Muddled Times
Issue:Issue 30, June 2005
Section:News & Gossip

Land Design Competition - The Scores

This summer, we ran a competition - for players, mortal and wiz, to design a new area for The Land. The winners of the competition would have their areas added to The Land and randomly loaded.

In order to enter, players were asked to enter with:

  • A name for the area
  • A description of the area
  • An estimate of the number of rooms
  • Three sample interconnecting room descriptions

Naturally, some of the entrants provided a great deal more than this, but we had to cut them down to make the contest fair. You can see the winning entrants in this article.

Players were then asked to vote on the entries in four sections and also provide a simple vote for their favourite. Voting ended and the results were announced ... but which entry did best in each category? Let's find out!

The seven entrants (in alphabetical order) were:

  • Beached Whale
  • Dinosaurs
  • Hidden Attic
  • Pet Cemetary (Lord's Daughter)
  • Redwood Forest
  • Sewer Complex
  • The Deerpark

For each of the sections, voters were asked to rate each of the entries from poor to excellent. These votes were then converted into a percentage. I'll list the percentages the winning entries achieved.


The first section was a rating of how original the concept was. MUD is the original, and so to fit in with the rest of The Land, an original concept is best.
Redwood Forest68%
The Deerpark53%
Beached Whale71%

So, Beached Whale scored the highest in this section, closely followed by Redwood Forest.


I'm sure you'll agree that one of MUD's best features is it's compelling atmosphere. How well will the new area work without spoiling the existing atmosphere?
Redwood Forest72%
The Deerpark75%
Beached Whale51%

The Deerpark scores best in atmosphere, with Redwood Forest a close second once more. This time, it's Beached Whale that loses out a little.

In keeping with the game

I'm sure it's possible to write an original area with plenty of atmosphere that simply still doesn't fit - it'd be difficult to work a space station in, for example.
Redwood Forest76%
The Deerpark75%
Beached Whale47%

These scores are similar to the previous section, except that Redwood Forest and The Deerpark have switched places. Perhaps, for MUD at least, being in keeping with the game is closely related to atmosphere.

Quality of room descriptions

The last piece of the puzzle is the quality of room descriptions. A great idea has to be presented well to be most effective and in a text game, that means quality descriptions.
Redwood Forest80%
The Deerpark67%
Beached Whale75%

Some of the highest marks were given in this section, with Redwood Forest achieving 80%. Beached Whale is a close second, and The Deerpark scores a respectable 67%.

Favourite entry

It's all very well trying to be analytical, but it's also important to pick a winner that's going to be popular!

Instead of representing a grade for the entry, these percentages represent the percentage of voters who considered the entry to be their favourite.
Redwood Forest25%
The Deerpark20%
Beached Whale35%

Beached Whale wins the popular vote, followed by Redwood Forest and the The Deerpark, the top three accounting for 80% of the vote! Luckily, the most popular three also happened to have scored highly in the other sections - sometimes being all analytical does work!

The final score ...

So, there are the results broken down, but who wins the competition? By using a fantastically complicated scoring system, the three entries with the highest scores were:
1stRedwood Forest (by Apeomancer)
2ndThe Deerpark (by a reticent wiz)
3rdBeached Whale (by Crowley)

So, you have your winners, and you now know why they won.

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