Slothmud was founded in January 1992 by a handful of college students, then renamed SlothMUD II when it changed hands from the original band of creators to the current owner, Jake. It then went through several changes throughout the world of the game and simultaneously adopted an informal set of quality standards for area creation.
From 1995 through 2007, as a group of newer administrators reinvigorated the development of the game, the playerbase expanded from its American origins to encompass players from Russia, Singapore, Australia, Canada, and points beyond. Several of the immortal and administrative staff have hailed from England and Spain.
Akasha, once of the administrators of the game, created a new scoring system in mid-2008. This new system provides for promotions according to a military and feudal rank ladder. Promotions are gained by reaching measuring points in the currency of the system, known as Honor. Each rank comes with a different clasp item that can be attached to the player's equipment; each rank item can affect its owner in in different ways. Only one of these items can be worn at a time, though.
A few months after Akasha added the Honor system, the player base of Sloth III began to see a gradually declining player base. The Administrators debated the reasons behind this, and eventually agreed that while the problem was real, the incremental solutions that had been implemented weren't enough.
The coders and creators active in late 2008 and early 2009 made the decision to end Slothmud III and create Slothmud IV from its ashes. Several people in particular-- Splork, Kjartan, Juggleblood, Clink, Jake, and Krom-- put in a major effort from the time of the decision until Sloth IV was born, on 10 April 2009, in order to effect a series of code changes.
The changes introduced with the arrival of Slothmud IV are focused around the fact that the MUD has changed from a four-class system in which players must choose their class order at the time of character creation, to one in which the players are only required to select their prime class at the time of creation. Once the character is in the game, the player can choose his or her secondary through octonary class simply by gaining a level in the class in question. If the character doesn't already have any levels in the selected class, it automatically moves into the next available slot in the character's class order.
One side effect of this change is that the continent of Lyme, which was previously restricted to characters who had achieved three fortieth-level classes, is now open to all. It's not particularly advisable to go there at too small a level, though, as the inhabitants are still more dangerous than on other continents.
Skills and spells are added to the game on a regular but unscheduled basis, as ideas occur to the coders.
A few important changes in SlothMUD's recent history:
- In 2003 and 2004, Tower spent a long time converting the character selection from one in which the players simply selected the order in which four classes would be played, to one in which the player could select any four of a list of eight classes, and the order in which they are played. The original class list included mage, cleric, warrior, and thief (the original Dungeons & Dragons classes). The new list also includes druid, bard, necromancer and monk. Although the new classes share names with D&D classes, SlothMUD's interpretation is unique.
- In 2005 and 2006, with the advent of MXP (computing) and MCCP, Splork decided to integrate their functionality into the MUD. This has led to decreased lagtime as bandwidth has been reduced, and to the ability to hyperlink directly from the MUD's internals. Isabo helped greatly with the implentation of this code.
- A forthcoming improvement, courtesy of Splork, is Mud Sound Protocol.
New immortals are brought into the ranks periodically, when newer players have the interest and the ability to write areas. Eventually some of these newer immortals work their way through the ranks to become administrators and, as in any society, sometimes people leave.
The current website is maintained by Clink, one of the active administrators and coders. A section of the site known as the EqList was written over a period of months by Enea, another of the active administrators and part-time coder. The EqList is also integrally linked to the Maproom.
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