I have played Realms off and on for 5 years. Realms has alot of good things going for it. If you are even slightly polite, then Realms is a very newbie friendly place. The newbie council is a great idea, and the people on it are nearly always friendly and helpful.(The do get tired of people abusing their kindness, anyone would.) The world of Realms is HUGE. In fact, huge is an understatement. The player websites are plentiful and include everything from EQ databases to maps of every area.(Area quests are not revealed for the most part) It's a good game, and a great place to learn to play MUDs. But... There are SOME bad things happening there. Golding and speed leveling have become the focus of the game. Some of the best areas for leveling for lowbies are also considered to be the best for golding, and are therefore over run with avatars. Some of the best eq in the game is horded by av's who will have chars. mob sit for it whereby they sell it to newbish players. It's become impossible for a newbie to buy potions, good eq, etc... UNLESS, you turn into a golder. It's a sad and unfortunate thing, because this is such a good game in all other respects. All in all, I'd still give this game at least an 8 out of 10, and this reveiw isn't meant to deter anyone from playing realms. However I do feel that the average new player to realms will not stay much past their first av, if they get that far. Lowbies are treated kindly, and are helped as much as posible, but newbtars are regarded as competition in a viscous economic cycle.