With LOTJ I played sometime last year, got extremely disinterested and left. Then a friend who continued to play, asked me to come back and give it another shot, so I did. I am still quite disappointed with the MUD. The game does have some decent features, plenty of races, your good ole Star Wars type classes with some good, thought out and sometimes downright impressive skills. The game is also quite newbie friendly, as long as you understand that some things cannot be answered on the newbie channel if the answer consists of In-Character information.
It has a couple of quests beyond the 'give this box to (name)', but not too many (that I have found.) So with all of these grand skills and decent coding, what is the problem? The players, the RP and the character limitations that can be encountered. The staff, I have found to be helpful for the most part, every instance of where I legitimately used a request for assistance, I was properly assisted.
My number one and primary issue is character development. When I create a character, I expect to be able to play my character the way he is meant to be played. If I make an engineer, I expect him to be able to make and repair stuff. I expect a medic to be able to learn first aid and cybernetic installations. All of the above works perfectly well, but for their system for bounty hunters this does not work so well.
The bounty hunter system works great on paper, but then seems to die once put into action. You have hunter master, whom new hunters need to learn their skills from. But first you have to find them, then you have to hope they teach outside of their OOC groups. I've not experienced the refusal to teach, I have heard of it, and based on my experiences, I believe it; I have, however, experienced the inability to find a teacher.
I play my character as a hunter, I expect him to be able to get the skills of a hunter, not to have to spend over 4 IRL weeks roaming around hoping to magically find some teacher and then pretend that he has no experience whatsoever and needs a master to guide him in things he has already been doing, but just doesn't have the hard coded skills to back up.
Most of the RP I see, are arguments. At least once a day the IC channels seem to flare up with insults, arguments and IC anger. (Mind you this is in character, not players insulting players). The rest of the RP seems to happen within clans and organizations behind closed and locked doors.
There are however, once in a while, major RP events. Like the most recent was this explosive mold infestation. While I admit, this is a genius way of stirring things up, the problem was solved within approximately 72 hours. Players that have been there a while were instantly solving the problem, while some of us were still trying to figure out what is going on and how to interact with the whole situation. I still don't quite understand what RP went on to solve the problem. Most of it seems to have been done in a personal ship owned by one corporation, or in the base of another.
The RP on this game is not the type that sucks you in and carries you away like most real good RP would do. It seems more like the kind you have to find, force your way into and try not to get shot back out of it, or killed. Dead is an easy thing to get here, although people do seem to be a little less perm happy than the last time I was here. My first character lasted less than 3 hours from creation, all of my current chars have been alive at least a week.
At the time of this review, I am still playing, still trying to get somewhere with my characters. However, between the sitting around wondering where everyone is, and the running my head against the wall hoping to break through with progress on my character, I wouldn't be surprised to be finding myself leaving again, this time without coming back.
In all honesty, it has been a rather negative experience for me, but I have stuck it out because I do see the potential of this game. I see that there are staff that want to see it succeed and want the players to enjoy their time in the game, and deep down I am hoping for changes of my situation so I can discover the fun and have a place to stay and enjoy.
All in all, with the pros and cons of the game boiled down, I would say at least give LOTJ a try. Obviously not everyone has the same views as I do, otherwise there would not be a Pbase to speak of. There are staff that truly want to see you enjoying the game and that listen most of the time if you have something worthwhile to say. There is still a lot of room for improvement, and realistically I see them at least trying. Which is more than can be said for most MUDs.
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