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mr_kent
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Joined: 10 Oct 2000
Posts: 698

PostPosted: Tue Apr 18, 2006 9:18 am   

A NEW or CASUAL user's CMUD wishlist.
 
We have plenty of wishlist topics already, but most of the posts mention very technical protocols (SSH/MXP) or specific modules (mapper). I propose that we come up with a list of things that will make CMUD easier to use than zMUD, for every user. A couple have been mentioned already, such as

1. the sticky prompt and
2. the right-click assigned #TRIGGER pattern.

Rainchild's thoughtful posts in the above links are examples of what I think should be focused on (making everything easier) in order to sell CMUD, not adding a bunch of features only a few people will use. I know there have been more but I hope you get the idea.

I also realize a similar goal was sought with the addition of wizards/packages/xml etc. but most users wouldn't even know about these things even if we had millions of finished script/wizard forum posts. I believe what the CMUD program needs is for its basic functionality to be much more intuitive/automatic. A vast majority of users want to MUD, they do not want to script, configure, layout and dock.

As Zugg has mentioned, he NEEDS current users of zMUD to purchase CMUD. I don't think that breaking compatibility with zMUD script will substantially affect the number of people who convert to CUMD; rather, I believe most people will use what they have unless something significantly better comes along. What other enhancements, tools and tricks will get the average MUDDER to switch to CMUD? Please give as many details as possible to support your ideas so everyone can envision what it is and exactly how it should work.
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mr_kent
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Joined: 10 Oct 2000
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 18, 2006 11:24 am   
 
TOOLBOX BUTTON on the toolbar.

Clicking this button will open a stay-on-top nondockable window near the right edge of the screen. This window will only contain buttons in a single column and the buttons will be labled, "Build ALIAS", "Build MACRO", "Build TRIGGER", "Build LIST" and "CLOSE TOOLBOX" to start. Clicking any of the buttons except the last will make a tooltip-like message to appear with further instructions. The message should remain visible until the mouse pointer is moved significantly.

The Build ALIAS instruction will read "Type the actions for the alias in the command line. Press the Build ALIAS button again when all the actions have been entered." After the Build ALIAS button is clicked a second time, a dialog box opens and prompts the user for the name of the alias.

The Build MACRO button instruction/operation will be identical to the alias except that in addition to a name, a hot-key will be prompted for.

The Build TRIGGER instruction will read "Highlight the text you wish to trigger on, then press the Build TRIGGER button. After the Build TRIGGER button is clicked a second time, a second floating button panel/window will appear with this text at the top: "Please select the type of trigger to create." A column of buttons will be below this instruction and be labeled: "Prompt", "Color", "Action" and "Delayed Action".

If "Prompt" is selected, the current window closes and another one opens with the selected text at the top in a text box. Under the text box will be this message: "To track a stat contained in the prompt, click on the value in the box above to select it, then click the appropriate selection below. To customize how the prompt is displayed, select the appropriate options under STICKY PROMPT." Below this line will be two columns of text boxes. Header titles for the two columns will be "Value" and "Name" The first column will be ~25 chars long, the second column will be ~10 chars long. The first four boxes of the right column will be pre-filled with "HitPoints", "MaxHP", "Mana", and "MaxMana". Ten more rows will follow the first four for additional stat-variable assigning. A separator and STICKY PROMPT title will be below these columns. Buttons/check boxes for displaying/gagging the prompt as described by Rainchild in the sticky prompt post will be at the bottom.

If "Color" is selected, the current window closes and another one opens with three columns, the first being a text box with the selected text, the second being a Combination edit/list box captioned as NAME, and the third being the standard windows color selector and a list box with all the MXP colornames listed directly below it. The Combination edit list box will be blank by default but if clicked will list(drop-down display) all the current Color trigger names in the appropriate color. Behind the scenes, a string list variable will be created and the trigger will fire on any of the elements of the string list variable.

If "Action" is selected, the current window closes and another one opens. Instruction will read, "Type the text you would like to be sent."
Three columns, first will be text box for entering trigger action, second will be drop-down box with first(default) as "send to mud" and subsequent selections being open CMUD session windows.

Build LIST will act in a similar manner but allow the user to either select a defined list(such as the ones created by the color trigger above) to add the selected text to, or create a new list with one item.
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Tarn
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Joined: 10 Oct 2000
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Location: USA

PostPosted: Tue Apr 18, 2006 4:02 pm   Re: A NEW or CASUAL user's CMUD wishlist.
 
mr_kent wrote:

2. the right-click assigned #TRIGGER pattern.


Nice feature outline in your posts in this thread!

I've been thinking along similar lines (though not going so far as an interface design. I was thinking of a wizard brought up occasionally; your outline is much better):
http://forums.zuggsoft.com/phpbb/viewtopic.php?t=21869&postdays=0&postorder=asc&highlight=automatic&start=15
Quote:

1) Extended GUI for trigger creation
a) Automatic trigger creation- give the client a couple of copy/paste examples of what needs to be triggered on, and the client suggests a trigger.
b) graphical (tree?) representation of structures like COND triggers
c) Extend the current "try this" triggerbox to allow line by line replay of selected log files (now you do this by reading by hand from a file, or building a fake server)

...

4) Cleanup of color triggers. The user shouldn't have to use a debug file to figure out which ANSI or MXP sequence turned the text red, only know that it LOOKS red in one part and blue in another


Basically, it should be possible to access most trigger functionality through a tree and pictures.

I think the thread you quoted doesn't quite go far enough. Many triggers will need a few examples to get reliable recognition and to understand which portions are variables.
"Bob draws his sword."
"Eric draws his sword."
"Elsa draws her sword."
"Aela draws her sabre."

Even some triggers will need more than one highlighted example to get right, because of possibly missing parts:
"<1 2 3>"
"<1 2 3 abc>"
"<1 2 3 abc d>"

-Tarn
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mr_kent
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Joined: 10 Oct 2000
Posts: 698

PostPosted: Tue Apr 18, 2006 6:53 pm   Re: A NEW or CASUAL user's CMUD wishlist.
 
Tarn wrote:
I think the thread you quoted doesn't quite go far enough. Many triggers will need a few examples to get reliable recognition and to understand which portions are variables.
"Bob draws his sword."
"Eric draws his sword."
"Elsa draws her sword."
"Aela draws her sabre."

Even some triggers will need more than one highlighted example to get right, because of possibly missing parts:
"<1 2 3>"
"<1 2 3 abc>"
"<1 2 3 abc d>"

-Tarn


Yes, that would be ideal for people with an interest in learning more, and creating more advanced scripts. What I had in mind was just a quick and dirty solution for very basic triggers. I doubt that most users (the ones that don't visit this forum, don't bot or script) and all of the new mudders, are interested in trigger conditions, regex and all the other fancy stuff. I think trying to include all that would just create information overload.

We have wizards and a nice settings editor for doing intermediate/advanced stuff, and I wouldn't doubt but that even the settings editor is daunting to new users. Same with graphical trees, unfortunately. If the highlighted parts are just recognized by CMUD as either alpha or numeric or both, that should be enough to create very simple triggers, and that is all I had in mind for the toolbox triggers.

I guess it boils down to getting as close to a gui as possible and hiding the scripting syntax for new and casual users. If their basic color, team leader follow, eat&drink, etc triggers are easily recreated with CMUD, losing script compatibility with zMUD should be a small issue.

Then again, I could be wrong. Wink
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Rainchild
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 18, 2006 11:34 pm   
 
You could have the wizard look for certain patterns - eg 'his' or 'her' could be detected and suggest using (%w).

The possible patterns should be in a stringlist which is auto-updatable as well as overridable.

This might even be possible for one of us user's to implement, rather than hard coding it.
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Tech
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Joined: 18 Oct 2000
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Location: Atlanta, USA

PostPosted: Wed Apr 19, 2006 12:51 am   
 
Along these lines... I would also suggest a build gauges feature (perhaps as part of the CMUD standard package) that will built from the recognized prompt with a few basic ideas for placement.

Building on this idea a bit more, a new Character Wizard where the users get common layout ideas (3-4) with the option to pipe chats/tells into certain tabs, with a map docked.

Another idea would be a wizard that happens after a user has played a character three to five times (but have not made major changes to layout) and offer a list of common features that other players use. Sometimes a user doesn't want a feature because they don't know it's there. If you build it, they won't come, unless they know about it.
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Vijilante
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 19, 2006 1:07 am   
 
That is quite funny, I started work on a wizard just for helping people make triggers around a year or so ago. I posted some preliminary stuff for it in the Beta forum to see what people thought and what kind of suggestions they might have. It was the intial stages of full trigger building system and had a decent interface for getting the pattern built correctly. Of course I never got any feedback other then some statements about just how large it was. Perhaps making it so the Wizard interface, if it will still be in CMud, is directly populatable by data in packages. This would allow that whole portions of background scripts and aliases could be built more easily for use in a wizard. As I recall my Wizard starts out with a single line that is over a page long setting up processing aliases.
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Rainchild
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 19, 2006 2:05 am   
 
Yeah, I think the wizard was a great idea but needed the package library to really make it fly. I mean it was a bit tricky for people to take the thing from the finished script forum and then put it in the special file in the zmud directory, but if we could back it into the packages, I think it's got a better chance of being used and shared.
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shalimar
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Joined: 04 Aug 2002
Posts: 3513
Location: Pensacola, FL, USA

PostPosted: Wed Apr 19, 2006 3:16 am   
 
Turn it into a Plug-In?
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hav
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Joined: 05 Oct 2004
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Location: Riga, Latvia

PostPosted: Wed Apr 19, 2006 5:28 am   
 
One of bigger grievances comes from muds that dont let players set linewidth. Forget casual user, even more advanced people would struggle if its not known where line break will be on a long pattern. Add in variables into pattern containing spaces that also could possibly line-break and it becomes ugly mess. Some kind of solution would go a long way helping casual user from these kinds of muds.
For example, http://forums.zuggsoft.com/phpbb/viewtopic.php?t=12874
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slicertool
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Joined: 09 Oct 2003
Posts: 459
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 19, 2006 6:10 am   
 
Rainchild wrote:
Yeah, I think the wizard was a great idea but needed the package library to really make it fly. I mean it was a bit tricky for people to take the thing from the finished script forum and then put it in the special file in the zmud directory, but if we could back it into the packages, I think it's got a better chance of being used and shared.


That's a really good idea. Most of the complaints I get about aliases I setup for people is 'but I want the alias to be -blah- instead of what you have'.

Also, if something is set to trigger on the player's character name (which may be different than their logon as on some muds), then this could be set in there as well.
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Tarn
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 19, 2006 3:04 pm   
 
Vijilante wrote:
That is quite funny, I started work on a wizard just for helping people make triggers around a year or so ago. I posted some preliminary stuff for it in the Beta forum to see what people thought and what kind of suggestions they might have. It was the intial stages of full trigger building system and had a decent interface for getting the pattern built correctly. Of course I never got any feedback other then some statements about just how large it was.


I'll admit that I wasn't (and am not) able to figure out how to get it started (or what it does). I can get it listed in the simple trigger wizard, but after that...?

Rainchild: yes, some common things like "his/her" should be offered replacements for the literal text. I think that many more users are capable of understanding the concepts behind complex triggers than are able to understand the programming syntax currently necessary to create or modify them.

-Tarn
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egads
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Joined: 10 Mar 2005
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 19, 2006 3:11 pm   
 
(One word of profanity removed: we don't moderate much but keep it clean. I'd appreciate respectful too, but won't be enforcing that unless the thread gets out of hand. The actual feature requests in these posts are basically on topic, so I'm leaving it for now. -Tarn)

I'm a zmud pirate.

I've never paid for a copy of zmud.

My reason for never paying for zmud is its an ugly horrible device with a jillion flaws. You can bot in it good, I use a hack copy to bot occasionally. Most of my mudding is within a paid for copy of Portal GT.

I will be buying cMud. From the posts on December 7th 2005, it appears cmud has all the things I love about portal (except the MIP, which is nigh identical to the MXP but only one client can use it :/) and all the speed and functionality of zmud.

I imagine this has been discussed a pile of times. I've been registered for a year, but only lurking on these forums for a week or so, eager to get me some cmud action, and heres the one thing I want that ive never seen in any mud client.

Multiline triggers.

Sometimes a one line pattern just isnt enough. I want to be able to trigger on a whole paragraph. A two line hp bar in a single trigger, an entire round of combat in a single trigger. Examples only.

This gripe comes mainly because of Portal, im sure most of the things i want a multiline trigger for (in Zmud) I could do with x number of triggers. Portal, although I do love the MIP, is really quite primative. limited to 250 triggers, no nested aliases, and one has to get really creative with ticktimers in order to do anything remotely botlike with the primitive scripting capabilities.

Is it even remotely possible to make a multiline trigger? Has this been discussed before? In great length? Is it already implimented for this godlike device called cmud?

Edit: I've just remembered why I want multiline triggers. The mud I play, and I assume this is true for most muds, has uncontrollable line wrapping, and I want to grab multiline chat spam and throw it in a window.

My mud of choice (3k.org) actually gives mages of guild level 150 a spell called wish, which literally allows us to get pretty much anything we desire coded in. Im only six months away. I will be wishing for my most used flaplines to be controllable linewrap. Until then.... maybe mr zugg, that guy ive never given a cent to, will help me.

Multiline triggers / bodgy fake chat windows / (profanity edited) docking is basically the biggest reason zmud for me is an occasional use client, during the wee hours of an american morning when theres no chitchat, just efficient grinding.
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egads
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 19, 2006 3:34 pm   
 
Oooh.

Something else I want.

If its already in, flame me. I havent used zmud this year. And I botted a few times last year.

An option. Perhaps a multistate option. To automatically gag blank lines. Gag none, gag single lines, or gag all blank lines.

I am of the belief that if there is a single blank line anywhere, its just spam. And you cant gag it reliably because #gag is kinda.. y'know. silly.

A double blank line is probably deliberate and might actually matter. So taking care of that automatically could cause problems. Unless of course your user gets to choose. Then its their own fault if something was supposed to stand out with massive amounts of blanks is missing. :p
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egads
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 19, 2006 3:39 pm   
 
Oooh. Something else I want.

A few screenshots of cmud.

I want to know what Im getting myself into.

You're probably going to go along the lines of nonono we cant have that, its all a super secret suprise, just wait and see. Unfortunately.. By the sounds, unless I buy zmud right now - which I wont be doing, I can't jump on board the beta wagon.

Well, until someone haxors it, and of all the mud clients zugg's ones are the only ones that get cracked, so someone will crack it. One can assume within 24 hours of its release.

Functionality is a good thing. Zmud has always had functionality. But does it have style yet? Good old zmud was always the fat guy hanging around the punch bowl. Reliable, but noone wants to get down and funky with it.
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Tarn
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 19, 2006 3:58 pm   
 
egads:

The multiline triggers should be doable with regexps and/or #COND triggers.

A few screenshots are in a thread in this forum (first page) which includes "Screenshots" in the thread subject, surprisingly enough.

Gagging of blank lines should be a very simple trigger- have you not figured out how to do that or are you asking for an additional "preferences" toggle?

If you want to go into detail on specific requests, please start another thread.

-Tarn
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Tech
GURU


Joined: 18 Oct 2000
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Location: Atlanta, USA

PostPosted: Wed Apr 19, 2006 6:51 pm   
 
You can get some very, very preliminary screen shots here. But a big sellng point of CMUD is GUI thanks to a zApp integration. So mosey on over to zApp and every funky feature and all the Southernplayalisticadillacmuzik style you want can probably be implemented. It would also be wise to check out some of sample apps.

As for Portal GT I tried it for a bit, but it didn't do too much for me. I didn't care much for the interface and as you mentioned the functionality significantly lags zMud. Perhaps it was engineer in me that opted for significant functionality over moderate style.
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Zugg
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Joined: 25 Sep 2000
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2006 6:13 am   
 
egads, as Tarn mentioned, I suggest you go post some of these questions over in the normal zMUD forum. Everything you mentioned can already be done in zMUD. Looks like your experience with zMUD might be a bit dated. The later versions are faster than any other client, so your "fat guy at the punch bowl" comment is no longer true. That was really only true for a couple of early 6.x versions.

Or, perhaps you got this feeling from reading stuff on the Portal site. One big issue I have always had with Portal is that they lie through their teeth and people seem to believe it. They tell you that zMUD can't do something when it can. They tell you that zMUD is slow when it isn't. They tell you the Portal was first to implement something when they weren't. It's amazing what they can get away with on their website.

But, the bottom line is that if zMUD is slow for you or you can't figure out how to do something, post over in the main zMUD forum and there are lots of people who can help you there. While CMUD is going to have some new stuff and a better interface, the early beta period will probably be a bit rocky and buggy and only appropriate for people with lots of patience to work through it's early problems as it improves.
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egads
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2006 8:10 am   
 
Nono, zugg. I said zmud was ugly. Its speed is unmatched, and from bots ive stolen (and then tried to understand / improve / or at least customise for me) ive always been very impressed with zmud.

Unfortunately, I just cant stand using it. Given as I said, I've never paid for zmud, I used 5.48 extensively, as well as 7.04, the most common cracked versions.

As for portal, portal was essentially made for 3 kingdoms. Scott Fairchild / Tensor would probably wish it isnt so, but the entire client base would be 3k players who like the MIP. MIP being exactly like this MXP (that ive never used), but it came a little earlier, and any program trying to emulate MIP (on 3k.org) if caught will get that player deleted. Since 3k's play model is such that you've got to sink 200 days into the game to be worth anything, the risk is too high to emulate it.

I was actually very impressed with the power zmud 7.04 had to offer, but only 10 minutes of using it convinced me not to buy it. And it was relegated, as I said earlier to an occasional use bot.

Tech, I too find most of portals interface annoying to the point of worthlessness, but it is the MIP that holds me to it. Given the masses opinion of portal's coder (who runs the mud), its actually a point of shame these days to be a portal user. I am mocked often for my refusal to convert. With actual guages that are easy on the eye, proper docking, effective chatline moving (that works) and all of those things that don't feel like their hacks on the user's part to make them work at the most basic level, I find myself sold on zmud.

Does zugg care about my piddly 30$ after a decade of casual piracy? Probably not. But I hope he is interested in my opinion - a very experienced mudder, who is 'new' to zmud/cmud.
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Tech
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Joined: 18 Oct 2000
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Location: Atlanta, USA

PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2006 3:11 pm   
 
You're right egads... you're opinion as an experience mudder, but new to zMud/CMUD will be valuable.

I don't know much about MIP features.. but when I was using it (I guess I must've been on 3K briefly, or was it Core) I remember getting a picture and think that was cool. But the sound download didn't move me (I thought it better to get the sound pack separately, although I guess for newbies on demand may be more appealing. Other than the picture though... (and I'll readily admit it could be because I didn't use it enough) there didn't seem to be much to make it the client of choice.

As for gauges comparing Portal to zMud I didn't see much of a difference.






I don't do much docking so I can't speak to that.

Finally I'll say try the latest version of zMud and even CMUD ( I suspect that despite the challenges of beta, you'll be mighty impressed. ) Afterwards buy a copy... it's always nice when hard work is appreciated and rewarded.
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Zugg
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2006 5:51 pm   
 
egads, perhaps you could start a new thread for us to discuss the "ugly" zMUD interface that you are talking about. I'd like to get more specifics on what exactly is "ugly" and how you think it could be better. I honestly find Portal to be "uglier" than zMUD, so maybe it's just a matter of preferences.

And yes, I know about the 3 Kingdoms story. In fact, I know that one of the main reasons they wrote Portal was because they felt zMUD was too powerful and didn't want their players using it. So they wrote their own client (Portal) and added some proprietary features to try and get their players to use it instead of zMUD. They don't make much money from Portal, and their business is not fully funded by client sales the way zMUD funds Zugg Software. They have other money sources and the Portal client sales are minimal.

The fact that 3Kingdoms decided to create their own MIP protocol and keep it private, rather than using the open and public MXP protocol is just another example of this.

Anyway, start another thread on this where we can talk about how to make CMUD better for you.
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Zugg
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 21, 2006 1:31 am   
 
Mr_Kent, sorry I didn't respond to this sooner. Some of your ideas got lost a bit in where this thread has gone. But I wanted to come back and reply to them.

Your toolbox idea is excellent and is similar to something I've had in the back of my mind. Also, the ideas over in the "MUD Prompt" topic are also important. In fact, after discussing this with Chiara and her experiences with zMUD so far, it really helps clarify some ideas for CMUD.

I think it's really important to address some of these issues in the first CMUD beta. As you said at the beginning of this post, there needs to be something substantial for newbie users in the first CMUD release rather than just all of the behind-the-scenes stuff like faster compiled scripts. In fact, I think that it is so important that I'm going to put some priority into doing something for the first beta that people can then give me feedback on.

So, I'm afraid to say, but it's all your fault Razz

Just kidding. But really, as much as I *need* to get CMUD released, what your post reminded me is that I only have ONE CHANCE for the initial CMUD release. It's not often that I release a new product, and the release of CMUD is very important. Even though I'm sure there will be plenty of bugs, I only have one chance to make a first impression on people. And while most people in this forum will be excited about things like the package library and compiled scripts, I agree that I also need to include something for novice users that might wonder if it's worth upgrading.

I'm going to refrain from announcing yet-another-release-date. That's counter productive at this point. CMUD will be released soon, but I want to do it right. I'm trying not to be too much of a perfectionist here (one of my short-comings) but doing some of the things suggested in this forum I think is even more important than "tweaking" the compiler speed.

I'd *love* to see additional discussion of this topic, and also the topic I suggested to egads above about how to make CMUD less "ugly" than zMUD. While I have some specific ideas in mind, I want to hear from other people. I don't want to post my own ideas yet which might bias the discussion. My objective with the first CMUD release is that *everyone* will say "WOW! This is really worth it!"
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egads
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 21, 2006 5:32 am   
 
Right. I'm not one for drafting or whatnot, so if I offend anyone, too bad. Go cry to mummy. In Australia, it is too arid for tears.

I've just grabbed Zmud 7.21 off this site, installed my profile. Now at least half of this is user error, what the original coder 'likes', and my inability to change it.

Theres several windows, Chats, Guild, PK, Clan, etc.

Chats takes all communication, the others take specific communication, making it a simple matter to filter out all the noise.

Windows in zmud, if they dock, they work as they are intended, and now this is just super. Hooray, unfortunately, it just takes up far too much real estate on a complex mud. I can imagine it would be bearable on simple muds, especially ones where roleplaying is the name of the game.

So I've got all these docked windows grouped together up top, taking up 30% of my screen. If I make the window thinner, I lose out on a lot of usefulness, If I keep it at its current size, I get less review of combat spam, in a guild where every single heartbeat is one round from death.

Lets try moving it to the side. Hrm okay. This is a little better, sort of. It doesnt impact on the screen at all, but it now fills the whole thing vertically, so I've got too much goddamn chatspam, forcing my eyes to the bottom right of the screen, rather than focused on the game at hand.

If I do this, I also lose the mapper. Can't have them both sitting on each other. How inconvenient. I know. Bright Idea.. I'll undock them.

Now If I undock them individually, its fine. I can keep 'chats', and it can be always on top. But I don't want just 'chats'. Chats is full of annoying people talking about inane crap. I want chats to keep a log, and I want to be focused on guild, where my peers will be talking about interesting things. Lets group 'em together. Oh look, I lose always on top. Click back to zmud, now I've lost all my chats. Super. :( We'll go back to docking. No wait. We'll just get rid of zmud and go back to something that dispite its massive amount of flaws, has a handy dandy chat monitor that isnt docked, does what its told, and takes care of everything, no clicks, no BS.

Ultimately, in the most current version of zmud available to me, and in every other version of zmud to have ever existed, there is no solution for my chatting woes. -10 points.

So now we've finished bitching about chats and realise that its pointless even trying this in zmud, but hey, its triggering is awesome, we'll just use it to bot when noones talking. Plan. I can go watch penguins huddling in the middle of a hurricane and not worry about those windows. Super.

Lets go down to buttons and the status bar and crap.

Way back in zmud 4.62, it had a status bar. In zmud 7.21 it has the exact same status bar. So you can add colour to it now, its still a status bar. For status. Ive only ever seen it used for HP Bar, but it really doesnt belong there. I know I'd like to use status bar for stuff I dont want to find myself looking at often. Maybe throw some sort of running stats on it. While I can see how it can be *made* useful, in itself it is not a useful device.

It does the job, but me, I like my portal bar. It was designed right from the get go to hold HP information, and it does its job perfectly. Zmuds status bar is not a hp bar, but it can be used as such, if you've got the smarts. Now the status bar you can only fit so much stuff on it, and you can only do so much with it. So now we get a little more inventive with zmud and we make ourselves a second status bar. Out of buttons.

This one is more useful, but again, only if you force it to be useful. It doesnt appear to have ever been designed in mind with what the masses actually use it for.

I see quite a handy dandy little hp bar up there, that someones made, and while it is super useful.. I still know that hp guage is in fact a button. I can click on it, and it might do nothing, but it is still a damn button. It was never intended from the getgo to be a button, but it has to be a button, because it is the best way to do it. It lacks simple perfection, but works if you force it to. And that has ever been the way with zmud, if you force it, it will work.

It's not all complaint of course. Theres a lot of things about zmud that I do like. I would not be sitting on this forum patiently waiting for cmud If I didn't. So don't take my stream of complaint to heart. There was a lot more things I dislike, but it appears they have almost all been covered within the many posts from December 7th.

However, I don't think I will ever like zmuds mapper. If you steal someones thats done all the work, like most things in zmud it is fantastic. And its clickclick-go ness of it, on a completed works is also just an absolute delight. But actually making it, and I'm not talking about the time involved, just fills me with annoyance. All the manual connecting of lines for nonstandard exits, pain in the arse zone linking, reshaping things that don't look right (although this is true for all mappers) is just cumbersome. And I found myself constantly doubling back. Id go west, wait for it to do its map thing, then go east, and instead of returning along its path - for whatever reason it has chosen not to - its gone and made a room right on top of it. So now I've got to drag the rooms about, delete the wrong one, turn the mapper off, go back where I was, try it again, blah blah blahblahblah. Im sure its useful, but excuse me If I wait another 5 years before attemtping to use it.

One point for portal, its mapper, for all its limitations (like everthing else in portal) is fantastically easy, and easy on the eye also, if nowhere near as responsive and ultimately useful, as zmuds mapper. It is slow, and gets slower as you add rooms. Thankfully, in my stage of mudding, I no longer have any dependancy on maps at all, over 30,000 rooms are mapped in my head, by rote. And a good thing too - portals mapper would choke and die at such an array of rooms, my brain doesnt seem to have much problem, so long as I keep a steady stream of caffeine.

I have kind of gone off topic. And please, don't respond helpfully about zmuds mapper that its all user error - im perfectly aware of that. But these are really simple things, its not a matter of grasping it, but zmud simply not doing any favours for a new user.

I did make a screenshot to emphasise my earlier complaints, but the ones above that clearly show a hpbar as buttons illustrates that one just fine, and the #window's can be looked at in a few seconds.

I saw posts in your blog (I think) about docking woes? It seems like you've at least had a very long try at improving them dramatically. So don't let my browbeating get you down. I will be investing a whopping 30$ in your software, and you'll get your chance at a new first impression with at least one experienced mudder who sticks to what he knows.

And Im sure Ive seen mention of improvements to the status bar, etc.

I guess I'll just have to wait and see. If it blows my pants off, I'll be front row and centre somewhere in the first 50 pages bowing down and worshipping on the inevitable 'Happy St Zugg Day' post. Although I may be the only one in my remote city taking part in the tickettape parade in your honour.
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slicertool
Magician


Joined: 09 Oct 2003
Posts: 459
Location: USA

PostPosted: Fri Apr 21, 2006 3:41 pm   
 
Being as that some of the technology from zApp is going into CMud, why not have the ability to create zApp powered status windows?

This would allow for more in depth layout, special input boxes, drop down boxes, and really obscure things that experienced mudders could invent. There could even be multiple tabs worth of status and/or chats that could be tossed into it.

This, however, would probably be a fairly large addition to CMud if it went in though and not directly helpful (without some sort of wizard) to new users... but, a neat idea none-the-less.
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Zugg
MASTER


Joined: 25 Sep 2000
Posts: 23377
Location: Colorado, USA

PostPosted: Fri Apr 21, 2006 4:50 pm   
 
egads, thanks for the useful post. That's just the kind of information I need to get from new users.

CMUD uses a new docking system, and hopefully with features like "flyout" windows it will be more flexible and more stable.

However, I'm still a bit confused about this "chat window" issue. I'm not sure what you are really trying to do with it. I've never used Portal, so I have no idea what kind of chat window they have that you are talking about, so maybe you can describe their chat window and what it does that you like. You mentioned that all of the chat windows in zMUD take up too much screen space, but I'm confused because when chat windows are docked together, all you have is the tabs for switching between the windows and I don't see how I could make that take up less space.

slicertool, using a zApp-powered status window is exactly one of the things that I'm looking into for the first CMUD release. I think I can do some things with a default docking layout, the mapper, a zApp-status window and something like Mr_Kents "toolbox" window that would greatly improve things for new users. Advanced users will be able to rearrange windows, close the ones they don't want, and stuff like that, but it will give new users a better place to start from.

egads: About the gauge "buttons". Yes, gauges in zMUD are buttons. That's actually a very important feature. I've assigned commands to my gauges to perform useful functions. For example, when I click on my HP Gauge, it sends a HEAL command to the MUD. Maybe the visual appearance of the gauges can be improved a bit, but having them clickable is something that won't go away. For me, having non-clickable gauges is a waste of screen space.

Finally, of course one of the advantages of using Portal on 3Kingdoms is that they can directly tie their mapper to their MIP stuff. If you use the zMUD mapper on a MUD with MXP mapper enhancements, then the zMUD mapper works just as well as Portal. The problem with 3Kingdoms is that (from what I recall) it's an LP MUD which is one of the hardest types of MUDs to map for a generic mapper like zMUD. If 3Kingdoms made MIP public, then I could improve the mapper in CMUD to handle it, but I doubt they will do that.
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