The Adventurer's Guide to Discworld MUD

Aliases

Now that we have disposed of the crucial subjects of what to wear and how to obtain funds, let's have a look at streamlining the process of getting around the MUD.

No, I don't mean more stylish ways of travelling from A to B - I mean aliases.

What is an Alias?

An alias is a command which executes a series of commands. It can be as short as one character, and it can execute as many commands as you like, as long as they are separated by semi-colons (;). Wildcards are represented by the star symbol flanked by dollar symbols: $*$.

A Helpful Example

So, you're wandering the stalls in the Goosegate market, when suddenly night falls and the world is littered with objects you can't make out. Some of them are people. Some of them may be carrying pointy items, and some of them may be about to make off with the purse you can no longer identify in the dark.

Swift action is clearly required.

Quickly you make your moves:

get ring from pack
You get a yellow stone ring from a pocket in the canvas backpack.
> 
wear ring
You are already wearing the silver ring.
> 
wear ring 2
A soft yellow glow spreads out from your middle to envelop you.
You wear a yellow stone ring.
>
look
>
A barrel chested outlaw is standing here.
> The barrel chested outlaw moves aggressively towards you!
Oh dearie me. You need to move a bit faster, and with more accuracy, or you're facing certain doom.

For this particular circumstance, I use the alias wyr.

The word "wyr" is simply the abbreviated acronym of "wear yellow stone ring". And when I type "wyr", I want it to perform three actions:

  1. retrieve my yellow stone light ring from my pack
  2. add it to the list of items I'm wearing
  3. give me a look at my immediate surroundings.

To do this, I type in the command alias, followed by the name of the alias, in this case "wyr"; and then the three commands, separated by semi-colons (;). And then I press Return1.

Like so:

alias wyr get yellow stone ring from pack; wear yellow stone ring; look
As soon as I've pressed Return, the game tells me:
Added alias "wyr".
Now when I'm in the dark, all I need do is type wyr, and illumination is mine. Lovely! (And then I can run away before I get spotted by any wandering bandits...)

Other Useful Aliases

A brief list of my aliases, and what they do. NB: As described above, the $*$ characters mean that when you use this alias, you'll be qualifying it with an extra word. For example, 0 bandit is the same as consider bandit, and pp book means put book in pack.

Final Words on Aliases

Discworld MUD help files: http://discworld.atuin.net/lpc/playing/documentation.c?path=/helpdir/alias

There are a number of modifiers which can make an alias very powerful, and considerably speed up mundane tasks like getting things from your pack or arming yourself.

The above helpfile provides a very comprehensive introduction and tutorial, so give it a good read. In addition, Wallsy's Index of Alias Syntax - http://mathew.walls.googlepages.com/aliases.html - provides an excellent syntax reference.

I have to admit, however, that useful though they are, I only use a handful of basic aliases because (a) as an Adventurer, I don't need that many, and (b) I feel more confused every time I read the helpfile.

So I shan't bore you any further with my limited array of aliases, and refer you instead to Pendrake's excellent practical guide here: Aliases.

NEXT: Talkers
BACK: Banks

  1. It is possible to create an alias that does absolutely nothing at all, simply by pressing Return before you've finished typing in all the commands you wish it to execute. One may find this tedious and annoying, so try to avoid doing it.