Put simply, the overall objective of MUD is to become a wizard or witch
Clearly, there is more to it than that - otherwise the wizzes would stop
playing once they made it to the top - but it gives the game an underlying
framework to direct most folks' play.
To become a wiz, you need to accumulate points. You start off at 0, as a novice. As you obtain more points, you will go up through different levels, the highest of which is wizard/witch.
There are three basic ways to obtain points:
Treasure is the most popular way of collecting points, since it is easiest... When you find something valuable, take it to the swamp and drop it. You will be given some points for it, but it is out of play until the game resets (well, sometimes magic can replace it). Swamping treasure is how most players increase their score.
Fighting is a way to go up levels quickly, since the rewards can be very high (some players are worth around 40,000 points dead!). However, it is also a risk - you may yourself be killed! You'll certainly make enemies if you go around attacking players, but few people object to the slaying of mobiles.
Other ways of obtaining points depend on your doing something, for example entering the fountain of wisdom (if you can find it). Sometimes, you will notice your score has increased because of what other players have done - when the number of mobiles alive drops to 100, for example, everyone in The Land receives a bonus, even if they've only been in two minutes! Wizards and witches can give out points for deeds they consider worthwhile, or because they feel sorry for you; however, they can take points away, too, so don't be too fawning to them...
You can lose points all three ways, as well. Some treasure is worth negative points to non-novices; if you flee in a fight, or are killed, you'll lose points dependent on your level; some actions which cause your (temporary) death can reduce your points total, eg. walking into the swamp carrying a burning fire brand.
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30th September 1998: points.htm