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What were MMORPGs like before WOW?

#1SolnotPosted 8/27/2013 10:19:57 PM
What MMORPGs did people play before WOW came along and what were those games like? Were they similar or different to what WOW is like?
#2g0tbeef89Posted 8/27/2013 10:27:04 PM(edited)
Grind grind grind grind stuff for exp.

Nobody gets to level cap because exp goes up so exponentially high.

Highlights were unlocking hero classes for your class at higher levels.

Check out Ragnorak, Maple Story and FlyFF.
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#3ThisCharmingCJPosted 8/27/2013 11:07:41 PM
Time sinks. More sandbox feel, exploration, quests that didn't hold your hand. Instancing took a long time to come into play so you had guilds waiting in line to kill a raid mob on spawn timers of 3 days to a week+. Dungeons were scary and you didn't go there unless you had experienced players running with you. Even then, one bad pull and you're on a corpse run for the next hour at least. All mobs could put you in your place and soloing is not something you would attempt if your class wasn't designed for it. No auction house type place. If you were selling your stuff, you were like a peddler on the street.

Everquest was a big timesink for a long time. Blizzard basically took everything "good" about EQ and what Sony was fixing with their grind problems and put it into a game.

A little biased. EQ was my first mmo and it's the only one that has ever made me feel immersed in the world. It was like DnD with visuals.

WoW is good, though. I'm playing it right now, but I've not got that sense of community and the need for other people like I did with original EQ.
#4ThisCharmingCJPosted 8/27/2013 11:13:19 PM
Another thing, PvP in MMOs was still a work in progress. In Ultima, if someone killed you, all your gear could be looted. On EQ pvp servers, there were a few different ones with specific rulesets. One was FFA, one was diety based teams, one was evils vs good vs neutrals. Some had coin loot, some had item loot, etc. The looting items didn't last forever and I doubt many newer MMOs will ever try that again.
#5EnclosurePosted 8/28/2013 12:35:29 AM
g0tbeef89 posted...
Grind grind grind grind stuff for exp.

Nobody gets to level cap because exp goes up so exponentially high.

Highlights were unlocking hero classes for your class at higher levels.

Check out Ragnorak, Maple Story and FlyFF.


Or you could, you know, not play exclusively korean mmos.
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#6SpookingPosted 8/28/2013 12:57:22 AM
I've played EverQuest and a lot of korean MMOs. The Korean MMOs were all free, but had a cash shop gimmick. They were fun, but grind, grind grind. Lots of set items, though.

EverQuest was where you leveled up off mobs instead of quests. You had SOME quests in the game, but you wouldn't do them for exp since exp came much faster grinding off mobs (especially in groups for the EXP bonus). There were NO instances in EverQuest and for at least a couple of expansions. That means when you raided, you had to fight other raid groups for the raid mobs. Lots of training, lots of reporting and lots of trash talk. With all that said EverQuest was extremely immersive.
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#7KCGeminiPosted 8/28/2013 5:20:08 AM
g0tbeef89 posted...
Grind grind grind grind stuff for exp.

Nobody gets to level cap because exp goes up so exponentially high.

Highlights were unlocking hero classes for your class at higher levels.

Check out Ragnorak, Maple Story and FlyFF.

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#8Gamer4e4Posted 8/28/2013 7:33:27 AM
They were great.

I played Ultima online and it was superb, the crafting was amazing, the community was very friendly and helpful (not nasty and impatient like wow) and the rp was really good. (Unlike wow's so-called rp realms that are full of lollers, griefers and goldshire pond scum)
#9KrozardPosted 8/28/2013 11:03:00 AM
Before WoW, the only MMO I had played was Tibia.

Here's what Tibia was like, and what changed with it.

1) There were very few quests, and none of them gvae exp. There were nightly server resets, and after these, certain chests contained the quest items. One person could get them per reset.
1a) This was later updated to proper quest chests, where each person could get the item er character

2) There was no safe trade feature when I started. To trade, you had to have trust in the other person, or find someone who could trust you not to take the gold (or item) and just leave.
2a) There is now a safe trade feature

3) There is no level cap.

4) Weapon Skills (Knight, Paladin - which is their name for the distance using class), shielding (knight and paladin), and Magic Level (Sorcerer and Druid) are extremely, extremely important. It eventually gets to the point where training (see below) would take hours to gain one skill point.

Training - To train as a Knight or Paladin simply equip the weakest weapon for your type (sword, axe, club, or distance) and attack something with highish defense. Then browse the web because it's painfully boring. Shielding, just let stuff hit you with a shield equipped.

Training as a sorcerer or druid: use mana. lots and lots of mana. Never be at full mana.

5) Death Penalty (unmodified): I'm not sure what it is now, but at the time you lost 10% of your total exp, meaning you could lose multiple levels per death. You lost weapon skills (can't remember what %). You dropped you backpack, and had a 10% chance to drop each piece of gear you have. It appears in your corpse, and anyone who finds it before you can take the loot from it.

So yes, a high level killing you, a second of lag, a sneeze...could cause you to die, which could easily cost you a lot of hours of training and grinding to be lost.

5a) There are some ways to reduce the losses.


Basically...you had to spend hours training before you spent hours grinding, only to spend even more hours training once your level passes where your skills should be, only to grind some more.

Then there was the PK problem...for a few years after I started, there was no penalty for killing low level players, unless you did it so frequently and for so long the creators had to manually ban you. Eventually a skull system was added, with progressively worse penalties for unprovoked pvp killing.
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#10koujimorenoPosted 8/28/2013 2:55:07 PM
Krozard posted...
Before WoW, the only MMO I had played was Tibia.

Here's what Tibia was like, and what changed with it.

1) There were very few quests, and none of them gvae exp. There were nightly server resets, and after these, certain chests contained the quest items. One person could get them per reset.
1a) This was later updated to proper quest chests, where each person could get the item er character

2) There was no safe trade feature when I started. To trade, you had to have trust in the other person, or find someone who could trust you not to take the gold (or item) and just leave.
2a) There is now a safe trade feature

3) There is no level cap.

4) Weapon Skills (Knight, Paladin - which is their name for the distance using class), shielding (knight and paladin), and Magic Level (Sorcerer and Druid) are extremely, extremely important. It eventually gets to the point where training (see below) would take hours to gain one skill point.

Training - To train as a Knight or Paladin simply equip the weakest weapon for your type (sword, axe, club, or distance) and attack something with highish defense. Then browse the web because it's painfully boring. Shielding, just let stuff hit you with a shield equipped.

Training as a sorcerer or druid: use mana. lots and lots of mana. Never be at full mana.

5) Death Penalty (unmodified): I'm not sure what it is now, but at the time you lost 10% of your total exp, meaning you could lose multiple levels per death. You lost weapon skills (can't remember what %). You dropped you backpack, and had a 10% chance to drop each piece of gear you have. It appears in your corpse, and anyone who finds it before you can take the loot from it.

So yes, a high level killing you, a second of lag, a sneeze...could cause you to die, which could easily cost you a lot of hours of training and grinding to be lost.

5a) There are some ways to reduce the losses.


Basically...you had to spend hours training before you spent hours grinding, only to spend even more hours training once your level passes where your skills should be, only to grind some more.

Then there was the PK problem...for a few years after I started, there was no penalty for killing low level players, unless you did it so frequently and for so long the creators had to manually ban you. Eventually a skull system was added, with progressively worse penalties for unprovoked pvp killing.


I remember playing that game, cheats and hacks made it playable for me. Oh and the private servers were awesome too.

I remember it being possible to kill things much higher than you if you had enough of those runes (I forget what they were called but they allowed you to use magic spells) and could kite.

I made some good friends there too.