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Mobile descriptions

The descriptions that a mobile has, has several key elements. A mobile needs to have all of them set. If they are left blank then the tilda's still must be used there as a place marker. Make sure you do put in the tildas ~. The placement of them is very important to the game. Forgetting one will cause your area not to work and the game to crash. Putting in extras does not help the game either. And putting them in the wrong place, will make your area work funny or crash the game. Below is a sample describing the key elements only.

key words~
{00}short description~
{00}long description.~

Lets go over each of those elements:

#QQ00 Number mobiles from 00, using the QQ method. Later when you are allocated vnums the QQ will be changed to the area vnum. It is important that you start at 00 and not 01. The vnums allocated to you when you get a 100 room vnum block will go from 00 to 99 and for 50 room blocks go from 00 to 49 or 50 to 99. If you start at 01 you do not make full use of the vnums available to you.

keywords - The keywords are the words that can be used in commands to identify a mobile. ie look monster or kill monster. Make sure you pick appropriate keywords as there is nothing more frustrating for a player than trying to figure out how to look at a mobile with inadequete keywords.

short description - The short description is what you see when a mobile peforms actions. For instance A monster says, or you hit a monster. Make sure you put in articles such as "a, an or the".

long description - This is what a character sees when they walk into the room and see the mob. ie A tall smelly monster stands here. Try if you can to keep this to one line in length. Not all telnet applications word wrap and see anything after the first line.

description - This is the longest description. This is what is seen when a character explicitly looks at a mobile. Try and keep this description between 4 and 10 lines in length. Try to avoid putting actions into the description. This is better done with mob programs. For instance saying that the monster lunges at you in the description is best done as a mob program. It is fine for mobiles to put equipment in descriptions (unlike PC characters), because it would be too unbalancing for the game to equip every location on a mobile, we tend to only put one or two items on a mobile. So therefore we encourage builders to describe what the mobile is wearing as well.

{00} - This is the colour code. All mobiles in the game should be colour coded. See the lesson on colour coding areas for more information on our standards and how to do the colour coding. Make sure to NOT colourise the keywords.

A sample mobile description follows.

smelly dwarf short~
{30}a short smelly dwarf~
{30}A short smelly dwarf is drinking an ale here.~
{30}He is very short for a dwarf with dark hair and a dark beard.  He has a
stubby nose and beady eyes.  His hands are large and calloused from
many hours of work at the forge.  He is of a very sturdy build with arms
and legs like small tree trunks.  He is wearing mithril chainmail armour.

When working on descriptions for the mud, whether they are rooms or mobiles physically put in the enters for an 80 character line. The mud doesnt word wrap and with some clients the player will miss out on the information. So type in descriptions like you are on an old manual type writer. For windows users you might find using dosedit a good way to figure out the screen width to press enter to. A program that I use for offline building is TextPad. It is very good as it shows line numbers and so on.