One of the most impressive achievements in the game is World of Warcraft. The MMO that has been running since 2004 is still extremely popular and receives updates to this day. However, while WoW may be the most famous long-standing game, there are others that have been running for just as long, if not longer. Some games were once hugely popular, but now they just cater to a hardcore crowd who still love it. Others were cult hits that never reached their peak of popularity, but were always retained by a fan base that kept them going all the time. These are the games that many developers today strive to create and replicate, but with perhaps a little more notoriety. Here we’ll highlight five classic games that are still going strong all these years later.
Without doubt the game that launched the whole MMO genre. Ultimate Online launched in 1997 with incredible success thanks to an extended player-versus-player mode and lots of role-playing. It was one of those games where the greatest fun was to have fun. Very Dungeons and Dragons-esque. It’s now become a bit more of a modern MMO experience, but many of the old design choices can still be seen in MMOs today. It is also always updated! It received an extension in 2020 and has around 6.8,000 subscribers. It might be old, but Ultimate Online is still loved to this day and is one of the most impactful games of all time.
Yes Ultimate Online was the original MMO then EverQuest was the remix that perfected the genre. The first 3D MMO, EverQuest was also inspired by the Dungeons and Dragons style which gives players the freedom of choice. It had huge commercial success and laid the groundwork for much of what subsequent successful MMOs would use. The fantastic setting, alongside several playable classes, and subsequent expansions were incredibly popular. The following, EverQuest II, also had moderate success but had no chance against this World of warcraft was going to become. As a result, many people have reverted to their old favorites in the original. He would have had 82,000 active players and 66,000 subscribers in 2020. Not bad for a game released in 1999.
Released in 2003, a year before World of warcraft, EVE online never quite had the level of popularity we saw like other games in their prime. However, with a reported number of players somewhere in the 300K range it’s pretty clear that people are still interested in this long-standing space MMO. Although this is one of the more difficult MMOs, players and developers have put in a lot of protections to prevent new players from feeling like they can’t join. This actually helped increase interest in the game and has given them some of their highest player counts in years. EVE online is a tough game to learn, but those who do can’t say enough about how fun it is to play.
Remember Runescape? While World of warcraft and Guild wars dominated MMOs from the early to mid-2000s, Runescape was everyone’s favorite free-to-play option. Runescape itself is not the most in-depth game. Go do simple tasks and make your numbers bigger. Complete some quests. Player versus player combat is extremely straightforward, but there is something relaxing about it and there was some additional content for anyone paying for the membership subscription. Of course, as the games got more complex Runescape tried to call, but many of the original players were already gone by then. Finally, the developers, Jagex did something interesting. They divided the game. Anyone who wanted to play the new modern Runescape could do it and anyone who wanted to play the game he grew up with could play Old-fashioned runic landscape. Both are fully supported, but larger updates for Old-fashioned runic landscape can only be done when fans approve of it. While Runescape is far from its peak of popularity, there is still a hardcore player base that is sustaining it all these years later.
Fantastic Star Online 2
This one is kind of a cheat, because Fantastic Star Online 2 technically released in the US in 2020, but the original game was released in Japan in 2012. Fans of the first Phantasy Star spent years waiting for an official release in the US, or Europe, before giving up and releasing go through other means to play the game. The community’s dedication to Phantasy Star was finally rewarded with a Western release and a major update in June 2021 called Phantasy Star Online 2: New Genesis.
Team Fortress 2
The original popular team shooter, Team Fortress 2 was the king of this genre before Monitoring. Original and weird characters with stronger teams who win more often. It was essentially the formula that Monitoring copy. First released in 2007, it has had decent support from Valve, but only on PC. Console versions saw no support. That said, everyone who plays TF2 plays it anyway on PC and despite Monitoring existing that didn’t kill the game. In fact, it’s arguably more popular than it ever was with a recent record broken. With more than 150,000 simultaneous players, it is an absolute record for this game almost fifteen years old.