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Everquest 2, Is it worth it?

Everquest 2, Is it worth it?

What is Everquest 2?

Everquest 2 is an MMORPG (massive multi-player online role-playing game) set in the fantasy world of Norrath. For those who are not familiar with MMORPGs, they are large, never ending games that you play in real time with thousands of other people around the world. Everquest 2 was released on November 8th 2004 (yes the game is a bit old).

In Everquest 2 you create a character by selecting its race, class, gender, and general appearance. There are 21 races to choose from and 24 different classes. Each race brings unique abilities and stats to their class. For example, some races are able to breath underwater where others are able to teleport to an ally. Some of these abilities do overlap. For instance, the Froglok race (a race of frog-humanoid creatures) and the Iksar race (a race of lizard-humanoid) are both able to breath under water.

The 24 classes in the game fall under 4 general types priests, fighters, mages, and scouts. However, with in these 4 general types there are a wide range of options. Just to give a few examples, within the fighter type there is an option to be a monk, which follow the spiritual philosophy of mind-over-body. Monks have the ability to increase the speed of their attacks with just a thought, or remove detrimental effects from themselves.

In contrast to the Monk would be the Shadowknight. The Shadowknight lives to cause pain and fear to its enemies. Shadowknights summon dark magics to enhance their own prowess as well as weakening or draining their enemies. These are just a few of the fighter types that can be played. This customization only continues with the Alternant Advancement tree, Racal abilities, Focus Effects, Class Training, and Prestige advancement. Not to mention deities, Overseer, and many other options that make your character your own.

Everquest 2, Is it worth it? - People in game!

Is Everquest 2 still worth playing in 2020?

Everquest 2 is not a dead game. It does not have the same player base as launch and it has merged some servers over the years, however, the game continues to have a loyal following. According to mmo-population.com, Everquest 2 has approximately 210,000 players\subscribers. There is no lack of content either. Over the past 16 years that EQ2 has been out, they have released a new expansion every year. Along with 4 additional adventure packs (mini expansions basically). Each of these expansions would released large amount of content, such as additional zones, races to play, classes to try out, and always more raids to try.

They have also released multiple servers and server types. The server types consist of much of what is expected from an MMORPG; PvP (player vs Player), PvE (player vs Environment), and Roleplaying. However, they also have some unique server types such as Progression and Event server. The progression server releases the content again in a set progression allowing players to enjoy the original 15 years of EQ over again. The release time frame is a bit faster though. The progression server will release new expansions every 16 weeks.

The event server is similar to the progression server in that some parts of the game have not been released. In the latest event server, the content was released up to the Runes of Kunark, the 4th expansion released in 2007.

Everquest 2, Is it worth it? - Combat

What are the benefits of Everquest 2?

So why would it be worth playing EQ2? A game that was released in 2004. Well, as of the time of this writing, there was still a good size player base. My experience with the community was quite pleasant. Everyone I spoke with was very willing to help and very knowledgeable about the game.

I played the live server for a few months but found that the progress was far to fast for my liking. It was difficult for me to get used to the game because I had not played in a while. However, when I moved over to the progression server, it was like I had joined the game only shortly after release. People were all over the starter zones. People continued to ask for groups of all different level ranges. It was and still is, a great experience. There are many different guild types as well, some casual, some hardcore, some a little of both. I am currently with a guild that is a casual guild with a progressive raiding mind set.

Everquest 2, Is it worth it? - Great View

Not everything is great…

But of course, not everything is great. The game itself is dated which means the graphics for the game are not mind blowing or anything like that. However, the game does have quite descent graphics for its age as you can see here.

There are also some bugs in the game. I feel that this is kind of a given considering it is an MMORPG that is constantly changing, even now. They continue to patch, add, and hotfix things on a regular basis. One of the other unfortunate things about the game is that all the server types, aside from live, are locked behind the subscription. This means that if you ever wanted to try out that progression server that I like so much, you would have to buy a subscription. I understand why they do it, I am sure that recoding the game to return to its original state is not easy (or cheap) but it is still unfortunate.

So, is it worth your time?

I believe the game is still worth checking out. If you are into high fantasy RPGs and enjoy playing with multiple people, it is quite fun and worth your time. However, if you jump on the live server and feel that the progression is just to fast for you, I would highly recommend trying the progression server. You can kind of think of it like WoW’s (World of Warcraft) classic. It allows you to go back and enjoy the game the way it was originally meant to be. Before a large amount of content was added with the years of expansions.

What is an RPGame?

What an interesting question… What is an RPGame? I mean really, what is it? I know it stands for Role Playing Game but when I was asked this question by one of my kids the other day I was stumped when I tried to explain what it was. I mean I know what games I play that are RPGs but trying to answer this basic question of what made them RPGs was oddly difficult.

 

Dungeons and Dragons(DnD) is an RPG

WAIT!! Don’t run away yet! DnD will help us answer the question, “what is an RPG?”. Don’t worry though this whole post is not going to talk about the table-top RPG Dungeons and Dragons… Although I probably could write this whole post about it, I know some people run away at the thought of DnD assuming that only “nerds” play it. At least I know they used to but DnD is really where the roots of modern RPGs come from. There were other games before DnD, but many believe that it was DnD that really started the push that created this genre. Then the question is, why is DnD an RPG?

 

Walking In Their Shoes

One of the key elements to RPGs (DnD especially) is the ability to pretend to be or even physically act out the role of another character. This is, for me at least, the main reason I was drawn to RPGs. I love the idea that I can be that other character. I can be that crazy strong barbarian guy with the Huge sword, or the wise old magic user who throws fireballs like they are candy. And that’s when you’re only talking about fantasy RPGs. Move into the future or current time frame and who knows what you can be! Your imagination is literally the only limit! That idea is very appealing to me. For the most part no one could ever be those characters in reality. So, these RPGs give you a way to escape reality. But, that isn’t the only thing that makes a game an RPG.

 

Progression, It’s a Stat Thing

In almost every RPG I have ever played (even DnD) there is some form of progression. Whether you are leveling up your character to gain more power to devastate your enemies or becoming stronger to protect your allies. There is always some form of progression. There are many people out there that argue that this is what makes a game an RPG. All they want to see is the stats increase and the power level rise. My counter to this is that if all you needed was some form of progression or leveling up then almost every game made today would be considered an RPG. Progression is, however, a very important part of RPGs. It can give the player goals to shoot for like, “Oh, two more fights and I can use that new fireball spell!”… for example. Not that I would ever say that…. Anywho, the progression aspect of a game is a part of what makes a game an RPG it is not the only thing though. We have yet to get to one of, if not the MOST important part of what makes a game an RPG.

 

Best Story Ever

That’s right, the story. I have heard others say that you can have an RPG without having a story, and I suppose there is some truth to that, but for me it is an integral part of making a game an RPG. There is just something about that story that makes the world feel real and when the world feels real so does that character, and when the character feels real so does the Fireball! And I mean, who wouldn’t want real fireballs, am I right!? But, I digress. In the end, everyone loves a good story. We all watch movies for the story, or TV shows for the story. Heck, we even read crazy blog posts for the story. For as long as human beings have been able to communicate they have been sharing stories.

 

An RPG is…

So, apparently, I over thought this when my kid asked me what an RPG game is. The answer is basically in the name:

  • Role
    • You are taking on the role of another character in a different world as they are telling you the story of their lives. Showing you their pain, their joy, their triumph, and their failure.
  • Playing
    • During this time, you are progressing and gathering more power/strength to defeat your enemies and help your allies. You know, the number junkies
  • Game
    • In the end it is a game, so you can through Fireballs at dragons!

What do you think is required to make a game an RPG? Do you disagree with my assertion that all RPGs should have a story to make the world feel real? Please let me know the answer to these questions and ask any other questions in the comments below. Thanks!

Good Hunting