After the Plague Coredump Team 1994 -2004

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
- AFTER THE PLAGUE

1.0 Introduction
       1.1 What is 'After the Plague'?
       1.2 What is a MUD?
       1.3 What is role-playing?
       1.4 Who is this FAQ for?
2.0 Getting connected
       2.1 How do I play?
       2.2 What is a telnet client?
       2.3 Where can I download a telnet client?
3.0 Getting started
       3.1 How do I create a character?
       3.2 Which race should I choose?
       3.3 Which guild should I join?
       3.4 How do I see in colour?
       3.5 Where can I get help in the game?
4.0 Rules
       4.1 What is legal here?
       4.2 Are Multiple characters allowed?
       4.3 Is Player killing allowed?
       4.4 Are Clients allowed?
5.0 Character Information
       5.1 How do I find out information about my character?
       5.2 What is the who list?
       5.3 Why do I see green-eyed thin male elf instead of Joe?
       5.4 How do I read mail?
       5.5 I have a message about unread news, how do I read it?
6.0 Character progression
       6.1 Why do I not gain experience points?
       6.2 How do I learn skills?
       6.3 How do I improve my stats?
       6.4 How do I join a guild?
7.0 Combat
       7.1 What are the basics of combat?
       7.2 Why can't I wield a weapon?
       7.3 What combat options are available?
8.0 Quests
       8.1 How many quests do I have to do?
       8.2 Where can I find new quests?
       8.3 How do I start a quest?
       8.4 Can I do more than one quest at the same time?
9.0 Miscellaneous
       9.1 I have an idea for something new, who do I tell?
       9.2 Can I change my command prompt?
10.0 Glossary of terms


1. Introduction

1.1 What is 'After the Plague'? [TOP]

After the Plague (AtP) is an English language MUD with a fantasy mediaeval theme running on a server in Hungary. Previously known as CoreDump, it opened in 1994 and is written in a C based programming language called LPC (Lars Pensjö C).

1.2 What is a MUD? [TOP]

A MUD or Multiple User Dungeon is a text based role-playing game. Unlike the text based computer games (eg. 'Zork') which inspired them, MUDs are played on the internet and allow multiple users to play simultaneously. Players take control of a computerised character, and
can walk around, interact with other users, explore dangerous areas, solve puzzles and face other challenges.

1.3 What is role-playing? [TOP]

Role-playing can be defined as simply 'playing a role'. Players of After the Plague are encouraged to bring their game characters to life by devising a persona and acting it out during the game. So instead of being Bob from Sweden, a player may present their character as
Tanul, the rough and devious barbarian, or Macsar, a charming, but evil sorcerer. What is good role-playing is a too lengthy topic to answer here, and is very much a matter of taste.

1.4 Who is this FAQ for? [TOP]

This FAQ has been written to give an insight to the mud and answer the most probable questions of players new to AtP. Also it will be of use to anyone who has not played AtP but is looking for more information.

2. Getting connected

2.1 How do I connect to AtP? [TOP]

To play on a MUD you need an internet capable computer and a telnet client. The MUD's address is atp.mud.hu (160.114.100.96) on port 3000, if you have win95/98 you can use a net browser (eg. IE4) to connect by typing telnet://atp.mud.hu:3000 into your address bar.

2.2 What is a telnet client? [TOP]

A telnet client is a program that allows you to connect to a MUD. Most computers running windows have a default telnet client, though they are not preferred by most people because they lack many features available in a MUD client to make playing more enjoyable, like colour
and text wrapping. Alternatively, a more advanced client can be downloaded from the links below, or you may connect to AtP using the Java Telnet Application, which requires no downloads but is not fully developed yet.

2.3 Where can I download a MUD Client? [TOP]

There are many clients available some are free while others are not. Below are a few of the more popular ones:

zMUD - This is a very popular windows MUD client with many features, though not free, an evaluation version is available to try it out. http://www.zuggsoft.com/

GMud - Another windows MUD client, not as feature packed but available for free. There are several versions available at ftp://papa.indstate.edu/winsock-l/mud

tinyfugue - This client will compile on any unix machine. Very popular and has many features.
Download from: http://tf.tcp.com/~hawkeye/tf/


3. Getting started

3.1 How do I create a character? [TOP]

If you have successfully connected to AtP you should see the login page with the question 'Who stands at the door?' This is where you choose your character's name. If after choosing a name the MUD immediately asks for a password it means that name is already in use, so just reconnect and choose a different name. Once you have chosen a valid name, you are asked to confirm your choice and to choose a password, then asked to retype the password once more to make sure it is correctly stored.

Next you are asked the gender of your character (It is not necessarily the same as real life, and has little effect other than which pronouns your character uses.), then you are asked for an email address (this is used if for security purposes in case you forget your password) and
finally you are asked for your real name, which is the name other players will see in OOC channels and areas (Though this question can be skipped). Later if your e-mail address changes or you wish to use another OOC name, you can change both using the <chfn> command.

Once you have entered the above information, you only need to select the race of your character, which for first time players is restricted to four of the better known races.

3.2 Which race should I choose? [TOP]


There is no best choice of race, as each has strengths and weaknesses. Usually players pick one depending on what type of character they want to play, so below is some information to help you when making your choice:

Human - Humans are good all-rounders, they have balanced statistics and no obvious weakness. Their strength is in their flexibility, for they can learn any skill and join any guild.

Dwarf - Dwarves are short, stocky bearded fellows, they are fairly strong and very tough. They make excellent warriors although they cannot use some of the larger weapons. Magic is beyond their abilities.

Elf - Elves are attractive and graceful people, they are nimble in mind and body but are not very strong. They do well in guilds that do not require toe-to-toe combat, their affinity for magic means they usually learn some spells, whatever else they decide to do.

Gnome - Gnomes are a diminutive large-eared race. Their fingers are agile and they have capability for excellent stealth. Being not so strong they often resort to trickery or deception to achieve their goals, they also make capable spell-casters.

3.3 Which guild should I join? [TOP]

Though there are over a dozen guilds in AtP, new player will find their choice slightly more limited. Some guilds are very secretive, and part of the joining process is finding the guild, other guilds will not take inexperienced characters, so you should work on your skills or
stats before joining. Each guild's helpfile gives clues as to the location of their guildhall and eventually a player can be a member of up to five guilds simultaneously, gaining skills and abilities from each. Good starting guilds can be found inside the city limits of Elements
City, these are:

Mercenaries - A loose collection of warriors who train in many different martial disciplines.

Right hand of the Elements - The RhoE train their members in the magical arts. Note: No dwarves
may join.

Priests of Mielikki - Goodly warrior priests who protect the people against the Plague. Cannot use magic, but gain miracles from their deity.

3.4 How do I see in colour? [TOP]

At login the mud starts with colour switched off. If you are able to see ANSI colours you can enable them by typing 'ansi on' , similarly typing 'ansi off' will disable colours. This will work in most cases, but if you have problems with the display type 'setenv TERM=unknown'. You can avoid setting terminal type at each login (for example when you always play from the same place) by using 'setenv TERMDEFAULT'.

3.5 Where can I get help in the game? [TOP]

The first place to look for help is in 'help commands' or 'help topics'. Alternatively if there is a particular subject you are looking for help with eg. combat, try 'help <subject name>' eg. help combat. If the MUD's help-files are not able to help, or do not cover your problem, try asking another player, often they have encountered the same thing and are happy to help out. There is only one global channel in AtP which is available for newbie questions.
You can tune into the newbie channel by typing 'chan newbie on' and chat on channel using 'newbie <text>'. These questions concerning usage of commands are fully OOC, there is no place for them in an in character conversation.


4. Rules

4.1 What is legal here? [TOP]

The basic idea at AtP is to have fun, but without spoiling fun for other people. The player rules can be viewed in game at 'help rules'

4.2 Are Multiple characters allowed? [TOP]

You should not login simultaneously with multiple characters, but you may have more than one character in the game. Punishment for abusing multiple characters such as by trading items between them may include destroying the characters or banishment from the site. please ask an admin to link your characters, this will forbid your second character to log in simultaneously. You can also help keeping the mud clean (and freeing character names) by removing unused characters through the <suicide> command. Also, characters are not meant to be transferrable between players - your characters may only be played by you.

4.3 Is Player killing allowed? [TOP]

Yes, but all such kills must be justified with an in character reason. By the way, in future nobles will be in charge of making up rules and of administrating mortal law. And if they decide against player killing, there might be a more organised response. The admin have no
position on player killing. However, players who wish to participate in player-killing should read 'help pk' and be aware they need to report to the admin the IC reason for the kill (which is not visible to other players). A Player who does not submit PK reports will be considered to
be performing an OOC player-kill and will be warned by the admin.

4.4 Are Clients allowed? [TOP]

It's recommended that you use a MUD client instead of telnet. We recommend Zmud for windows based and tiny fugue (tf) for unix based machines. The use of auto commands, cycles and triggers is forbidden. If a player is caught using them, they are subject to various
punishments like destroying the user object, reducing skills and/or stats or even removing the character entirely.


5. Character Information

5.1 How do I find out information about my character? [TOP]

There are several commands used to find out about your characters health and abilities, the most useful are 'score', 'bio', 'stats' and 'skills':

score - This is an overall report of your character, it lists basics like health, experience, belief etc.

bio - This is a record of things your character has done, and is a useful reminder sometimes. It starts off quite empty, but will list quests you have started, your deaths, and what killed you, your spouse, birth date and background

stats - This report lists your mental and physical stats, which are important when performing actions and using skills

skills - First of all, 'skills' lists your actual skills and the command 'allskills' shows all available skills you are capable of learning and your aptitudes (the speed you learn the skill). This list will expand when you join a guild to include special skills and moves. What you have learned while a member you can use later on even if you have left that guild (you worked for it!). Also there is a similar command 'allspells' and 'spells' for magic user guilds, also 'allmiracles' and 'miracles' list faith based abilities. Finally the command 'powers' and 'allpowers' exist for psionicists, and 'abilities' for everyone to list their racial abilities.

5.2 What is the who list? [TOP]

The who list is a summary of all characters currently logged in and their approximate level. Some names will be preceded by a '*' which means the person is using the mail or report function, so it is polite not to interact with them until they have finished their task. Also
some names may be preceded by an 'i' which indicates the character is idle and may not respond to you immediately.


5.3 Why do I see green-eyed thin male elf instead of Joe? [TOP]

Because no one is running around with their name highlighted on their forehead! You have to learn to use the <remember> command to make life easier. Everyone may introduce themselves as anyone, ie. the particular elf may say I'm Joe but then may say something else to others and it is your task then to remember that guy by any name you wish (maybe 'remember elf as joe'). Of course others may remember him by other names. After you have remembered him you will see that particular elf as Joe anytime you meet with him. Please remember it is possible to disguise someone to look like someone else, maybe even to look like Joe ;)

5.4 How do I read mail? [TOP]

Visit a post office in one of the larger towns. The commands are shown on a list in the post office. You can read mud-wide news too (wizards and administrators use this method to inform players about changes) with the 'news' command. This is menu-oriented, and you can find help by pressing 'h' in it.

5.5 I have a message about news on login, how do I read it? [TOP]

The news boards are used by the admin to communicate game changes and other information to the players. To access the news just type 'news' then use the <enter/return> key to proceed through all unread notes. There is news help available by typing 'h' in the main menu of news.


6. Character progression

6.1 Why do not I gain experience points? [TOP]

In AtP experience is measured by your skills and stats. You won't get any experience by killing a monster. You gain experience by using your skills or by exploring new areas. The experience field in score shows the increase of your experience since the last check.

6.2 How do I learn skills? [TOP]

A character starts life with very few skills, when they join a guild they will automatically be given some free training so that they have a basic understanding in the primary skills of that guild. Also if you are fortunate enough to find a NPC teacher you may be able to learn a skill
by paying them for training. After a while the most common way to learn more is by just trying to perform an action which uses the skill you want to learn or practice. Raising skills depends on the assessing stats. So if you are clumsy, and weak you will have much difficulty
raising skills which need strength and coordination. Each skill has a weighted stat list on which it is depended on, this can be found with the 'skillinfo <skillname>' command. It is important to note that skills will slowly diminish, but the improvement rate is much quicker. So if you don't practice a skill for a long time it will rot.

6.3 How do I improve my statistics? [TOP]

Stats are representations of your basic physical and mental make-up, which is determined by your racial heritage. These stats are used in different relevant aspects of your mud life. In fact, stats are closely related to skills, and when you increase a skill, any relevant stats
are improved also, similarly if a skill drops the related stats will too. Another way to improve stats is through completing quests, any stat which is used to do the quest will improve slightly if you are successful.

6.4 How do I join a guild? [TOP]

A guild is not like a class (in most games), and rather than being a set choice for the life of the character, they are more like professions. You may apply to a guild at their guild hall, also if you decide to leave you can do so at the guild hall. There are a few guilds which keep the location of their guildhall secret, so a little exploring may be required, also some more powerful guilds have entry requirements, this might be a certain level of skill or stat, they may discriminate against some races, or ask you to perform a quest, or maybe answer questions in an interview with the guild leader.


7. Combat

7.1 What are the basics of combat? [TOP]

Combat can be a good way to train skills, loot valuables and complete quests. To initiate combat all you need to do is use the kill command (eg. kill <creature name>). Sometimes this will be unnecessary as a few creatures are so aggressive they will attack you on sight. Once
combat is started you will attempt to hit the enemy every few seconds with whatever you are holding in your hands until either they or you are dead. If a battle appears to be going badly for you, you can flee just by moving out of the room, or you can use the wimpy command to preset in what shape you wish to run away. There are many factors involved in combat, not least your skills, stats and equipment will all have an effect on the battle's outcome.

7.2 Why can't I wield a weapon? [TOP]

Whatever is in your hand when you enter combat is what you will try to hit with, there is no need to wield. Sometimes you may want to switch hands or want to hold a weapon in two hands if it is too awkward to fight with in one hand see 'help hold'. You may have also noticed that you fight less effectively if you hold items in both of your hands without the double wielding skill.

7.3 What combat options are available? [TOP]

Once you are comfortable with the basics of combat you may wish to consider some other options available, briefly these are:

aim - This allows you to target a particular area of your opponent (uses aiming skill).
appraise - You can get a rough idea of how dangerous your opponent is with this command (uses appraise enemy skill).
mood - You can set your mood strike to kill, or just stun your opponent.
party - You can group with other characters, increasing your safety and combat power.
setenv - The setenv command has an option ('setenv fights off') to cut down fight spam if you find the screen scrolls too quickly in group combat.
style - Your style dictates how you divide your energy between your offence and defence.
wimpy - This command lets you set how wounded you can be before you automatically flee from combat.


8. Quests

8.1 How many quests do I have to do? [TOP]

In AtP, you are not restricted to improvement only by quests. The quests are for your own challenge and for your knowledge only. By the way, you do have to fulfil some quests if you want to do some of the more privileged actions, for example, some guilds may require some quests are fulfilled before you may join them.

8.2 Where can I find new quests? [TOP]

You can find new quests almost anywhere, as there is no quest demon, or auto quests in After the Plague. Most commonly talking to NPCs will reveal tasks or quests to be done. Asking about keywords like quest, help, job etc. can often start you on the right path. Also read 'help hints' as this gives a starting quest.

8.3 How do I start a quest? [TOP]

Most quests are started by acquiring a particular object, or talking to an NPC. In most cases there is no need to 'accept' the quest from an NPC, once you know of a quest, just start doing it.

8.4 Can I have more than one quest running at the same time? [TOP]

Yes, You can start as many quests as you like. The bio report gives a summary of known quests and which ones are still unsolved.


9. Miscellaneous

9.1 I have an idea for something new, who do I tell? [TOP]

Use the bug, typo or idea command (whichever is most appropriate). These commands post your report to the specified wizard newsgroup.

9.2 Can I change my command prompt? [TOP]

Yes, 'help prompt' gives many options, the most common is a health bar prompt, the syntax of which is 'setenv prompt %h'


10. Glossary of terms

AtP - After the Plague
EC - Elements City (The biggest and busiest city in the world)
IC - In Character (Actions or speech carried out by the player's character)
Newbie - A new player (this is also the name of the global channel)
Mielikki - One of the four major gods.
OOC - Out Of Character (Action or speech performed by the RL person playing AtP).
Stats - Statistics, the characters basic abilities.
PK - Player killer (or player killing)
RhoE - A mage guild (The Right hand of the Elements)
Soh - Square of Hope (The main square of Elements City)
Wizard - A term often used to refer to admin or creators.