THE PCG Q&A
Find all previous editions of the PCG Q&A here. Some highlights:
- What's the best game you ever received as a holiday gift?
- What's your favorite line of dialogue in a game?
- What TV show would you make interactive?
It's a sad fact of online games that they've got limited shelf lives. The day they launch is the first step on a countdown to the day we post an article about the last players logging on for an end-of-the-world party.
But sometimes there's an afterlife. City of Heroes is playable again, thanks to its community, and Warhammer Online has Return of Reckoning. Which brings us to our weekend question: Which online games would you resurrect?
James Davenport: Destiny
Does Destiny count? I'm gonna go ahead and say it counts. It's technically not dead on consoles, but has yet to grace the PC. The best raids are still in the original Destiny, some of the best locations. What a tragedy that Bungie can't infinitely grow Destiny 2 because I just want all of that original game stuff slapped hitched onto the back of it. Folded in, at least. We're returning to the moon in Shadowkeep, but so many players haven't even been. They don't know about the Vault of Glass or the infernal hive story that already took place. Imagine if that setting simply grew and evolved. It sounds too unwieldy to ever work, especially in Bungie's nascent stages without Activision, but I really wish there was some way we could archive the old game, or renew those old areas and assets without forgetting them completely.
Andy Chalk: Myst Online: Uru Live
I'm not really an MMO guy, but one that I had high hopes for—and that never really managed to get off the ground—was Myst Online. It was intended to be an MMO extension of Uru: Ages of Myst, and I envisioned it as a magical place where teams of explorers would work together to unlock the great secrets of the D'ni, open portals to strange new worlds, and bask in the sheer wonder of the place, which would evolve and grow over time. But Uru didn't meet sales expectations, and Uru Live was canceled before it launched. An attempt to bring it to life as a standalone game a couple of years later also fell through.
Cyan made Myst Online open source years ago, and fans actually managed to get it running, although without any support or the ongoing development that was originally promised. You can still download and play it, the client is available free at mystonline.com. It's as beautiful as it ever was, but it's empty—a haunting, long-forgotten digital ruin. I still log in once or twice a year, though, to see if anyone else is poking around, and I hold out hope that maybe someday, someone will pick it up and rework it (or do something about the hot garbage controls, at least) and give it a proper shot at finding an audience.
Chris Livingston: Pirates of the Caribbean Online
I'm pretty into Sea of Thieves these days, and when I get in the mood for a genre (like pirates or Westerns or time-travel films) I tend to want to consume as much of it as possible. I tried Atlas a while ago for more pirate adventures, and it felt like a hot mess, so maybe it'd be cool if Pirates of the Caribbean Online made a comeback. I didn't play it back in 2007 when it came out, but if there were a secret server somewhere I'd probably pop-in and give it a try now.
Wes Fenlon: EverQuest Next
When you really look into it, it's surprising how few MMOs actually have been taking offline over the years, and many have already been brought back with fan servers. Phantasy Star Online, City of Heroes... hell, even Toontown Online. So many old MMOs like EverQuest and Ultima Online are still running. So I'll go with an offbeat answer: EverQuest Next, an RPG that was never finished. I'm not really a big MMO player, but Next had some grand ambitions for a destructible, changeable world that no MMO has matched before or since. It feels like the last MMO project to truly be taking the genre down a different path than World of Warcraft. Or trying to, anyway. Who knows how well it would've worked, but in an alternate reality where Sony Online Entertainment still existed and was willing to throw millions and millions of dollars into an MMO, I'd sure like to see this one finished.
Jody Macgregor: Marvel Heroes
My answer would be Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning, but I'm already playing that again thanks to a fan server project called Return of Reckoning. So instead I'll say Marvel Heroes, the online action-RPG by Gazillion that ran from 2013 through to 2017, enjoying several renames and relaunches along the way.
It was a bit goofy to have multiple players as the same character but you could always explain those three Hulks away thanks to parallel universes. It was nothing special, just a fun Diablo-like where you could be Scarlet Witch or Rocket Raccoon and collect a bunch of costumes, and that's all I want.