Ages of Despair was the first mud I ever played, and I used to love it there. The mud had a very friendly player base and the look and feel is really nice. However there are some very serious downsides to it.
First of all there are a lot of bugs in AoD, as a new player or someone who solos the whole time you probably won't notice this so much since especially bigger mobs are filled with bugs and a bug on a big mob has a much higher chance to be lethal, causing complete party wipes.
Some of the bugs: re-enter-bug after dying or going linkdead (admins said it was a bug in April, in august they made a help file in which they said they didn't know how to solve it and called it a 'feature'), stun-bug (stun
protection who don't give 100 percent resistance like the help file says), pk-island where your own guards get aggro against you and kill you, bugged potions, greater demon bug,...
The bugs are so widely spread on AoD and stay so long that they even get
Balance is another weak point of AoD, almost all mobs over 2m exp have a spell called greater demon. This spell makes up to 3 demons who assist the mob you're trying to kill and they all cast acid rain, which is a spell which does 800 hp damage on second row (the demons can to this spell simultaneous). If you know that the best spellcasters use a 3 round spell and that
spellcasters/healers (which stand on 2nd or 3rd row) with maxxed stats on con and with a health bless from the best healers can get around 2000 hp, you'll see that you just can't kill those mobs (melee combat of paladins, the only guild who can tank such big mobs is worthless).
AoD is a mud where you can multiguild and multiguild, but there are restrictions on it. The only restrictions that are mentioned in the help files are the ones where another guild is completely forbidden. However there are a lot of guilds where you can join another guild but only get to a certain level in that other guild. Those restrictions are never mentioned (only exception is cleric who does mentions the restriction to psi), causing reincarnations where players who just get stuck cause they can't advance anymore. When this happens they claim it is your own fault and you are not granted a free reinc (reinc
means 10 percent lose of your total exp and for a higher player often over 1m gold coins for advancing levels and stats).
About Law, it only seems to work for some players on AoD. I mailed law 4 times for different things and I never even got an answer of them, one of those was about harassment which imo is a very serious offence (which they also tell in their rules).
About a month ago I was nuked on AoD together with around 20 other players (mostly highbie players who played there a lot and also 6 wizards) for reasons I still don't know. The simple fact is that they never even talked to
me or anything, one morning I just found out that I was nuked and sitebanned along with several other. Later I heard from friends who weren't nuked there that they made a post in which they claimed that we tried to hack and take over
the mud and they had 100 percent proof of it. Only... when anyone asked to see that proof there were asked if they didn't trusted the admins and never showed any proof. Neither do they mention that some of the people who got nuked hadn't even logged in there for over a month.
I never hacked, tried to hack or harm AoD in any way (I wouldn't even know how you have to hack a computer), but the fact is that I can't proof things I didn't do. It's just the word of 20 nuked people against that of the admins.