classic mmos

Generally used to describe MMOs from before World of Warcraft’s launch in 2004, though sometimes shortened to describe just the first few MMOs launched prior to 2000.

The Game Archaeologist: Digging up the history of City of Heroes

For the longest time in the early 2000s, MMORPGs scared me off. They looked too obtuse, too grindy, too ugly, and too unapproachable for...

The Game Archaeologist: Kesmai’s Air Warrior and Legends of Kesmai

Most studios would be overjoyed to have pioneered one significant advancement in video game history, but then again, most studios aren't Kesmai. While it's...

The Game Archaeologist: A history of EverQuest’s expansions

I don't know if EverQuest holds the crown title for the MMO with the most expansions, but I'm sure it's among the top...

The Game Archaeologist: Raph Koster on MUDs and Privateer Online

The release of Raph Koster's monster book of game essays, Postmortems, was of high interest to Bree and me for different reasons. For...

The Game Archaeologist: The tangled legal history of Interplay’s canceled Fallout Online

With the recent revelation that Bethesda's Fallout 76 is going to be an online multiplayer survival game, players who have been hoping for...

The Game Archaeologist: Myst Online

The impact of Myst in 1993 was akin to an atomic bomb going off in the PC gaming world. The leap forward in graphical...

The Game Archaeologist: The rebirth of The Realm Online

Debuting in 1996, The Realm Online (or, as it is sometimes shortened, The Realm) became one of the first online RPGs to overlay...

The Game Archaeologist: Warhammer Online

When it comes to notable years in the MMORPG genre's history, 2008 stands out as one of the most significant. World of...

The Game Archaeologist: Red Planet’s Lost Colony vaporware

You know the story of Roanoke, right? That early American settlement that abruptly went missing with only the word "Croatoan" carved into a...
Please let this stay far away from Rowling's endless retcons.

The Game Archaeologist: Harry Potter Online

If all goes well, later this year we will finally be treated to an actual Harry Potter MMORPG in the form of Harry...

The Game Archaeologist: Lineage

If we judged MMOs by their numbers alone -- and I'm not suggesting we do so -- then the original Lineage would be...

The Game Archaeologist: A Tale in the Desert

Once asked what he thought was the most innovative MMO from the last decade, Dr. Richard Bartle, the creator of MUD, gave a succinct answer: "

The Game Archaeologist: Shattered Galaxy

War. War never ends. Especially if it was designed and encouraged to wage forever. One of the most popular computer gaming genres of the late...

The Game Archaeologist: EverQuest Mac

In 2003, Sony Online Entertainment tried an experiment to reach out to the (then) small-but-growing community of Mac users. The company released EverQuest...

The Game Archaeologist: BBS door games

When you think of MMORPGs, I wouldn't blame you if your mind stayed rooted firmly in the past decade or so, perhaps taking a...

The Game Archaeologist: Fallen Age

Imagine that one day you wake up, stumble to your computer, and check in on the morning news. Among the various tidbits is a...

The Game Archaeologist: Neocron

It's the distant future. The high-tech battle armor you wear sharply contrasts with the ruins of civilization that you traverse. You spot an enemy...
Dark Age of Camelot

Leaderboard: What’s the best classic MMORPG still running in 2017?

Those of you who've been following Massively OP for a while know that many our writers have a fondness for old MMORPGs - that's...

The ultimate guide to The Game Archaeologist’s MMO archives

When we moved over here to Massively Overpowered, some of us transplanted our long-running columns to the new space. I perhaps felt most devastated...

The Game Archaeologist: Revisiting the first three months of World of Warcraft

Were you there? Many of us were. Many weren't. Either way, November 23rd, 2004 was a watershed date for the MMORPG industry and one watched...

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