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Reader Comments (11)

Posted: Jan 11th 2011 10:42AM AlienFanatic said

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Thanks for the fun read. Having read it, I'm reminded of the old chestnut, "You can never really go back." I played EQ for about five years from launch until about the OOW/GOD expansions and then petered out. I have similar memories to the three people you interviewed, but I also recognize that for many of us the nostalgia is better than the reality.

What I miss most about EQ is the simple vastness of it. Unlike most recent MMOs, where you spend most of your time in instances, EQ was a giGANTIC world. You could literally spend hours just moving from one area to the next. Every dungeon, tunnel, and zone was unique (none of WOW's copy/paste crap), so it felt much more immersive. Vanguard was the last title that attempted something similar, and sadly it was poorly supported.

I hope the future MMO developers look at these articles and can once more build a business for those of us who miss the feeling of a vast, living world. I don't see anything on the horizon, but I have high hopes for the guys that are developing Everquest Next.

Posted: Jan 11th 2011 1:13PM twill713 said

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If you are looking for a true classic experience i recommend checking out project 1999. Just Google it. It is a recreation of the original Everquest setup on eqemu. It's been loads of fun so far. The devs are great and have been beta testing and scripting Kunark. The server plans to go all the way up to Velious. We are still quite a few months away from a full Kunark release so I highly recommend you try it out. It will bring back some great memories and horrible CRs but hey no other MMO can recreate this experience !

Posted: Jan 11th 2011 11:42PM Lionhearted said

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@twill713

Another option for a 'classic' experience that isn't quite so severe as going all the way back to classic and/or Kunark would be to play on a Mac. The Mac server still exists but was never updated after PoP... so all the classic gameplay since the beginning of PoP is still there. To me, that's the 'core' of the game, anyway, and when EQ was at its all-time peak.

It doesn't take much to run it; I've heard of people with even just Mac Minis playing it (I don't know of those machines are rigged or not, but I have heard from several people that they've used them -- and that was at least a year or so ago).
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Posted: Jan 12th 2011 9:42AM TexRob said

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@twill713 That's awesome, I played up until PoP with a short break in between Kunark and Velious. I've talked to people I have met playing other MMOs (actually found my first Xegony person in Aion, hi Gwidion) and I've heard that EQ changed so much, that a lot of why I'd want to go back would be gone. I heard Crushbone and Blackburrow for instances are like level 55+ now, and Fippy Darkpaw comes back as a raid mob at Halloween or something like that. Cool that things progressed, but sad to see all the places I remember have changed. It makes sense though, like Cataclysm is doing, people don't go to the "low XP" zones anymore so they have to do something.

EQ is so vast now, if I tried to go and check out the current EQ, I'd be lost I imagine, not to mention I hear you are required to have like a zillion AA points to be useful.
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Posted: Jan 11th 2011 1:20PM Naphilia said

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I remember spending weeks completing the newbie armor quest in Kelethin for my Woodelf Ranger. Killing wasps and those mean stunning basilisks, then advancing into Crushbone just to get killed by a massive train on my first entrance ...

Then getting a Light Velium Bow from a completely stranger at level 12 who happened to become one of my best friends over the years. He was unbelievable Level 42 by the time and I couldn't even image getting that high.

So many great memories ...

Posted: Jan 11th 2011 1:29PM Pewpdaddy said

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EQ truly was unique at the time... Many fun memories of Hate, Sky, Tactics, Disease, Time.... Ahh... Say what you will about what SoE did to the game, Verant really did something with EQ. Nice to see it still around after so long. It was 7 years well spent for me... I wonder if EQ is the reason I feel a "need" to play the MMO's of today?... Don't get me wrong there are some good titles. But nothing matches the originals.

Posted: Jan 11th 2011 3:10PM CorwynnMaelstrom said

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Also worth noting (it was cut for article limits and is why I look silly answering the last question) is that EQ is going to be coming out with a time-locked progression server sometime soon. That will allow people to play from level 1 in an expansionless EQ . . . at least until Kunark opens up!

The mechanics will doubtless be a bit different playing with all the patches modern EQ offers, but some of the more "classic" feel should indeed be available.

Posted: Jan 11th 2011 4:39PM Interitus said

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I laughed at the first picture, I had that robe

Posted: Jan 11th 2011 6:27PM meanieme said

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With the older greats like EQ, and I realise it's a simplistic view, but I always wonder why the developers don't just translate them to a new graphics engine, give the char models a but of an upgrade and then just update the zone graphics a bit at a time.
That or sell/license the game to a developer who will.
Surely it would be cheaper than creating an entire game with lore from scratch.

Posted: Jan 12th 2011 12:07AM Lionhearted said

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@meanieme

Honestly, taking EQ and updating it with a completely new graphics engine and new character models *would* be creating a new game from scratch. Don't get me wrong, I think it could work, at least if they started from the same area (the 'classic' game, Kunark, Velious and maybe Luclin and PoP)... but I don't think it would be any cheaper to do that. You're not saving *that* much by not needing to create a whole new story.

Personally, I think SOE would be better off keeping the game as is for now, or going FTP if it ever comes to the point where they don't want to make new expansions anymore for it with just the subs. If they ever do want to create a new version of the original EQ, it should be done as a 'reboot' and take from the original content and stories and recreate what worked best.
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Posted: Jan 11th 2011 11:04PM Lionhearted said

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Honestly, I still find myself coming back to EQ every now and then for a few months at a time -- even though I'm hopelessly behind -- just for the pure nostalgia.

I think new players could go to the game and really enjoy it, but it should be a committed group of players who are willing to learn the game and figure things out on their own. It is a very top-heavy game, though the community is generally very nice and once you get in a guild, you're going to find it very social. (There's something about EQ that was always much more social than any other MMO I've played -- probably because you really do have to build relationships in order to achieve any kind of success in the game.) Certainly, anyone who enjoys the genre should give it a go and experience a lot of the older content -- some of it still exceeds anything you see today in terms of game play and design. Velious revolutionized the industry and really created what we all view as modern-day raiding, while PoP was just equal parts awesome and insane (in a good way).

EQ's still probably the only game where you can trigger zone-wide raids that aren't in pocket zones... imagine facing off an entire army of giants across the entire zone and needing to coordinate the fight... in EQ (Velious expansion) you could do that. It really is a special game that goes above and beyond what we have out there today and the parts far exceeded the whole given the technology that was available as the game was being developed.

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