After 2 days I got my account activated. Everything looks fine with mushclient, no special setups needed. Room descriptions looked pretty good for the most part; I spent the majority of my time inside the city just wandering around.
That's the good stuff. Here's the not so good stuff:
In the 2 different attempts I've made to play this game, the first being around 10 full days worth of semi-regular play, I have run into a total of 4 other characters. This time around: none.
The NPC auto-guide that gives you a tour takes forever, but doesn't stop long enough in any of the places he wants you to see, for you to experiment with the commands to examine things in the rooms. He also wizzes past things that did look interesting, fast enough that you might as well not bother with a guide at all and just spend some quality time getting to know the city by yourself.
The help system is horrendous. If you wanted to figure out, for example, how to look at a list of the things an NPC merchant has for sale, you have to type help. It brings up a list of 4 or 5 categories. You can easily rule out two of them, but there's no way to tell if "figuring out how to interact with merchants" is in any of the specific other categories. So you have to pick one of those categories. And then you find it's not in there. So you have to type "help" again, and try the other category. And there's no subcategory for "dealing with merchants" or "lists of stuff" or "shops" so you have to poke around the help files until you find what you're looking for. Or, give up trying like I did, and just attempt random commands that *seem* like they *might* work until you bump into the right one. By the time you figure it out, you're a half hour into playing (not including the 20-minute-long guide tour). All that, to identify a single command. In every other game I've ever played, the help files were much more intuitive: "help shops" would either return information on how to deal with shops, or would return the directions to the nearest marketplace, or would return "See Buy, Sell, Trade, Barter".
Any other system than the one Unwritten Legends implemented would be easier to rule out the wrong things and come up with the right things.
The verblist reads like a cartoon instructional tape. BOUNCE? What kind of character in a "roleplay enforced" game would have a verb specifically for the purpose of bouncing around someone else? Save the silly funny giggly smurfy verbs for the Smurfs, they don't belong in a game advertised to attract people interest in roleplaying.
I gave combat a shot, ran into some kind of cuddly cutie-thing and whacked at it a bit. It finally fell unconscious and it actually took LONGER to kill it, while it was stone-cold passed out on the ground, than it did to get it to pass out in the first place. This happened repeatedly, so it didn't appear to be a bug.
After a couple of days of trying to figure out what I was supposed to do, how to do it, and not interested in trying to find the "right" player-created guide for me (since the official docs SHOULD contain all this info), I gave up and decided to stick with RPIs.
Oh also - if your web browser doesn't support flash, you can't read the website at all. So much for anyone who has need or reason to reject flash animations being able to even learn about the game, much less play it.