I posted a review years ago, so here's an update. The game world has expanded - it was always large, thousands of rooms. Now it's thousands more. Lots of areas to explore, mobs to kill, and to kill you, plenty of dynamic code. With the "forage" skill comes opportunities to find valuable artifacts, gemstones to sell or use, food, wood and on rare occasion, treasure (those would be loaded for specific reasons by staff). Some areas have closed - mainly the city of Tuluk, and Red Storm East, an outpost village that was never all that populated in the first place. The guild/subguild system has been completely reworked and is now a class/subclass (semantics). You can now specialize more efficiently, and be "really awesome at everything because you picked the right main and sub" less efficiently. This is intentional. The results are a mixed bag, I feel. The mundane classes are much better well-rounded, and I absolutely love the myriad of options now. The magick system has been split into subclasses, which I feel takes a lot away from the mystery and risk vs. reward of playing a mage in a world where magicks are considered dangerous, scary, suspect, and loathed. I enjoyed playing victim or minion or hunter to some of the more difficult mage roles, and I enjoyed the possibility that I'd be able to play them some day, myself.
The roleplay is still the core of this game. Inspired heavily by a combination of Dark Sun and the Dune novels by Frank Herbert, characters live in a post-apoc desert world where the fabled, legendary and never-seen Sorcerer-King rules the south and the equally legendary but (previously) sometimes-seen Sun King rules the north. Noble houses vie for their place in the heirarchy of politics, influence, and power, their minions doing their bidding (or not, and risking consequences). Commoners live their lives, some trying to rise in influence, some simply wanting to "get good" at making fancy things and selling them for lots of money. Some are hunters, who bring back raw materials and artifacts from elsewhere on behalf of clients. Some are raiders, who ride the trade route ready to rob those very hunters - whether by coersion or by force.
The player base is also a mixed bag. Some of the veterans who left years ago are returning after a haitus, and that means newer players will have a chance to interact with more folks who understand the depth of this game. I feel the best way to get these newer players deeply involved in interactions, is to show them how robust the RP can be. Some of them don't understand that their character being murdered can actually be a GOOD thing. Some don't understand that this isn't a PK-game, even though PK is allowable and not uncommon. If more folks who appreciated their character being influential enough to warrant an assassination attempt, would step up and demonstrate the benefits of this, I feel it would attract more new players to see how intricate and satisfying it can be.
Armageddon is not a "fair" "balanced" game, but it's not supposed to be. There are coded benefits to choosing certain options, and there are coded detriments. However, regardless of which way you choose, your character WILL die, eventually. No matter how buff your character is, no matter how rich they are, how well protected, how good at all things combat, or all things merchant, or all things rangerly - he will die. Skills and stats certainly do matter, but they don't mean a damned thing if you aren't into the RP of the character within the scope of the game world. This is enforced in part by the staff, in part by the playerbase, and in part by the code.
There is a whole lot more I can say on the plus side and the negative side, from code to players, but this is already a really long review.
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