The Daily Grind: What cancelled MMOs deserve a rogue server?

    
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So here's the deal.

As a historian, game preservationist, and general MMORPG geek, it does my heart good to see players do their best to restore and operate titles that were kicked to the curb by studios years ago. There are so many rogue servers out there, from Star Wars Galaxies to Free Realms to The Sims Online to Warhammer Online.

But that isn’t to say that every cancelled MMO is represented in the emulator community –at least, not yet. Several of our most beloved online titles remain in the dark, surrendering their hold on our memories as days pass by. There’s always hope that someone will start up a project for these games, of course.

Which of these cancelled MMOs that haven’t yet received a rogue server revival deserve one? What game would you like to see brought back in the hands of players?

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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Tom De Laet

I don’t know if anyone knows the game but Archlord is one I’d love to see a private server for.

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Sashaa

MxO and FE.

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cursedseishi

A lot of the easy ones have already dropped, so I’ll put my foot in this with the two that have been said the least.

Marvel Heroes:
Can it be done? Easiest answer is likely yeah… but it is the IP that likely makes it so difficult to actually launch. I didn’t play very much of it having only dipped my toe in the slightest bit, but it seemed like a rather competent and fun MMO-ARPG/Diablo blend. I’d say the game is deserving of revival purely because the shutdown wasn’t even really of its own fault.
The scumbags behind the scenes were. The CEO poisoned matters, and Disney/Marvel/Gazilion all kind of just… threw their hands up over how to handle putting that game down which… Well, ‘imploded’ seems like a fair enough descriptor for it. Then there is…

Dragon’s Dogma Online:
This was a great game, that didn’t get the home it deserved. It’s easy to forget, or ignore, how Capcom can kind of just… ruin itself and its IPs because of a few shining stars they manage to release. Street Fighter 4 was the ‘revival’ of fighting games as people like to say, only for Street Fighter 5 to bungle right off the gate naked and all its shame on full display. MvC 3–despite its issues and failings–had a potential successor in Marvel Vs. Capcom Infinity… until it didn’t. Marvel (noticing a trend here) screwed things around because of the MCU. And Capcom gave literally close to 0 budget for Infinite’s development, such that DLC for games received more investment for their development than the entire development of Infinite’s game and release. Or, and let’s put this rather easily? Any Even-numbered Devil May Cry game (2 had a whole separate team with zero understanding of the game put on it behind Kamiya’s and the OG team’s back, 4 had its own wild story). But people will forget because ‘Hey! Devil May Cry 5!’ or ‘SNAP! Monster Hunter baby!’.
Sometimes it is a mainline release ‘back to roots’ like RE7 or RE2 remake or the two mentioned above that do that. And sometimes? It is a dark horse, a small thing like Dragon’s Dogma.

Like Heroes, I didn’t play as much of Dogma Online as I would have wanted or liked. But I have a deep love for the game’s release and Dark Arisen expansion. And the only reason it never branched out was because of Capcom’s hesitance and refusal to invest in server architecture for their titles–and ultimately why this game got canned. The classes that were carried over were tweaked and made unique and individual in style, and the classes introduced were given the same care. The combat, even through a VPN and cruddy US internet service, felt snappy and chunky in the way you want it to feel. But Capcom rented out servers for the game, and when the lease was up? They dumped it. And, unfortunately, private/rogue servers are at an impasse because of how the communication between server and client was handled. There is (or was, at least) a small group trying to crack it, but no luck so far.
Oh, and it did what D&D Online or Neverwinter are too scared of doing. They put in a mother-loving Tarrasque as a boss for Dogma Online. I never got to experience that fight, and I’m disappointed in myself for that.

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Fair Mores

WILDSTAR

Loved the tragic story line about the arrogant Eldan being master architects of their own doom and our mission to rescue Nexus and the known universe!
Plus, I do miss that action combat. The chaos of the telegraphs is something I would like to experience again.
Lastly, I would like to have a big fat cat mount that carries you around by gobbling you up!

FAT CAT 2.png
FAT CAT.png
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Castagere Shaikura

I really miss my Engineer in Wildstar

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Ken from Chicago

Speaking of tragic, WILDSTAR was a tragedy in the most important way–it was self-inflicted. Choosing to listen to the vocal but very mintority “hardcore” players at the last minute after building up a huge following of casual players after a very successful marketing campaign? I think you gotta go back to the ALLODS ONLINE launch for a bigger and swifter turnaround in fan favor to fan backlash against an mmo. So sad, what might have been. 😭😭😭

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Brazen Bondar

I think I would enjoy going back to Landmark. I had some issues with it towards the end, but I would enjoy getting in there to do some small builds. I also enjoyed the crafting in that game.

And I know it meets no one’s definition of cancelled but my own – but The Secret World.

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styopa

Oh, you’re very definitely not the only one to feel that Secret World is actually gone.

I’m still completely baffled why they or so much energy into remaking the mechanics of a game they clearly don’t give the faintest shit about. Were they trying to sell it? Did they think a tepid warm-over of a dying game would spur sudden interest?

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Bruno Brito

They wanted to cash in the microtransaction frenzy and their other games didn’t hold up to the test of time.

They thought TSW would, it didn’t.

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styopa

I’d be more interested in understanding how the MOP team as made a COMPLETE 180 on the idea of private servers, etc.

Holy smokes guys, I understand the grudging need to cover Classic – you can hardly not – but this is a remarkable change from where you were editorially a few years ago.

I’d be curious to know why?

(To be clear, I’ve always been fine with private servers, and cheerfully gave Project Ascension $$ while simultaneously begging Blizzard to bring back classic so I could pay THEM for their IP.)

It’s …unusual for me to go from pariah to mainstream.

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Castagere Shaikura

Yeah, I remember mentioning the Earth & Beyond rogue server and it was a no-no here in the early days. Man, that server needs more players so badly. It’s a fun space MMO and no one knows about it.

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Ken from Chicago

Yeah, I remember rogue servers and emulators were verbotten but I imagine their change in stance was due to TPTB’s change in stance, not suing the everloving life out of anyone and everyone that mentioned them. Also, as mmos have (again) fallen on hard times, anything that promotes mmos might be viewed again with fresh eyes.

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MrReaper

Wildstar
Rift because we all know where that’s going.
Guardians of ember
Champions of titan

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Sorenthaz

All of them, but which ones I’d like to see would probably be Marvel Heroes, Wildstar, and pre-F2P RIFT.

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nomadmorlock9

Vanguard SOH for sure. I know there was one in the works but it doesn’t seem that they are making much progress over the years.

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Vunak

Wildstar for sure. That game was actually really good. It wasn’t hardcore like everyone thought because of marketing. It was actually really casual friendly except raiding… which is by design hardcore.

If it had released now instead of years ago between FFXIV ARR, ESO and a WoW expansion, I really think Wildstar would be booming with people.

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Katzvariak

There’s an on going development for Wild Star.
You can also see the progress here: https://github.com/NexusForever/NexusForever/

https://wildstar.dev/

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Fair Mores

I like your point.

For me, when Wildstar was shut down there was still this hope that a revolutionary MMORPG was right around the corner. However as the years go by its more certain that there is no such thing coming. Instead of losing Wildstar because we were swept away by this new generation of MMORPGs, we just lost Wildstar.

I would be playing it now if it existed one way or another.

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Castagere Shaikura

It was advertised as a hardcore raiding game and that help kill it.