_____The Official AVATAR______________________________________
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______________________________________December 14, 2004_______
/.--.\ The Avatar Gazette
|====| For subscription info,
|`::`| read HELP GAZETTE
/\\ / |...::..|` | | `| Produced by Angel Kenji
|:'\ | /'''::''| | | | With help from Gouki
@|\ /\;-,/\ :: |=========| New Hero and Lord Stats
`||\ <` ._::_.|=========|
|| `""` / ^^ | | | |
|| | \ | | /
It's going to be a busy month, both on AVATAR and off. But
then, December always is!
This month's Gazette includes:
Quest Points top 10 by Anessa
New Hero and Lord Stats by Gouki
Snikt's Thoughts on UberCon IV
Enhance Your MUDding with Sound by Kenji
Two Recipes by Drenalone
Grandma Drenalone's Christmas Butter Cookies and
Chicken and Andouille (pronounced Andooee) Gumbo
Into the Alien Hive by TPRFive
We're excited to get Crom and Hyperion back on AVATAR. Crom
has been busy coding away, with more projects completed than
I can even remember. And Hyperion has come back out of
retirement. So now, all the newer players who wonder who
the statue was, they can meet the real thing!
December is usually a busy month for the Quest team, and this
year seems to be no exception. Here is a quick note from
Kariya via the Quest website.
For those who are already in the festive mood here is a bit
of information for you. We plan on running a bunch of fun &
interesting quests related to the Holiday season throughout
the month of December. So stay on the look out. We are plan-
ning right now, and details should pop up soon. Unlike last
year we will not be doing the gift-giveaway. However, if you
have spare gear you don't need you can always give it to
others even without Santa and his quest team elves! Stay tuned!
Also, there is a huge trivia contest planned for the 17th
of December. See http://www.outland.org/quest/index.php for
Two new remort races have been introduced. Golems and Demons
are now available. See Crom's note in-game for more information.
Ubercon V is planned for March 11-13th. This UC should be
even bigger and better than previous Cons. For information
visit http://www.ubercon.com/ Also, read the article below
for Snikt's thoughts on UC IV and plans for UC V in NY/NYC!
We are currently seeking out new ASCII artwork for our MOTD.
Rewards will include questpoints. If you aren't interested
in questpoints, other arrangements (ie. gold) can be made at
Our MOTD has a restriction on the number of lines as well as
the line length. The current restrictions are 21 lines at
70 characters per line. Please keep in mind that this
includes any text or information we wish to include in the
For an idea of past ASCII art sizes, please read and/or
review help history.
For more information on this quest and future quests, please
visit our quest team website at http://www.outland.org/quest
All submissions will be reviewed and accepted submissions
will be reviewed and included in future MOTDs, with mention
of the artist! Please send your submissions to
firstname.lastname@example.org in a .txt file.
There seem to be a lot of rumors swirling around about
Legend. And, Snikt has announced that he will be moving
to MD this month, ahead of his family. What do you think he
will be working on during his free time? I'm anxious to
see what will happen!
AVATAR has been listed as one of the top 20 MUDS on a regular
basis over the past few months on the Top Mud Sites webpage.
It's nice to see that so many players have been logging in to
TMS at www.topmudsites.com and voting for AVATAR, and it's
great to be in such good company!
Did you know that you can also write a review of AVATAR to
let people who log in to Top Mud Sites know what you like
about Avatar? We've noticed that a review by a good player
tends to attract other excellent players. To post a review,
go to the site and look in the top left-hand corner of the
TMS homepage. These are the reviews that players of other
muds have written for their games. You too can review AVATAR!
Just search for AVATAR MUD in the database box at the top of
the homepage. Click on the 'AVATAR MUD' link, then click on the
'Submit a Review' link.
Just remember to be fair and honest. You don't need to use
your real name, mud name or even real email address.
Reviews help increase exposure to the MUD, and help bring
new players to our community!
I know what you're thinking. "Kenji, where do you keep coming
up with stories, articles and recipes for the Gazette?"
Well, that's easy. You! The players of AVATAR are some of the
most creative people I've had the pleasure of working with.
So send in your short stories, game-themed articles, recipe
ideas and ASCII art for future Gazettes. Email your submissions
Articles that are used in the Gazette may earn you Quest Points!
So be sure to include your main alt's name in your email. (Or
the name you want QPs credited to.)
Email me if you have a large or multi-part story idea as well.
Here are the current top 10 in Quest Points.
Quest Points Top 10
NEW HERO & LORD STATS from Gouki
Here are the new Hero and Lord stats since November 1st, 2004:
30 Heroes morphed since November 1st, 2004. Please welcome
the following to the Lord tier:
AkaDI, Alcarin, Azazel, Coyotee, Darcis, Draxi, Eric,
Esariish, Gerut, Gnimish, Grinach, Heimdall, Hellown,
Huntley, KAARiA, Lahrynne, Lurch, Masahiko, Moo, Nezzar,
Pantalaimon, Precision, Rizlin, Rysak, Septimus, Shakar,
Spry, Tarzan, Tsion, Ytreshi
10 Lords remorted since November 1st, 2004. Please wish
the following good luck:
* Beowulf from Human Warrior to Troll Warrior
* Burzum from Orc Warrior to Human Berserker
* Darkwolf from Elf Archer to High Elf Archer
* Gobo from Lizard Man Cleric to Tuataur Cleric
* Lokmar from Drow Archer to High Elf Archer
* Manu from Lizard Man Mage to Lizard Man Sorcerer
* Matog from Kzinti Warrior to Kzinti Berserker
* Mringasa from Orc Berserker to Troll Berserker
* Valad from Elf Archer to High Elf Archer
* Xanith from Gargoyle Warrior to Human Berserker
0 Heroes/Lords deleted since November 1st, 2004:
Please congratulate 79 characters who reached Hero 101+:
Buntess (101), Gormlaith (101), Ahab (102), Enonrog (102),
Kansas (102), Zorin (102), Foogle (103), Yevgeny (103),
Zydar (103), Cometh (104), Livia (104), Qwaen (104),
Caballero (105), Elendar (105), Trent (105), Chantilly
(106), Krator (106), Swordstalker (106), Kevlar (107),
Kilmer (107), Shi (107), Akaame (108), Netscape (108),
Cardamon (109), Nejevoli (109), Yoink (109), Calypso
(110), Nisa (112), Torenth (112), Arthas (114), Nox (114),
Sneek (114), Ryoki (115), Mringasa (116), Nebula (117),
Tyrin (117), Mufassa (119), Leinad (122), Endless (123),
Liane (123), Fitwon (125), Orodreth (125), Sinjin (125),
Thranduil (126), Laun (127), Pia (128), Yee (129), Aiji
(135), Tsuruchi (135), Xiloscient (135), Cicero (136),
Sethren (138), Proeliator (141), Shrake (141), Spice
(142), Thranx (143), Sar (147), Tiera (147), Juan (149),
Ganzstahl (150), Asteilith (152), Scorcher (155), Tass
(156), Menelaus (160), Valad (163), Eldarial (167), Sake
(168), Jman (177), Rohling (192), Rintan (195), Auryn
(200), Dared (215), EssenceRoses (246), Hades (257),
Ferox (262), WhiteFang (280), Duce (284), Quarum (302),
Please congratulate 27 characters who have achieved Super
Aakesh (500), Briarbuck (504), Dreya (505), Balor (507),
Madog (507), Frunk (508), Ryuu (510), Siras (510), TPRFive
(515), Evol (524), Meekor (524), Vithral (526), Cindel
(533), Alcander (538), Gnolen (540), Jilly (550),
Fuzzywomper (566), Ratera (576), Nomadic (585), Shred
(586), Fin (587), Sarnimir (587), Zelkin (609), Tsabrak
(620), Kerok (713), Haldir (729)
9 Heroes failed to morph since November 1st, 2004:
Erion, Asynja, Aela, Coisty, Kayln, Acrien, Shakti, Frej
Top 10 Hero
1 .) Burzum (469)
2 .) Shred (446)
3 .) Burzum (369)
4 .) Feng (346)
5 .) Siril (320)
6 .) Busstop (295)
7 .) Haldir (287)
8 .) DuSk (281)
9 .) Kerok (270)
Top 12 Lord
1 .) Nezzar (101)
2 .) Skarr (100)
3 .) Somniare (77)
4 .) Rooks (75)
5 .) Varewyr (73)
6 .) Jarlaxle (71)
7 .) Draeger (66)
8 .) Tange (65)
9 .) Nyxx (60)
10.) Tolgath (53)
11.) Pyromanic (51)
12.) Greenhide (48)
Snikt's Thoughts on UberCon IV
Well, UberCon IV is over! Several major successes were the
Medieval Expo, the huge RPGA turnout for all mods that were
run (including the exclusive Tomb of Doom interactive!),
playing D&D Miniatures against the World Champion, the 24k
Magic Tournament, DDR, the LAN (as always), and of course
the Boardgaming area was always packed!
Personally, it was great to see the con run itself so much
more effectively this time around. It was going so well that
I was able to sleep for EIGHT hours on Friday night (Saturday
night - well, that's a different story... ;) ). I am very
proud of how everyone either knew what they were in charge
of and did it, or stepped up and volunteered even though
some of the tasks might have been challenging. It was my
pleasure to meet Shanda, Kyandra, Honoria, and a slew of
other faces I've never gotten to actually talk with!
Additionally, it looks like we will be incorporating some
of this talent into the next UberCon out of the gate... >:)
As we grow larger and more experienced, we've become more
effective at correcting conditions that have posed challenges
at previous events. In the past they've been things like
snowstorms(UCI), weddings (smack in the middle of our space!),
and huge gains in attendance (1200 at UC IV in far too little
space!). Although our infrastructure is now ready (three months
before the event) we still have some areas that we can improve
upon, and we always welcome enthusiastic volunteers.
For UberCon V, we have obtained the Imperial Ballrooms (no
circuitous trek from space to space!), planned better/easier
GM discounts, are pursuing some new creative solutions to the
ever-present food issues... and have devised some significant
improvements to the scheduling system! We value the input from
our attendees and have moved to improve things that didn't
work as well as we had planned. Please, someone whack me if I
don't answer responses on our forums "fast enough". ;)
As some of you may know, 2004 has been a challenging year for
the Snikt household, what with job searches, two events, babies,
job searches, consultant gigs and job searches. Well, the search
is over (hopefully for a few decades) and we'll be relocating
to Maryland. In fact, I am writing this a few days before I go
down solo - once again I'll reiterate my desire to get Legend
and possibly Ranger done over the next few weeks. This also means
that with a new dayjob, Paul DiGennaro will be taking over the
reins of ConChair for UberCon V. Please join me in welcoming him
to this grueling role and lend him a hand where possible! I'll
still be somewhere in the background cleaning toilets... ;)
Lastly, from my rl family and my extended mud family, may
your holidays and New Year bring you happiness and health for
you and yours!
Enhance your MUDding with Sound! by Kenji
Last time I ran a poll, about 90% of AVATAR players used a
client program with trigger support. Most of those programs,
such as ZMud (www.zuggsoft.com), Portal (www.gameaxle.com),
and TinyFugue (tf.tcp.com) offer support for sound files,
mostly .wavs and some .mp3s.
Ever since I heroed my first character, a Mage, I used two
sounds in my triggers. One was the typical BEEP function.
The sound I used for this sounds like Homer Simpson getting
electrocuted. (Think: bzzzz.... DOH!)
The other, which I always thought was very clever, was when
I was getting hit, using the message 'That Really did HURT'.
A simple 'oof!' sound sufficed for me.
But recently, I was thinking about the typical MUD vs. MMORPG
argument. Why are players willing to spend $20 per month for
Everquest or UO? Is it the flashy graphics, sounds and music?
There really isn't much I can do about graphics on a MUD.
Let's face it, part of the attraction of AVATAR is that our
imagination fills in the pictures. But the sounds and music?
That we can do.
The music is easy. Most of us have a few favorite playlists
to listen to when MUDding. I personally like movie sound-
tracks, such as the LoTR trilogy, Braveheart, etc. Other
players that I have spoken to like rock, rap, techno or
trance. Just pop in a good CD and start jamming.
The sounds require a bit of setup, but can be just as fun.
I personally use Portal as my client of choice. You can
group triggers together, so I created a group called SOUNDS.
Then, I can just turn on or off that group as desired.
I then went through and chose certain events to match sounds
to. Some of my personal favorites are; (Note: the * is a
'wildcard' to account for player names or other variables.)
* opens the *
You open *
You close *
You get * gold coi*
* weapons dance through the air!
* clatters to the ground!
* bellows in anger!
Some of these are pretty simple. I found sounds of a creaky
door opening and slamming shut, the sounds of two swords
clanging together, the sounds of a couple coins falling
into a coin jar, and even one of the monsters roaring
from DOOM II.
Other events that can be enhanced with great sounds include
portaling/teleporting, casting area spells, damage spells,
healing spells, bashing, tripping, etc.
I've found it rather fun to hunt around for useful wav files,
and even more fun to find events in the game that go well
In fact, as an Angel, I even have one now for when a player
is praying for help. It's a three second clip from a Tweety
Bird cartoon, where Tweety is screaming for help.
Kind of makes you wonder about us Angels, doesn't it? ;)
Two Recipes from Drenalone
Grandma Drenalone's Christmas Butter Cookies
Here's my grandma's recipe for Christmas butter cookies.
(Sorry, I don't know conversions, it's the American measuring
2 Cups butter
1 1/3 Cup sugar
2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
4-5 Cups of sifted flour
3 teaspoons of baking powder
Cream butter, add sugar and cream again. Add unbeaten eggs
and vanilla. Stir in flour sifted with baking powder and mix
well. Chill. Roll to 1/4 inch thickness on floured board or
pastry cloth. Cut out with fancy cutters; place on ungreased
cookiesheet. Bake in 350 degree (Fahrenheit) oven for 10-12
minutes. Ice with confectioners sugar mixed with milk and
some butter. Color icing and decorate as desired.
Thanks for allowing me to submit, hope you enjoy it. My
grandmother bakes these every year and they're soooo delicious.
Here's another recipe from the only Cajun on Avatar:
Chicken and Andouille (pronounced Andooee) Gumbo
1 4-6 lb stewing chicken(cut up)
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/8 teaspoon red pepper
1/2 Cup cooking oil
1/2 Cup flour
1 lg. onion (chopped)
1 lg Green pepper (chopped)
1 Cup chopped celery
1 clove garlic (minced)
3 quarts hot water
1 lb andouille or smoked sausage cut into 1/2 inch slices
2-3 Tablespoons of File` (ground sassafrass leaves)
Sprinkle chicken with peppers and 1 teaspoon salt. In
Dutch oven brown chicken on all sides in hot oil. Remove
chicken and set aside.
Add flour to pan drippings, scraping bottom of pan to loosen
crusty bits. Cook over medium heat to make roux. Add onion,
green pepper, green onions, celery, and garlic; cook and
stir over medium heat for 5-10 minutes or till tender.
Gradually stir in the water. Add the browned chicken.
Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer for 2 to
2 1/2 hours. Add sausage and 1 teaspoon of salt; simmer
20 to 30 minutes more. Remove from heat, skin off fat.
Stir in file`; let stand 5 minutes. Serve over rice.
Serves 8 people.
Into the Alien Hive by TPRFive
I was feeling brave one evening, 9 o'clock pm, Day of the
Great Gods, 19th Day in the month of the Forest. I can still
smell those smells, breathing in that damp air. I decided to
march out of the safe comforts that the Sanctum Guide
offered, and take on what is known as the Alien Hive.
I came in peace, although the guards of the queen didn't
seem to care. The place was crowded wall to wall with endless
amounts of aliens. As I started to get attacked, I summoned
an invisibility spell. Along with my trained skills as a
Rogue, I crept in silently.
It was mighty difficult to squeeze my Centaur figure though
the tunnel. I made it though, with speed of hoof and an alert
eye. I discovered several secret underground passages.
The tunnels never seemed to end. I pushed on, although I
felt very uneasy about it. I explored and explored, and
finally I met someone who wasn't quite so angry.
Gunther was his name, and I'll never forget it. He was there
with a few others, Jundrath, Fendrick, Stephanie, and Bolivar.
These were fascinating people, telling me stories of the
tunnels. They told me they don't see visitors that much, and
they enjoyed my company. I had to push on though, I felt
there was something else in this place.
After a quick nap, I headed out. A few quick jolts, and I
discovered what must have been the Apex of the triangle. I'd
heard rumors around local bars in Midgaard about this place.
I knew I was getting closer to the Queen. After hoofing my way
through a short tunnel I found her! It was really the Queen,
or was it? By the way she was acting I figured something
was wrong. She was blinding red, about three feet tall (not
what I pictured as the Queen at all). As soon as I started
conversation with her she wouldn't shut up!
She was complaining about the failure of the hive, about how
the food was running low, and the hive even turned to eating
the Red Consort! I suddenly realized how this can't be the
true Queen. Why am I not being attacked? Of Course! I quickly
ran out of that room before she even realized I was missing.
I bounced on down a few more tunnels, getting attacked every
which way. Running and moving as fast as I could. I was on a
mission and no guard of the queen was going to stop me. After
a few lost moments, I found another tunnel leading further
into the depths of this hive. The pit, the final tunnel,
call it as you may, this Rogue Centaur was shaking in his
This was it, scanning every time I could I discovered
something rather interesting. Red eyes, this must be her.
I wanted to see this beast face to face, so I had to cast
a spell; 'Burning Hands.' There she was in all her glory,
face to face with me. Let's just say I can describe her this
The Queen is a true monstrosity with triple jaws, a bony, black
head frill, and a spike on her tail about the size of your
thigh. She awakens from her meditations when you enter her
chamber, and nods to her guards to rip you apart.
That's all I caught, in fact that's all I had time to do. I got
a good lasting glance into her eyes, and teleported so quickly
to Sanctum he almost got knocked over! I apologized and ran to
my hiding spot, the upper room of the western wing. Ahhh, home
sweet home. Here is where I tell my story.
Many of these young mortals don't travel or journey like I do.
This realm isn't only specific to massive killings of Morte
Vallta, or the Great Divide. Get out and explore! This world
we know of consists of more than we can even fathom. That is,
of course, if you have the guts.
This is the new Avatar Gazette. It is published with the
permission and cooperation of the Avatar staff and edited by
Angel Kenji. (Original concept by Asamaro and Dizzy.)
The Gazette is written in plain vanilla ASCII text to ensure
that everyone can enjoy it regardless of computer type.
To subscribe to the Gazette, send internet e-mail to
email@example.com. In the body of your
subscribe username@hostname (MudName - RealName)
e.g. subscribe firstname.lastname@example.org (Snikt - Kevin Jagh)
Your real name is optional for the Gazette list.
e.g. subscribe email@example.com (Snikt)
If you have any questions, comments, suggestions, criticisms,
compliments, or (best of all) articles that you've written
for the Gazette, please send them to Kenji via my e-mail
address: firstname.lastname@example.org Please use 'Gazette' as your
You can also view the latest issue of the Gazette while
playing Avatar by typing 'help newgaz' anywhere in the game,
or on the design web site at
Original credit for Ascii art or other submissions is given