So far, we’ve been talking on several occasions about MMO RPG games, and either praised them for being repetitive, or praising them for having huge worlds and lots of diversity. However, it’s time we went back, all the way back to the roots, and talk about the game that started it all, a game older than even WoW. It’s time we talked about EverQuest.
When EverQuest was released back in 1999, it was the wet dream of every D&D gamer and every video gamer on this good green-blue planet. EverQuest was, if not the first, then certainly the MMO that propelled the genre into new heights of popularity. EverQuest was a brilliant game at the time, a true marvel of technology and gaming. It had the best graphics at the time, and players marveled at how colorful the game is and how diverse the monsters and the landscapes are. And, indeed, EverQuest provided players something they’ve never seen before – an open world with nothing to keep you in check. You were free to explore as much as you wanted to.
But, this was no game for casual players, mind you! This game required dedication, and hours of your time. It wasn’t like it is now – you slay a few monsters, do a few quests and voila, you’re level 40 in no time. In EverQuest, you had to grind for 12 hour straight to get to lvl 10, and only then could you proceed into another instance with hopes of being safe from the monsters. The game features health regeneration, but its pace never changes, so it can get really tedious at higher levels when you had a lot of health.
Naturally, combat is always fun with others. Gathering a party and going on a hunt was the real deal back then, because it gave you relative safety from the monsters. With five or even ten players coordinating, you stood a much greater chance of winning. And there was plenty of opportunity for coordinating.
One of the best things about the game is that it had a lot of classes and races. Each race started in their own village and each one had their own unique traits. But, the best part was that there were so many classes, and no race was restricted, so you could make some very interesting combos. Alongside with your combat skills, you could buy and sell equipment, trade with your friends, and upgrade other skills and professions. In essence, you could do pretty much everything you can in WoW now.
Naturally, a game this old has its bugs, glitches and downsides. For one, the manual for the game was awfully written and organized, with plenty of mistakes. The interface was subpar and the many menus for your items and spells was hard to navigate. The game also looked horrible at times, and there were a ton of small bugs in the game.
Ultimately, EverQuest is the alpha of MMO gaming. This game gave so many young gamers their fondest memories, and anyone who has ever played it, remembers it fondly regardless of the bugs and sometimes awful graphics.