Ask HN: Which MUDs have good writing?

I know there are HNers who are into interactive fiction (IF). Where can I go to see IF with really good writing, especially if it's a MUD? I'd like to use it to start to draw someone into coding who isn't big on shoot-em-up games.

7 points | by brlewis 12 days ago


  • muzani 11 days ago
    A lot of the writing focused ones end up MOOs/MUX/MUSHes. The reason for these is that these center around roleplaying more. For example, a player has a handgun, which gives a +3 to ranged combat mechanically, but it's up to the player to define it as a Colt or a Glock or some pew pew laser. MUDs are more gamey.

    A good deal of these also end up being adult or at least having horror levels of adult content. It surprises me how many teenagers are actually on some of these. Many seem to be blind, so I guess they can't pick up Roblox as easily.

    I'd name names, but yeah, I'd have to check that they're clean enough to recommend.

    One name is Armageddon MUD. Brilliant writing, haven't found a MMO that's as fun. Many of the mods and players are professional writers. But everyone is an asshole - it's out of character to be nice, which is what makes these games hard to recommend.

    If you want an IF, I strongly recommend Adam Cadre's stuff:

  • HenryBemis 11 days ago
    VikingMUD was and is great. ( I pop in to say 'hi' every couple of years, and I see that they are still developing/growing it, even if nowadays there are <5 players at any given time. The quests were floating on the internet some years back, so someone can (easily) make the QuestPoints to become "eternal" (first levels are easy, the fun starts once you become "eternal").
  • serf 12 days ago
    Aardwolf is a fun MUD to walk around in. I wouldn't call the writing great by any stretch, but walking around a twisted 'Land of Oz' and stomping flying monkeys is a bit of campy fun.
  • solardev 12 days ago
    Does it have to be a MUD instead of a single-player RPG? Planescape: Torment is an old isometric game that has excellent writing, IMO. It's in the Baldur's Gate family of Infinity Engine games, but unlike its cousins, it has a very strong focus on narrative and almost no combat. It's really more like a point-and-click adventure with some RPG lite elements.

    • brlewis 12 days ago
      Doesn't have to be MUD. Thanks!
      • rjh29 10 days ago
        In that case another easy recommend is Disco Elysium. Fantastic writing and huge amounts of choice.
        • solardev 10 days ago
          Maybe Citizen Sleeper too in that case
  • wara23arish 11 days ago
    Growing up as a kid in the 2000s and having awful internet & awful pcs (3rd world) . I used to play . Visiting the website now, it still looks the same after all these years. It looks like theyre still receiving updates too!

    I thoroughly enjoyed playing this. The writing was nice, the quests were very cool.

  • bjourne 9 days ago
    There's a mud called WoTMUD I used to play. It has amazing descriptions of the world.
  • bilsbie 9 days ago
    Any you can play on the iPhone?
    • solardev 8 days ago
      You mean the MUDs? Don't you just need a terminal emulator/telnet client?

      Some cell providers might block some of their ports or protocols, though, not sure.