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I "dreamt" I was in Pre-CU SWG a few months back.
And when I was there, in my dream, I was initially cheerful. I redid my character, head to toe, just like it once was...
...and I started in Tatooine, just as I once did. The initial levels were great; in my dream, it was just like I remembered it. There were new people, and I was thrilled.
But...things just weren't right.
I'd go to the cantina. AFK had degenerated entertainment to levels unseen of at the height of the Holocrons. Not only were dancers and musicians scattered everywhere on the floor in big piles, but you couldn't even hear a song without having to turn off your speakers. Nobody seemed to care about matching the song; it seemed as every person in the place--and every player game wide--just "accepted" the fact that every musician was going to play their highest song to max out their character's XP, whether it sounded like crap or not.
Things got worse when I went looking for a group. Nobody grouped anymore. Nobody said "take two to the NE" like in the old days. Instead they had a squad leader or an entertainer do a macro-spam for a "solo group." What it was is a way to get the full group bonus, without ever having to actually fight lairs as a group.
Nobody roleplayed. The few who did logged on one or two days, then would never show up lit on my friends list again.
Nobody talked. You'd meet a group standing out in the middle of the desert macroing surveying...a group of maybe twenty or more...and nobody was at the keys.
Practically every open space had harvester farms. Lots were springing up like wildfire. I couldn't believe the level of development that was so entrenched in such a short time.
The central hubs, like Coronet, had spammers...lots of them. You couldn't even see the screen because of the spam. And the bazaar? Undercut. It was tough selling spice. I'd sell a crate of 50 muon for 5K....and someone would sell a 100 crate for 4K.
Nobody even cared about looking good. Nobody even bothered to stock full composite; all you could get were the four piece "mini suits". And some exotic armor? Like padded or chitin? You'd be hard pressed to find any.
Cities, for the most part, were dead. Maybe an odd tourist or an AFK musician. But Anchorhead? Bestine? Moenia? All dead to rites.
The medbay was just sad. Nobody even bothered to heal wounds anymore. Even in Mos Eisley or Theed, I'd sit in a room full of doctors with full black bars, and nobody would heal me for hours on end.
Now I heard, in my dream of course, that we shouldn't expect a full play experience. And yet, it seems that the good things about Pre-CU--the most important things--were things we already had: emotes, characters, venues, a story to create, and roles to fill. Nobody cared though about anything but reaching max level and being über...as if there was anything, really, to be über for.
It just seems to me that if we could care THAT LITTLE about the thing we had lost, to play it with such apathy, perhaps it was--in all seriousness--a good thing that Pre-CU "died" in 2005. Because what I saw--in my dream, of course--is what Pre-CU would have looked like, had 2005 never happened.
And it wasn't good. That "dream" was, in fact, rather cold and lame, compared to what we had.
"Its sad when people use religion to feel superior, its even worse to see people using a video game to do it."
"...when it comes to pimping EVE I have little restraints."
--Hellmar, CEO of CCP.
"It's like they took a gun, put it to their nugget sack and pulled the trigger over and over again, each time telling us how great it was that they were shooting themselves in the balls."
--Exar_Kun on SWG's NGE