My boys have been playing Runescape.
From their site:
RuneScape is a browser-based MMORPG (Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game). In simple terms, all this means is that the game is not bought or downloaded, but instead runs off our website, through a popular program called JAVA.
The ‘massively multiplayer’ aspect of MMORPG refers to the idea that hundreds or thousands of people can play a game together, online, at the same time. In RuneScape, as many as two thousand people can play on a single server at any one time.
A ‘role playing game’ (or RPG) is described best by taking its title quite literally; you play the ‘role’ of an adventurer. In RuneScape, after designing your character by choosing its physical attributes and base clothing, you enter a ‘tutorial island’ where you are introduced to the basic features of the game – talking to computer controlled characters (NPCs or Non Player Characters), fishing, mining and woodcutting. After this you are sent into the actual game environment, where you then have a whole world to explore.
RuneScape is a fantasy RPG. Although it is set in a fictional world, many aspects of the game are very familiar. Like the real world, RuneScape has an economy; players can buy and sell items from shops or trade with one another and can even dictate their own prices. The in-game currency is called GP (gold pieces) and allows players to purchase anything they might need to live within the gaming world. If their character loses health, they will need to eat and drink in order to replenish. If a player wants to attempt a more dangerous quest, then they will need better armour and supplies in order to succeed. They can even chop wood, smith nails and weave cloth in order to build and maintain their very own house.
Every player has a set of skills that can be improved. The more a player practises each one (by completing tasks directly relevant to that ability, e.g. chopping wood increases the ‘woodcutting’ skill), the higher their rating in that skill.
A higher skill level unlocks new items and abilities that can be utilised to better effect. It also gives the player a higher overall rating, which is visible to other players and shows their experience.
This is them tonight, Cimion (14 yrs. old) playing on one of our PCs and Billy (my husband) on the laptop.