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Reviews Section
The Inquisition by gamezgrrl

The Inquisition is touted as a role-play intense game and certainly lives up to the term in the best way possible.  Everything is done via character interaction, primarily since rpxp (roleplay experience points) are used for purchasing skills, cash, and essentially everything else necessary.

The quality of role-play found is likewise very high, and covers a broad range and variety that includes nearly any type a potential player could hope to find - mudsex, rape, and suicide need not apply due to sensitivity towards those dealing with such issues and for liability reasons.  

Players are on the whole friendly and welcoming as well, and while a new player may be overwhelmed by the incline of the learning curve, those same experienced players are usually willing to help out and answer questions, and even involve the newcomers in roleplay whenever possible.

No place is perfect, however.

While the code itself is stunning and breathtaking, changes are often implemented when half-ready rather than wholly supported, such as removing methods of earning money before emplacing planned new ones.  Questions on this topic receive the answer, "I have an economics degree and know what I'm doing", a statement of theory rather than a response to the practical fact of the game economy's stagnation.  It is usually possible to work around the difficulties these various instances create, but they disrupt the roleplay and feel of the theme.

This is at least simply a case of poor logic in argument.  More disturbing is that a player who has since left the game due to a ban for other reasons reports a direct reply from the implementor to an attempt to calmly discuss negative perceptions:  "You're paranoid.  You need counseling."  Perhaps it's not surprising this type of attack has made its way into the playerbase as well with this type of example, reflected in the same player's online journal recounting a fellow player's remark, "You should go to a mental hospital!"  We are tempted to laugh at what must be a joke until we realize both knew this person did indeed suffer from mental illness.

Policy immortals pander to guilty until proven innocent rather than vice-versa, at times even admitting to not reading or regarding input from one "side" of a dispute before preparing decisions, and voice a policy of non-interference in roleplay while simultaneously making it very clear when a character acts in a way they dislike (as opposed to something breaking rules, which it is certainly their right and job to enforce).  This does not mean they force the roleplay they desire, but it can become very uncomfortable to go against it, and in-character consequences are sometimes threatened if a situation they dislike is not repaired within a given amount of time.

In a similar confusion, Immortals watch role-play for the sake of granting roleplay-points or quest-points, which perks us all up once announced.  However, the points have been known not to arrive while confirmed immortal-controlled magical creatures (to provide reasonability) do, publicly displaying knowledge of the watched private sessions.  In a game that hinges both on a policy of revealing nothing out-of-character that happens in-character and on such secretive roleplay, this is destructive, especially as since the immortals are not pcs, they are literally immune from any consequences these things might have if done by a pc who could potentially be caught at it and stopped or punished in-character.  This is a side-issue but related issue to immortals being in fact permitted to spread in-character rumors about any roleplay their discretion assumes is public enough, regardless of whether in tavern or forsaken cave.

What typically saves the game and makes it worth the time despite these issues is its other players, as already stated.  However, recent changes penalize players with large amounts of experience points/hours played by awarding them less, which has resulted in a drastic numbers drop as well as a drop in the depth of overall roleplay since it is naturally established characters who are typically at the helm of more extensive plotlines.  It is not solely irony that the game forum currently lists the topics "Reducing Est Char XP" and "Nobody Around? What To Do?" side by side as this review is being written.  Unfortunately, much as with the economics debates, this is typically answered with, "I care because I pay the hosting bill" rather than an address to the problem itself - admittedly a true statement, but a non sequiteur and an echo of  the administrative-player difficulties that eventually forced the former version of the game to shut down.

In short, it is the last paragraph above that makes me no longer certain whether I could whole-heartedly reccommend this game, or even recommend it with reservations.  It was the players that bridged the gap in every fault I might mention, and with their departure, what makes the game special goes, too.  While it may be easy to pass this review off as the ramblings of a disgruntled player, and this will doubtless be said, the tone and writer's very readily apparent willingness to trumpet the good alongside the bad will speak for themselves.  Dwindling numbers speak as well, diving from hovering at 25+ during peak hours to rarely more than 5 even at the same time frame.