I spent most of my gaming time this weekend playing EQ2. Now I played this game at launch and I’ve gone back to it intermittently since then, but since launch Sony has released 5 expansions for the game.
And I find I just have no idea what’s out there any more. And the only reason I realize how much I don’t know is because I look over at Angela’s screen and say “Where is that?” and she’ll rattle off a zone name that I’ve never even heard of. Turns out I’m unaware of huge swatches of the gameworld.
This leads me to wonder how much I’m missing in other MMOs. LOTRO has had a series of free expansions since launch and honestly I’m never sure if I’m in an original area or an expansion area, so I have no idea if I’ve explored everything there is to explore.
I guess the only way to really keep track of an MMO is to be active in their *shudder* forums. But my experience is that after about a day surfing the official forums of any MMO, I’m ready to delete that MMO from my hard drive and snap the CDs in half; forums tend to attract the real bottom feeders of online society, and it only takes a few of these wretches to drown out all the well-meaning people who are saintly enough to endure the environment and stay around to help people. I come out of these places thinking “I do not want to associate with these people EVER AGAIN” and logging into the game means associating with them, so I just go off the game altogether (even though in-game experiences tend to be much, much more positive than forum experiences — this is an emotional reaction on my part, not a logical one).