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How MUD's Work

From the players’
point of view, the underlying mechanisms are of little or no interest. To them,
MUAs are environments where things happen. Players have ‘personae’, which exist
in a world elsewhere. The computer is their interface to this otherworld, carrying
out their orders and reporting back to them what has happened. MUAs are sprawling
landscapes, richly described, and you can try anything (within reason) that you
like.

– Richard Bartle, Interactive
Multi-User Computer Games
, Game Architecture, 21 Jan
1999.

MUD’s are designed around
a client/server architecture, where each server holds the data and rules that
make up that world, and a local client program interacts with the server across the Internet. The following subsections provide more information.