22.1 MORTAL BUILDERS IN LUSTERNIA (HOW TO GET AN ORB)
From time to time, the administration of Lusternia will take Mortal Builders to help expand the world and develop new areas. These mortal builders work closely with the administration on the areas and are paid in credits for their work.
Being a builder in Lusternia is not like being a builder on many MUDs. One does not become an immortal. Instead, we have Orbs of Creation. Using an Orb is well-documented in other HELP files listed under HELP OLC.
Building is not something done on a lark. It is hard work, because we do not allow poor-quality material to go into Lusternia. Furthermore, it does take quite a bit of administrative time, as we have to approve every single thing that you do.
As a Mortal Builder, you will be expected to maintain complete and utter secrecy on any project you are assigned. If you 'leak' information on classified projects, be prepared to face DIRE CONSEQUENCES. As such, we require all Mortal Builders to sign a standard Non-Disclosure Agreement and send it back to us before work can commence.
You will need to work your way up from apprentice builder and prove yourself as trustworthy and reliable, and you will need to show you can turn out quality work before being allowed to create your own areas. At this time, there are three stages for Mortal Builders to go through:
The differences between the three stages are based on the amount of credits they receive per room for their honorarium, as well as the ability to develop full-fledged areas for Lusternia. Apprentice builders receive 3 credits per room designed, and they will move onto the Journeyman stage upon completing 100 rooms. Journeyman receive 4 credits per room designed, and they will move onto the Architect stage upon completing 100 more rooms for a total 200 in points. Architect builders receive 5 credits per room designed, and have the opportunity to design areas.
The workload for builder projects work on a first-come, first-serve basis, with opportunities appearing upon request of the administrative team. The most frequent project is basic room description, with a project requiring 10 rooms described within the span of a week (or a week and a half). Other types of projects may have larger room numbers or they may include designing custom items or mobiles. Additionally, there may be time-sensitive projects that ask builders for a higher turn-over rate for their projects.
We wish to emphasise that we expect Mortal Builders to be active, steady and responsible workers, so consider very carefully whether you wish to take on such a commitment.
At present, we have two methods of applying to the Mortal Builder program. The first is a general rolling admissions, to which interested players can simply submit an application with the following information listed below to the Plots newsboard (which is only readable by the administration). The second is a formal call for applicants, initiated by the Camenae, where players will submit their application to email@example.com directly. The application for both requires the following information:
* Your name and your character's name(s)
* Five sample room descriptions, preferably of varied locations
* A brief (250 words max) description for a new Lusternian area,
including its main story and how it fits into Lusternian mythos
* A brief (250 words max) characterisation of yourself and why
you think you may be a good builder for Lusternia
We expect the five room descriptions to be entirely error free. If you cannot manage to get five rooms without errors, then 20, 50 or 100 will be out of your reach.
Please note that only those who are 18 years of age or older may apply to be a Mortal Builder, due to the legalities associated with the NDA.
When writing your room descriptions, keep in mind the following:
1.) Try not to describe actions in descriptions, especially actions
that have the person reading the description doing something. It
makes no sense to say "You cower in fear before the bloody
altar." in a description, as it is not reasonable that
someone is going to cower in fear every time they read the
2.) Try not to even refer to the reader in your description. Instead
of saying, "You hear the refreshing sound of running water
nearby," allow the description itself to convey the sensations
to the reader without forcing them. For example, "There is
running water nearby, a refreshing sound to the ears."
3.) Do not include lines like: You see exits to the north, east and
south. These are dynamically generated by Lusternia. You can, of
course, describe what a player can see in those directions,
but the actual line listing the exits shouldn't be included.
Also, do not include descriptions for actual items that
will be in the room.
A useful thread from Lusternia's old forums may be helpful for you, found here:
While these may feel like harsh demands compared to most MUDs, Lusternia succeeds because we aim for higher standards of quality in building. If you can meet these standards and do the work, you'll be rewarded.
Eventually, if you prove yourself to be a reliable builder, you may be allowed to propose and build an area of your own. Note well, most of what you will be doing for this area will be writing the room, item and mobile descriptions, as well as helping the administration on the general development of the area; however, most of the actual programming of the mobiles and quests will still be done by a member of the administrative team.
The most important part of starting to build a new area is the area proposal. An area proposal should include the following:
* A general description of the area, including a history of the area
and also tie-ins to existing history
* A paragraph or so describing why you think your proposed area would
be a valuable addition to Lusternia
* Approximately how many rooms you will need
* A list of the mobiles in the area, and approximately how many
there will be of each
* A general description of quests you'd like to have in the area
When writing an area proposal, you need to avoid the tendency to be overly elaborate, but at the same time, you must make the area interesting. An area that has no compelling quests or history will be boring and fail to excite the imagination of our players. While no area will ever live up to what you may have in your imagination, areas like the Kiakoda Nature Reserve, the Meliashmora of Imperial Secrets, or villages like Dairuchi contain much more variety and have more personality.
Keep in mind that areas are not built to immortalise or favour you and your friends.
Once your proposal is approved, the hard work begins. You must now write every single brief and verbose description (room title and actual room description, respectively) for every single room in your area. Once you have done this and submitted the work for approval, you will be able to help create the items and mobiles, and then move the area toward its completion.
While building is a lot of work and responsibility, it is also very rewarding to see your ideas grow and take shape in the actual world of Lusternia. It is not for everyone, but for those who have a knack for creativity, it is something fun to do while also earning credits for your pocket.
We look forward to having many applicants interested in helping to make Lusternia all that it can be!