Project 1999 - EQ fans will want to check this out

Fans of the original Everquest, rejoice! A friend of mine informed me of this little gem. Now, I’ve played on more than a few EQ emulators, but they were either completely empty of people and/or something too different.

Well, this group of EQ fans got together and made a true-to-form EQ emulator server. The goal of the developers is to have this be Everquest as it was, not Everquest as it should have been.

Right now it is set up as old world EQ with no expansions. Fear and Hate are open right now, and the devs are currently working on the Plane of Sky. I believe after they are done with that, they are going to release Kunark, and then Velious down the line. No more expansions after that. I am pretty psyched about that, because I thought the game world got too large and lost most of its luster once Luclin was launched.

As I am posting this there are 521 people on right now. I’ve seen 800+ at peak times. I just started playing on Tuesday and I’m having a ton of fun. Even with the old school, hellish grind :)

I have absolutely no idea if this is legal, or allowed on these forums, but I am a total EverQuest fan from the way way back (I wasn’t in beta, but first logged in on release day in March 99) and this would be relevant to my interests if I didn’t have such a huge backlog.

I thought the original EQ was widely considered terrible due to a punishing death penalty, lack of soloability, poor graphics, (although they were OK for the times) poor/unimaginative quest design, as well as a host of other issues.

Is the attraction purely nostalgia?

Luclin took the game’s crappy graphics and made them unbelievably shitty. Took the charm out of some of the races, too. Trolls and gnomes especially.

Luclin’s only high point was the fact that they tried to make more emotes have animations, which resulted in a /grin animation that made it look like your character had to take a massive crap.

Hey open piracy! Awesome.


Some people are into S&M.

I was given a green light to post this here, FWIW

Honestly, I think it should be legal for people to reverse engineer server technology. I see this as no different than going into KOTOR2 and ripping out assets to reconstruct questlines or mod the game.

Isn’t this as bad as private servers for any other MMO? Sony is still taking money for EQ, isn’t it?

Look how many people play the Lineage series. You have to be into S&M to enjoy that shit.

“Widely” only counts if you are talking to the group of MMO players that includes people who’ve only played WoW. Personally, I like death penalties (because it means I try to avoid them rather than gogogo-ing through everything where wipes mean nothing), I prefer grouping to soloing, the graphics could use updating but I liked them at the time, and many of their quests put to shame the tasks in current games. I’ll take long vague quests over today’s map highlighted bullet point tracked busy work exp machines.

Sure, except for the fact that you gave your money to Obsidian for KOTOR2 and they don’t expect any more from you since it’s not a server-run game.

Private servers are a very different experience than the core game usually. Reverse engineering the gameplay systems and server tech is not the same as just copying the game.

Well, as long as people bought their copy of WoW/EQ or whatever, I personally think it’s OK. It doesn’t matter if they want to charge me for access to their servers. If I’m using a private server, I’m not using theirs.

Oh man, I can’t wait to wait while medding up staring at my spellbook!

I sure hope they locked down alt-tab, too! Task switching out to look at something other than your spellbook is CHEATING!

From the setup guide:

To get started, you must first obtain a copy of the specific Everquest client that is compatible with our server. This client is called the Titanium client, and can be found in various places like amazon, ebay, or >>BitTorrent<<. While there is another client that works on our server (The Secrets of Faydwer client), this client is unsupported, and you may experience problems with some of the features. For the rest of this guide, we will assume that Titanium is being used.

The bolded part is actually the feed link in the setup post on their site. They don’t seem to give a shit where you get your client from. Hell, at least Limewire pretends to care by tossing up a few boilerplate legal warnings.

Regardless, I’m uncomfortable with these private servers. I don’t see much difference between these and any other game piracy because you’re denying the publisher/developer the money the expect from you playing their game.

Yea, but the site he links suggest pirating/torrenting the client as part of the setup.

I really gave EQ a fair attempt again a few years ago. But I can say that the expansions since the beginning really took away from the shine that the original game had. This server might have some of that shine, if only because it has enough people that you might still be able to group and get along okay.

Having played many MMO’s since though, that nostalgic feeling is a bit akin to riding in a car from the 30’s. For a minute or two you’re like, “wow, what an incredible feeling, this is so old-school awesome.” Then you’re like, “wait, where is my satellite radio and why can’t I lean the seat back, it’s killing my lower back. Also I can’t hear the person talking next to me.”

Still, I have may fond recollections of the adventures of my Necro. Fear kiting and scaring the bejesus out of newbs in South Ro while in spectre form.

Been there, done that, don’t want the T-shirt.

All those were certainly true, but it still managed to be a compelling game for its time simply because there was hardly any other experience like it. The 3D was way more immersive than UO, Asheron’s Call was still a little ways away and weird-lookin’, and for all the grumbling about it, the forced grouping did lead to meeting some great people. The slow progress meant a steady stream of new exploration, and there was a real sense of accomplishment when you finally did take down that boss as a group, or even just getting complimented for being good at your class.

A lot of which is true of other MMOs now, of course, but for a lot of us, EQ was the first. But it’s not the only one anymore, and without that uniqueness, the flaws start to overwhelm the nostalgia.

Yes and no. All the things you’ve said about the original EQ are true, but I’m not sure it’s fair to say it was widely considered terrible. Instead it had good and bad sides. People striving for world firsts in WoW have nothing on people who simply did raids in early EQ. As an example, simply to get safely into the Planes of Fear and/or Hate were tremendous accomplishments. You’d zone into fear in the right order, generally after the more experienced and competent players had gone in and cleared a small area around the gate. Going from being on the outside and waiting for it to be clear (along with the inevitable “Oh f**k, someone just ran the wrong way and trained all the tentacles into camp!”) was a feeling of real accomplishment.

Hate was more “fun” in some ways, because you had to teleport up, and depending on luck of the draw and patrols (and how good the monk scouting your entrance point was) you would either get in and have a hectic battle to establish a toehold, or get in and get piled on by half the zone. On especially fun insertions, you’d end up pissing off Innoruuk with chain aggro and get death touched.

I enjoy WoW. I don’t think at this point in time I could go back to a game where I can’t play unless we have not only an additional 5 people to help, but the right classes. That’s just more devotion than I can muster for a game these days. However, if I really wanted to dig in and devote all that free time to a game again, the feel of actually conquering things in EQ up to the point when I left (roughly 5-6 months after WoW launched I think?) surpasses any other game’s feeling of accomplishment I’ve ever encountered. Despite the stupid AI and rote nature of the game, there are things you could do in EQ that really made you feel like you’d conquered things, and that was a very powerful feeling.