Based on last week’s discussion where we started off wondering if it was ever possible to get back that “first MMO” feeling, that veered into nostalgia, a few of us thought, maybe we would give EQ a try again. Well, that sounded good to me, so I reactivated my other account, and there for the first time in a year stand my two mains in EQ — Brita the cleric and Tipa the rogue. After raiding Thuuga and Emerald Halls on EQ2, I logged over to EQ to chat, and then omg… a pickup raid. Tonight was the last night of Fabled, and the raiders were trying to get them all killed before they were put away for another year.
I had Brita re-activated, but I didn’t have her UI, I didn’t have her macros, her hot keys, her spell-sets… I had NOTHING. So naturally I head right over to the Plane of Fire and join up. Everyone there was red to me. Since I’ve been gone, the level cap raised from 75 to 80, but clerics get in anywhere even if they’re gimp like me. It felt GREAT to be in a TEAM again. Raids in EQ2 are so tiny, but in EQ1…. rawr…. you’re a professional fighting force. Since it remains so incredibly hard to level in EQ, and since you need to group for nearly all of it. Every. Single. Raider. KNOWS their job. We had eight or nine groups, many of whom had never raided together before, and everyone knew exactly what to do. This is something you simply do not see in other games. That air of professionalism.
I had forgotten how much I liked being part of a team of professionals. Raids in EQ2 are laissez-faire. We clerics fell into a dynamic CH pattern, with some of us dropping to fast heals when needed — and nobody said a thing. We ALL knew what to do and how to adapt our healing for each mob. I guess it helped that we had all done the non-Fabled versions of these mobs many times in our own guilds.
That’s Quavonis Firetail there. He shadowsteps the raid — MA, healers, everyone. All the time. It’s friggin annoying… I saw a bunch of old guildies there, and they wanted to see me in a raiding guild again. After tonight, I would be really tempted. I wrote an article for Massively awhile back about 5 MMOs better than WoW, noting that EQ raiding blows WoW raiding away. The encounters may be of similar complexity, but get together 50 people with NO ADD ONS, all they have to use is their brains, memory and training, all working together like a team — controlling aggro without aggro meters, figuring out who to heal without rows of health bars — doing so much with so little information. Well. raid in WoW with twice as many people but no add-ons and no voice (never really caught on in EQ)… you get the idea.
EQ has a lot more mounts now…
A few of us have decided to see if we CAN recapture some of the EQ magic by bringing a static group that meets once a week from level 1 to whatever, seeing all the new zones and, one last time, seeing Norrath as newbies. We have five characters now — Einhorn as tank, Stargrace as monk, Cordanim as rogue, Egat as enchanter, and me as cleric. We could use a sixth :) Or if there are enough people who think this would be kind of fun, we could make two groups. We’ll be starting off on the Luclin server every Friday at 7PM Eastern Time. It’s going to be fun!