New Worlds is my second foray into the world of LP Muds after my first had ended in boredom. I've since become a roleplayer and I've subsequently gone through several MUDs and evaluated their capacity for being able to foster a vibrant and ever changing environment that always keep players coming back for more.
There are some things that New Worlds do quite well. I like the variety of classes and the way that they're set up. At the time of this writing, there are the following classes: Warrior, Fighter, Rogue, Assassin, Mage, Shaman, Dark Cleric, Light Cleric, Druid, Trader, Thief, Retter, and Merchant. Each and every one has several unique abilities that allows a player's character to develop themselves in a believable and excellent way.
New Worlds also offers a variety of locales, there are two starting cities and several places to explore, and there is a working ship system that one would assume would give players the ability to search the ocean for hidden islands with all sorts of awesome goodies on them.
At its core, at least according to the staff, New Worlds is a roleplaying MUD. However, there are many things that hold it back in this regard. The staff often wants players to be the ones to generate roleplay, however, there are characters called INPCs who are in control of the cities that appear to be relied heavily upon when RP is generated by the players. This leads to issues such as a broken law system, should a law actually be broken, the players are unable to deal with this themselves and must wait for a staff member to be available to play a judge.
A large problem caused by this is that it's very difficult for players to organize their own events outside of beach parties and dances because of the lack of involvement of the staff with the in-game religions. There is a light religion, a neutral religion, and a dark religion. In most cases, these would be the source of great conflict, however, the gods don't actually -do- anything despite the threat in the help files. It's very difficult to cause any sort of religion conflict, because the only thing that determines whether or not anyone could win or lose is the levels of the followers, and if those followers lose, there's no actual divine retribution for failure because the god characters are simply non-existant.
Another gripe that I have with the game is a common one for most games. A great majority of the playerbase seems unable to take the setting seriously, including people elected to lead the many guilds that make up the game. An example of this is the current leader of the Mage's Guild, who ostensibly should be a paragon of good roleplay, but often spends his time cussing people out like an immature high schooler. This is not to say that all guild leaders are like this, but to me it feels like there should be a little more quality control when it comes to people who would be leading the game's roleplay.
Overall, the MUD is run well. The setting is well-developed and the staff does pay attention when there are bugs to be reported. The game does suffer from some bugs and if you're a roleplayer that enjoys hack and slash as well, you may find the gameplay to be rather slow. Other than the intense lack of detail of most to roleplay, the game is worth a play if you can find your niche, but I certainly hope that the possibility of staff members who devote their time to perhaps increasing roleplay in-game is considered.
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