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EverQuest in detail.

Discussion in 'MMO(RP)G / Online Discussion' started by anvi, Jun 12, 2017.

  1. anvi Prophet Village Idiot

    anvi
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    Someone made the grave mistake of asking me about this game on the comments wall thing, but it limits characters so I'm gonna make this thread.

    I don't know this guy but it is an ok summary vid:


    This has more detail and is very good!!


    overview

    It is/was an amazing MMORPG that started the world of MMOs more or less. It was released in 1999 by a small group of people and a small budget (I think 3m USD). But somehow the game was huge and full of content that was mostly fascinating and amazing to play. It was really advanced too, tech wise.

    It had a lot of problems though, some that got fixed in time, some that went away as you learned more about the game, and some that never got fixed or are so integral they can't be fixed. But for all the problems, the gameplay was so good and so advanced and unique, it felt like the future of gaming. A lot of people got instantly hooked on it like WoW players are today. I could write pages of all the various problems, but more pages about all what made it special and great to play. And another page or two on why WoW is very different.

    The original EQ was difficult, brutal, harsh, unforgiving, insane, grindy, obtuse, an enigma, etc. But fascinating. But it got made easier and easier and simpler over the years. A lot due to necessity, but WoW which is basically a much simpler and more accessible EQ, was so hugely successful, it made every other MMO think they needed to do what WoW did. So EQ started throwing out depth and complexity and challenges left and right. Some of it was a big relief and some of it was like wait we needed that...

    By now it is a very different game to the original, but it's still fun for some people, depends what you want. People who preferred the original have some emulators and stuff but the true original experience is basically gone now.

    There were about 1500-2500 on each server. I think about 570,000 subscribers a month at the peak, but box sales on all those games and expansion packs was significant too. And 570,000 in one month doesn't include all the people (like me) who had quit by that point. So it is probably millions of people who had played it.

    THE BEST BIT


    There was some crafting and plenty of lore to read and stuff to explore etc. But mostly the game was about combat. And it was so sooo good. How good? Well as I edit this post now, it's 22 years later... EQ is still the game I hold everything else up to and sigh. Nothing even comes close I'd say, except for one game which sadly no longer exists.

    Anyway, EQ. The combat is real time, but it has the depth of a turn based game. They copied a MUD but converted into 3d and tweaked. It is sort of based on AD&D, so it is kind of like Baldurs Gate 2, but in real time. There is no pausing, you just have to practice and think fast. The pace is adjusted so that enemies have a lot of hit points and take some time to kill, and you are more or less the same. So fights can take a minute or more, so there is some time to think and react to stuff, but basically, if you hesitate too much or make a dumb choice, you will likely die because of it. Yet if you are quick and clever, you can do amazing things in the game, even things that no other players can do.

    Rogues had to get behind enemies to backstab, there were doors in dungeons that needed picking, traps that needed figuring out or people would die etc.

    It had "emergent gameplay" which means some players would be playing in ways that the developers didn't expect would be possible. In most cases the developers embraced the new styles and made sure they were balanced and fun to play. Ask me if you wanna know more on that.

    It had a real factions system. I think they hired a guy just to make it even though it doesn't say on the wiki. You start with allies, enemies, and neutral people all over the world, based on your race and class but also your actions. Some get an easy life because they are mostly liked everywhere, some are hated by everyone. But generally everyone has lots of friendly cities they can visit, and some cities that will welcome your buddy, but kill you on sight because you are an evil race to them. And regardless of these starting factions, it can all be improved or ruined based on what you do. Mostly people just kill monsters so this doesn't matter. But say you kill some guards in a Human city, you will lose some faction with those guards, probably most of the merchants in that city too, but also maybe various other groups and factions throughout the world who are friends of this particular city. Yet at the same time, maybe some evil Dark Elves living nearby that hate these humans, they will like you more now. It is hugely deep. And you can tweak factions by killing people, doing various quests and stuff, or with magic. Mostly people don't have to worry about this but the game is from a time when shit like this mattered and people wanted a real world. Nowadays you can't even target NPCs in most games because they don't want you getting hurt or killing a quest NPC or something. Back in the good ole days, you could do anything and then deal with the consequences. You could just deal with being hated by a lot of places, but say you pick an evil race but really want to hang around in a 'goodie goodie' city, you could do if you put the work in.

    The game was designed to be played in first person, and is maybe the most immersive game I have ever played. Crysis and modern stuff might have better graphics, but there is just something about this game that makes me feel like I am there. It can be played in third person too, and it really helps you see your surroundings in hectic situations, but I highly recommend trying to play it in first person if you can because it just sucks you into the world. I think sound design has a lot to do with it.

    The Gameplay and more detail


    You choose from a big selection of classes and races, and also a deity. Originally the game put difficulty levels on the classes to give an idea of how easy/hard they are to play. Based on your creation choices you start in different parts of the massive world. Basically each race has its own unique area of the world, so Humans start in the town of Freeport or Qeynos, Elves start in a treetop village called Kelethin, High Elves in Felwithe, Dark Elves in Nektulos Forest, Ogres start in a cave called Grobb, etc... There are some exceptions but this is mostly how it works. These starting areas had a few quests, but they were very simple and not worth wasting much time on. You can easily reach the very top end of the game without doing a single quest, and many players do this. Despite the name of the game, you mostly just explore the world and kill things, although there are some quests in the game and they are very big and give huge rewards.

    So you leave your pretty treetop village and see monsters roaming around, and unlike modern games, this one doesn't ease you into it. The area you start in might contain lots of low level mobs for you to kill, but fighting a level 1 at level 1, is not a sure win, especially as a complete beginner. But also, not all of these mobs are "non aggro". In other words, some are wandering around waiting to be picked off like all modern MMORPGs, but some are aggro and will spot you from a distance and come to attack you, even at level 1. Not only that, but they will bring with them any other of their allies they see on the way (this was called a train). And not only that... but there are big scary high level enemies that are wandering around even in these newbie areas, and they can and will kill you in 2 seconds. So right from the start this is a different experience, you have to watch your back, you have to always keep an eye on your surroundings, and know which way to run if things go wrong, and even if you are keeping on top of things, at some point you will still get beaten to death unceremoniously anyway. Part of this is to encourage people to play together, and in the good ole days, making friends with strangers was a big part of what made it a great experience. There was a real US VS THEM! vibe because people were so scared of getting beat down by the brutal environment, everyone wanted to group up with anyone they could for safety. This still happens, but it is harder to find now in an old game where most people are already high level and not many other new players are around, and also now that people have mastered the game, a lot of people tend to be able to progress now by themselves. But anyway, the point is, the game has no beginners wheels, it starts brutal and stays that way. If anything it gets easier as you level because you get a lot stronger and figure out so much about how the game works, so the early levels are really a trial by fire.

    Also related to this, the way everything works is more hardcore, but in particular the combat. Hardcore, and has more depth than any other MMO. So even at level 1, when you cast a spell, it can just fizzle. It uses the mana, yet doesn't even cast. Alternatively you can manage to cast the spell, but the enemy will resist the spell. This can happen randomly at any time, although it is based on your stats and the mobs stats and the type of spell and the mobs resistances to that particular school of magic etc. There are things you can do to lower an enemies resists, but at low levels you don't have these things so you luck plays a part in the early days. Also, if an enemy hits you while the spell is casting, it will interrupt you. So even in those early days of 1999, you had to time what you are doing very carefully, and be very fast, in real time combat. The mob will attack you a few times and then there will be about 4 seconds before his next flurry of attacks. And your spell will take about 4 seconds to cast... so you have to time it to click the spell the moment he finishes slashing your face. If you don't, you'll just get interrupted and torn to pieces.

    Also mana is a big deal. You can only cast your spells maybe 10 times and then you are out of mana, and the only way to fix this is to sit down and chill for a good minute or so, and this gets longer as you get more mana later in the game. This is not a game for ADHD types because you wont be rushing around zapping monstorz with lightning constantly, you can do that for a while, but then you need to sit and meditate. What this does is makes the game very tense and thoughtful, you have to plan what you are doing, and you have to play very efficiently, or you can end up in deep shit in a dungeon when there are enemies all over the place and respawning on top of you, and you ran out of mana because you were playing like a pleb. Everything is just more serious in this game, and some people might not like it because of that, which is understandable. But a lot of people once they get hooked on it, they don't find almost any other game fun anymore because EQ felt so serious and intense.

    It wasn't always like that though, what you did might vary constantly from minute to minute. There were so many different places to visit and different things you could do. Mostly it was focused on combat, with some other minor stuff like crafting, lore, trading, etc. But the combat is what had the most variety, you could be fighting almost anything you can imagine, it might be really easy or really hard, and that can change based on how many of you there are, what classes you are etc. My point is if you ever read someone saying omg EQ is way too hard my wizard got one shotted constantly! Then they probably did one shotted constantly, but it was probably because he was unfortunately playing with his brother who was also a wizard and they were trying to fight rock golems that are resistant to magic, or whatever... Or someone says the game is far too easy, I just kill lower level enemies all day and make progress! That's true too. But progress from experience is one thing, getting items was even more important, and that was usually a real challenge.

    It was tuned to be really hard, there was no help anywhere, no tooltips. But mostly what made it hard was that people made a lot of mistakes and had a lot of stuff to learn. The whole world of MMOs was new so people had to figure out what a Tank was and what it meant, and then bother to get one for the group. Then find a healer of some type. The game had some old school rpg'ers and pnp fans, mud players, etc. So there was a lot of knowledge, but there were a lot of casual gamers too. So it took time for the knowledge to spread. It made the start more fun and chaotic and challenging. Things got easier and a bit predictable as time went on.



    The itemisation, the best ever in a game.

    This needs a heading of its own, because it is such a key part of the game. So exploring the world and killing enemies is mostly all you really do in the game, all in the name of earning experience to level up, get more interesting and more powerful spells, and visit further interesting places. But the second huge part of progressing in the game, is the gear, and the way it works in this game is like no other.

    Nowadays MMORPGs just throw loot at you constantly. At level 1 you do a quest and get some shoes a hat and some pants, and then you head down the road and do another quest and get an upgrade to all those pieces before you even reach level 2. It basically makes loot meaningless and forgettable.

    EQ was the opposite, you start with nothing and it takes a long time to get anything at all. You might play for a few hours and all you found is a cloth bracer and the only stats it has is 1AC which is basically no different to just not even wearing it. If you played for many hours, for multiple days, you might find a few more of these pieces and even then you wouldn't feel any difference at all. But then that fun guy you met a few days ago comes rushing up to you and says, "Hey man have you heard about the Minotaur Axe?!" And you haven't, so he explains that there is a cave far away that has these huge Minotaurs and they sometimes drop an axe which is way better than the rusty swords and crap we are using now. So you get your room mate and his sisters friends friend and you look around town to see if anyone else wants to come and eventually you get a group of 6 people together, and you set off to get this axe. It takes a while to travel there and you maybe get into some fights along the way, but eventually you find the cave, and there are the Minotaurs, and you can see that some of them are carrying axes... That is the Mino Axe, and it is a bit better than what you have, but a decent upgrade at level 5 ish or whatever. So we attacked the Minos, and most likely what happens is that we all get torn to shreds and the whole adventure comes crashing to anticlimactic halt, and we all respawn miles away, naked, and have to run all the way back again and give it another shot... But this time we finally win! And one of us gets the famous Minotaur Axe. That guy is now tougher, so we hang around for a few hours and get more axes for the rest of us. This whole thing happened to me when I first played the game, 18 years ago... That's how much it meant to me, and anyone else who played this game will have stories exactly like this. Compare that to me playing Skyrim or any number of MMORPGs just in this last year, and I can't remember a damn thing. So this Minotaur Axe was a 'named item', and there are thousands of these in the game, but none of them come easy. They all require a tough journey and an even tougher fight.

    And the items get cooler and cooler. They might just have really good stats like a helm with lots of AC or a sword that is fast and does a lot of damage. But there are also swords that cast a curse, a hammer that casts a powerful buff on you, a cloak that makes you invisible, or float, etc. And you had a lot of slots, so at first you just want to survive and get a bunch of ok items in as many slots as you can. Once you become more badass in the higher levels, you start looking for a really good fancy item in every slot. The game is balanced in a way that you feel much stronger and better as you get higher level, but the game always stays one step ahead of you to provide a challenge.


    Stuff I just learned 22 years later:

    It got so popular so fast and so early (1999), it ended up taking down the internet for the entire city of San Diego and caused disruptions to satellites and shit. The ISP was in breach of so many contracts they went out that night and started digging a trench with cables to LA.

    It was Forgotten Realms based but they invented new systems themselves. And apparently the staff at WOTC loved it so much they implemented some things, the Bard especially. I think D&D 2nd edition (or 3rd?).

    They went with 3d graphics before that was really established, and when the game released they sent the game to reviewers and had to send a 3d graphics card with it so they could play it.

    Brad McQuaid didn't play many games and his vision for these games was based on an entirely text based MUD that he loved. All he wanted to do was recreate that MUD in a 3d world, and according to his closest business partner, Brad died with this dream never being fulfilled.

    It got no marketing but Brad was talking about it on various forums. They went to a trade event, and the staff were seeing famous devs and saying things like wow cool the Rainbow 6 team! But it ended up with everyone surrounding the Everquest booth. Management hoped to grow to 35,000 players and that would have been a success. But 35,000 were playing in the first few days.

    Various 'industry legends' got their start in EQ as GMs and bug fixers and stuff. And Brad McQuaid's awesome partner and co-founder of Vanguard was a guy who started as a games tester on EQ.

    None of the money people at the time were convinced the world of multiplayer gaming was worth much. They thought 1 million players for even the greatest game was unimaginable. When they were working on Vanguard which was EQ's sorta sequel, WoW was new at that point. Lineage 2 was being made at a similar time, and they had a budget of around $150 million. Even with EQ being such a wild success, Brad McQuaid struggled to secure a budget of $15 million! And that was from Microsoft! They were more convinced about consoles. They talked about pitching to the heads of Square Enix and said they were like unimpressed statues. None of the money people in the business could understand how it could grow. Many thought that making any new game would just cannibalize the existing games. Not long later WoW had 13 million subscribers and LoL has 115 million monthly players.
     
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  2. anvi Prophet Village Idiot

    anvi
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    .
     
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2021
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  3. oldmanpaco Master of Siestas

    oldmanpaco
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    I played the beta for EQ back in 98 or 99. I remember having to track down components to even make the scrolls to get spells into your spellbook. And the mana regen. So much camping at guard towers.

    Never really got into it after launch though. Think i only played a month or two.
     
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  4. I played for a week in 1999. It was fun, but my buddy wanted his computer back, as mine wasn't powerful enough.
     
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  5. anvi Prophet Village Idiot

    anvi
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    Too late to edit now but I forgot a few things:

    Some of the melee classes seem kinda sucky to play. The Warrior for example, it is the best tank in the game for raiding, but it is kinda laughable how it plays compared to modern MMOs where you have a hotbar full of stuff to click. The Warrior in EQ, you just target a mob and click auto attack, and pretty much just watch. There is a kick that you can keep pressing which does a little bit of damage, and if you have a shield you can click on the bash button which does tiny damage but stuns which is useful (you can interrupt spells with this). But that is more or less it. The only other thing you get early on is a taunt button which isn't a sure thing, but helps when a mob starts attacking someone else. Much later on you get some more cool stuff but it is quite simple in terms of what you do, and you can also pew stuff with a bow which helps for pulling, but mostly it is auto attack. Yet some people would kill me for saying this because it still requires a lot of skill and smarts because being a good tank involves so much more. You have to position mobs carefully and stuff.

    However spell casters are better than any game ever. Really, I've never played an RPG or MMORPG that come close to playing a caster in EQ.

    Aggro:

    It works more... realistically? Your group is standing around and a mob sees you, it will run in and probably just attack the nearest person. You have to start doing some damage or annoying it somehow to get it off that person. The tank has a taunt button or some tanks have spells, and that can grab the aggro, but it isn't an ez-mode button, and wont always work, and even when it does, it isn't that strong. So spell casters have to be careful with what they do or they can end up pissing off a mob too much and getting ripped to shreds, and no healer will be able to save them. Nowadays the game has an aggro meter built into the game, but in the good ole days you just had to develop a feel for this yourself through experience playing and trying stuff out. Also there was some AI going on even back in 1999, so healing spells generated aggro and the mobs could often ditch the tank and go straight to the healer because he healed someone and it annoyed the mob.

    Mezzing:

    There are a few classes that can mesmerize or sleep mobs, but it is not ez-mode like WoW. In WoW the mob would turn into a sheep and be completely out of the fight for a while, and nothing could change that. In EQ, the mob just goes to sleep but still looks the same, and if someone hits the mob, it will wake up, and likely be super angry at the person who mezzed it, and this can easily wipe a group. So people had to be really observant to see who was doing what, and make sure you time stuff ok and not just shoot any enemy you can see. You should play smart, assist the tank or at least make sure you know if someone is mezzing stuff so you don't fuck it up.

    Dying:

    In original EQ when you die, you left a corpse with all your money and gear on it... And you respawned back at your bind point, completely naked. So not only did you lose a big painful chunk of experience, but you had to travel butt naked back to your corpse and somehow get past whatever killed your when you were fully equipped, while naked. This takes luck sometimes, cunning, help from other people, or you can sometimes get invisibility and sneak and grab the corpse and drag it to safety. Other people can drag it for you, and there are various options. But basically dying like everything else in this game, is serious business.

    Modern EQ tweaked this though so you still lose experience but you respawn with all your gear.
     
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  6. anvi Prophet Village Idiot

    anvi
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    Yeah most spells you can buy from merchant NPCs, but some are research only, and they required you to find bits of paper all over the world from various enemies. I think it was too much hassle for players so they kinda phased it out very early on, but it is still there for some spells. And yeah mana regen was really slow and serious. It is faster in modern EQ, and also later you get spells to speed it up and Bards get songs to speed it up too. But it is always quite serious, it makes being in a dungeon so scary because if people don't play efficiently and go out of mana at a dangerous time, it can easily wipe the entire group.

    It was really high end at the time. It required a 3d graphics card which not everyone had back then. I was really into games at the time so before EQ I had been playing other stuff like Tribes, and some stuff in EQ looked quite goofy and cartoony compared to other games, the ground in particular was like big triangular polygons. But some things like the armor on characters blew my mind. I could see the individual links in a piece of chainmail armor.

    But yeah, it needed a really decent PC. That was one of the reasons World of Warcraft ended up being so much bigger, it came at a later time when the net was bigger, there were more gamers, it was more accessible, but it could also be played on any old PC. Kids could get on their Mom's netbook and it would work.
     
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  7. Pots Talos Educated

    Pots Talos
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    UO > EQ
     
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  8. anvi Prophet Village Idiot

    anvi
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    UO was awesome as well, and also has at least one good emulator server so can still be played! I have a buddy that plays it sometimes. But EQ is more my thing. It is so sad that this style of game died out though because they were due to grow into the most amazing genre, and the whole thing got ruined and sidetracked by WoW.

    EVE Online seems pretty cool though.
     
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  9. Higher Animal Arcane

    Higher Animal
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    Go into more detail about some of the gameplay tactics that EQ required you to use. Do you have any memorable encounters?
     
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  10. Siobhan Arbiter

    Siobhan
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    Doesn't that honor belong to Meridian 59? I remember the first time I read about it in a gaming magazine in the mid 90s and having a hard time wrapping my head around it. And that's actually still the case, I don't understand the appeal of MMOs. Even after your detailed write-up, I still find myself wondering why this can't be a single-player RPG.
     
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  11. anvi Prophet Village Idiot

    anvi
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    Would love to.

    I started as a Bard which was so different to how all the classes work. But eventually I restarted as a Necromancer which is probably the best class in the game, not just in terms of power but how it plays.

    The most fun I had was when grouping. One time when I was about level 55 we went to this enormous dungeon called Sebilis, and at level 55 there were no newbies, everyone was a decent player, and this group was especially good. I knew one guy and he invited me to the group, but I'd never met the others. We travel to the bottom of this dungeon, fighting our way down lower and lower, and it took maybe an hour to get to the bottom, so if we died at this point, we would respawn back at town and have a 30 minute run just to reach the dungeon again, and then at least an hour of pain to somehow fight our way back down again to recover or corpse, while we were all naked... So basically dying was not an option, and that makes everyone kinda terrified.

    The group was Paladin, Magician, Enchanter, Cleric, Necromancer (me), and Rogue. We set up camp in a room that had no enemies spawning in there, near a room the players called 'Disco' because it had enemies that appeared on what looked like a stage. The Pally would run around to nearby rooms and grab the enemies in groups of 2 or 3 and bring them back to our room for us to gank. The Enchanter would mez 2 of them and we would beat the third one down, and then wake the others up. We had been there for a few hours and made lots of cash and gear and stuff, but after a while we were getting a bit tired, and we lost track of respawn timing, and the Pally ended up pulling 2 or 3 mobs just as a bunch of enemies had started respawning, so on his way back he ended up with 5 mobs chasing him and says, "OMG get ready!" Then right outside our room one more spawns, so we end up fighting 6. Any average group would easily die from this, but this group was really good. The problem was that one of the mobs was a Wizard and as soon as it runs in the room, it does an area nuke that blasts us all half to death. The Cleric starts healing people, and the healing makes all the mobs pissed off at him so they all pile on him and start ripping him up. If he dies, we are all fucked. But he is clever, and luckily he had a spell ready called Divine Aura which makes him invincible for about 10 seconds. This was just enough time for all of us to start grabbing these enemies off him. The Pally taunts one and smacks another one, so starts tanking 2 by himself. The rogue does all he can do which is start chipping away at the ones on the pally. But that leaves 4 more. The Enchanter does an area stun which gives him about 5 seconds to do something, and in that time he puts one of the mobs to sleep, leaving 3. He is getting torn up now and can die in a few seconds but we all think fast enough to save it. The Magician sends his fire pet at one of them which manages to gets its attention, leaving 2. I don't have any way to taunt and don't have my sleep spell memorised (the Enchanter was doing that), but I know my shit, so I cast my biggest deadliest poison on this mob which makes it super annoyed at me. You should never usually do this, but I had to. So it chases me and I run to the other side of the room, and then cast Root which locks it down on that spot. I can now run back to the other guys and that mob is now out of the way, but standing there glaring at me. The Cleric starts healing the Enchanter and saves him just in time, and the Enchanter manages to sleep the last mob beating on him.

    So now we have 2 mobs asleep, 2 being tanked by the Pally, 1 mob on the Magicians pet, and one parked in the corner glaring at me. We all focus on the 2 with the pally and start blasting them down as best we can, and we kill one fast, the second one takes a bit longer. Then the root breaks and that one from the corner comes charging at me and starts ripping me a new butthole. All I can do is pretend to be dead (necro trick), and it gives the Pally time to taunt it onto himself. I now jump up and start lifetapping the mob to recover some of my health so the Cleric doesn't have to waste mana healing me. At this point the Magician's pet dies because it was handling one by itself. We got 2 down, but still have 4 to go, and most of us are getting really low on mana at this point. The pro Enchanter manages to get 3 of them asleep and holds them there, but he says the dreaded, "LOM" meaning he is running low on mana and wont be able to hold them for long. But then the Cleric says LOM too and things are looking dire. So it is time for me to show what a Necro can really do. I sit down in the corner of the room and open my spellbook and start memorising a few spells that nobody else ever uses... They drain my health and transfer it to other people, so a heal basically, but it is really weak and pretty dangerous. But you could use the low level one with the higher level one, so I spam it on people and they are like woah who is healing us?! Cleric is resting, waiting at low mana to cast his one last heal on someone who needs it the most. Between us we manage to kill a few more mobs and we end up with just 2 left, but everyone is completely out of mana. We did well to make it this far, but were running out of steam and many groups would die now because even a decent group can only fight so long. But I have one trick left which is my charm spell. People rarely use this because it breaks randomly, you can't use it when you have a pet (which is the more reliable option), and it only works on undead. But of these last 2 enemies left, one of them is an undead... So when everyone thought we were finally done for, I charm this mob and they see in chat the mob says, "Guarding you with my life, Master." Now it starts beating hell out of its buddy and we all give whatever we have left to kill that mob. And suddenly, silence :P They are all dead apart from the one I have charmed. The group all sit down to rest and recover any tiny bits of mana they can in the moments before my charm spell wears off. It is just long enough for us to recover enough to kill this last mob, and finally he drops. We are completely spent, so we all huddle together in the back corner of this room, so hopefully no other passing enemies will drop in on us, we sit for a good 15 minutes to recover our our health and mana, and get ready to leave the dungeon. It was a good day and we made lots of cash, experience, and loot, and we all know that we got to leave in one piece when most other groups wouldn't have!

    So this happened 17 years ago when I was a kid, yet still today I can remember it vividly. I play lots of other games, but none of them come close to the depth and intensity of this. I hope one day another game will come along that can provide the same kind of hardcore excitement.

    There were a few other uber fights I can remember as well, I made a fortune doing something solo that nobody could believe I could do, but I figured it out and it made me rich. The real 'tactics' came from the raid scene, the mobs in that game do amazing things that puts games like WoW to shame. There were these massive giants that were twins and you couldn't split them up, so you had to fight both. Raids usually had one "main tank" that would tank one of them, but raiders had to improvize to kill his twin brother. That fight was crazy. And there was one where you engage this huge dragon, and an army of statues lining all the walls would awaken... They would slowly walk towards the raid and if you didn't kill the dragon fast enough, the statues would start slaughtering people. But most raids couldn't kill the dragon fast enough so they had to come up with crazy tricks to deal with these statues. I think the real tactics was from all these hundreds of raids. But personally the most intense fighting was from grouping in dungeons like I described.
     
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  12. anvi Prophet Village Idiot

    anvi
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    Welcome. I think MMORPGs have kind of turned to crap but I still think someday there will be an MMO revolution that brings the scope back to them and makes a whole new type of game. It is going to be hard to achieve though but I think it will happen eventually. Star Citizen is the closest I've seen to a huge MMO that throws out the rulebook and makes a genuine virtual world (or universe), but I don't know much about that game or whether it will succeed. One of the main guys behind EverQuest is currently working on a new game called Pantheon which looks very similar, but a modern version. It is too early to know if he can pull it off yet but it looks promising.

    Yeah Meridian 59 was the first. And Ultima Online was only 2d but kind of the most interesting because it didn't have much in the way of rules, so people could kill each other and could kill the devs of the game... and do all kinds of mad stuff. But EQ was kind of the one that made a real game in a virtual world, with great gameplay, huge numbers of players playing together, and it looked beautiful at the time and it was a huge persistent world. People would know who you are, idiot players became well known and people would want to avoid them, and great players became like real legends, and people would want to meet them or be in their guild. And when you logged off and went to sleep, people were still playing the game and doing stuff, so if you didn't play for a week, you started falling behind. People got seriously hooked. The solo gameplay could easily be done by a single player RPG, but grouping with other people would be hard to replicate. The way raids worked are the most unique because you had around 60 people from all over the world, all together heading off to kill a legendary dragon or something. It was a very social experience for some people, they enjoyed the banter between people and they enjoyed the drama when people would argue or become enemies or whatever. Personally I never really cared about the social side of it, I just liked adventuring and fighting stuff and collecting great gear :) But it felt like living in another world, a second life. There is nothing else really like that, everything else is just a game, this felt like a secret world inside your monitor. It was crazy.

    But the whole genre got McDonalds-ified and it just isn't the same anymore. But it could come back eventually.

    Yeah the grind was huge in EQ and it was the main complaint people had. It was the main reason World of Warcraft was created, because they loved EQ but they wanted to make it without the grind and without a few other bad things. So instead of killing enemies over and over, WoW wrote thousands of quests to give context to what you are doing. At first it seems better, but after playing both games, I actually preferred the EQ way.. But it is a slow paced game. They speeded it up a lot over the years, but it still takes a month of regular playing to reach level 40 ish for the average player. And then 40-60 will take a lot longer because it slows down. And then 60+ takes even longer. It is a game you play for years and if you need stuff to happen faster, it just wont be fun. But people got hooked on it when there weren't any other options and now they love the grind because achieving anything in the game takes ages and lots of effort, and it makes your achievements feel amazing. And new players look at you and go :O OMG. I remember travelling waiting for the boat with my real life friend, and we were on the phone at the time, and he goes WOW turn around! So I turn around and there is a guy standing behind me with this huge flaming sword and he is floating off the ground and wearing this shiny steel plate armor. I had been playing for months and I still there in my torn cloth pants and rusty mace :P

    Sort of. In the early days it wasn't at all because there was nothing to buy at all, and they funded the game with subscriptions. But now it is free to play and you buy boosts and stuff with real cash. The thing is, there isn't really any PVP in the game unless you play on a specific PVP server, or if you do a PVP tournament for fun or something. So it is mostly a game about people playing with each other. So paying real cash for uber stuff doesn't really affect other people. Most people wouldn't even see how it could be pay to win because if someone buys a whole set of uber gear with his dad's credit card, it wont affect you. But for people who are competitive by nature (like me), it is technically pay to win because part of the fun of the game was motivating yourself to get better gear than everyone else and 'be the badass'. You can't really do that anymore unless you at least spend a bit of money, because there is some stuff you need to buy to have an uber respected character. Although you could play for 6 months for free before you would even need to worry about that.
    Not really. There is loads of different types of crafting and it makes amazing gear and people become well known as being the guy who makes brilliant jewlery, or the blacksmith who makes great armor or whatever. But the actual process of crafting is little more than hunting for items in the world, putting them in a box and clicking combine. It takes a lot of time and effort and money to be a good crafter, but then you put it all in a box and click combine.

    The devs of this game actually made a spiritual sequel called Vanguard which had the best crafting ever. There was a work bench and you put the items on the bench and had to pour a liquid on, and random mishaps would happen and you had to react. You could make all the stuff EverQuest had but it was all made with a proper mini game that was surprisingly good. Unfortunately that game had other big issues and got shut down a few years back. There is a team of fans making an emulator but it is about a year away from being worth playing.

    Yeah kind of. Trade is a huge part of the game. There is just so much stuff to get, you could go and kill all the enemies that have all the stuff you need but it would take years, so people fight for what they can, and make money to buy the remaining bits they need. And to make money you really need to sell stuff and learn the prices to sell things at and how much to pay for things. And some people go out and kill lots of lower level things to hoard lots of easier to get gear, and then sell bags full of it on their NPC trader. Each item wont be worth much but if they sell 50 of those items over a few weeks, they can make a lot of money.

    Also you can technically get a subscription for free now if you make enough money in game, you can buy an item called a Krono which gives your account a month of subscription. But you would have to be a hardcore player to make enough money in the game to afford to buy that. But some people play that way.

    Not essential but at the high end of the game it is mostly about raids, and it is just much better to be in a good guild for that. But the big guilds now will recruit almost anyone because the population isn't as big as it used to be, so they can't be as snooty and picky as they once were. But the game is just so big, you don't even have to raid at all, and it would take at least a year of regular playing to even reach the 'high end'. So some people play it casually, like me. I play it a few times a week and I never raid, I just explore the enormous world, do dungeons and stuff by myself, so I don't need a guild for that. I have been in many guilds over the years but I don't play hardcore anymore so I like to just chill and do my own thing.
     
    Last edited: Jun 12, 2017
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  13. Lacrymas Arcane

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    I'd just start playing an instrument instead of grinding in EQ tbh. That also takes years, but at the end of the day it's more fulfilling and it lasts a lifetime. Yes, EQ is wonderful and has pretty much the best world in an MMO in terms of exploration and reactivity, but the grind simply ruins it, it becomes a mind-numbing trudge through the motions, the only difference comes from the environments and mobs you have to grind on a specific level. And then come the hell levels... If you can somehow stomach the utterly ridiculous grind then EQ is truly amazing, the official progression server that is coming out soon (Agnarr) seems like a great place to start. I'm waiting for the day someone creates an MMO as deep as early EQ, but not as stupidly grindy.
     
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  14. anvi Prophet Village Idiot

    anvi
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    Yeah it is such a long term thing. A game you play over years rather than days or weeks. If you want to do raiding and play in big guilds and stuff like that, a new player would have play for at least a year to figure out how to play and grind through all those levels. It wouldn't really be worth it.

    Although you can just do what I do and play it casually and just travel around adventuring. You will find a dungeon and explore it and get some great loots that really improve your character and can make your day. If you enjoy that, this may be the best game that there is. But nobody will care about your achievement because you are just level 10 and getting an item some people got 17 years ago. If that matters to you, it wouldn't really be worth playing I think. But I just like how the combat and classes work, so I go adventuring and do stuff in my casual way and don't really care that I am not even close to being a top player.

    Another option is finding an emulator server with easier rules and stuff. There are some where you can reach max level in a few weeks instead of a few years! I'm not sure how many people would like that though. For an easier faster more action based online game, it would be better to just play one of the hundred other modern MMORPGs.
     
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  15. Lacrymas Arcane

    Lacrymas
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    I am all for slow leveling (even in single player RPGs), interesting and challenging content for all levels, focus on exploration and the world and punishing deaths, but only if those things are captivating and you don't feel like you are wasting your life when doing them. Leveling in EQ is too much grind (if you want to get into raids and such), there are some quests, but they are repeatable turn-ins. The best quests are mainly your class quests and the epic quests for your weapon, waiting 1 week for bosses to respawn for a non-100% drop notwithstanding, although it depends, I don't remember if it's a shared drop many people can pick up or only one person can.
     
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  16. anvi Prophet Village Idiot

    anvi
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    Some parts can be looted by someone else and then they help you finish the quest, but usually it isn't. Although even the Epic quests people tend to not bother with anymore. The Epic 1.0 was for level 60 ish and the 2.0 was for level 70 ish, and now the game goes up to level 105 so there is much better gear now. I think just a few of the Epic weapons are worth having now, just for the clicky.

    That said I'm actually doing some of the epic quests now because I like doing them. I think that's the thing with this game, if you enjoy just 'doing stuff', then it would still be worth playing today because there is so much stuff to do, and it is fun. But if it feels like a grind then it would become boring. I don't have anything to rush towards so I don't really feel the grind. I got to 60 quite fast but then it has been a slow grind, but I've done it in probably 10 different zones, many of which I'd never been to before, so I still enjoy it and it doesn't really feel grindy to me. But if your goal isn't to just do stuff but to reach the end game and do raiding and stuff, I think the grind would be too slow, even in modern EQ. (Unless you paid a bunch of money to skip it).

    The exception is those emulator servers though. The most popular one p99, that only goes up to level 60 so I can do that fast these days. There are even some servers now that have boosted exp but also boosted characters and weakened mobs. So the idea is that one person can solo anything that used to take groups, and now a single group can do any raid content. It is a fun idea.
     
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  17. Higher Animal Arcane

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    It's too bad this got moved over into the step-child MMORPG subforum. It seems like EQ's mechanics are worthy of being discussed in the more popular RPG area, but oh well.

    My experience with EQ is somewhat limited. I remember being 12-13 years old and playing EQ nonstop, so much so that it affected my grades and brought the wrath of my parents. There are so many things about this game that I didn't understand for a long time, like that dying wasn't permanent and I didn't have to reload a character after every death. I didn't get too deep into the game, but I was able to reach about level 19 as a Barbie Shaman. Eventually soloing yellow level mobs by blinding and poisoning them before quitting the game for good.

    Funny part about my EQ addiction was how much I got into the genre of mmorpgs because of it. I got into Dark Age of Camelot, which had amazing PVP. I also remember being so excited for games like Shadowbane, The Sims Online, Star Wars Galaxies, Everquest 2, and World of Warcraft. I thought that MMOs were literally going to take over the world, and everybody and their mother would be connected to an engaging online experience. There was so much controversy and dystopia around the concept of MMOs and it seemed like the endless march of progress would never stop.

    But History and Progress are a funny thing. It's been Twenty years since the release of EQ, and it remains the most engaging online experience ever constructed. MMOs did not live up to their potential as real life replacements and have slowly been phased out of popular consciousness. In fact, I can't recall hearing anything about MMOs from popular culture after that famous South Park WoW episode. It's like the entire genre lived in the spotlight and then spent itself out, replaced by the current trend of Esports and Minecraft.
     
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  18. anvi Prophet Village Idiot

    anvi
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    Exactly. It is a shame really because WoW kind of killed the genre (imo), yet it isn't WoW's fault, and WoW itself is actually a really good game in its own way. And it did some great new things. I had a lot of fun doing the battlegrounds and the arena PVP matches, it was like playing an action Capture The Flag match but with fantasy characters which was cool. And some of the classes played in a fun way, the WoW Druid is brilliant with its shape shifting. But WoW was so huge and made so much money, almost every MMO since then has followed its formula of being accessible and not too brutal etc. It is fine for casual gaming, but it isn't what the MMORPG was originally about.

    When I first read about EQ in 1998 ish, the hype was all about the concept of a "persistent world", that had real people all over the world playing together, and when you went to bed, the world still carried on going and would never stop. And you could be anything you wanted, you could be a villain that people hated, or a hero that people loved, and you excel at what you do and people would know your name. I pictured someday a game where someone could rise up to become king of a nation, maybe be murdered by an evil player, and entire cities could be burned to the ground, new ones founded, and people could play completely as traders and crafters and never lift a weapon if they didn't want to. Some of that happened but a lot of it didn't and the whole thing just ended up being about getting a quest to collect 20 wolf pelts and zapping stuff with lightning bolts.

    I think EVE Online is the only modern MMO that went anywhere near what I thought the genre was going to be. But someday I think this will go full circle and some huge games will bring back the potential. The concern to me is that originally these games were inspired by MUDs, so 40+ year olds grew up playing those incredible virtual world games but it was all very text based. So early MMOs were trying to recreate that experience but in 3d with real graphics. Now it seems MMO devs are only inspired by previous MMOs. I hope that MUD influence could come back, because those seem to be the games that are most interesting. I never even played a MUD but my buddy did and tells me about stuff like items that are completely unique, an amazing legendary sword that nobody else in the world has, and everyone knows the name of the guy who has it. And some day if someone kills that guy and takes his sword, that guy will become infamous. Stuff like that still needs to come to modern MMORPGs.

    And even besides MMORPGs, I would like to see single player RPGs that have combat as good as EQ. Nowadays it seems RPGs are either deep and turn based, or actiony and shallow. There are no real time yet deep games. One of the weird things about EQ is that the classes actually had difficulty recommendations when the game first came out. So the Monk might say easy difficulty because you don't have that much to click and it is standard melee with some martial arts. But the Enchanter is high difficulty because you have to be really fast at locking down a room full of enemies to save your group. Games today are so terrified of being too hard because people might not buy it, but if they had proper difficulty levels instead of just ramping the enemy stats up and down, one game could appeal to far more people.
     
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  19. Lacrymas Arcane

    Lacrymas
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    Well, they have, just not in that way. E-sports are kind of like MMOs, just ...faster. MOBAs are literally a microcosm of an MMO"RPG", but instead of your character being a constant in a world, it's your username that is a constant in the world. MMOs were never really controversial, not in the sense Night Trap and Mortal Kombat were, which effectively created the ESRB (with a handful of ignorance mixed in). MMOs were the scapegoat de jour, replacing comic books, heavy metal, Harry Potter and all the myriad of absurdities corrupting the children. The media also gobbled it up pretty fast, because it's a juicy story. The truth is that only people who were prone to dangerously addictive habits were ruining their lives over them, they would've been addicted to something else if MMOs were not around.

    The concept of progress in history has been debunked so hard and thoroughly that we now know there is no such thing in this context. Different stuff happens and that's the most correct viewpoint concerning history, so nobody should be surprised that MMOs got replaced with something else (a variant), even though it seems like a step back. Whether there's room or a market for an MMO like EQ nowadays is a good question. Just like the question of whether single player RPGs are relevant. Those questions are always concerning the mainstream though, which is the wrong crowd. The mainstream is a fickle beast, latching on to The Next Big Thing, soon MOBAs are going to be replaced. It's not like video games are unique in this aspect, every other medium suffers from the exact same thing, certain things decaying in popularity and being muscled out. Johann Fux, whose writings modern polyphonic teaching is based on, has written in 1725 how the perfect old polyphony was replaced by a decline and decadence in the music of his time. He's not the only one to write such things, many people throughout history have.

    We do have an advantage over the old ways though - the internet. That's how the RPG "Renaissance" was possible and we are getting new RPGs quite frequently (the quality thereof notwithstanding), so I'm pretty sure there's some market for old-school MMOs like EverQuest, someone just has to find the audience (and design) for it. There's also the fact that modern MMOs just aren't good games, let alone good MMOs, so we don't really know what's happening in that genre.
     
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  20. luj1 You're all shills

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    Thank you for being honest. I'll move on
     
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  21. Beastro Arcane

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    I'll add some stuff being a vet of the game. Started in Dec of 99 and recently came

    Sadly the taming really screwed with some of race/class balancing, like how Iksars (lizardmen) are pretty much the best Necromancers due to their innate HP regen that really eases the penalty of Necros hp to mana spell line that was countered by them being kill on site everywhere else, something which they sadly didn't fiddle with more in later expansions.

    In the original game and the first expansion, Kunark, these sorts of things were massive factors, like how my brother went to level around Lake Rathe as his Gnome Necro, but the nearest non-kos town was Freeport, a human city over half a continent away. Traveling to Lake Rathe was an adventure in itself and complicated by the fact that originally pet class pets needed to be given weapons for them to do things like double attack, so he'd load up in Freeport on fine steel daggers, become massively encumbered and then literal walk to Lake Rather, all while doing this on Rallos Zek, the first of the games PvP servers.

    Well....

    The Progression Servers changed that and most people play on them now.

    As someone who is playing on Phinny I can say this really puts a short life limit on Agnarr. It's a fun ride to POP, then a big drop of boredom during LDON, but without Gates of Discord, Omens of War and others to come the PoP content would get boring fast. The sad fact is there are just some things like the mercs they should have never put in, but they're a good enough price to pay to enjoy progressing through all the other enjoyable content that came after PoP, especially for those like me who quit at release of LDoN.

    I do too, I sucked it up and bought two year long subscriptions, which at $120 isn't too bad.

    What you can do if you're able to if you get into the game of playing the market is to build up a horde of Krono, which if you right click on one adds 30 days to your subscription. It's a common thing with people to pay for one months subscription to be able to play on the Progression Servers, then work to build up a horde so they can keep using them to add more days.

    Krono operates on very much the same mechanics as real life currency in that it's value is constantly changing, typically continually appreciating in value, but certain circumstances can result in its price dropping. It is very much an effective tactic to play on a new prog server where their price is almost nothing, buy as much as you can, then resell them at appreciated value to then resell the platinum for real cash.

    I have an RL friend that plays EQ to make money on the side by doing things to buy Krono and then resell like I said above while only consuming Krono to keep subscribed. He's made over $5k that way so far, but it's a chore I don't have the patience for.

    IF anyone plays on a prog server and wants to built Krono up, do so now while Agnarr is still new. Not really trying I've built up a tidy collection of them benefiting from the laziness, and imo, stupidity, of players easing the early beginning of their game by just throwing Krono around as I've migrated with my guild from Ragefire to Lockjaw to Phinny.

    A good example of that is the first bunch I made, which I got early on in Lockjaw when I won the roll on a Flowing Black Sash, the first and really only item with haste that makes melees attack faster on my Necro since all the melees in the group had gotten one already. After heading back to back I announced selling it and got someone who offered 6 Krono for it, which I snatched up before he could come to his sense. Since then I've gotten more from similar deals, just as my guild leader, who loves tradeskills, worked on blacksmithing early only to have someone offer him a Krono to make him a full suit of Banded Armour, which is pretty basic newbie armour that sells for a pittance, but he couldn't buy starting out because he had no Platinum.

    The biggest example of this "Splitting", that is the ability of Monks and SHadowknights, and if they have to, Necromancesr, to use a spell/ability they get that makes them fall down and fools the AI into thinking their dead. Originally it was meant as a survival skill for when things are going bad that they could avoid dying, just as others like Druids and Shamans could use their increased movement spells to outrun dangerous situations.

    The thing was Monks and SKs quickly found out that if they FDed, then waited for mobs (EQs name for monsters) to walk back to their spawn point some mobs would walk back sooner than others and repeatedly having them do that and FD over and over would break them up allowing another group member to aggro one by itself so your group or raid could then focus on beating on it and only it.

    Originally Verant (the original developer of EQ) looked on this as a bug and they expected players to have to deal with every single mob in a group not matter what either using Enchanters or Bards spells to mezmerize mobs, or in the case of raids when often mobs couldn't be mezzed, to originally force players to split up and have one tank class fight each of the mobs while the raids groups would split up to support them.

    Splitting meant all of this could be avoided and Verant treated it not simply as a bug, but as an exploit, that players were abusing something unintended in the game to get unfair advantages and originally punished players for it. The problem for them was that they found that they simply couldn't get rid of the bug, and at the same time, the games combat mechanics proved too remorseless for it to be a good thing for them to remove it even if they could. As a result, after a short bit of punishing players for splitting they added it as a permitted rule and it's now become one of the most integral mechanics to both groups exping and for raids raiding where groups need to have a puller almost every time and they are crucial for raids making Monks and SKs some of the highest value classes to have around (Necros are simply too squish to regularly pull, though it can be done by them if need be).

    Even on the progression servers it isnt quite the same as it was in classic. The long wait literally was one where some classes might have to sit around for half an hour or more to get max mana, all the while their buffs are counting down with most lasting between 30min to and hour. It's not even dungeons where you have to be cautious, if you're playing a class known to solo that also lacked a means of really increasing their mana regen, like Druid or Wizard, you had to constantly balance your DPS as well as keeping an eye on the timer on your buffs so rebuffing didn't eat into your mana pool when it was already low as well as them not wearing off in the middle of a fight.

    The importance of mana makes the Enchanter class massively important then and now. Besides it being the main of two mezzing classes enchanters also can give others a buff called Clarity that increases their mana regen and they are a constantly in demand class people seek out to ask for the buff while chanters could, if idle and bored, begin to announce that they can buff people with it for donations to make some money on the side.

    Most classes that need mana have different ways of making it back, even ones that don't conventionally do like Wizards, which if you play on an old server, if you've able to track down someone selling an old item called a Manastone, something you could right click that could take hps away and give you mana back. The item synergies with Wizards more than anyone else because, even though healers can heal the hp that are taken away, especially Clerics with their Completely Heal spell, they countered the benefit to them by restricting Manastones ability to be cast outside of the original content of the game to prevent healers from abusing it just like this so they could spam away while grouping. Two things made it awesome for Wizards: THey have a line of spells called Runes that give them a buff that is effectively artificial hps, as in you cast it and it puts a 500hp rune on you, then when monsters attack you the first 500 damage is taken by the rune and not your hps. The thing is, Manastones spell is effected by runes as well and Wizards epics effect is a right click rune, so wizards, being one of two port classes, could port back to the original continents, then alternate spamming the epic and Manastone to get full mana, then port back to where they were leveling.

    Not simply that but items become specialized for certain niche things. The thing with Manastones is just one of the more well know ones but there were others and they way Verant, Sony and Daybreak handle/d the changing circumstances with loot makes items even more important.

    What I mean is the general rule of thumb that was begun with the Manastone. It was about the first item they realized was overpowered and required being removed, but despite doing that they decided to keep all preexisting Manastones in game, just later adding the nerf that only allowed them to be cast in the original content. The result was suddenly this item was both rare as hell and massively sought after.

    Others would follow that weren't as overpowered but still required removal, but again preexisting ones were kept in and quickly became prestige items. One of the biggest ones is the Mask of Deception, which is a mask with right click Dark Elf illusion on it. It was the first of a long of items meant only for Bards and Rogues to allow them to be able to sneak into cities they are nominally kill on sight to, like a goodie goodie Wood Elf Rogue using the mask to sneak into Neriak, the Dark Elf city to mass around in it, something that soon became a reoccurring thing both classes (and Enchanters, the class that comes will a full line of illusion spells) needed to do to do class specific quests.

    The problem was a bug was quickly discovered with the mask, you didn't need to be a Rogue or Bard to use it, you couldn't equip the mask, but if you put it in an inventory slot and clicked it, it would still cast. This quickly got around and everybody began to camp it. To keep people from ignoring ever bothering with choosing Dark Elf as a race and instead just pick another race, camp the mask and then run around using it instead, the mask was removed and all preexisting masks were made No Drop (They could not be traded away, something which all important raid and quest items quickly became too). Because of this the mask became yet another prestige item, and since it was No Drop, also became a symbol of veteran status as the mask only dropped for the first few months of the game.

    In addition to this the mask wasn't simply a novelty, for some races it was a hugely important item that could drastically change the game, especially in the early stages of the game when they really sought to maintain racial balances by emphasizing racial penalties in the terrain of many zones. Seeking to maintain this balance was the driving reason for the masks removal and is sad to think about since they later began to remove these penalties as the game increasingly became casualized.

    The mask was important above all others for Ogres and Trolls, and to a lesser extent, Barbarians. Ogres and Trolls are some of the most powerful racial choices to pick, Ogres getting frontal stun immunity and a ton of HPs while trolls get slightly less hp but better hp regen than other races. The downside to both was their size, which in many dungeons could quickly result in their deaths if they had to run away from a fight. They emphasized a spell Shamans had, a class originally only all three races could be. The spell could shrink you down as small as a gnome of halfing, and in many dungeons you either needed to have a Shaman around to track one down and bum this buff off of them (and rebuffed if you had to zone mobs off, the spell wore off if you zoned). This was mandatory for the two main and most popular original dungeons, Guk and Solusek B which were both mazes of very restricted passages.

    The mask allowed these races to have no trouble anywhere and so early large race players who got this mask found themselves in a very unique position of freedom as well as desirability in groups since it allowed them to function if a Shaman wasn't available to get into the group. It was a mixed bag as the game progressed expansions dungeons became less crowded so fatasses became less dependent on Shamans and as a result to counter their strengths they progressively made the differences between classes less and less until now it largely cosmetic. For instance it's a common thing for people to play Gnome Warriors when the only advantages Gnomes have is their high intelligence that makes them good casters. To be a Gnome warrior is purely for the comedic value playing a race unsuited to be one.


    All I'll add here is to be very careful playing on Emu servers. Corruption on them is practically universal, it's the consequence of having just random people running them and not employees of a company that have to maintain a standard of ethical conduct because they could get in legal trouble if they don't.

    P99s main problem is it's just become a massive conduit for RMT (Real Money Transfer) that has infected the Emu servers staff. P99 is the best cast where the server has essentially become a way Rogean (the guy who runs the server) makes money and he doesn't give a fuck how RMT unbalances the server so long as he keeps getting his cut. Original he made rules banning it and kept up the appearance that he was enforcing it, but it was smoke and mirrors since he only would ban people who didn't give him a cut of their earnings. The rest of the staff are corrupt so some extent either in on it as well or there to get a power trip except for the one guy who is the developer, I think his name's Null, he only fiddles with the game as a hobby since he enjoys tinkering with EQ and gets enjoyment from doing so with it resulting in a fully functional server coming from it, the only problem is that's all he cares about and since he can do that no matter what the state the server is in he doesn't give a fuck what damage RMT might be causing.

    If you're used to EQ it's a nice change of pace but it's differences ruin a lot of the games charm, chiefly the weird lore they've built the server around. If you've played lots of EQ and want something different it's good to give it a bit of a go, but leveling in it can be a pain (I mostly played it in 2006), all the most so now that the populations declined.

    - The Grind is oddly a big part of its appeal.
    - You can buy Krono with real money then sell the Krono for in game money or items, that is where the "sorta" comes from. It is not required though and I get by without it.
    -It's not super good like many other games, but it still is useful if you know what to work on. The best example of that is Jewelcrafting which is mostly an Enchanter trade skill (They have the spells to enchant the metal that are needed to make magical items) that produces a lot of jewelry with stats on it that is especially useful early on when such jewelry is rather rare outside of that made by Jewelcrafting.
    -Not unless you want it to become one. The game is fun for both those who love tradeskills and those who hate them, like I do.
    - Not really but that is very class dependent. Warriors benefit from one and really need one to do their best while a Necromancer is tailor-made to be a loner with a lot of their self-only spells allowing them to do things that others classes require buddies for. The other big solo class is Druid, but it's a mixed bag that I played back in the day and wouldn't recommend while others can work on being them in specific circumstances like Wizards and Bards if you work on them enough.

    If you ever do try it, pick a Necromancer.

    I'll get around to adding a class and race list later unless someone else gets to it first.
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2017
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    Revenant
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  23. anvi Prophet Village Idiot

    anvi
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    WOW I never knew they did that, that is so stupid. :/

    No probs. I love the game but imo it has as many weaknesses as it has strengths. But it is still my favorite :) I did have fun in various other MMORPGs though, Rift was awesome in the early days, The Secret World was promising and is coming back as a remake in about a month. Elder Scrolls Online is pretty good, WoW was great for a while, I haven't played it for 10 years though. Some others I forgot.
     
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  24. anvi Prophet Village Idiot

    anvi
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    Here's another bit of gameplay for you Animal, one I've never seen in another game. It was called AOE groups.

    So there are Area of Effect (AOE) spells in the game that just a few of the classes have, they do less damage than the usual direct damage spells, and cost a lot more mana, but they hit everything in the area. Usually people don't use them because mobs are too dangerous to pull in large numbers so groups only ever fight 2 or 3 at a time anyway, and even then, someone will likely mesmerize the extra ones while the first one is killed, and an AOE spell would wake them all up and cause mayhem.

    But players came up with yet another trick. The Enchanter class had an AOE stun spell which stuns all the mobs nearby, but only lasts for about 2 seconds. But as they levelled up they got upgrades to this, and each older version could also be cast, so if the Enchanter was willing to do no other damage or anything else, they could just stand still and cast their 5 AOE stuns in a row, and by the time the last one was done, the first one would be off cooldown and ready to go again. As long as they didn't get too many resists, they could stun anything nearby. So you get a strong tank, preferably a Paladin that can use Divine Aura, and instead of getting 2 or 3 mobs, he goes and pulls 50-100 mobs... He would run all over the zone making sure they don't catch him, and then run back to the group and pop his Aura. A moment later 100 mobs would show up and the Enchanter (preferably 2 of them) would start spamming their area stun. And while everything is locked down in stuns, a Wizard (preferably 2 of them) would cast their biggest AOE spells over and over and blast them all down to death. It was really dangerous and most people either didn't know the trick, or were too scared to try it, but when a group was doing it, it was amazing! You got enormous experience, like 10 levels in half an hour kind of experience, and it was an amazing sight. Even on high end PCs it would slow to a crawl with all those stuns and all those AOE nukes spamming and 100 mobs wincing in pain and then dying.

    It was tense and could easily kill everyone in the group with one mistake, but once you get the hang of it, the exp flies. Last time I did with a group I got level 50-60 in 2 evenings, when usually that would take at least a month.
     
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