Short version: AchaeaWITH VAMPIRES!Long version: A Gothic Fantasy MUD with roots in Achaea, long regarded as a carbon copy with VampiresConsanguine and some extra skills. Recent developments have started to give the game its own identity, as has the strong community focus on quality roleplay.Galleus, Aetolia's producer, has stated that the game world will be taking a turn towards the Lovecraftian. Whether this means the emergence of a Eldritch Abomination or just a few extra tentacles remains to be seen.The main website is here.This game provides examples of:
Bribing Your Way to Victory: Credits can be spent on lessons to improve your skills, or sold for ridiculous amounts of gold. You either pay exorbitant amounts of real life money for them, or find some way to win them in the game proper.
Broken Masquerade: The Grand Artifice: The world is a lie, and the lie has been unraveling.
Character Class System: There are seventeen different classes in Aetolia. Most, but not all, have an associated guild.
Priests, the predecessors to the Luminaries. They use Spirituality, Devotion, and Healing as their skillsets. Ever since the Luminaries were put into the game, the Priest guild has ceased to exist, and thus only a few players have retained the class.
Global Currency: Gold sovereigns are accepted everywhere in the world as legal tender.
Grandfather Clause: Anyone with the Priest class is operating under one; the Priest guild was replaced by the Luminaries, and there is no way for new Priests to be created as a result.
Guide Dang It: Some of the quests require large jumps of logic, or simply don't play fair at all; the fact the game administrators strongly discourage the sharing of quest information does not help.
Heal Thyself: In addition to the health, mana, endurance, and willpower totals, the game has an almost ridiculously intricate system of curatives and status effects. And there are two different sets of curatives for the living and the undead.
Item Crafting: Several classes can create unique items such as weapons and poisons, other trade skills are available to those with the funds to purchase a license, and anyone can train in Tattoos or their relevant curative skill.
Jerk Jock: A fair number of player-killers. The "jock" part of it is very questionable, though.
World Tree: Featured prominently as an actual location.
Our Vampires Are Different: Aetolian vampires are also called Consanguine, and come in Praenomen (fighter) and Bloodborn (mage) varieties. Both are immune to all the traditional vampire weaknesses, with the sole exception of sunlight, and vampires of certain races can even kick their blood dependency with enough experience.
Our Werewolves Are Different: Werewolves and Werebears are not bitten, and the moon doesn't affect them at all - it's just a learned form of voluntary transformation.
Perpetually Static: Partly averted; the RP-heavy nature of the game means that political institutions of any kind tend to come and go—especially vampiric Houses. However, most other aspects of the game are reliant on administrative intervention to change permanently.
Physical God: Most of the Gods in the game fit this trope, though Gods tend to be comprised of essence filling a mortal form. While the mortal form can be damaged or killed, the essence is effectively indestructible, and can be consumed by another God or seek out a new mortal to inhabit.
Player Versus Player: The main focus of the game, with an absurdly complex combat system designed to facilitate conflict.
Playing with a Trope: Aetolia being an RP-heavy game, you see almost as much of this, if not more than, tropes being played straight.
Powers That Be: Varian the Celestine ranks somewhere above most of the other Gods, being as he created the world.
Schedule Slip: Very common with the administrators of the game, who have been known to miss their deadlines for new content by real-life years.
Warp Whistle: Most classes have at least one teleportation ability. Sciomancers and Ascendril can warp to their Master Crystal, Indorani to an isolated location pre-marked by their Hermit tarot card, Cabalists to a place pre-marked by their Numerological abilities, Lycanthropes to a place they previously marked, vampires to their coffins, Luminaries to Nirvana. Paladins, Luminaries and Priests also get the Pilgrimage ability, which lets them travel to anyone standing within a Pilgrimage rite and lay down Pilgrimage rites themselves. Sentaari and Daru, who share the Telepathy skillset, can teleport to each other after linking minds. Syssin can use Subterfuge to create and use wormholes that link rooms together.
Infernals are the one exception, receiving no teleportation ability whatsoever.
Welcome to Corneria: Regularly subverted; the Gods of Aetolia are actually the admins, and moderators ("Celani") can possess mobiles and interact with players, often with dramatic—or hilarious—results. Similarly lampshaded regularly when RP is going on between regular players and a mobile jumps in with its regular inane comments.
Wizard Needs Food Badly: Characters need to eat and sleep regularly, and vampires that don't feed enough go berserk and kill everything within reach. Reaching level 80 obviates the need for sleeping and eating, but vampires still have to drink blood.