in Wheel of Time MU(SH|X):

    It could be interesting to have a WoT game again, especially if it developed into having a solid playerbase and a variety of things to do.

    I have to admit I have a certain nostalgic fondness for WoT games. I started them with a Moment in Tyme when (I believe) a mom and son team ran it and played them, off and on, for a decade or so.

    It's a surprisingly good setting for MU storytelling, in practice.


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