There Are Too Many People Playing My MMO!

I’m seeing this sentiment all over EverQuest both in-game and on the forums. People are complaining that there are just too many other people playing the game with them. I never thought I would see the day when people complained about too many people playing EverQuest.

There are A LOT of people playing EverQuest. I’m seeing more people playing on Ragefire than I have seen in any new MMO launch in the past 10 years. I want to emphasize that I am actually seeing them. Let’s look at why.

No Phasing. EverQuest doesn’t artificially hide players behind imaginary phases of existence because they’re on another stage of a quest or version of a linear story. Norrath is a contiguous world we all share.

No Individual/Group instances. There may be multiple copies of zones, but they are not the instances people have grown accustom to in new MMOs. Dungeons and zones are always shared. Dungeon bosses and mobs are on respawn timers. They get camped.

All of Norrath is Useful. Players have to travel places, go to cities to buy spells and sell. Dungeons drop items that can be sold, traded, or used. Players will always be wanting to find rare gear and feed the economy. Crafting and spell reagents that a level 50 will want to use drop from low level mobs. There are no zones in EQ that are worthless.

Norrath is not Linear. You do not grab 20 quests from Greater Faydark then never return. You’ll travel through GFay to get to Mistmoore, Crushbone, Kelethin, etc. You’ll travel through Commonlands on your way to Sol or Freeport. The world is all connected and people have a reason to cross back and forth.

High Level and Low Level Mobs Share Zones. In many games a lowbie zone has only lowbie mobs. In Norrath, level 35 mobs often roam around where there are level 10 mobs. Oh, and they are aggressive.

Quests Require Exploration. A level 50 Necromancer Quest may require the Necromancer to revisit Mistmoore. Spell research requires reagents that may only drop from certain mobs. Epic quests require massive amounts of camping and travel to find rare things. You’re given reasons to move about the world.

I would not give these things up for reduced crowds. I may moan and complain when I can’t find a camp in Unrest, but the alternative leads to what ruined this industry. No thank you.

  • Hah. They have no idea. Just wait until they want their jboots and you have to train, camp, know the spawn routine or patrol (or placeholders) for the giant. =)

    Everquest was the epitome of snide, internecine game mechanic abusing camp competition.

    Have feign, will travel.

  • All of Norrath is useful was so magical to the game. When I first started playing I had no idea why high level players were buying bulk amount of bat wings from us newbs. These were drops from level 1 mobs! What could they possibly need them for? I found out later they were used as reagents for levitate. I also found out even later that they were needed in several baking recipes.

    One item. From level 1+ mobs. So much usefulness.

  • I agree 100%. I understand there are certain aspects of EQ that people don’t like such as the need for camping rare mobs, etc. But, it is hard to deny that there are lots of things like those you mentioned that current game developers could learn from EQ to make their worlds more immersive and interesting.

  • Man the more you post about it the more I want to play it, but I tried P99 and the outdated UI just made it so frustrating that I gave up. I definitely want to try again on ragefire though, just trying to decide whether it’s worth it.

  • @Drathmar: UI on Ragefire is the same as live and much better. Live has as lot of quality of life improvements that make it feel like a smoother experience. I have to admit, I’m having more fun on Ragefire than I did on P99.

  • Hehe do it.

    If I’m honest I was on the fence as the GUI and Graphics put me off.

    But now I’m lvl 3 dam it and slowly getting use to it.

    Though the first time u cast a spell and think “whats this fizzle all about?” or “What yea mean I need a Fire Beetle eye to cast?”

    Little touches like that makes the game so much deeper then newer mmo’s

  • Loving these posts Keen. Its really making me consider giving it a go. I miss the days I spent in Norrath.

  • It is a little hard for me to reconcile this post with “multiple copies of zones”. So what are they bitching about cause we both know it didn’t work this way before. Is the problem they don’t get 40 copies of lguk? Which frankly would only be a problem if everybody leveled too fast.

  • @keen: That makes up my mind knowing that, looks like I’ll be trying ragefire. Now to figure out a race and class…

  • @Keen I must admit the quality of life additions and easier leveling curve have made a super enjoyable experience. While I enjoy P99 and think there is a place for that classic hardcore style, for my current gaming desires and available resources, ie time, Ragefire has been great. Even the multiple instances have really helped make find groups and playing with friends easy and fun.

    I’m 32 now and while I want to get to level cap, I really don’t feel a rush.

  • @JJ Robinson: Yeah, I’m leveling two characters right now both in their 20s. This is so much fun and being able to play like this putting in only a few hours a day at most is phenomenal. I have no desire to play any other games. 😛

  • @Keen: I would definitely like to join you guys, I made a Wood Elf Druid as my first char, name Drathmar

  • Man, I forgot how much fun this game is, it took me like 2 hours to hit lvl 2 from just becoming use to everything again but once I got going it was really fun. I forgot what it was like to actually need to buy your spells, train skills, having slow but meaningful combat, having to actually look up quests to find them.

  • So far ive been sucked in, my biggest issue is the towns and how easy it is to get lost. Even with the in game map. I had a necro but I just couldnt find my damn trainer to buy stuff in Qyeynos!

  • Here’s a tip: Press M to bring up the map. On the map window press FIND. Find what you need and it creates a visible line in the game to follow (and a line on the map).

  • It must be really packed if it seems crowded even though there are so many instanced zones.

  • @Jenks: It is pretty pack, I saw a LOT of people in greater faydark last night while leveling, it was pretty hard to actually find a mob to kill at times.

    I do have to say, after only a couple hours last night, it makes me miss old school rpgs in general and how they were so much more immersive. All these little things that newer rpgs and mmos have taken out to make the game more accessible or to let you do more in your play time, has come at a much bigger immersion cost than I had realized until last night.

    Little things like actually having to scribe and memorize spells, while they don’t necessarily add anything great to the game or do much more than take time… add immersion. It makes you feel like you are that character and are part of that world. After an hour or so to get re-acquanited with it, it was at the point where I didn’t even notice how bad the games graphics look now or that it’s an old game because it does all these little things to draw you in, and I did not realize how much I miss that in newer games.

  • @drathmar Yes. That’s why I have come to believe, dragged kicking and screaming really, that the players have zero idea what is good for them. They will always want the easier loot, the faster travel, the quick combat, to be able to solo, etc. All of that is ultimately horrible for immersion and longevity, but it’s where all games have been for a decade.

    Because of the trend toward mobile I think we may have another decade before they figure it out.

  • When I was first leveling up in the mid levels back in 2000 I would do a /who all in South Karana when I arrived there. If it capped out at “too many results” I’d go somewhere else. The /who cap was 100. At that population density every camp on the zone would be held by a sitting group and most of them would have waiting lists. To get a spot at one of the more coveted camps – treants, say or the ramp at the birdhouse, you might expect a wait of an hour or more. You could roam of course but pickings would be slim. I often used to chase elephants around in that dead area behind the centaur camp while waiting for a birdhouse group to open up.

    I could give chapter and verse on a dozen zones like that – I still remember most of the camps and how popular they were. I’m skeptical that overcrowding like that represents any kind of improvement on the modern MMO. I know that most people disliked it back in the day, which was why there was always so much pressure for new servers to be brought up and why LDON was such a runaway success when it brought instancing to the game.

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