The name "Duris, Land of Bloodlust" says it all. This mud is probably one of the most successfull muds to date since its creation in the mid 1990's. Why? To put it simply, it has the nasty tendency to make you jump out of your seat when you least expect it.
The theme of duris is a three way war of the races with each unique racewar side uniquely tailored to fit your "role-playing" tastes. "Good" aligned races make up the bulk of the newer players which provide this racewar side with a numbers advantage and simpler, somewhat player friendly environment. By comparison the "Evil" and "Undead" racewar sides experience more hardships and consequently are played by more experienced players. All sides have a wide variety of unique race and class options..in fact a quick list of these will give you an idea of the diversity of this game:
Good Races: Storm Giant, Barbarian, Centaur, Human, Dwarf, Half-Elf, Grey Elf, Gnome, Halfling, Thri-kreen
Evil Races: Ogre, Troll, Githyanki, Orc, Duergar Dwarf, Drow Elf, Goblin, Thri-kreen
Undead Races: Wight, Revenant, Phantom, Vampire, Shadow Beast, Lich, Shade, Death Knight
Class options are based upon the race and racewar side that you choose and include the following:
Hitter: Warrior, Mercenary, Paladin, Anti-Paladin, Reaver, Ranger, Monk, Berserker, Dreadlord
Rogue: Assassin, Thief, Bard
Clerical: Cleric, Druid, Shaman, Warlock
Caster: Sorcerer, Necromancer, Conjurer, Illusionist, Alchemist
The mud features up to 56 levels. The first 50 are attained by gaining experience via zoning, fragging (pkilling), quests. 51-56 are attained one at a time by doing "potion zones" which require a strong organized group to complete. 1-50 experience is not difficult once you have played the game a bit. The idea is to get you into the action of the game as soon as possible so that you can compete with the other opposing racewar sides for "frags". 51-56 potion zones are long, however they can provide immense gratification from either recieving a potion and the accompanying top notch equipment in the zone or slaying opposing racewar sides within the potion zone as any of sides makes a potion attempt.
Ability to succeed in the game is very dependant on two things, levels and eq. The duris "map" is quite large with 5 major continents and a number of lesser continents/islands. There are more zones in the game then you will probably ever get to do, and the room count is a ridiclous number way over the million mark. Yet, the way the game is designed there are a number of excellent methods of getting around so that you dont feel lost.
The sheer size of this game makes it quite interesting in terms of racewar battles, because they can occur anywhere, anytime with any number of players involved. This is where the "dammit I think I soiled myself" aspect enters into the game. As a player you are free to attack anyone regardless of racewar side just about anywhere. There is no such thing as a safe room, although your guildhall can be a temporary haven from the opposing racewar side. The beauty of pkill on this mud is that the players enforce who dominates and who dies, not the code.
The equipment in this game, is exciting to say the least. Duris has maintained a firm grip on thematic content within the game, so you will not see silly names on equipment or zones, and the ansi is stellar. Equipment can provide a wide variety of character enhancements, including effects that would normally only be attainable if you were playing a different class, or racewar side. Balancing equipment properly in this game is key to having a strong character. In addition there are a number of unique "Artifacts" which can provide your character with unique enhancements until you lose the "Artifact". All "Artifact" items must be "fed" on the blood of an opposing enemy race within 10 levels of yourself within a four day period, otherwise the "Artifact" will "poof" at is spawning point. In addition you will get your name listed on the "Artifact" list (if it matters to you). Here is the current artifact list for you to get a glimpse:
Daqill the orb of the sea
Duac the unholy avenger named 'Bloodlust'
Lac SunBlade the two-handed sword of Justice
Ippo the mystical warhammer of the barbarian kings
Lur staff of blue flames
Daqill a cloak of Elvenkind
Iat the sphere of wind
Kymazz Lyrical Instrument of Time
Duac the platemail of the DragonLord
Straker the sword of fire and flame
Zulor the sword of light and darkness
Noob A God Stone
Ayaki Avernus the life stealer
Lom Doombringer the sword of chaos
Hitokiri Tiamat's poison tail stinger
Daqill the Living Necroplasm
Grubner the holy mace of the effreeti
Azcre Tsunami, the trident of storms
Iruzl a blood red sword named 'Death Rider'
Keslor the Rod of Dispator
Hitokiri a pair of pale, misty gloves
Sais the mace of the earth
Gitji Tendrils of Shadowy Mist
Aik the globe of shadows
Torsak Chaos, The Unholy Avenger
Yes I am on this list :P.
You get frags or percentages of frags by slaying enemy races, and if you do well enough you will get listed on the mud frag lists according to race and class.
One of the major elements of this mud is a consistently active group of coders. Every day updates are put into the game, and there is a constant sense of growth. Aside from the pkill element of this game there are a variety of other features to the game including:
1)brand new quest system
2)personal ships, sailing and pirating/sinking other vessels
3)guilds complete with guildhalls and outposts
4)random zones,equipment, and continent connector zones that change per boot
5)active website with a forum for battle logs, newbie help and player input
I almost forgot to mention, that the fighting in this game is VERY dynamic. Solo fights or small skirmishes occur frequently, however the large group fights is where the duris fighting engine shines, in zone as well as in pkill. Without a good level of group coordination you will be lucky to experience success on the battlefield. In addition each and every class in the game has a unique purpose or advantage they bring to a fight, so you dont feel left out because you picked the wrong class/race.
There is so much that can be said about this game, but the best statement I can make is that my addiction to this game began in the mid to late 90's and continues to this day. This happens to be true of a large number of Duris players you will see online...no matter how long we have played this game...it keeps pulling us back. For more information check out WWW.DURISMUD.COM, and if you jump on, I will be happy to introduce you to the game by having my Undead Wight Warrior feed off your carcass.
See you on the battlefield,