2021-02-21 09:56:18 (edited by hawgpadre 2021-02-21 10:16:34)

Hi blind friends.

I am going to relaunch the original Wayfar 1444 for reference purposes as I refactor it to a more modern codebase.  During this time I will open the original Wayfar server so that you can play on it.  However the purpose here will be to modernize the codes in a new engine.  Since I have made a few friends (and more than a few enemies) in the blind community, I would like to open this topic for discussion on the ways the MUD could be improved for blind players.

I am very interested in which aspects of the game you found helpful, for blind players, and anything that was a problem for you.  I'm also interested in any features you found especially helpful.  I will check this thread regularly to see your feedback.

Thanks,
Hawgpadre

Link: https://wayfar1444.blogspot.com/2021/02 … -soon.html

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2021-02-21 10:35:20

Your documentation could use some work. For instance, most of what I learned I learned by trial and error.

Also and just so this doesn't come off as a complete criticism, if I can help in any way, feel free to reach out. I'm not hard to find, and with Covid and all that it's not like I'm short on time.

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2021-02-21 10:47:56

Wow. Cool to see you're still around and thinking of bringing Wayfar back. It's been a while, so I don't really remember anything that was horrible for blind players. I'd have to come on when you relaunch it to get reacquainted with it.

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2021-02-21 10:50:34

Draq wrote:

Wow. Cool to see you're still around and thinking of bringing Wayfar back. It's been a while, so I don't really remember anything that was horrible for blind players. I'd have to come on when you relaunch it to get reacquainted with it.

Great, look forward to it!

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2021-02-21 10:56:21

wow. Wayfar? Hah, hope i'm not in a dream. I'll certainly be there to compensate my impatience when i was young and play this cool mud!

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2021-02-21 15:37:46

Hell yeah, sounds awesome. I don't remember anything necessarily bad for us, but I didn't get very far before things got shut down.

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2021-02-21 18:16:39

As I remember the really major stumbling block in the game was lack of the textual map. Though you could be told coordinates of each biome, and obviously could look around and see what resources were gatherable from where, it was difficult to find a specific place.
however, I do remember just before the game went down, a command was introduced to tell you the nearest biome of a specific type, which obviously would be helpful.

Likely other things will occur when I'm playing the game, though as I remember the game was already very screen reader friendly, even down to having relatively slower combat than in many muds.

With our dreaming and singing, Ceaseless and sorrowless we! The glory about us clinging Of the glorious futures we see,
Our souls with high music ringing; O men! It must ever be
That we dwell in our dreaming and singing, A little apart from ye. (Arthur O'Shaughnessy 1873.)

2021-02-21 18:24:36

So will the modern codebase be in Moo? Or is it going to be custom client with graphics etc.

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2021-02-21 19:03:56

As with some others, I'd have to start playing again to say. I was much younger when I played Wayfar. I think this news will be very popular here; a thread about muds rarely goes by without some kind of mention of the game.

Sincerely,
Lucas.

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2021-02-21 20:48:18

Being able to get biome and materials info of a planet from space accessibly (without the color coded map) which was added soon before the game went down, was really helpful for us.
Also some materials, I believe [fulurene sheeting] or how ever you spelled it, didn't really have in room descriptions before Aphteroid added them, so if we're going back some, that may need to happen again.
Other things I can remember weren't really blind specific, such as the economy being kinda badly balanced in some ways, or certain device blueprints being referenced but so hard to find statistically that it was basically impossible.

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2021-02-22 01:13:31

I wish you can order and/or your colonists, who just walked around the planet and eventually get killed by NPCs while exploring in the wild, could do more in general.

Last I remember all they could do was stockpile resources in warehouses. Would be nice if they could do what citizens do in EmpireMud and beyond.

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2021-02-22 02:21:01

Come back on Flux if you ever get a min, Cent mentions you sometimes, probably would like to hear from you again.

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2021-02-22 17:44:40

@Orin, agreed on making your population useful, I always really liked the fact you could turn your colony into a real settlement with buildings like theatres, cinemas and racetracks, and yet I could never get the colonists to do much besides harvest resources, they wouldn't even use the refinery or make things in the factory.

It might also be handy to have either pvp and none pvp planets, or an opt in system for players who wanted to fight each other vs those who didn't.

Admittedly, the game was so large, and generic planetary resources so plentiful  that when I played, matters stayed civil, however there was nothing in place to stop some vandal blowing up other people's colonies and buildings for no reason if they wanted to, so perhaps limiting player killing or blowing up other people's property to specific zones might work.

With our dreaming and singing, Ceaseless and sorrowless we! The glory about us clinging Of the glorious futures we see,
Our souls with high music ringing; O men! It must ever be
That we dwell in our dreaming and singing, A little apart from ye. (Arthur O'Shaughnessy 1873.)

2021-02-22 23:46:04

Lol. Yeah. One day I came back after waking up and found my factory destroyed by another player. I was not a happy Draq, considering it had a lot of stuff in it.

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2021-02-23 05:57:37

This might not happen but could you make this relaunch open-source? I was unsure on asking first since I didn't think it would ever happen but thought I might ask anyway.

"On two occasions I have been asked [by members of Parliament!]: 'Pray, Mr. Babbage, if you put into the machine wrong figures, will the right answers come out ?' I am not able rightly to apprehend the kind of confusion of ideas that could provoke such a question."    — Charles Babbage.

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2021-02-23 06:32:26

Ethin wrote:

This might not happen but could you make this relaunch open-source? I was unsure on asking first since I didn't think it would ever happen but thought I might ask anyway.

The game code is open sourced by hellmoo.org.  The game content (creatures, descriptions, etc) is my property and won't be open sourced.

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2021-02-23 13:42:12

do we have a soundpach for this?

Ladies and gentlemen, this is your captain speaking. We have a small problem. All four engines have stopped. We are doing our damnedest to get them going again. I trust you are not in too much distress.

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2021-02-23 15:13:32

Note that the version of the MOO code open-sourced by Hellmoo (Hellcore) is... terrible. They never designed it originally to be corified I think, so some critical objects are missing or mislabeled in the code so they reference other object numbers. The server code is also open-sourced, but Toaststunt is better for modern development. It's one of those things where if you're not a beginner, it'd just be better to develop your own stuff and if you are a beginner, you won't be able to do anything with it anyways. Ethin isn't a beginner, and I'm definitely not saying you should open-source everything (might be a security risk etc) but just as an addendum for anybody else who might want to look into it.

Sincerely,
Lucas.

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2021-02-23 15:41:03

Yeah, don't use hellcore, you'll just end up with a huge headache.

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2021-02-25 00:33:26

Lucas1853 wrote:

Note that the version of the MOO code open-sourced by Hellmoo (Hellcore) is... terrible. They never designed it originally to be corified I think, so some critical objects are missing or mislabeled in the code so they reference other object numbers. The server code is also open-sourced, but Toaststunt is better for modern development. It's one of those things where if you're not a beginner, it'd just be better to develop your own stuff and if you are a beginner, you won't be able to do anything with it anyways. Ethin isn't a beginner, and I'm definitely not saying you should open-source everything (might be a security risk etc) but just as an addendum for anybody else who might want to look into it.

I'd totally agree with this as well.

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2021-02-25 01:36:27

I think it's worth chiming in to say that while you may be attached to your intellectual property, you lost a lot of points from many of us for shutting the game down without releasing it.  That's fine, but that does mean that you have a proven track record of yanking it out from under players.  I doubt you care about having players judging by your initial post, but unless your goals have changed you're building something graphical and from which blind people will be excluded in future.  Whether or not someone continues developing it, I'd suggest that you commit to open sourcing it if you take it down again.  No one sighted is going to care about your moo, not enough that it could even slightly detract from the players you'd get with a non-mud project, so it's worth considering that you might as well let blind people continue running the thing that ultimately only blind people are going to be interested in in the long run.

Kind of nevermind if your motivations changed and you're actually going to keep it as a mud or make something accessible, but even so: lots of great games that we'd have kept running died off because their authors walked away and wouldn't release anything because of the "it's my property, grr" mindset, even though they knew they were done with it.  It's always sad, in the sense that there's very little quality blind accessible games out there, and also in the sense that even though it would be of immense value to the blind community to be able to preserve the few that did something different we can't without collaboration from the devs.  Dark Legacy, Project Bob, I'm looking at you.  Though those games were in the previous generation of young blind gamers, so I'm probably one of a very small number of people to remember them.

For my part, I might one day play again, but "the game is disappearing, sorry, there goes all your progress" turns me off.

As for the quality of open source moo?  Open source moo can't work because moo can't work at scale, and was originally designed for social chatrooms plus a bit, not full-on combat-based muds.  The primary advantage of open sourcing in this context isn't giving people quality code, it's providing a plan for the longevity of the game.  Blind people are a captive mud audience: we want the good ones for at least the net 10 years, and have become the majority playerbase or damned close to it in the last 5.  There might be an audio MMO of some quality eventually but I think I'm the only one contemplating writing one who has the skill to even try currently, and if that's going to exist it certainly won't before 2025 simply due to the lead time of that kind of project.  Maybe someone is silently working on it and hasn't said a word and is going to come out of the woodwork tomorrow and be all "blind World of Warcraft". But I doubt it.

Anyway, food for thought.  Take it or leave it as you choose.

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Twitter: @camlorn38

2021-02-25 03:27:04

OK, but how long was it up before that happened? Without knowing the why of why it got taken down, it's harsh to say that he doesn't care about having players. Anything could have happened in those intervening years. Hell, he could have died. I kinda thought maybe he had to be honest. Failing that, maybe something drastic happened in his life and he ended up on the streets, or maybe he had a baby and didn't have time to run it.

One would hope that if there was some sort of impending knowledge that something was coming up that he was unable to continue, that he'd at least have said something rather than yanking it. That's what lead me to believe that something came up out of the blue. But the possibility does exist that he could have ben like screw you guys, I'm going home.

MOO can't be done at scale? OK, tell most of the successful MOOs out there that. There's nothing to that argument, as there's nothing preventing MOO from being done to scale. Hell, go on lambda, the original damn MOO, and you'll see 50 some odd people there. Most of them AFK, true enough, but they're still there.

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2021-02-25 05:43:09

Most of my points apply regardless of the cause, but he specifically said that it stopped being able to run on a VPS and that he'd try to polish it then disappeared with it for however long: https://www.reddit.com/r/MUD/comments/5 … of_111016/

Having a plan for the longevity of your game and the willingness to release it into the world without you for the sake of it being able to continue are really, really important things that were not in place here.  There is at least some obligation on the part of game creators not to yank things out from under the players; "taking this down and developing on it, bye" isn't a good way to instill confidence even if it's just for a few weeks.

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2021-02-25 07:05:44 (edited by defender 2021-02-25 07:06:31)

I'd be happy to donate some to help keep the older version running.  But yes, I too am scared it could go down randomly again.

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2021-02-25 09:33:30

@23, is the not running on a VPS thing why you believe it doesn't scale? If so then I agree, but that'd happen in any database system. I don't really understand how you think it doesn't scale and what your looking at that made you generate that conclusion, because MOO can scale pretty well. It fails on SMP systems primarily because it was never meant to be used with multiple cores or processors, but it scales in terms of objects and tasks. The HellMOO game has over a million objects (no, I'm not exaggerating). The creation of so many objects was, undoubtedly, poor DB design, because that number is absurd, and no DB should have that many objects without a really, really good reason. As a consequence, it takes up a (huge) chunk of RAM. But HellMOO is definitely proof that MOO scales well in terms of object, task and player load.

"On two occasions I have been asked [by members of Parliament!]: 'Pray, Mr. Babbage, if you put into the machine wrong figures, will the right answers come out ?' I am not able rightly to apprehend the kind of confusion of ideas that could provoke such a question."    — Charles Babbage.

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