For experienced MUCKers, this brief guide will be old hat. But for people new to it, or people who just need a refresh, hopefully this page will be useful. MUDs, MUCKs, or just MU*s in general, are an old-school text interface game or social experience. To use one you’ll need client software. There are many different MU* clients, and a casual Google search will produce many. While the technology is old by this point, they’ve experienced something of a renaissance of late as developers create clients for smartphones, and MU*s, being light on data and power, are pretty good on smartphones too.
If you’re a Windows user, my personal choice of MU* Client is BeipMU as it’s one of the few Desktop clients that still undergoes ongoing development even today. It’s what I use personally, and it’s a fairly full featured client. There are alternatives of course, such as Trebuchet (which is cross-platform), MushClient, GMUD, Mudlet, and so on. In general the basic functionality is the same.
For Linux users, MU* clients tend to use the terminal/command line interface. Some notable and popular clients here are TinyFugue, which was the dominant client for many years in this environment, but there’s also TinTin++, which I use when running Linux.
For Apple users, there are also several choices, including MUDRammer, and also Mudlet again (which is another example of a cross-platform client). I can’t personally guarantee that all of these will be a good fit for a MUCK like Hope Island, but if you’re used to playing on furry-themed MU*s like FurryMUCK, Tapestries or SPR, they’re all likely to work.
Once you have a client, the way to connect to the server itself is by entering the host-name, which for us is
hopeisland.net and then a port number. Here, like many servers, we offer two options. If you’re using a client that supports SSL/TLS encryption (which you should), you can use port
2048. If your client for whatever reason doesn’t support secure connections, a plain text connection can be made on port
1024. I highly encourage the use of SSL connections whenever possible.
The next thing to note for new-comers to MUCKs is that once you’re in, you can’t just type away and expect your text to appear to others as-is. Because the game is a text interface, some text inputs are reserved for doors between rooms, or various commands or programs. As such, you need to specify that you’re saying something out loud, or posing an action. These are commonly the
pose commands respectively. For example, I can type
say Hello world! and other users would see
Sheridan says, "Hello world!", or
pose waves! would be
Sheridan waves!. There are often shorthands for these commands, for example, you can say by simply typing an opening quotation mark,
"Hello world! and you can pose using the colon character,
In Hope Island, many of the routes between various rooms use the cardinal directions, such as North, East, etc. This is common in text-based games. In almost all rooms, the exits are listed below the room’s text description, and you can enter those exit names directly to travel through them. Hopefully you found this basic tutorial on connecting to and moving around in a MUCK useful. In the future I’ll use the Blog portion of this website for more detailed posts on various aspects of playing on Hope Island MUCK in particular.