Solar Eclipse is a mud with a great codebase that needs an influx of players badly. The big positive of the mud is that it has many very innovative mechanics and ideas driving it and is fun as a game on its own accord. The big negative is that currently we are suffering from a very small playerbase. Part of this is because the mud has undergone somewhat frequent admin changes and as a result the code stagnated for about a year or so. But, now that the staff has stabilized and work is being done again on the mud, more players would be wonderful.
Let me talk a little bit about the underlying game. There are eleven different classes: Warrior, Thief, Monk, Ranger, Paladin, Bladesinger, Necromancer, Bard, Mage, Warlock, and Templar. Of those, currently Warrior, Bladesinger, Thief, Ranger, Necromancer, Templar, Mage, Paladin and Bard have promotion classes available. Be forewarned though, the quest to promote is often quite difficult and will test your mind as well as your typing skills. As far as I understand the last two promos are already in the works and will be available relatively soon. Phoenix has made a real effort to distinguish the classes, and regardless of how many remorts you have been through, you will still find yourself using unique skills from all of the classes you have access to. I won't say that the classes are well balanced, as some are vastly superior to others, but they all have their uses and attractive skills.
The promotion classes themselves serve to further distinguish the classes. Usually, with promotion comes access to new and powerful spells or abilities. The abilities usually fall very close in line with what you would expect for the class. So the promoted ranger, a trainer, becomes more proficient in poaching body parts from his prey and also can train captured monsters to be his pets. A promoted mage gains the ability to cast spells as if he were much higher level than he currently is thus letting his buffs last longer and debuffs stick easier. They are all well thought out and serve to give your character a sense of uniqueness that might not otherwise be there after remorting several times.
The remort system is what really can drive you. Eventually, if you spend enough time, you can remort an eleventh time and thus have access to the spells and skills of every class. Character planning goes a long way here though and you can spend alot of time planning which path you want to take to achieve your final goal.
There are a ton of exclusive areas, and very few stock areas remain. I'm not a snob about stock areas, I've been mudding since the early 90s and I remember when some of those stock areas were new but I do accept the fact that the codes for muds have progressed a long way and that those areas certainly do not take advantage of all the features that are available now. In the areas on SE you will find no shortage of brainburners that force you to pay close attention to descriptions to work your way through them. On the other hand, there are plenty of brainless pure move and kill areas that you can use to level with little or no thought.
The other big positive about the base game on SE, is that there are so many original mechanics available to play with. There is a very intriguing capture system that works very similar to that found in final fantasy X. The promotion system and the related quests can occupy days as you fight and solve your way through the quests. New mechanics like poaching will keep things fresh as you exhaust the other possibilities. And this is a key point: the code is changing quickly. Phoenix is constantly coming up with, listening to, and implementing great new ideas for mechanics. So log on and see if you can come up with the next great one.
As of right now, there is no PK on SE. This is mainly because of the small player base. The code for clans is there, and if somebody wanted to make a clan, it would be available as far as I understand from conversations with the staff. It is limited PK in that only those who have chosen to clan or achieved a loner flag can be involved in fights. An active, interesting, and balanced PVP enviornment can only come with a larger playerbase. So if that is something that drives you, connect and bring a few friends with you. The nice thing though is that if PK is something that totally disinterests you, it is a feature that you are never required to participate in.
Early on in this review, I said that a big flaw with SE is the small player base. However, I think you will find that we are generally a friendly bunch and if you have a question, there will always be someone willing to answer if they can. Connect and send me a tell sometime.
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