Again following on from my last post, the pinnacle for people interested in politics in games like Achaea, Iron Realms Entertainment's flagship MUD, is city leadership.
Politics in general, but leadership especially, can be a thorny topic. However, it is something I personally have derived a lot of enjoyment from over the years. After establishing himself as a member of the ruling council, my character Silas was selected as the Sultan of Shallam at the age of around 89, which is a little over two years after I started playing.
I know that sometimes these timescales seem extremely long, but that is the nature of role-playing. Achaea is not the type of game where you can grind and quest your way to the head of the thieves' guild in 20 hours of gameplay, or beat the game in around 60 hours; MUDs are not the same as typical RPGs like the Final Fantasy series, or open world games like Skyrim. Instead, you get from MUDs what you're willing to put in.
For me, that time investment meant I was now given absolute authority in Shallam, with the ability to set for myself the direction of the entire city.
Some people, I know, are oftentimes unwilling to really wield the power that they are given, afraid of offending somebody or causing hurt feelings; personally, I thrive under those settings. Given the way Achaea is set up, positions of power really give you the freedom to take your ideas and run with them.
So, I ran.
It wasn't long before, under Silas's leadership, Shallam found itself embroiled in the first player-driven, outright war between two cities for in-game centuries. Many people bemoaned that decision: some probably still do; but it was a necessary step along the road that I saw for truly solidifying the ethos and the identity of the faction.
Sure, there was a lot of dumb crap surrounding some of it - but that's just something you occasionally have to put up with in the MMO world. At the end of the day, that war, and the events that surrounded it, remain some of my fondest memories, and amongst my proudest achievements as I look back at the years I've spent playing Achaea.
There aren't many games where, even with ultimate power, you can really affect the world like that. That's one of the best things about all of the IRE MUDs, and it's what keeps me playing even now.