The Daily Grind: What’s the best old-school MMORPG feature that has never made a comeback?

A couple of weeks ago, Justin and I fielded an epic podcast question from a listener (heya Josh!) about guild systems, specifically about the Asheron’s Call monarchy system. As far as we know, that specific system — a pyramid-like system of patrons and vassals whose social interactions created experience and benefits for everyone without the formal hierarchical structure of a stock guild — has never been fully duplicated. It’s a damn shame because it was amazing. Turbine solved the guild problem in 1999: Instead of dumping people into military-style guilds to be just another worker bee for the queen, it incentivized individual, personal relationships, upward and downward.

That got me wondering what else hasn’t ever been duplicated. It seems like it could be a pretty short list, as so many retro MMORPGs have popped up in the last few years promising to resurrect a ton of old-school features, good and bad. So you help me fill in the gaps: What’s the best old-school MMORPG feature that has never made a comeback?

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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117 Comments on "The Daily Grind: What’s the best old-school MMORPG feature that has never made a comeback?"

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David Vraniak

http://mistwalkers.wikia.com/wiki/MistWalkers_Wiki

2d screen based mmo’s have all but disappeared

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steve

I’ve always thought that EQ was on the right track with splitting PVE and PVP rulesets. The only benefit I see in merging those playstyles is to provide victims for the PVP players.

PVP balance destroys entire systems that might otherwise have helped flesh out our online worlds, and PVP in a video game most often devolves into things that equalize the forces in match play, so instead of a complex, dynamic virtual world we wind up with a themepark supporting a sports stadium.

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Chris Clark

The SWG profession system, entertainer classes, open world housing, political profession, dynamic resource spawning, random resource qualities, crafting experimentation, crafting unique items, naming/branding crafted items, mass production of crafted items, and probably a few other things I can’t dredge up right now.

Celestia
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Celestia

I absolutely loved being able to mark my own teleport/gate runes in UO, but what I really love is support classes (not whack a mole healers), and they seem to be less and less available with each new MMO.

possum440 .
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possum440 .

Choice.

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Slaasher

Vanguard’s diplomacy feture was very cool and to my knowledge has never resurfaced again anywhere.

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Stormwaltz

From Asheron’s Call 1, the ability to inscribe any item with a message (for gifts or item ID), and blank books that could be written in and passed to other players.

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Sajiri

I really just miss the old hunter pets in WoW. I liked that you had to take care of them, you had to teach them abilities, and they had a friendship rating. It was kind of a chore sometimes, but I have such fond memories of wandering around azeroth with my wolf best friend. Made me care about my pet.

mosselyn
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mosselyn

Crowd control and encounters designed around it. Seems like everything now is “rush in and aoe everything death”. Boring, boring, boring.

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Rottenrotny

We can look to SWG for both of these gems.

1) Non-combat classes.
2) Open world housing.

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starbuck1771

you forgot their top notch crafting and resource systems