Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Linux Mud Clients Overview - TinTin++, KMud, Lyntin and KMuddy

Update 20.02.2009: I am using Tintin++. Because:
  1. It is Tintin++ compatible :)
  2. You can actually edit your scripts from your favourite text editor and then just reload it with one command - you don't have to create your 20-line aliases in command-line
  3. #split command provides quite good windowing possibility
  4. #prompt command provides powerful statistics possibility (it's possible to create multiline prompts, and dump everything you need there)
  5. You can do quite some window-work with screen or terminator
  6. You can use tintin++ over ssh (to workaround firewalls etc)

I've been using ZMud for quite a while. Now that I've moved to Linux (currently Kubuntu 8.04 Hardy Heron) as my primary and the only operating system, I've found myself in need of a good MUD client. Zmud runs out-of-the box on Wine, though it runs quite slow (especially settings windows) and stub-buggy (like RichEdit input box doesn't show the text you've inputted Update: to fix it, turn off spellchecker). It also likes to crash sometimes (that can be deadly).

So I've went on a path of finding a suitable Linux Mud client for me. My main criteries were:
  1. TinTin compatibility (given a fact I have plenty of scripts written already in ZMud, I would like to be able to export most of them, or at least port them with minimal effort)
  2. Ability to import scripts from other mud clients (would save me a lot of work if something could import ZMud scripts)
  3. Ability to export scripts — in case of next "migration"
  4. Script editing UI. I write quite complex scripts and often tune them in process. It will be a hell in a command line. (Yes, they are far more complex then stupid cfdisk /dev/hda && mkfs.xfs /dev/hda1 && mount /dev/hda1 /mnt/gentoo/ && chroot /mnt/gentoo/ && env-update && . /etc/profile && emerge sync && cd /usr/portage && scripts/bootsrap.sh && emerge system && emerge vim && vi /etc/fstab && emerge gentoo-dev-sources && cd /usr/src/linux && make menuconfig && make install modules_install && emerge gnome mozilla-firefox openoffice && emerge grub && cp /boot/grub/grub.conf.sample /boot/grub/grub.conf && vi /boot/grub/grub.conf && grub && init 6)
Clients I've reviewed so far:
  1. TinTin++
    This is one of the oldest mud clients, with scripting system that is now considered "standard" for mud clients.

    • 100% TinTin compatible :)

    • Totally console. No fancy buttons, gauges, mxp hyperlinks and stuff. And most importantly — no visual editing.
  2. KMud

    • Script editing UI

    • Not TinTin-compatible.
    • Unsupported. Last update — 6 years ago.
  3. Lyntin

    • Tintin compatible
    • Tk UI (limited to multiple output windows though)
    • Originally written in python so it easily accepts hot-swappable python plugins and extensions
    • Crossplatform
    • Supported and developed

    • No script editing UI
    • Pretty much console, even in it's "Tk" form — no buttons, gauges etc
  4. KMuddy

    • Script editing UI. Quite advanced, I must say — regexps, variable triggers etc.
    • Supported and developed
    • Graphical — buttons, gauges and stuff, yet with simple and nice layout.
    • Online-execution of external scripts

    • Not TinTin-compatible
    • Quite unpretentious scripting — probably not enough to implement everything you might want (for example, you can't create a new trigger from a trigger), plus stupid multiline constructions like /if ... /endif
    • Troublesome to write aliases that accept variable amount of parameters

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Greg said...

Typically you do not edit inside TinTin++, but instead you write your scripts using your favorite text editor, and use the #read command to load them. Another advantage of this method is that it allows indenting your scripts.

Cranked said...

Yup, I ended up using Tintin++ with it's #prompt possibilities and Terminator - giving me way better experience than ZMud.

Also, you can use Tintin++ over ssh.

It's a clear winner.

cryptr said...

TinyFugue is not here, you have lost my friend .)

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