Welcome to the Entropia Universe!
Entropia Universe, commonly shortened to Entropia or EU, is a Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game (MMORPG) whose unique features have allowed the virtual creation to flourish for over fourteen years. So why have you just stumbled upon it recently? Where has Entropia been hiding for over a decade? MindArk PE AB, the primary developers of Entropia headquartered in Goteborg, Sweden, have opted to market the game organically, setting world records and capitalizing on press releases, rather than running major advertising campaigns. As a result, the player base is fairly modest in size. However, it is comprised of quite a few dedicated individuals who have discovered a corner of the internet like no other; a hidden treasure in the endless sea of online recreation.
What are these features that so markedly set Entropia apart from the typical MMORPG?
First of all, there is no defined end game or maximum character level. There are hundreds of skills, attributes, and professions to advance, but their levels are uncapped, with no end goal imposed upon the player. Personally, I find this tremendously enticing, as I have never enjoyed the experience of rushing to the end of a game, just to restart from the beginning and repeatedly traverse the same content.
Another attractive facet of Entropia is its massive world, ripe for exploration, where there is always something undiscovered just around the corner. The universe is divided into several planets, encompassed by a region of outer space. Each planet (as well as space) is enormous, and space stations, asteroids, caves, and other environments furnish the world with even more content to explore.
Why follow this tutorial?
By far the most significant feature of Entropia is its Real Cash Economy (RCE) foundation.
Players can participate in the game for free, and plenty do so; there are no download/account/monthly fees. Alternatively, real United States Dollars (USD) may be deposited into the game to be exchanged for its in-world currency, Project Entropia Dollars (PED), at a fixed conversion rate of 10 PED per 1 USD. Here's the interesting part: Players can initiate the inverse transaction as well! PED may be withdrawn from the game and converted into USD at the same conversion rate. You can withdraw in-world currency that you've deposited, earned, or won to your actual bank account.
However, as Entropia is maintained by a corporation and is not a get-rich-quick scheme, the overall PED balance of the player base must decline over time, through gameplay. If it did not, the developers would have to disburse at least as much USD to cover withdraws as they'd accumulated through deposits, earning no surplus to cover operating expenses, let alone profit for their shareholders. What this means is at least some players must take a financial loss while playing; not everyone can profit. If you are an "average" player, the PED costs associated with your gameplay activities, such as item decay, will outweigh the expected PED value generated by those activities.
Of course, you need not be an average player; there are practices and principles you can learn to implement to place yourself ahead of the curve.
The most basic examples include newcomer friendly gameplay activities which award PED but have no cost. You can perform services for other players, find items that spawn on the ground, use external (officially approved) websites such as PEDtoClick.com to earn PED by completing surveys and offers, or collect Vibrant Sweat from creatures. Most of these activities award PED rather slowly; you will not earn a real life salary, but you will be able to begin playing the game for free.
By the end of this tutorial you should have over 50 PED total between your PED and item values. Giving you a good start on the game without having to spend any real life funds.