The Daily Grind: What’s your favorite obscure MMORPG?

Even at a site like Massively OP, we still run across MMOs we’ve never, ever heard of, obscure little gems (or trainwrecks, depending) that just never got the attention or acclaim they deserved. In the hopes of hearing about more today, I’m hopping aboard /r/MMORPG for our Daily Grind. Redditor Cicero asked fellow MMO fans,

What is your favorite obscure MMORPG? And by obscure MMORPG, I mean one that isn’t often talked about, or just isn’t that popular anymore.

Glitch would probably top my list. Though it’s closed now, and though it received a flurry of positive press early on thanks to the credentials of its studio, it somehow managed to wallow in obscurity, such that every time we mention it, our readers pipe up to say they’ve never heard of it. Runner-up for me goes to Zentia, an adorable and bizarre little import that probably turned off most MMO players because of its aesthetic but was actually the cleverest MMO I’ve seen to date out of China (it also was initially hardcore PvP) (and you could play a baby) (I told you it was weird).

How about you? What’s your favorite obscure MMORPG?

Every morning, the Massively Overpowered writers team up with mascot Mo to ask MMORPG players pointed questions about the massively multiplayer online roleplaying genre. Grab a mug of your preferred beverage and take a stab at answering the question posed in today’s Daily Grind!
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96 Comments on "The Daily Grind: What’s your favorite obscure MMORPG?"

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JakeDunnegan
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JakeDunnegan

vicariousfan That’s another one that would have hooked me big time, had they used Forgotten Realms and had Turbine had made a FR setting as broad as they did their LOTR setting. Fourteen AT-ATs and a purple worm couldn’t have torn me away from a setting like that. Instead, I bought the original copy of the game based on the beta, and then proceeded to never actually play it.
(Eventually, I made a FTP account, bout a year sub before the Underdark stuff came out, but then never got a character high enough to play in it. Good grief, I’ve wasted a lot of money on DDO that I never actually used… :/)

JakeDunnegan
Guest
JakeDunnegan

bossrprouse Aywren Is that still a thing? Horizons was like the original Star Citizen insofar as they promised a LOT.
(That’s where the comparison ends, of course. I have no reason to doubt at least at this point, that SC will actually do most of what they promise.)
But yeah, I was one of those who actually tried to do a dragon character at launch.. that was some neat shit! Not sure how long I stayed in that game, but probably gave up on it after a few months. Just way too many bugs, too much repetitive content. (Here’s a green goblin. Now, here’s a blue one! Now a magenta goblin. Have we shown you the grey goblins yet? Wait, what about yellow?)
Could have been a really kick ass game, though.

mjcbarnes
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mjcbarnes

Star Stable. I absolutely love that cute little horsey adventure/racing MMO.

PurpleCopper
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PurpleCopper

I used to play a MMO game called Kill & Steal.

Never heard of it before? Exactly.

se7engames
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se7engames

Eldevan…. For me better than runescape.
And bree took the other games right out of my mouth. Really miss glitch and zentia…. I played both extensively!!

DaBruuzer
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DaBruuzer

karmamule I’m right there with you.  Progen Sentinel forever!

DaBruuzer
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DaBruuzer

For me, it would have to be “Seed”, a great little non-combat MMO from 2006 or so.  It was all about social interaction and political systems, with some “machine maintenance” thrown in.  Hard to describe, to be honest.  I really loved the cell-shaded look, and the fact that everyone had to work together to save their surroundings.  Really, really unique, but not well managed by the developer, who filed for bankruptcy before they ever really released the game. Found this video:

KenMitchell
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KenMitchell

Not sure how obscure it would be considered, but I’ve always enjoyed WURM.

MrEllis
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MrEllis

Isn’t an MMO not very obscure by default? Or does it have to be a failure to be obscure? Hipster dilemma! “What is your favorite failed/unpopular MMO?” Guess that doesn’t have the same ring…

Vexia
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Vexia

I don’t play it very often anymore, but Puzzle Pirates has a place of honor among my favorite MMOs (being one of the first and still most unique I’ve played). Then there’s Realm of the Mad God which is an unusual but surprisingly fun time whenever I choose to play it.

TadSaine
Guest
TadSaine

just this week i decided to revisit The Repopulation.  i’m still in the training area, but really digging the updates to the game.  i suck at combat though – can’t kill a Vulture Queen to save my life!

Sleepery
Guest
Sleepery

I still miss Tabula Rasa. I liked so much about that game :(

Oleg Chebeneev
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Oleg Chebeneev

FVerret Oleg Chebeneev Key word “used to”. I havent heard about it for moths on MO

Ramellan
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Ramellan

I’m willing to bet more than a few dollars that no one’s mentioned this one; the very first MMO I ever tried, Fusion Fall. It was a kid’s MMO made by Cartoon Network that let you play alongside all your favorite characters from back in the day: Dexter’s laboratory, Samurai Jack, Kids Next Door, you name it. It was in no way a serious game, aimed to be playable by 10 year olds and up. Before that I’d never really considered playing an MMO before (I’d been spooked by news reports about wow addicts who had no life outside the game) but I couldn’t pass up the chance to play with Megas XLR in a game.
r
I didnt stay very long in that game, since by its children’s design the ‘endgame’ was easy enough to beat in a day, and there wasn’t much Else to do. Still, I have some good memories from my time there, and it was that experience that compelled me to go out and try World of Warcraft after that (followed by Swtor, GW2, and now FFXIV.)

Estranged
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Estranged

I don’t even pretend to be a fringe MMO player. This website gives good coverage to my collection.
Camelot Unchained would be fringe in the greater gaming world as a whole, but not around here.

Denice J Cook
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Denice J Cook

Favorite obscure MMORPG:  Saga of Ryzom.

fastcart
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fastcart

The Crew.

Zariarn
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Zariarn

I play Adventure Quest Worlds and Elvenar on occasion.  Although new and probably won’t get much attention, I find ELOA entertaining.

kimowar
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kimowar

CastagereShaikura kimowar  I know I hop on it from time to time,

CastagereShaikura
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CastagereShaikura

chosenxeno CastagereShaikura FeveredDreamer Its like this in all the new games. I don’t get it either.

CastagereShaikura
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CastagereShaikura

kimowar Neocron is still up but hardly any English speaking players and very small player base.

palejens
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palejens

I could tell you, but its so obscure you probably wouldnt know it.

CastagereShaikura
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CastagereShaikura

karmamule Loved that game.

Theo454
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Theo454

Minions of Mirth was fun for awhile(reading one of Beau’s articles got me interested in it), until I left there to go play SWTOR(the voice acting, cutscenes and romances made it hard for me to want to play any other game after having experienced it). The few players I met there were friendly and helpful, but the population was kind of sparse(which did not bother me since I played it with a friend). A friend of mine there encountered a bug and reported it(instead of trying to exploit it) and was rewarded with free premium upgrade to his account for doing the right thing. There were ways to unlock all sorts of strange playable races in that game(beyond what you get by simply upgrading to premium status). I also liked the multiclassing.

BigMikeyOcho
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BigMikeyOcho

Rusty Hearts when it was still around. Now… no idea. Everything MMO I play is pretty much mainstream… maybe Defiance? Is that obscure?

Flamethekid
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Flamethekid

adventure quest world and Dofus

Noble_Einherjar
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Noble_Einherjar

Saga of Ryzom, definitely. One of the most beautiful MMOs I’ve ever played. I stopped playing when it started having all those financial troubles years ago. I wonder how that game is doing these days. I should check it out.
I don’t know if this counts, but my runner-up would be Haven & Hearth. I love the concept, and when I play I can lose days of my life. But I always come back to the realization that it’s a bit too hardcore for me.

Noble_Einherjar
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Noble_Einherjar

FVerret Oleg Chebeneev That’s very true. It was actually those articles that led me to discovering Massively.

Siegfre
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Siegfre

ChooChoo_la_ChooChoo PSO was wonderful, on dreamcast, gamecube (locally with friends), and pc (psobb), it was my entry into the genre. I logged thousands of hours playing, getting two characters to 200 (the last level taking the same amount of time as the other 199 levels combined! ugh). 
The first time fighting any of the bosses was so epic and overwhelming, the game has an abundance of awesome weapons/items to collect, and the game itself had an air of mystery/tension that really attracted me to it. It lacks a lot of what I expect to see in mmos today though (no crafting, a barter economy on the pc with people using photon drops as currency, extreme grinding, between 4 – 12 levels depending on which version you were playing, pretty much no visible armor), it never seemed to take away from the game any though. 
Occasionally I still run through caves, or seaside (the beginning of episode 2 in general, because of how “beautiful” it was), but I can’t really play for any length of time. Everything’s so familiar that I fall asleep, works great as a sleep aid though.

I am/was looking forward to PSO2, I play it a bit now on the Japanese server. It’s hard to get any of my old PSO buddies to play though, because they want to play an official NA release.

Also, FOmar’s ftw.

kimowar
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kimowar

ChooChoo_la_ChooChoo  I still hook up the dreamcast from time to time for pso.

kimowar
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kimowar

Neocron its really good and completely free with no cash shop nowadays, Endless ages of course that depends on who currently owns it and if its online.

karmamule
Guest
karmamule

Earth & Beyond was fun for me while it lasted. You could be a warrior, trader, or explorer, and it had both ship-based and avatars-in-stations gameplay.  I was very sad when it shut down back in 2004. (Long enough ago that I had to look it up on wikipedia to remember exactly when it shut down.)

FVerret
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FVerret

For me, it would be text-based browser games (like Billy Vs. SNAKEMAN) or private servers.

Griffs
Guest
Griffs

melissaheather Griffs I will not lie, you will have to deal with a hacker every so often. But that is true for all MMOFPS games. I always just change to a different server. 

Been playing it off and on for years, have so many guns and vehicles unlocked. It’s one of the funnest pvp games I’ve played.

They are getting a graphics update in  a few months, and also releasing it on Xbox One soon.

Rozyn
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Rozyn

This question makes me miss Beau’s articles from back in the day. Not enough to go find him on MMORPG.com now, but still.

FVerret
Guest
FVerret

Oleg Chebeneev We used to hear about it all of the time.

Rheem Octuris
Guest
Rheem Octuris

bossrprouse Rheem Octuris FeveredDreamer  Well, I think Crowfall will probably be the closest to a ‘best of both worlds’ solution, where there will be varying campaign types, each one temporary and having rules about deteriorating / lootable equipment. But still, its a PvP sandbox.

On the PvE side of things, I think if there is any hope for this, it would be EverQuest Next. But I’m not holding my breath.

Oleg Chebeneev
Guest
Oleg Chebeneev

Age of Wushu (aka Age of Wulin). Excellent MMO. Very popular in China but failed in the west

zoward
Guest
zoward

A Tale in the Desert.

Liandreth
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Liandreth

Quincha My kids love this one.

chosenxeno
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chosenxeno

CastagereShaikura FeveredDreamer I will always say that WoW has the best crafting. Straightforward. Simple. It’s still the only game I have played where I actually maxed my Professions. I play other games and I’m like, I don’t wanna do all of that lol. I don’t get why companies think crafting needs to be annoying. I absolutely hated my professions in WildStar. Potion Making was tedious and annoying.

bossrprouse
Guest
bossrprouse

Rheem Octuris FeveredDreamer It sounds very counter-intuitive, but I’m curious if there is a way to make items important and replaceable at the same time. That’s probably the biggest disconnect when trying to play a game like Eve because most games put so much emphasis on permanent items and power, while Eve makes items disposable and not to get attached to them.

chosenxeno
Guest
chosenxeno

I don’t have one. I did spend a month in 9 Dragons way back in the day. I mostly, stick to the major games. If we were talking “niche” I would say Dungeon Fighter is one that I really enjoy.

bossrprouse
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bossrprouse

Aywren Horizons was fun back when I played it. Haven’t entered in forever though.

Greaterdivinity
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Greaterdivinity

Not a MMO, but Exteel during its brief existence. I can’t think of any “obscure” MMO’s that I enjoy all that much or even play that often.

agemyth
Guest
agemyth

I am a big fan of Wakfu. I just have barely played the game and don’t think I ever will spend some serious time on it. I’m still a fan darn it!

Aywren
Guest
Aywren

I used to, and still do, cheer for Istaria, once known as Horizons. Lately, Project Gorgon has also got my attention. :)

vicariousfan
Guest
vicariousfan

ChooChoo_la_ChooChoo loved it on Dreamcast.

vicariousfan
Guest
vicariousfan

DDO would be my favorite MMO that is the least played i guess.  I mean its not really obscure but its not as big as other MMOs.    It really is so different then every other MMO what with Spell points and health not regenerating out of combat so you have to play your battles and the narrator for each dungeon.

chosenxeno
Guest
chosenxeno

playerxx What’s, WoW? *eye roll*

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