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Ashes to Ashes, Buffs to Buffs

·763 words·4 mins·
Nick Dumas
Table of Contents
aardwolf-adventures - This article is part of a series.
Part 1: This Article

Broad Strokes

This year I picked up Aardwolf, a free MUD ( Multi User Dungeon ), a now ancient form of gaming that takes place over Telnet.

The game is structured around a couple different gameplay loops, the most central of which is the remort and tier systems which allow you to reset your level and begin acquiring more skills at earlier levels respectively .

Equipment gets carried over between iterations of a character, so on a macro-scale the game is about collecting Quest Points to purchase gear and Wishes, special permanent character upgrades.

Gameplay on the micro-scale consists of traveling between Areas, which may or may not have some amount of public/secret goals/quests. Some goals are as simple as killing a number of target creatures, some can take days or weeks to complete as you gather components and complete tasks.

After a few weeks of play, I hit level 200, and then 201 as I Superhero’d. I’ve done a bunch of goals, a bunch of campaigns and quests, and I wanted to try to consolidate and share what I’m learning.


I learned really quickly that effective play requires is greatly aided by the use of plugins. Going into full usage examples is beyond the scope of this post, but are planned.


Above and beyond the most important. The world of Aardwolf is massive, spanning multiple continents and hundreds of discrete zones with their own complex internal, often non-Euclidian geometries. For the most part, it runs in the background quietly tracking which rooms connect to each other and most critically, what creatures have been seen where.


The core micro-gameplay loop consists of campaigns and quests, tasks that ask you to kill a certain number of specific targets throughout the world. snd ( search and destroy ) leverages the mapper’s room and mob data to assist you.

snd scans the output of cp check and similar to extract the rough location of each target. You can then use snd commands to leverage the mapper to auto-navigate to your destination area and then find your target.


Inventory management is a huge deal for me, so learning about dinv was a godsend. dinv will build a database of items held or carried and use that database to do things like:

  • automatically find and use a portal
  • use the mapper to navigate to a vendor which sells the highest level healing potion you can use and purchase a specific quantity
  • analyze your equipment and design an equipment set that optimizes your prioritized stats ( presets are available for all base classes )


the docs indicate that most of its utility is dedicated to helping deal with Enchanting. very cool but not something i’m specced into so I’ve put a pin in exploring this one

My Journey

I rolled a male Psion Navigator because I’ve always loved the flavor of these characters, and Navigator was the only one that sounded like it had interesting abilities. Psion ended up being a really convenient starter class. Very quickly on, you start getting get spells that allow you to fly, breathe under water, ignore food and water, and more.

This probably saved my run; if I had to manage buying and eating food for very long I don’t think I’d have kept at it because I hadn’t learned about dinv yet. I try to avoid consumables when I’m allowed, so the hassle would’ve turned me away most likely.

Another huge thing was joining the Boot clan. Immensely friendly people, and having a clan means having a morgue: your corpse returns to a safe location when you die saving you a LOT of trouble.

Guild knowledge went a long way to help me learn the fundamentals:

  1. Portals are your friend
    1. don’t forget to mapper cexit
  2. never forget your detects
  3. lots of doors exist and are accessible, simply not visible on first look
  4. learning the hunt trick (or using snd )

After graduating the Academy, I really just ground out those levels. Campaign level is tedious and slow, but it paid off. I scored around 8000 total Quest Points before remort. Extremely satisfied with that. I bought a Bag of Aardwolf, which is doing wonders for my carry capacity.

I didn’t spend any time at Hero or Superhero this run, I did not feel good fighting those high level mobs, so I decided to take it around one more time and work on my Global Quests so I can get promoted. Already knocked one out today, so it’s not far off.

aardwolf-adventures - This article is part of a series.
Part 1: This Article


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