When does the history of MMOs start? If you answer that the first MMO was Ultima Online, you’re right enough. If you answer that before that came along there were MUSHes and MUDs, you’re also right. If you answer that the whole thing really started with Lucasfilm’s Habitat on the Commodore 64 back in 1986, you sound like you’re just making things up, but you’re actually hitting upon an oft-forgotten historical title that paved the way for what would later become the MMO genre. And now you can play around with the game’s source code.
The full source of Habitat has been available after three years of work by the Museum of Art and Digital Entertainment, restoring the game’s code and bringing this important piece of software history back to life. Keep in mind that you can’t simply download the code and run it, as the team is still working to get everything compiled and running properly, and there are still missing libraries from AOL (which was Qlink at the time Habitat was running). Just the same, this is an important piece of online gaming history far closer to being seen and played than it has been in years.