Someone on TMS has been getting stick for their ad offering to pay $100 for a coder for their new MUD, so as a public service I’ve put together this handy list of dos and don’ts when looking for a coder.
Do have a design written out. It doesn’t have to be a formal design document, but you need a clear written plan of the features you want to have.
Do be willing to compromise. Anyone coding will want to work with you to make a game, not simply implement everything exactly your way.
Do create as much content as you can. Even if you’re waiting for a coder before choosing a codebase you can still write out descriptions, help files, ability and spell messages etc.
Don’t use words like “hire” and “work” in your advert unless you are actually hiring someone for a job of work and offering to pay the market rate.
Don’t be secretive or talk about people stealing your ideas. This is a big red flag that you don’t know what you’re doing.
The single biggest factor for me in deciding if I want to get involved in a project is whether I think the other person is capable of delivering their end. If you’ve got a solid design and plenty of content already put together then that shows me that you’re serious and that we have a good chance of launching a game.
Too often you see people hawking their ideas around MUD forums months or even years apart and still they have nothing to show for it. You don’t need to wait until you have a coder to plan out your design and build your content, and if you do that you will greatly increase your chances of finding someone to work with.