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Reader Comments (53)

Posted: Nov 17th 2010 12:10PM Valdamar said

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Everfrost in EverQuest - so atmospheric - from Halas all the way through to Blackburrow, you almost wanted to shiver while levelling your new Barbarian there. Then you head into Blackburrow to make some friends in a scary dark dungeon where you need friends backing you up and players have to gather together to survive. No newbie zone has really brought players together quite as well as those starter zones, imho.

Oh sure, if you wanted an easier time of it you could start in Kelethin/Felwithe, level in Greater Faydark and hit Crushbone, but G Fay was more like WoW's Barrens - lots of people getting lost, asking silly questions, and lots of terrible /ooc chat. In Everfrost/BB players helped each other, because the person whose life you saved now would probably be saving you within the hour.

Posted: Nov 17th 2010 12:59PM Seffrid said

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You never had "train to zone" quite like the one in Blackburrow!

I remember my first visit there. I zoned in from Qeynos Hills, took one look at the action around me, felt scared stiff and zoned straight back out again!

Qyenos was indeed a fantastic starting area, and stepping over the zone line into Qeynos Hills, entering Blackburrow, or making the trip through that dungeon and emerging into Everfrost had to be some of the scariest moments of my gaming life!

The first generation MMO's had an atmosphere that has never been equalled in my view, for it was EQ and for others it was UO or AC, but there was a tremendous buzz from playing something altogether new and exciting.

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Posted: Nov 17th 2010 3:48PM Damn Dirty Ape said

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I wouldn't call GFay an easier time of it! Sure, Blackburrow trains were legendary.... but Crushbone 'Dvinn to zone' trains were just as notorious. The pathing in Crushbone was so bad that Dvinn (and all the orcs in the throne room before you got to him) would every so slowly path back to their spawn points (each at different times), curbstomping every poor player who got in their way.

Add in the hilariously awful Crushbone pathing, and sometimes the mobs trained to zone would spend minutes walking an imaginary labyrinth at the front of the zone (the only way in or out) to get back to their spawn points.

Ahh, good times!
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Posted: Nov 17th 2010 2:24PM Xilmar said

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Todaki system in EVE online... Todaki system best system.

Right now on a serious note...personally starting areas don't do much for me...don't have a favourite one and that's never a factor in my decision to play an mmo, coz end game is what matters the most.

there's only one starting zone i was really impressed and actually liked a lot...can't remember the name, but it was the warrior starting zone in legend of mir. it probably isn't all that great now, but it was the first MMO i played hardcore, 9 years ago, so it'll probably always have a special place in my heart...god i loved that grindy grindcorefest game /sigh

other decent starting zones were in AoC (only good thing about it imo), EQ and WAR - 50 vs 50 PVP at lvl 4 with first char was my final hook for the game.

Posted: Nov 17th 2010 3:45PM Xilithi said

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Tortage by far

Posted: Nov 17th 2010 7:16PM darrenkitlor said

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Tantooine from SWG's launch.

I spent hours wandering around - visiting cool sites and starting to assemble my weapons factories - just close enough so I would be caught in the Reb v. Imp city battles.

Posted: Nov 17th 2010 4:39PM SwobyJ said

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Sorry to plug it but...

Terminus, the Defiant starting zone (just newly done) in Rift: Planes of Telara.

It's pretty epic.

Pretty damn epic.

Posted: Nov 17th 2010 4:55PM Ragemore said

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Tortage, the ship wrecked slave boat, getting to swing a broken boat oar and save a hottie who is half naked, 10 seconds into the game. All the voice over, the story and side stories of the town and outer areas.

Not only the best starter area but the best area. If every area could match those standards, I wouldn't be typing right now, I would be in game, forever.

Posted: Nov 17th 2010 5:24PM Monkey D Luffy said

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I have two favorites.

San d'Oria in Final Fantasy XI.

The Forsaken starter area in World of Warcraft.


I wish I could still get that feeling that I used to get from walking around San d'Oria my first year. (I miss being new in MMO's)

Posted: Nov 17th 2010 7:14PM (Unverified) said

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My choice is also Tirisfal Glades, the forsaken starting area in WoW.

Most MMORPGs start you out at an arbitrary point, sort of "you're all grown up and ready to start your adventuring career"

The forsaken starting area is different. You start at a true beginning point, your "awakening" into undeath. During your progress through the quests, you learn what it means to be a forsaken, what the forsaken are all about, and the nature of the world you find yourself in.

I like Azuremyst Isle too, for similar resons.

Posted: Nov 17th 2010 9:44PM timthel0rd said

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Most of Tier one was amazing, but unfortunately that can't keep a game afloat on it's own.

Posted: Nov 17th 2010 10:44PM Phubarrh said

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My favorite would be the Kurashasa starting area in Vanguard...the catch being, I had already been playing the game for some time. When I launched a new toon there, and found myself surrounded by all the demonic races that I had been fighting for months just hanging around the palace waiting to pay their respects, it left me cackling like crazy.

A little dip into some Lovecraftian lore also didn't hurt a bit...

Posted: Nov 18th 2010 12:34AM (Unverified) said

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Shire. Love it. It's kind of a bummer that you can outlevel the entire zone in half an hour running one quest line since they sped up leveling.

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