Online Text RPGs: How I Got Into Them

Online RPG MUDs

By Christopher K. Davis

When I was younger, I got into video games and instantly felt drawn in by the role playing genre. I played select titles from the Final Fantasy series, Chrono Trigger, Shadow Hearts, Zelda, and Suikoden, as well as many more. No other type of game could give me as much enjoyment. I vividly remember playing Final Fantasy VII over and over again, beating it multiple times and completing specific side quests. Until one day, when I saw a friend playing a MUD and asked her what that game was. I sat in the chair next to her, and read along while she explained what was happening, and about her character. She always loved elves, but I was more interested in humans and dwarves.

Eventually I grew tired of playing console games, and I remembered back to when I watched my friend play that strange text-based game. Since I loved reading, I got the idea in my head to search for a text-based game of my own to play.

At first I played through a few games that did not hold my attention for very long, but eventually I found - and completely fell in love with - Iron Realms Entertainment's Achaea. From the very beginning of your journey, you can just tell that the world you're in is rich with history; I was impressed just by the newbie tour which is intended to introduce to the basic commands of the text game. The beginning sequence is grabbing; your character witnesses a friend getting cut down by a goblin right in front of you.

The depth and the sheer amount of choices available for your character was flabbergasting at first. I could not get enough of the game, playing hours and hours while trying out various classes and races. My character was in the Paladins, which really introduced me to the philosophy of an important faction in the game, the Light of Good. I was better able to learn about the game-specific conflict by being on one of the two sides most polarizing teams. Completing requirements per my specific rank was also fun and challenging. I learned about various histories, how to defend myself, and even the game economy.

As I played and learned, I introduced Achaea to other friends. Immersing myself into the game world also helped me develop a better understanding of proper role play. It helped me develop a larger vocabulary, type faster, and invest in my character to the point where I really enjoyed just watching his journey. For the amount of time you can put into a game like Achaea, you really can get back so much more in terms of enjoyment and success.

As I gained levels, knowledge, and got to know the world around me, things became simpler over time. Although the learning curve can be steep, I eventually learned the strategy and skills of my class; fighting monsters was fun, but fighting adventurers and feeling the rush of a kill was even more of a high.

Text-based games are the type of gaming experience that have you constantly craving more, and coming back even when you thought you had finished. There is so much to do that playing never gets boring or old unless you let it.

\The best advice I can give is to help and introduce other players to text games, so they can feel the same excitement you felt when you first started.

If you would like to try out some great online text-based games, check out these text-based RPGs.

Christopher K. Davis is a text game enthusiast and currently plays games from
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I got into IronRealms games more or less the same way, watching a friend playing it, and i must agree on a high level, that What IronRealms put up in Muds is simply just 500% better than any other Mud i have tried. Its much more orginized than most of the others, which is properly also the reason to why so many people stick to IronRealms :) And a really great review of Achaea, haven't really played that Mud myself, more Imperian/Aetolia fan myself :) 

Saw a link on nuklearpower.

Nice job fraudulently using copyrighted artwork from Etrian Odyssey to promote your game.

Your intro about all those wonderous classics got me so nostalgic!


Oh nostalgia :D


Interesting post.



I think so too!

Pretty much the same way, once I found Achaea. I can't see myself playing anywhere else nearly with the same motivation. 

Girl I dated was into them.

brother played achaea.  he had a friend who did..dunno how they started

My friend was always 'busy' playing Achaea. One day he decided to drop me the link and I got hooked immediately. Unfortunately we were in different cities. Eventually, we both moved to Lusternia when it opened since credits were a fraction of the cost that they are now. XD

I've been playing text-based games ever since I was quite young, I still remember playing games like Zork and Wumpus Hunter (Never did catch that blasted creature...)

i was originally introduced via a friend who was an immortal in a very little mud. a friend i larped with mentioned achaea to me, though it would be several years before i started Achaea. from that point. but the moment i typed my first command in that long ago mud, i was hooked.

A friend told me about it. I got back in because I needed something that would sound like I was working on papers but was actually fun.

Always a friend!

I started playing RPG VG on C64, the so called adventures (without a big deal of success). Then The Bard's Tale and all the rest (including FF VII, which still remain unmatched as a console RPG). I discovered the MUDs just recently, because of a friend of mine eho used to play a famous Italian MUD. I had no idea of what he was talking about even if I could follow what he was saying (spells, potions etc...). Somehow the MUD were not in my considerable VG career. I browsed the web and discovered IRE, and Achaea. I do not know about IRE MUDs but this is the most rewardimg gaming experience on the planet. 





Read a webcomic, saw the link...I liked tabletop as is, this seemed like a neat way to continue it. Haven't regretted it since.

remember how I got into IRE games. I think I tried Achea first then I saw Lusterina and tried and got hooked

Achaea was like 5+ years ahead of Lusternia ^^


I was bored and I clicked on a banner ad. I didn't even know it was text-based till after I clicked.

I had used to have a lot of time on my hands and got into Achaea. Now I don't have a lot of time on my hands, and still spend it on Achaea. Figures.

I would definitely have a lot more time if I didn't play Achaea. Can't see that happening.

Through my father. He played a game called Dragonstone, and thats how I got into it. After a while I started to search through for another one and came across Lusty. Sadly I tried quitting both for a while and it didn't work out. So now I'm back to both :D

if i could find a place like that in the pic above, i'd be a happy camper.



I started playing MUDs back in the late 80s and early 90s.  Back then, they were pretty much nomadic, moving from college server to college server.  See, students hijacked bandwith and ran their games.  Which were pretty good, too. 

I had a bunch of friends who played Achaea in 8th grade (lolz), none of which play any more, and that got me into it at the time - I by far became the biggest fan though, most of those friends became total japanophiles and LARPers (not that there's anything wrong with that, I just stayed with the text versions!) and here I still am... like 10 years later. Annnnnd now I feel old.

I was introdued at 15 by a friend of mine, and fell in love with it after immersing myself. I was able to have everything there that I didn't in real life, and was a good substitute for me until I was able to do have it IRL

Bound Credit

I wanted to learn more about ubuntu, programming and prompt control, so.. I stumbled on Mudlet, found Achaea and got stuck

I got into it cause of a friend, but I got stuck as other old muds got the slay command and such, it's very boring and just luck. I love that Achaea got all the abilities and a fun way to fight and hunt and such.

I got into it cause of a friend, but I got stuck as other old muds got the slay command and such, it's very boring and just luck. I love that Achaea got all the abilities and a fun way to fight and hunt and such.

So after laughing at him I became curious and had a look. 

Saw MUD mentioned on one of the forums as an interactive fantasy game, got curious and found Achaea. I don't think I would be interested if it was described as a 'text' game.