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Library: Bards Tale by Banba


Author: banba
Date:Nov 30 2020

Since we left these dark nights of the wilds and escaped to the security of
our armchairs, we have forgotten the horror, the turmoil of the hidden 
battlefields and the secrets of their special magic.  

Like ghosts in the moonlight, sleek shapes gather to confront each other -
mortals to beguile wizards, wizards to torment the mortals.  The rivalry
reaches far beyond the competition for life, if beings can hate - this is a
blood feud. 

For decades these two scavengers & hunters have waged an ancient war against
each other.
It is often unpleasant to witness, desperately sad and horrifying ? sometimes

Until now, this war has been veiled in the secrecy of darkness.
This is the story of two of the universes bitter, eternal enemies. This is the
story of Batmud

My story of being in Batmud is actually mundane but this is the theme that
plays in my mind. The interactions of the content provided by coders and the
players exploring this ?sandbox?  seems like an eternal battle sometimes. I am
in awe at the resourcefulness of everyone, admiring the ingenuity of all. 

Around 1990 or so, a colleague entered the lunch room, visibly excited. ?I've
been playing the neatest game online? he exclaimed. ?I created a character and
roamed around this village killing things. I?ve got a leather jacket and a
sword and just defeated a band of orcs.? Over the next few weeks, we noticed
more people eating lunch at their desks, focused by what was on their screen.

The Mud (called Darker Realms) was hosted by a university in Texas and proved
to be a compelling introduction to online communities. Having played RPG games
like Bards Tale and tabletop d&d, it was a natural fit with a bonus of meeting
players from all over the US.

We migrated to Batmud in the early 1990s, having bounced around a few other
Muds first. I didn?t like it at first as the information was overwhelming
(character creation began with ALL channels on) and it was difficult to
evaluate and sort out mentally, the various channels. Remember the ?alert?
channel anyone?

Using a 2400 baud modem gave me the bandwidth to make it to the newbie mines
which were located just north of the old bat city gate, just before the
entrance to player valley. (warp 25 11 to get home!!). I roamed the mines
tirelessly, remaining a level 30 giant to ensure unfettered access to it.

I had two hammers of might that were enchanted by either Sly or Moght and my
decimation of baby black puddings was relentless. Rescuing people from the
dwarf vault introduced me to people from all over the world and my good memory
allowed me to extend friendships beyond our encounters therein.

To this day I revisit the mines upon reinc, sometimes just to walk through,
but always reminiscing about shares experiences there, warmly remember the
?ghosts? of players long gone.

Another delight is to encounter older players who are visiting after a long
absence. Their very presence triggering a rush of memories and allowing an
opportunity to reconnect, even if only briefly. Then look ahead, wondering
when our present experiences will be memories triggered by each others
presence and recollections.