I can only assume that an individual asking such a question is not overly familiar with mud programming (or any programming for that matter). If that is the case you should most certainly try your hand at modifying existing codebases or at least familiarize yourself with how they are made/designed before attempting to make your own from scratch. If you are interesting in programming your mud using C++ I believe there is a port of Merc in the repository (Murk++?) that might be helpful. Also keep in mind that you can use interpreted languages like Python and Ruby to design a new mud codebase. TeensyMUD and Rocketmud are both excellent starting points for Ruby muds. Also, if you prefer python you could check out Nakedmud, which is an excellent codebase.
You want to be using the Windows Console Application, but as Chris said it's probably correct to assume that you aren't overly familiar with the environment yet. You probably want to learn your way around simple "hello world" applications, learn C++, learn MSVC++, and only later try to write your own MUD.
What exactly are you trying to do? There are lots of codebases that run on Windows, some requiring Cygwin and others not. If you just want to run a MUD, you might not even need to touch MSVC++.