MMORPG Epic/Platinum Editions...Worth 20 bucks and 30 days?

So DOAC and EQ1 both have packages which include all expansions on the shelves now. Each for $19.99 and one month free. I have played neither. I seem to be jonesing for new lands to explore or new things to discover. End-game stuff in WOW is still a possibility, but I am ready for something new and different. Any thoughts on these questions?

[li]Is it possible to simply treat one of these as a “normal” game and play for a month? I figure I can easily get my money’s worth in one month. Even if it is just running around seeing cool stuff. (Understanding there is no way I can see all of what is included in a month.)[/li][li]While I realize they are both much different from WoW, will my hundreds of hours with WoW hamper my enjoyment significantly?[/li][li]What is the risk of me simply developing a second habit?[/li][*]Should I just wait for the Vanguard Beta?[/ol]

DAoC free trial be sure to play on one of the “Classic” servers - the more evil catass elements of gameplay are somewhat stripped out there. has a sidebar showing you which servers have the highest pop. Based on that list, you’ll want to try playing on Gareth.

Also - I can’t in good conscience recommend DAoC as a PvE game to someone who’s known and loved WoW. Most of my good DAoC moments were A) PvP combat or B) in large PvE groups, which can be hard to find. Of course, I haven’t played since before the Champions expansion (or whatever the one with mounts was caled) was released.

If you come from WoW you’ll be hugely disappointed by both. Vanguard is hardly an option.

DAoC aged much better than EQ but you could still have a very hard time to figure out where the value of the game is. EQ would be really, really hard to get into if you cannot rely on a group.

  1. is no to both. Both EQ and DAoC have value if you dedicate to them. Pretty much as every old-school mmorpg. It takes a while to understand how things work and distill the fun.

As I said DAoC aged much better than EQ and if you have all the expansions it should even be easy to get into. Just make the right choice for the server (Gareth).

Anyway, I’d hardly recommend either of them. If you want PvE just get EQ2.

PvE in EQ2 - aren’t you forced to group later on?

EQ1 has done a lot to make the lower levels friendlier, there’s plenty of area to explore and quests to do even sticking to soloable areas (choose a class with invis or feign death and you can see and travel even more), and good equipment should be fairly cheap to buy since there’s always a glut of ‘junk’ items that are still far better than what those of us who went through untwinked had.

But on the other hand, it’ll likely be pretty lonely at the lower levels. Most quests aren’t exactly thrilling (the usual “Fetch me 6 goblin buttocks!”), and the good ones usually need a group effort. The graphics are pretty dated in a lot of the older areas, and exploring is a bit less fun when you’re continually thinking about how horrible it all looks. The ‘dynamic’ mission-oriented dungeons all look alike and get boring fairly quickly.

Not really. A friend of mine is a 61 Shadowknight and while he bitches frequenty about the game–and life in general–he hasn’t bitched about any forced grouping. SOE has tried to make it as solo-friendly as possible

That said, I’d recommend staying away from the pure-healer classes. Those I’ve heard still have solo issues.

There are going to be very few low and middle level people to group with in an orgnaized (guild) or random (pick-up group (PUG)) in older MMOs. Many of the players are either doing the high end content or have moved on to other games. I do like soloing, but after doing it for a few days soloing always gets very lonely and very boring.

And I agree with the comment that soloing with a pure healer at mid and high levels was, uh, very frustrating in EQ1 and EQ2.

If the choice is between EQ or DAOC I’d recomend DAOC.
If you are coming from WOW and loved it, I think you will find DAOC less repulsive than EQ.
If you want an alternative to WOW I think you should check out EVE or EQ2.

EQ2 is good if you like questing, since you can have 80 quests in your journal at any time, unlike the "#&"¤# 20 limit in WOW.

Get a Sony Station Pass and you can play EQ, Matrix, SWG, EQ2, Planetside etc for 26$ a month?.. even though you’ll probably only play one or two of the games, so you’re not saving much. It will probably include Vanguard whenever that game is out…

Course; If you want a multiplayer shooting game I would recommend World War II online, much more skill based than Planetside.

Anyway, dont by either, try a free trial first.

Druid class in EQ2 is quite viable.

Um, Eve is a great game but about the only thing it has in common with WoW is that it’s an MMO.

EQ2 is an easy recommendation for WoW fans, on the other hand, as the two have similar gameplay.

Camelot has a free trial. Play it for 2 weeks. If you like it, pick up the $20 package. If you’re familiar with MMOs from playing WoW excessively, you should reach level 20 within the 2 weeks, which will get you to the first highly-used battleground to see if you like PvP. (Disclaimer: I worked on DAOC for 4 years.)

EQ1 has a LOT more content than DAOC (or any other MMO in existence) but at this point I wouldn’t recommend it unless you know people already playing and will have a support group.

I appreciate the input. I’ll mull it over.

I want to recapture the newness and thrill of starting out that I felt in the Dwarf starting area when I first picked up WoW. Re-acquainting myself with the mechanics and advancements and not wanting to log off because there was so much yet to explore.

I had stayed out of MMORPGs for 5 years so, most likely, nothing will provide that much excitement in the current generation. I guess I could put WoW down and wait for five years. By then, maybe, one or two of these MMORPGs on the horizon that are featured in CGM will finally be ready for release.

I forget where you are now Lum. Since you left DAOC, are you Mad again?

EQ2 has a free trial out. Give it a try; the gameplay is in the same general space as WoW, and you can get a good number of hours of fun out of the game before any grind shows up.

(I’m recommending EQ2 over EQ1, since it has very nice quest-driven gameplay right from the start; EQ1 is more grindy. DAOC, I’ve never played.)

If you’re looking solely for another swords & sorcery MMO, then I agree with what everyone else is saying here - EQ2 is closest to WoW, while Camelot is a lot more playable currently than EQ1 is (it holds up a lot better, has still pretty unique PvP content, and you’re not as likely to be crippled by being unable to find a group as in EQ).

But if you’re just looking for another MMO experience that “captures the newness” that you felt starting out in WoW, and that gives you a lot of new and different experiences from what you’re used to, then I’d strongly recommend City of Heroes/Villains, which is probably still my favourite MMO, as well as Eve Online. I think with any other swords & sorcery MMO, you’ll be disappointed compared to WoW, but CoH and Eve Online offer pretty different experiences that are a lot of fun and new to you.

For what it’s worth I’ve played every major MMO that’s come out trying to recapture the magic I felt when I first played EQ back in spring of '99. I have had no luck. That said, I’m holding out hope for Vanguard.

That is why I am really thinking the layoff was integral to my re-discovery of the whole MMORPG experience. It simply may be an impossibility.

I forget, was WoW your first MMO? If so, as Mastema said, you may never find what you’re looking for. Trying to rekindle your first MMO experience is like trying to rekindle the magic when you lost your virginity.

NCsoft, unannounced project, still quite insane, thanks.

I had played UO back 6 or 7 years ago for maybe 6 months and took a five year break to have my first kid. Now that we have our second, I know when I can ignore shrieks of boredom and then register shrieks due to bodily injury.

I am afraid you are right.

“I want to recapture the newness and thrill of starting out that I felt in the Dwarf starting area when I first picked up WoW.”

Sorry… but I think you will only get that in the first MMORPG you play.
the first of its kind, 2D, 3D… so the next will have to be 4D/VR…

Or maybe you are lucky and get that in every game… I did not, unfortunately.

If you want a game that has pretty areas to explore, quests to complete, and an overlying story arc to discover, try Guild Wars. It’s $40, but there’s no monthly fee.

EQ2 is indeed very simliar to WoW in it’s general sense of gameplay and quest based advancement. There is a free trial. EQ1 and DAoC are both excellent games, but someone coming straight from WoW is going to be dissapointed in both in terms of graphics, ease of gameplay and quest based advancement.

A nice looking and fun MMORPG to play that most people eithe rnever tried or abandoned early on is Horizons. It’s got a lot of the “exploration thing” going on, some quest based advancement, and the best crafting system in any MMO to date. Unfortunately, it was released only months before WoW and EQ2, and suffered for it. There is a free trial. I can’t figure out why Tulga hasn’t taken the game down from $12.95 a month to under $10 or even free with ads yet.

Please not all of the above games with the exception of Guild Wars are going to have sparse low level populations. EQ2 because it’s not attracting new players as much anymore, and EQ1, DAoC and Horizons simply because their whole populations in general have fallen off.

Both EQ and DAoC stink compared to WoW. EQ2 is a bit closer but it too doesn’t match up. Not that WoW is so wonderful, it isn’t, but it by far the most polished turd on the market.

If you want a totally different MMO experience, try eve online. You may like it, tons of positive press and critical success lately. Free trial there, too.