Putting It All Together

This section is a small listing of techniques and suggestions for novice builders. This is very subjective, and based on the experiences of the builders at the Curious Areas Workshop. Not all these techniques may be of use to your average builder.

Learn to build without a dikueditor first:
It is a lot easier to troubleshoot when you understand what exactly goes on with all those numbers in those files...
Do it on paper first. Do it big:
Areas always seem to shrink while you're building it, from a cross of aggravation and editing. Having a map to work from helps a LOT when doing exits, and provides a visual impetus to getting all those tedious bits done.
Do the .wld file first:
The .wld file almost always takes the longest. Once past that long fight, the .mob and the rest will come easier.
Your .zon file will almost always be wrong on the first try:
Get used to it.
For random mob distribution, use this method:
This was contributed by Locke of CthulhuMUD
Make a room, with exits to all the places that you would like mobs to come out of, in all 6 directions. Load all mobs to be randomly distributed in this room, and they'll choose and walk out themselves... (if they're not sentinel).
For a big area, several of these 'mob chutes' can be connected for a bubble-sort effect.
An area will take twice as long as you think it will to build:
A certain boredom sets in sometimes. just set it aside for awhile if this happens; it is better to build when you want to then turn out something uninspired.
Be fair with the items:
Good items should be hard to get. Lousy items should require much less effort. Give the most powerful items actually _to_ a mob; thieves and mages can often steal stuff on the ground without even bothering with the mob.
Decide what players you want playing in your area.
Keep in mind what levels and player types your area is geared for and follow through with that in mind. Make it fun and challenging for the players.
Have fun building it.
Try to make a well-rounded area that you both enjoy building and looking over afterwards. If you don't like what you see when you are done, don't delete your creations, go through and find out what you don't like, then try to change thoes things until you like them. Another good reason for not deleting them is that you can get them out a year later and give them to someone else as an example of what an area looks like on 'paper'

Contributions to this section are welcome, and will be added with proper credits.


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Alex Fletcher
Last modified: June 24th, 1996