The History of TooMUSH
according to Tangent

In August of 1992 Edmond Meinfelder began his new job as a scientific programmer at the National Radio Astronomy Observatory in Green Bank, West Virginia. To say the least, moving from the DC metropolitan area to an extremely rural location in the mountains of West Virginia was a big change. Without the usual distractions of civilization, our hero had an extremely large amount of time on his hands. [ That is to say, he had no life. ]

He began NarniaMUSH to occupy his time and try out some ideas. It worked. However, he wanted NarniaMUSH to be an excellent role-playing MUSH, yet all the wizards insisted on talking about PernMUSH (all had originally met on PernMUSH) while on NarniaMUSH. This was annoying. But what to do? This group of friends wanted to be together and discuss topics of mutual interest (usually PernMUSH). This ruined the fantasy setting. Edmond copied the entire NarniaMUSH game directory (database and all) and then created TooMUSH (in about 5 minutes) sometime in October of 1991. This explains why the Mousetrap Tavern existed on both TooMUSH I, TooMUSH ][ and NarniaMUSH.

At first, TooMUSH was designated just a playground with no real purpose. Just a place for the NarniaMUSH wizards to go (and perhaps talk about Pern). Fluff (also known as Amberyl) informed Edmond of the need for a refuge. A MUD for when your MUD was down, and in general, a place to talk. Edmond agreed and thus advertised TooMUSH as such a place.

October ('92) to April ('93) was a slow time. TooMUSH was in the maturation period that is common too all new MUDs. April marked a turning point. PernMUSH was having severe lag and crashing regularly. Many began to use TooMUSH as a refuge. As some found themselves on Too every now and again, they got used to it, and stayed. TooMUSH gained a regular group of players.

In the late spring of 1992, Nicky (known as Jellan on PernMUSH), offered his services to provide TooMUSH with new type of MUSH, called TinyMUSH 2.1. It was innovative, using many ideas from UnterMud, but suffered from many bugs. Nicky had no time to support it and TooMUSH slowly lost its player base. With Nicky absent, it was decided to return to the last saved TooMUSH 2.0 database. Because the rollback was large, it was also decided that the name should reflect the change as a warning. TooMUSH became TooMUSH ][.

In November of 1993, the TooMUSH ][ database was declared annoying. It was time for a change. The TooMUSH ][ database was mothballed and everyone packed up their things went over to TooMUSH III. Why?

Tangent (previously known as Jerrod on TooMUSH I & ][) simply could not get emotionally attached to a database full of junk. Too had, along the way, gained some junk.

It is now known as TooMUSH III. On a busy day it will see over 50 players at one time, qualifying Too as a small-to-medium sized mud in terms of a player-base. In terms of a database, it will always be very small. TinyMUSH 2.0 as maintained by Evinar and the rag tag group known only as "The Mushhacks", sees innovations that makes the latest code obsolescent every few months. Also, a large MUSH is usually a large headache. People frequent Too to get away from their problems, not to create new ones. To minimize problems, the database is restarted at regular intervals.

At first the wizards of TooMUSH were simply the wizards of NarniaMUSH under different aliases. They were: Jerrod (Coriakin), Anastasia (Emma), Amberyl (Amberyl), Christian (Ramandu), Marianne (White_Witch), Count Duckula (Tash). This arrangement was not to last.

First, in the period between April to October, only Jerrod, Anastasia, Kynn, Tanaka and Ehlrick were on-line with any frequency. As Kynn was a master with mush-code and could make Jerrod laugh, Jerrod gave him a bit. Ehlrick was also talented with MUSH, thus he too gained a bit. Tanaka had no talent, but was having fun building a world with many friends. Jerrod, not one to break a habit, also gave him a wizard bit. Thus begun the start of an alarming trend on Jerrod's part.

It seemed that anyone who even looked at Jerrod a certain way gained administrative powers. In fact, it still seems that way. The reality is that Jerrod (now Tangent), does always have a reason for who he chooses to be a Wizard of TooMUSH. Perhaps the reason is not always a good one, but there is one. "Cheap labor," is a quote you will often hear the God of TooMUSH utter upon bestowing a wizard bit.

Jerrod then gave wizard bits to: Evinar, Smoke, Felan, Moonchilde, Spork, Random, Elora, Fire, Tenzil, Nicky, Garrett, Moira, Frog and Air. Evinar was given a bit in the hopes he would take care of the server one day (it took a year, but it happened!). Nicky got a bit to help with the server during the TinyMUSH 2.1 experiment. Garrett gained his bit in a contest to see who could correctly guess Jerrod's underwear (it was black w/ green paisley). Frog and Air were helpful with the globals and thus each gained a bit. The rest all helped in some way. Sadly, Jerrod learned the hard way that nice people do not always make good wizards, so there were some casualties as well.

The first major loss was Anastasia. She was Jerrod's SO at the time. One night when Jerrod's ex-SO, Kristin Lee, logged in, Anastasia became enraged with anger and jealousy. She asserted that TooMUSH was her mush and that Kristin Lee was not welcome. The majority of the people present disagreed and fled with Kristin Lee to another location. Anastasia shutdown the MUSH, presumably out of frustration. Jerrod dewizzed Anastasia, broke up with her, and continued on with his life. All-in-all, a dark page in Too's history.

Tanaka made a wiz-inherit object with a huge security hole. One of his "friends" took advantage of it to destroy #0. This was one of the few times Too ever had to restore a backup database. Tanaka lost his wizbit and was never seen from again. Rumor has it that he fled to ApexMUSH, vowing that vengeance will be his one day.

Ehlrick made the controversial +lobber global. It would lob any number of people across the MUSH to a random JUMP_OK room after they were visibly led to a curious spot on the ground (giving the victim a chance to flee). Every time it was activated, it created an object called "spring". The database increased by almost 25% before this was found. Ehlrick also lost his bit. To his credit, he still hangs out on TooMUSH and enjoys himself.

Count Duckula resigned when Fire was given a wiz bit. Christian and Moonchilde stepped down due to inactivity during the switch over to TooMUSH III. The lineup today, on TooMUSH III is Air, Elora, Evinar, Felan, Fluff, Fire, Marc Spencer, Moira, Nicky, Smoke, Spork, Tangent, Tenzil, and Kynn. Jerrod changed his name to Tangent. Random changed his name to Marc Spencer. Both Fire and Kynn change their names as frequently as most people change their underwear.

TooMUSH III still provides a home for Displaced Mudders, but it has filled a new niche as well. Two popular hangouts have evolved, The Main Bar of the Abyss, and The Sphere. They have each become minor centers of role-playing coordination for PernMUSH and AmberMUSH respectively as well general areas of conversation, not unlike that which you might find in a pub.

TooMUSH is, and will most likely remain, a paradox in its (minor) success. It retains a modicum of popularity for the exact opposite reason many other MUDS are popular. To put it simply, there is almost nothing to do. No dragons to slay, no treasure to find, no exciting tales to lose oneself in. Nothing. I am certain it is this void that creates a relaxed atmosphere. A place where no one expects you to do anything. A place where there really is not much to see. Just the company of some friends, and the conversation that you help create.

I would love to claim the credit for the brilliant idea that makes TooMUSH what it is, but it all happened by mistake. By this I mean that TooMUSH is a pleasant place despite my efforts to make it enjoyable.

Tangent (aliases: Jerrod, Alaric, Perfect Tommy, and Edmond)
June 10, 1994

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Last modified: Thu Aug 31 16:48:48 -0700 1995