Playing what’s already there

Reading a thread on Reddit about public transport in MMORPGs, I was close to posting “just go play what’s already there!”. In any discussion where players start waxing lyrical about the lack of new open world MMORPGs, the dominance of queued content or the linearity of content or similar, I am tempted to just tell people to go back and play all the older-style games that are still there and still perfectly playable.

With anniversaries coming up I’ve been reading more than usual about both Everquest games. The linked Reddit thread has several very fond (or rose-tinted) posts about Everquest 1’s boat journeys and the equivalent in Final Fantasy XI. These two venerable MMOs are still alive, FFXI is on maintenance mode but Eq1 still receives regular content (at time of writing). Maybe some of the posters of these comments have played these particular games to death back in the day or maybe they want Unreal graphics and can’t look past lower res gameplay? Irrespective of this, older games often have deeper gameplay, so I do think gamers who haven’t tried these MMOs should really go back and try them at some point. There are so many live games in the genre that there really is a lot of choice to be had.

Personally, I’m continuing with my plan to focus on one game more intently at a time. Since I jumped back into Everquest 2 for the recent event, it makes a lot of sense to do that game next. I may actually spend some time on travelling around by less convenient means just to explore what is still in-game and how it adds to the experience. I’m most tempted to play a low-level alt through one of several starting zones, playing zones as close to intended as is possible in the modern game is likely to be more enjoyable for me. I’d tried before Christmas to play through the Feydark on a chronomentored, down-levelled, character and it wasn’t a particularly satisfying experience (too many abilities and alternate advancement ability upgrades).

If I can resist too much ‘twinking’ via anniversary rewards and crafted gear, I can at least experience content on or near level for the first time. Taking land-based taxis and boat rides fits into this little experiment nicely. Here’s hoping it’s fun!

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2 Responses to Playing what’s already there

  1. bhagpuss says:

    Re the problems with old-school graphics, I was very surprised, when I was laying on EQ’s Test server earlier this week, to see a conversation in chat about children and teenagers playing the game. Someone said they had a fourteen-year old in their guild and two more people chimed in to say they had seven and eight year old children of guildies who enjoyed EQ. The ironic thing is, very young players are probably less likely to question the old-looking graphics than teenagers or adults. Getting them to stick around as they grow up might be more of a problem, though.

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