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UO was my first, and I've never forgotten her. Over the years I've played em all, well almost - never got much into the sci-fi ones other than SWG. I can tell you though, anyone who played that game and allowed themselves to really dive in, still thinks about going back, and what it might be like. Just this month I cancelled my account for the first time, ever... and I started playing back in 97.I sincerely hope they have plans of redoing this game, BUT with many cautions in place. If you try to change too much of this game, it will fail, and it will fail more quickly than Warhammer and AiC (if that's possible for AoC). If there are any stabs at remaking this game, you must keep it simple. The game survived for as long as it did with a VERY limited amount of content compared to what's out there now, and they did it by keeping things simple.Off the UO topic for a sec though, I would love to also see an attempt at EQ again, whether it be a remake or an EQ3. Try to make this one have the addiction factor of EQ1 though plz Content overload is killing these games, too much space equals empty areas. No one wants to play solo all the time, and if you do, why are you paying $15+ a month for something you could do on your 360. The social factor is what promotes competition, and it's competition that drives addiction - That's what the next great remake should be based off.
"I play Tera for the gameplay"
I agree with the premise, and those are worthy candidates. But how could you omit EverQuest? EQ was bigger than all of them - before WoW it dominated the genre. EQ is the template on which most of the later games were built. There's a lot of folks out there who played EQ who would love to see a remake - with updated graphics, and based on the classic game - the first three years, when the original dev team were in charge. This one is top of my "I can't believe they haven't done it yet" list. :-)
On September 25th, the MMO industry turned 12 years old. In 1997, Origin launched Ultima Online and while it wasn’t the first multi-player RPG (MUDs) or even the first one with graphics (Meridian 59), it was the first commercially visible game to hit the market and set off a chain of events that led to more half assed, poorly translated imported MMOs than anyone can possibly imagine.
You are wrong. The first graphical mmo was Neverwinter Nights for AOL. It was released 4 years before Meridian 59.
Get your facts straight.
I don't suffer from insanity, I enjoy every minute of it...
Originally posted by Kokushibyou "On September 25th, the MMO industry turned 12 years old. In 1997, Origin launched Ultima Online and while it wasn’t the first multi-player RPG (MUDs) or even the first one with graphics (Meridian 59), "Why does everyone say Meridian 59 was the 1st graphical MMO? Especialy if you are writing an article you should put in the effort to look these things up. From wikipedia:"Meridian 59, the first commercial, 3D massively multiplayer game, was developed by Archetype Interactive and published in September 1996 by 3DO.""The Realm was launched in March 1995 for Windows personal computers. It was designed in the tradition of graphical MUDs, before the popular usage of the terms "massively multiplayer" and "MMORPG"." Refering to Sierra's The Realm Online.Meridian 59 was not the 1st graphical MUD, it was the 1st 3D MUD. The Realm gets no respect, sigh.
I even played The Realm, you're right I should have mentioned it there, but the larger point is moot since that's not where I was counting from.
Sorry, M59 still appears on our list, The Realm has long since disappeared as far as I know. I simply forgot it when sorting by age.
Dana MasseyFormerly of MMORPG.comCurrently Lead Designer for Bit Trap Studios
Nice article. However too bad my favorite is not there.
I am willing to pay a 50$ monthly subscription for working remake of original Shadowbane.
Originally posted by tazarconan Originally posted by Campana If you want a UO remake, Mortal Online is the one:www.mortalonline.comThe guy who started this has said the best gaming years of his life happened in UO and he wants to recreate that.
MO has only 1st person style though and that will drive many ppl out of it, and a mmorpg to to survive and succed you need big numbers of ppl playing it from start otherwise it will have financial problems and thats bad for every game's future.
In regards to a MMO requiring big numbers of people playing from the start to make it I believe you are incorrect. I have been playing EVE since 2003 and that game started as a very small game and we were a very very small community (~20K.) The game has done great and been a huge success, growing a lot every year (~300K.)
I would say for a large company like EA or SOE you are correct in that it needs huge numbers at the start to make it. But for indi companies it is much better to grow the game with the playerbase. And this is much more important in a game like EVE, UO or MO that has so many sandbox aspects to it.
CCP did it right with starting EVE small with a small community, it is to be seen how Star Vault will do with remaking UO with MO. I hope MO turns out great as it is time for a game like that.
For MMO's, I am looking for a new or fresh experience rather than I remake of a game I no longer play.
I played DAoC long after release. At that stage the company was updating the game to:
If an old game is still making money, maintaining a game so that it is still playable is one way of extending the income stream and may be a better option than risking venture capital on a complete remake.
City of Heroes is a great game. Don't be put off by some of the above posts that discount the game because it does not match their preferred game style.
Yea I'm a huge UO fan but these 1st person view wannabe remakes are really turning me off. The top-down angle is one of the reasons I loved UO. I think someone above here said it best in that another UO would have to be top-down view with todays graphics otherwise you just have a mediocre MMO trying to come off as "hardcore". UO never had any kind of hardstance on "this is a hardcore game BRO" it was just a sandbox MMO that allowed the community to run the end game.
These Darkfalls and this MO game is nothing like UO if only for the fact that it is in the 1st person view.
The Realm was pretty fun, it would be interested to see it remade into 3D.
Shadowbane should definitely be on the list. The depth of character customisation was incredible. Haven't played a game in which I could make the same class in so many different ways, or play the same spec group in so many different ways. This depth also resulted in incredible PvP as you were always adapting and adjusting your spec group and strategies based off who you were fighting (and if you were on Lore, one fight would be versus a Vampire Necro spec, then a Centuar Prelate spec, a Mino Polarearm or a Dwar Chucker spec... There was incredible variety.) which brought an amazing challenge, especially if you were the one leading your group.
I would pay a hefty fee to play Shadowbane on a better engine with a good population.
MrGimpzCrash and Burnvaleofshadows.21.forumer.com
I cant say I read this through entirely, simply because I am not conversant with all of the games covered.
I do think its an excellent article with a very good and strong point.
From my perspective, there are too many games out there vying for our time and attention and too many of those are either outright rubbish (rubbish beyond any influence of any objective personal opinion) or are merely a flashy graphics front end pasted on top of old, outworn, poorly implemented ideas and game engines that are so simplistic as to baffle their description as MMO.
Strangely enough, one game that you would have to consider as being worth a remake would be Conquest Online. Pretty poor on the graphics front, with and extermely simple class and combat system, its nevertheless a great game for both group and solo play.
As for those you mentioned AC was a game I never really liked and maybe a spruce up of the graphics and general game mechanics would result in a decent hack and slash.
UO maybe once had some sort of glory, when people were actually there to play with, but I cant say I ever saw that, and, tbh, the hard to see graphics and eye frazzling colour contrasts put me off it almost immediately. Stick Baldur's Gate quality graphics on it and maybe it would be worth some attention.
Perhaps, in some ways, Wurm Online is the remake of UO, having a 3D environment with gorgeous graphics and complete freedom to pursue whatever skills you are interested in right up to the point where the buildings and items you construct are repsresented as part of the landscape. This game is well worth a look if you like Ultima Online.
As an original player of EQ, EQII and AO, I look back with sad nostalgia to the days when the servers were packed with eager, fun loving players in games where team work was an ultimate requirement to success. The same can be said of the revivified DDO.
All of these games, in spite of looking slightly aged with respect to their graphics are games that have eternal appeal, simply because the games themselves are incredibly well written, well balanced and have that immersive quality that any good MMO must have to be recorded in the annals of the glorious.
However, it is not any datedness or inadequacy of these games that would suggest a remake, or necessarily that any of them need any sort of remake, since what makes a game great is not it graphics but its playability.
What really needs a rethink, and all MMO's really have to consider this issue, is how they are marketed.
With the advent of WoW we saw a type of self destructive, predatorial marketing that encourages people, especially younger players, to focus on uberism, soloing and deemphasis of what actually gives an MMO lasting appeal to all age groups, ie the social group play aspect that causes the game to be more than just a computer program but a leisure passtime that is as fun and fascinating as any other passtime that involves interaction with other people.
Its the people that lend the dynamism, fun and excitement in the longterm. No people = no game.
The younger players grow up. They want more from a game than an online solo FPS/RPG in a huge environment. When the game has become too focussed on solo play, the players are inhibited from creating the social environment that would keep those players as they begin to want more from the game than just personal achievement .. as they begin to want the achievement of working well with others.
Those players then leave the game they played to try to find a game that offers that missing something but, all games suffering from that migrational inclination in a market where there are almost more games than players, the market as a whole actually starts to lose players, driving them away with its own cheap marketing policies, with the end result that every game currently, good or bad, is suffering from depopulation.
The solution, perhaps, is not for the games that led the way and are still the best to be revamped, but for those games to be recognised by us for what they always were and still are .. the most playable games on the market.
In return, the companies running those games need to do two things. They must ensure that their player population is not split destructively across multiple servers.
Every game has an effective minimum population which seems to be about 75% of what the developers estimate as the maximum population which the servers at the time could handle.
All the games mentioned are old and were developed for much less powerful hardware. Were each of the companies responsible to invest in more modern servers, capable of twice the population load, and then merge the populations of the current servers so that the new more powerful servers ended up with between 75% and 125% of that initial maximum estimate, then all their servers would be sufficiently highly populated to make the game attractive to new players looking for other players to play with.
Assuming, our hope, that those games then attracted more players, their servers could then be split at around the 150-175% population mark to create new servers to handle incoming population.
Remember that all those old games were written in times when the computer at home was much less powerful, when our internet connections were much less capable. Client side lag, which was a common cause of frustration in the past, should be nearly non-existent in those games now. Similarly, there is no reason for there to be server side lag in older games, given that today's server hardware and internet connections are also to the order of seven times more capable.
Running servers that can cope with twice the initial estimated maximum population should be trivial. Thus consolidating existing populations to make games that much more attractive to new or returning players should be, more or less, simply a matter of investing in servers capable of doing so.
Anarchy Online, 156 Fixer <Famous Last Words>, RK1Dungeons & Dragons Online, 13 Fighter <Knights of Shadow>, Keeper(?)EverQuest, 56 Shaman <Miraj>, Venril SathirEverQuest II, 55 Assassin <Cult of the Dragon>, SplitpawLord of the Rings, 50 Guardian <Thorin's Shield>, SnowbournWorld of Warcraft, 46 Hunter <The Way>, forget server
Another game in desperate need of revisioning is Diablo3.
It's not even released yet, and I can already tell it will not live up to the standards of the hardcore diablo fans.. It has the look and feel of a diablo game, but none of the key character customization features that made the previous games so enjoyable. It is going to be a major letdown if it ever does release, since for me Diablo&D2 were and still are my top favourite RPG's of all time.
Don't know if it was mentioned, but didn't they kind of try to re-do Ultima Online with Ultima Online Worlds and Ultima X? Not sure of how much money was wasted on those two ventures, but with the market as flooded as it is now with MMORPG's I don't see it happening any time soon unfortunately.
Exactly how is it that people forget the past so quickly? Meridian 59 is listed as an afterthought to UO when talking about the first MMO? Meridian 59 was old and grey by the time UO went into Beta.
Even worse, nobody seems to remember the other original MMO, NeverWinter Nights.
(And somebody stick a sock in the mouth of the first noob that pipes up with "NWN isn't an MMO, and it only came out a few years ago"... FFS. And here I was starting to get the impression that most of the online gaming community were getting to the age where nobody bothered to card them anymore....)
For those who don't remember: NWN (now known as ONWN in light of the new, less impressive games) was an old-school D&D Gold Box game, but online and in a massively (for the time) multiplayer, persistant world. (I think the popcap at that time was 250, later raised to 500? Which was actually damn impressive for the early 90s.) Like M59 it was hosted by an internet service (in this case, AOHell... back in the day when it cost $2.50 an hour to be logged in... Ouch!) There were GMs and farming, level grinds and PvP. There was even epic gear that had to be purchased with live event and PvP ladder rewards. It had virtually all of the trappings of the modern MMO, but with an oldschool graphics engine.
Like a lot of older gamers (man, am I really using the term 'older'?...) I actually kind of apreciated the low end graphics to a certain degree as it fostered more imagination which in turn gives the game more immersion and flexibility. Until graphics and content bloat can catch up to the capabilities of the mind (not to far off with the level of customization we're starting to see in some of the next gen games), the old games still have that one thing going for them.
As for a remake of ONWN? I think DDO kind of nailed that one. I actually started playing DDO (this year, after it had had time to mature a bit) because of it's nostalgia value from ONWN.
I played UO from Beta to late 2003, and I have to agree with the op. If they took the game back to it's original roots and update it a little in the graphics department, I'd come back.
UO was and still is the most original MMO ever made.
Awesome. However I think I would put DAoC as number one. I loved that game so much... really brought MMORPG's to the forefront of my gaming time.
Asheron's Call "the lands of Dereth"
One super gigantic unzoned world
No non human races
AC2 only connection to AC 1 was it was 1000s of years after AC1
When you remake a game you need to keep fun elements of the original game, not throw the whole game out make a brand new game.
Asheron's Call, Champions Online, Dark Age of Camelot, EVE Online, EverQuest, Lineage 2, Star Wars Galaxies and World of Warcraft.Waiting for SWTOR
This list was pretty good. I agree with pretty much all of them.
COH is a good game. But even in its heydey, its fans wanted more from it. This was supposed to be Champions Online. But IMHO, they changed the formula too much and didn't make as good a game as COH. So the world STILL needs a COH remake.
Great article and ideas.
I have always wondered why companies did not do this instead of making a never ending parade of awful MMO's.
I would agree that this is a real opportunity for some of these companies and yet it goes untapped.
I would support any effort if it was done on the right terms. By remake I would stress it would have to be just a remake. They should remake the engine and return to launch mechanics and begin anew and nothing more. Anything more and they have serious risk of failure. Complete failure. They should get the idea from everyone that cries about classic servers and begs to return to the original game and just do it simply. Remake the original game and nothing more.
AO for #1! Go away with AoC, I want AO2 )
I wholeheartedly agree about UO, or at least a game similar to that. As you said, it's amazing that no one has tried to rip off the concepts of UO like they did EQ ( WoW and everything else, though EQ ripped off DIKUMud).
I think I know the answer as to why no one has attempted it, and that is it's just plain hard to do right.Star Wars Galaxies came close in many ways. IMO the parts of the game that worked were the sandbox UO loike parts.Player housing/cities, the deep crafting system, exploration.Where they totally screwed the pooch was their crappy take on classes, unfinished or broken skill trees,etc.., and their total failure at making you feel like you were actually playing in the Star Wars universe. And the whole fiasco about how they introduced and handled Jedi into the game really pissed a lot of people off, including me.
Originally posted by Kilmar AO for #1! Go away with AoC, I want AO2 )
i think they are going to revamp AO with AOC graphics.
March on! - Lets Invade Pekopon
Ultima Online is - hands down - the best game I ever ever played (and still playing for more than ten years). And hitting 37 in a couple of months, believe me, I played hundreds (if not thousands) of games since the early 80s.
Would I have to rate UO on a scale from 1 to 100 where UO is getting the 100, the second place would not even get above 50.
UO still - in its current state - wipes the floor with all those wannabe MMOs out there.
Personally: I consider all other MMOs out there totally crap (although I can not speak for Eve Online).
Sure, there are some nice games out there, e.g. Vanguard, Darkfall Online (do not believe the bad rating of that game), Mortal Online somewhere in the future, but all of them come not even close to UO. Theres great crafting in Vanguard, but where is the PvP? Darkfall Online as being a copy of UO has not implemented all parts of UO: where is the taming? Where is the stealing?
I honestly doubt that there will ever be another game with the same game depth as UO.
The Realm was launched in March 1995 for Windows personal computers. It was designed in the tradition of graphical MUDs, before the popular usage of the terms "massively multiplayer" and "MMORPG". You may of had to zone ever screen.. but the fights were fun, the quests were fun and I think it is what lead to EverQuest's success!.. until Wow came along..
I'd like to say, since I was a part of this eon, that the above show's clearly Merdain 59 was almost a full year after The Realm launched.. Even to this day I don't feel that Ultima Online held a candle to it.. Don't get me wrong I loved the Ultima RPG series, However, Ultima Online had way to many short falls, throughout its whole life..
The Realm Online will always be the Father of MMO's, at least for me!
IMO, which isn't worth two peanut hulls !!!
I must say UO being on top was no surprise. They ended up killing that game by adding more and more nonsense and making things easier to appease the instant gratification wants of the younger generations.
I would be inclined to ask the staff here at mmorpg.com to get an interview with some of the EA staff and grill them on why they have turned their back on a game that could literally line their pockets with gold(and a pack llama). While their are at it invite me to the meeting so I can grill them on AOS, KR, neon colored half aprons and ninjas....