Duris is a highly entertaining game. It offers a multitude of activities to participate in, all complex and thrilling. You can literally spend years learning this game and still only experience a fraction of what it has to offer. There is a diversity of class selections, quests, equipment, roll playing...the works. One of the most appealing aspects of this game is the full loot 2-sded racewar PvP style gameplay. If you can manage to kill your opponent, you get to loot and keep all of his hard earned equipment, no matter how difficult and time consuming it was to come by. For many, this can be a little intimidating, especially considering the amount of time it takes to build the perfect set, but I assure you that once you get to the point where you can play competitively in PvP, it is completely worth it. There is no better rush than hearing the death shriek of your opponent and stripping the spoiled from their cold corpse.
The world is absolutely huge and consistently offers obstacles to overcome. It definitely keeps you on your toes. The zones are also spanning and rewarding. Most of which require several of your fellow player's assistance to complete. This isn't a big issue because most people are eager to zone and build their character up.
There is a complex (not too complex) ship system that allows you to patrol the seas and includes things like ship fights (against players or pirates), doing cargo runs for treasures, upgrading your ship to become the most powerful vessels to be feared, or just plain traveling from continent to continent. One of my favorite aspects is the ability to board whatever ship you have sunk, which may be a player or pirates with treasure booties to collect once you have killed the scurvy dogs.
The game is very intense and very large, almost to the point where it can be overwhelming, but again, totally worth it if you can stick it out.
It is everything you would want from a mud. I have personally been playing it off and on for 18 years, it is the game I learned to mud on. I would classify myself as a middle-pack player. I have quite a bit of knowledge, can lead a variety of zones and quests and if left to my own devices could build a powerful character over enough time. Everyone surely knows me, which can be a good or bad thing.
Now, would I recommend someone new try out Duris? Sure, but only if you have the ability to play from work for 8 hours a day or are unemployed. While the mechanics are spectacular, the administrators have always taken a hard-nosed approach when it comes to tweaking difficulty levels. They honestly don't want players who aren't tough enough to hack through literally months and months of boring and difficult exp before you get to the point where the game is actually entertaining. Leveling from level 1-46 is truly mind numbingly boring, and is near impossible for someone new to accomplish solo. If you are lucky, you may be able to tag along once in a while with the experienced players and get a few levels here and there. Duris history has shown us that most new players get bored or frustrated very quickly when they attempt to learn or explore solo, mostly because it is nearly impossible to do so without having a huge amount of experience with the game already. If you have never played Duris before and log on for the first time, you will find that you will get stuck at level 20. If you decide to start exploring the game at that point, your experience will basically be you accidentally running into an area that instantly kills you. If you manage to find your way back, you will most likely die several more times trying to retrieve your corpse and lose your equipment and entire days worth of experience in the process.
Someone like me who has been playing this game for more than half of my life knows the game mechanics well enough to overcome most obstacles (but even then it becomes more frustrating than it is worth).
Again, the experience is awful. After level 25, you can kill mobs for literally hours and not gain an experience notch (10 exp notches per level) and then find yourself randomly dying to an unexpected mob and ending up with less exp than you started with hours before. Most players will encourage you to quest, but the locations that quests send you to are often difficult to find for new players and can easily result in your death if you don't know what you are approaching. Unless you are on a personal mission to conquer Duris and want to devote your every waking hour to it (which why would you do that for a game you've never played before), I would suggest going elsewhere until the administrators make things a little easier. We have picked up a handful of new players over the year, most of whom will be subject to scrutiny and scorn once they 'come of age' and can't perform at same the level as those who have been playing for a decade.
My final overview - if you enjoy a considerable challenge that requires a huge time investment, Duris is definitely the place for you. It is COMPLETELY worth it once you get to the top levels (level 51-56). However, if you are a casual player and only have a few hours a day to invest in a game, I suggest you continue on your search for something else.
My fellow players will not like this review, but it is completely honest and a shared sentiment by many of the players who have attempted to start playing in the current era.
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