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For the dragon of J. R. R. Tolkien's fiction, see Smaug.

SMAUG (Simulated Medieval Adventure Multi-User Game) is a Merc and DikuMUD derived MUD server.[1] Its name is a backronym inspired by the dragon Smaug found in J. R. R. Tolkien's fiction. The project was started in May 1994 by Derek Snider and in July 1994, Realms of Despair, was opened to the public.[2] In December 1996 the SMAUG source code was publicly released due to an earlier leak of the code and some areas.[3][4]

SmaugFUSS (Fixed Up SMAUG Source) is an ongoing project dedicated to finding and eliminating as many of the bugs in the stock SMAUG source code as possible in order to provide a cleaner and more stable base for new admins wanting to run a SMAUG MUD.

SMAUG has served as a base for the development of several other MUDs.


Over and above the features present in Merc 2.1, here is a list of some of the major features SMAUG includes out of the box:[5]

  • Online building - the ability to create and edit nearly every aspect of the game while online. This includes, but is not limited to creating rooms, objects, mobiles (NPCs), shops, message boards, mud programs (scripts) and even new spells.
  • The ability to damage, and repair equipment
  • NPCs that remember you, track you down, and can even summon you back with magic
  • Levers, switches, pull-chains, buttons and traps
  • Searchable hidden objects and doors
  • More flexibility to command syntax
  • Delayed teleport rooms, tunnels
  • Clans, pkilling, guilds, orders and councils
  • Revamped experience and skill/spell learning system
  • Private mail and comments on players
  • Automatic daily scheduled rebooting
  • Advanced immortal hierarchy
  • Complicated monsters with stats, attacks, defenses and body parts
  • Resistances, Immunities and Susceptibilities
  • Weapon proficiencies, Pipes and herb smoking
  • Full featured container commands... fill, empty, etc
  • Extra exits - ne, nw, se, sw and keyword exits
  • Special exit flags, floorless rooms (falling)
  • A new flexible spell system that allows online creation and editing
  • Object grouping, items hidden under other items, layered clothing
  • Player corpses are saved in case of crash or reboot
  • Projectiles, pets and mounts


  1. ^ "A Classification of MUDs, by Martin Keegan". 
  2. ^ "Bulletin board announcement for the opening of Realms of Despair". "Realms of Despair". Newsgroupalt.bbs.majorbbs. Usenet: 
  3. ^ Cowan, Andrew (2001-09-17). "MUD FAQ Part 4". Internet FAQ Archives. SMAUG: [...] History: The SMAUG code started out as a Merc2.1 MUD called "Realms of Despair" in 1994. It wasn't until 1996 that it was given its name, and the first public release wasn't until December of 1996. The interest in the code spread like wildfire, and within a few months and a few revisions there had been over 20,000 downloads of the distribution. 
  4. ^ "Raph Koster's Online World Timeline". 
  5. ^ "SMAUG Feature List". 

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