I did a search and found lots of very specific client advice (scripts, html5 help, etc.) but nothing really about people's preferred methods of play generally.
Apologies in advance if this has been done to death and my search-fu has failed me.
Personally I have been playing completely "naked"...... in a virtual console.
With the HTML5 update just released I am looking at the alternatives, but I like the full screen, no distractions aspect of the terminal. There are no other tabs or notifications drawing me away. It's just a black screen with text. Within a few minutes I'm immersed.
Sooooo - how do you guys/gals play?
I'd also like to hear what people like and don't like about the various options, ie: terminal vs client vs html
Theoretically I'd love to be able to use the html5 client on my mobile, but I haven't figured how to keep android Opera client from refreshing the window (and thus disconnecting me) every time I minimize the window.
And you won't understand the cause of your grief...
...But you'll always follow the voices beneath.
Just right-click in it and start unchecking things.
Yea, that one!
Later, when I started wanting to use scripts, I would occasionally switch to MUSHclient (and zMUD even later) for a little while; for example, switching to MUSHclient just long enough to automatically inscribe a big batch of tarot cards, then going back to java for actually playing, or switching to zMUD to use a fishing script (after a couple bugs that made fully manual fishing practical were fixed). I didn't do this very often though, I still used the java client 95% of the time.
The first step towards the current style of complex browser-based clients was called Nexus. It had fancier artwork and more complex (though still pretty limited) scripting. In fact, it seems it's still available (http://achaea.com/nexus/), but back then it didn't have any of the stuff on the right side (the character stats and all the other tabs), the most complex part of the GUI was the compass that displays the available exits and can be clicked to move. For whatever reason, I absolutely hated it, and would have simply stopped playing Achaea if I didn't already know about 3rd party clients (the old java client was actually still available if you knew the URL, so I continued to use that for a while, but it was eventually removed entirely so Nexus was the only official client available).
I also disliked zMUD back then, but it was better than the alternatives, so that's what I switched to. There were a lot of free scripts available for zMUD, so I started using them, then fixing bugs in them, then making changes to them, then learning the language and actually writing scripts myself. From there, scripting became one of the main things I enjoyed about Achaea, a big part of why I've been playing for 12+ years.
As for what I like and dislike about the various options: I also prefer minimalism when it comes to the UI, for most of the time I've been playing my screen pretty much just looked like this, barely more complex than a terminal window (though I did end up adding some health/mana/endurance/willpower gauges at the bottom, since I'd gotten accustomed to them from the java client).
When ships were released though, a separate window showing the ocean map and various other information became pretty vital, there was no way I could follow a huge map that took up most of the screen the screen scrolling by every second or two, and I definitely couldn't read any other text at the same time, or keep track of the information in the ship prompt. So I made a status window off to the side (it was just empty, wasted space anyways, with the text being wrapped so it only took up about 2/3 the width of the screen), like this. Later on, during the massive spam of a world event, I quickly whipped up a channel capture script for the same reason (being able to follow what's going on when there's too much spam to see normally). Being able to do something like that makes a massive difference in usability, no matter how much I prefer a plain, unadorned window.
GUI aside, as I said scripting is a big part of Achaea for me. My current system for Sena alone (alts are separate) is about 5000 lines or about 552 KB of text, and that's with me actively trimming out old scripts I don't need at the moment so it doesn't get cluttered, which means that almost all of it is stuff that I use reasonably often. Almost every time I play for a significant length of time I end up tinkering with some script at some point, and I often spend more time working on scripts than actually playing. The HTML5 client has developed enough that I can do a similar level of scripting, but it's not user-friendly enough that I can take 10-15 seconds in the middle of a fight to quickly fix bugs or make some small changes to a script. While I got by for the first couple years just fine without any scripting beyond a handful of name highlights (which I had to keep turned off, and only turn them on for a moment while checking qw, since just a few name highlights was enough to slow down the java client a lot), I couldn't really enjoy playing without any scripts at this point. It's extremely nice to know that, if I run into some usability problem in the game or don't like how something works, there's a good chance I can improve it myself.
The HTML5 client has some advantages over 3rd party clients as well, such as being browser-based and having scripts stored online so I could play just fine from any computer with a modern browser, and coming with useful features like channel and map windows without having to implement them myself.
See how clever they are! I tried to go back and find a picture of my first mudlet GUI Kaelyn helped me build but imgshack won't let me access it
This was my mock up of an Alchemist GUI for a touchscreen. Unfortunately I don't have the coding know-how to make it and shortly after commisioning it I changed class anyway.
Paying around with the colouring of the Homunculus. White skin = Corruption up, Open mouth = Shriek, FLanes represent the prime influencing them. Clothing is just to see what looked best.
I will definitely mess with Mudlet and maybe move on to the HTML if I get stuck...
One of the symptoms of an approaching nervous breakdown is the belief that one's work is terribly important
i have a pretty nice setup in mudlet, too.
I always have to replace all the keys except for "c", "f", and "h". This is why I might as well just sit down and die in any given situation.