On November 8th, 2004, SOE launched a brand new MMO; a game that would carry forward the epic tale of a land called Norrath, of the gods and monsters that formed the land, and of the people who would weave its ongoing saga.
Today we celebrate six years of that land, and of adventures that range from glorious victory in the face of great peril to woeful defeat at the hands of our dearest friends, in this game that we all know and love: EverQuest II!
We also celebrate six years with you -- the people who breathe life into the land of Norrath and continue to write its story. Thank you for an incredible first six years! Now, blow out the candles...
In honor of this momentous occasion, we've collected a few Launch Day stories from the people who bring you EverQuest II. We hope you'll enjoy this little trip down memory lane, and we invite you to share your own memories with us over in the EQII Forums discussion thread.
|My whole guild ran out and bought EQ2, mostly the Collector’s Editions and such...we were really into it. The coolest thing I remember early on was dying while tradeskilling: |
~ Dave "Maevianiu" Kish
We had played extensively in EQII Beta (where I made all the maps for the Prima Guide), but there is nothing, absolutely nothing like the opening of a brand new, long-awaited game in LIVE.
I remember camping the servers on launch day, and the exhilarating rush to claim my four primary play names on our guild’s chosen server, Crushbone – Victory was mine! The very instant we newbies had scrounged enough coppers to register our good and ebil guilds in-game, we did! Then it was off in a high speed crescendo of questing and load-screens and hand-ins and death and leveling and… I think my husband and I played for some fourteen hours straight the first day.
My first four characters were a Dwarf Mystic, Half-Elf Inquisitor, Ratonga Shadowknight and Gnome Dirge… they remain my primary characters to this day, six full years later. A loving toast to some of the best gaming I’ve ever known!
~ Linda "Brasse" Carlson
Many years ago - six of them to be exact, as it was November 2004 - I was hard at work with SOE’s Customer Support staff as a Technical Support Representative. Specifically, I was one of the friendly folks that helped you on the Technical Support forums.
The Technical Support team was bracing for EverQuest II the best that we could while playing the game and reading up on everything possible. Now, if you’re thinking along the lines of Star Trek when all the red lights start flashing, and the sirens blaring, you aren’t too far off. Ok, not really, but we were definitely gearing up to make sure things went as smoothly as possible for the players who were eagerly awaiting the arrival of the next iteration in the EverQuest franchise.
As with any big launch, there were long hours involved, a little blood, definitely some sweat, and maybe a few tears. We all pulled together to answer all the questions from players on the phones, chats, emails, and forums. We gathered data for reports to send to QA and development, and we relayed the responses as fast as we could to all the players. It was an exciting time because you knew something BIG was going on and we were all a part of it.
~ Joel "Raijinn" Sasaki
I remember logging in from home that evening after Launch Day. My husband and I grouped up with some friends we played Star Wars Galaxies with. We created our guild there and played late into the night with those friends. We're still in touch with a few of the people that originally started our guild on EverQuest II, and many of them come to Fan Faire every year. Two of them, another married couple, play with us almost every Saturday evening...my children treat them like they are an aunt and uncle!
~ Aimee "Ashlanne" Rekoske
Long before I worked at SOE, and shortly before launch, I recall having a discussion with my husband about what classes we'd be playing in EQII. We'd both played EQ, and I was not so successful at the enchanter class, so I decided to take on a bard role. And since I'd played a high elf in EQ, I'd decided to go for a dark elf in EQII, and that meant I'd be a dirge. We met up with good friends from our EQ days, and assembled the perfect little quartet.
On Launch Day I logged in and found myself in Longshadow Alley. It seemed to take forever to find the bank, and my house (oh so important!) but slowly I became acclimated to my home town. Then I had to set off to find my friends, and before long we were mastering Heroic Opportunities and killing all sorts of innocent little creatures for money and glory. It felt so incredibly evil, but it was so incredibly fun. Muhahaha!
~ Tiffany "Amnerys" Spence