Everquest 20 years

Who can forget their very first MMORPG experience?  For some reason, I skipped UO, probably because I had young kids and no time to play games. Possibly it is because I loved text games, and could not give up the ability to IMAGINE a beautiful world in my mind for a world that was, well, a little too low poly. Of course, I did not know the word poly back then and had no idea that those graphics would someday be outdated.

So I entered this new world full of magic and fantasy creatures. I played an elf, of course. I like elves and they seem elegant and lovely.  So my first visit consisted of me walking around on some wooden docks and falling into the water, over and over again. And dying and then trying again.  I was getting used to navigating in a 3d environment, a very new experience for me. I also fell out off the ramps that ran around the trees. Frustrated, I almost left the game.

But months later, I will still running around the world, banging into the loading areas when your character went still…hiccup…and then runs again. I met a few people and killed stuff and mostly explored. It was so cool.

Life has a way of drawing you back. A new baby kept me busy and I was busy with the other kids’ school. I did not totally give up games, but I played them a lot less. Over the years, I played Asheron’s Call, Star Wars Galaxies, and now ESO with my son and husband. Each had their own magic, their own immersive style that drew me in. I liked some more than others and I still miss the exploration in the old games where you did not have to die so much to look around and take in the sights.

Today, I make games and 3d environments. We have clients and I work with other game developers. The graphics our team makes today totally blows the ones in the old first EQ.

One thing though that I will never get from a game again, especially an MMO, that feeling when for the first time you enter a world full of others, a world that is full of surprises. Today, the games are not as wondrous, they are faster, less time to ponder, less time to see the amazing work the artists and programmers and others accomplished. Today we expect more. It takes so much more to amaze us.

20 years. Here’s to EQ, and may they have another 20 years. 🙂




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Medieval Monday: Merchant Ships

Ships and trade! Great information for your medieval game or novel. #indiedev #gamedev #mmorpg

Allison D. Reid

medieval-cog2While many crops and other goods were able to be moved by hand, or by using animal-drawn carts, boats were also an important mode of transportation in the Middle Ages. They could bear larger and heavier loads, and allowed merchants to trade over long distances. They brought goods into the medieval world from exotic places, sparking a desire for shorter, less difficult passages, which eventually led to world exploration. There were a variety of ships built and used in the Middle Ages, and there isn’t enough space in this post to explore them all. For today, I’m going to focus on those used by merchants, since they had the most impact on daily life.

medieval-cogFor Northern Europe, the Cog was a standard merchant ship—though more accurately, it was a general term used for a variety of ships that had similar attributes. Cogs were built small at first, but with need…

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World Building with new perspectives

I found this article by Mimi Mondal on the HindustanTimes website. Fascinating look at how fiction has perpetuated real world stereotypes even  when it makes no sense to do so. I will leave you to read the article. Very interesting.


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Big move and new client



The past 6 months have been crazy. We have made a huge move from Florida to New Jersey. This means leaving our house of many years, packing it all up, driving 2 days with kids, 4 cats and a dog, and then trying to fit all of our stuff in a smaller house.

Finally our office is set up and we are done with the first part of a job with a client so we can concentrate on our games. I have also decided to learn a bit of code since Unity is adding visual scripting and I want to be able to use it myself rather than depending on others to do all the code. I have learned that as great as visual scripting may be, if you do not understand what you need and why you need it then it does not work that well. So the non-programmers on the team are working together to learn some code. Not nearly as exciting as building worlds, but I am beginning to see some use for this code stuff. 🙂

In the meantime, I am building up our database of items for the game. I a lot of spreadsheets to build.  Adding all the objects, effects, etc., to the database is tedious but very important. Once we have that, we can actually start setting up our game. Level design is the fun part after all.

Now that we are settled I will post some more here and on the Unity forums.  The outside work with our client will take time but it will also help fund our project which is a big bonus. 🙂

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Medieval Monday: Undergarments

As we work at modeling period appropriate clothing for our characters, I found this very timely. Interesting article on the clothing we never think about in games. 🙂

via Medieval Monday: Undergarments


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Medieval Monday: Insults

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Medieval Monday: The Peasant

I love this! Allison Reid is going to talk about the social classes during the medieval time, starting with the peasant. If you like this, please go to her website and give her a much deserved Like.

Allison D. Reid

Now that I’ve gone through all the labors of the months, my first-of-the-month posts will shift focus to something new–social status and occupations. We’ll start with peasants, who were at the bottom of the social scale. They had limited to no voices in feudal society, might not be allowed to own property, and led rather difficult lives.

While we tend to lump “peasants” all into the same category, there were really 3 basic types of peasants, with important differences that distinguish them from one another.

Serfs were just a step above slaves, bound to the land on which they provided manual labor for a lord. In addition to working in the fields, they might also do things like work in the mines, forests, or maintain roads. Serfs were not permitted to leave the lord’s land (or purchase their own) and might be sold with it like property. Marriages between serfs…

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