Everquest In Your Browser

There’s been a bunch of rumours floating around about a possible Everquest 3 game but personally I don’t think SOE will release another high profile, fully fledged MMORPG in the same vein as EQ2. Instead, what I think – or rather what I hope - is that we’ll see a more lateral shift with the franchise. What I’m trying to say is that I’d really, really love to see a port of the original Everquest to an Internet browser based game.

I’m not sure if the technology even exists for this yet but considering we’ve now got Quake Live, I’m sure it won’t be long before we can see MMORPGs played entirely through the browser. And I’m not talking about lightweight Flash based ones either but rather proper games and proper ports. Again, I urge any doubters to check out Quake Live and I dare you to not be impressed by it.

I know Everquest is no Quake but considering it’s 10 years old it’s not like I’m asking for a modern day game to suddenly and magically appear in Firefox as an add-on. I’m realistic in my expectations and understand that any port would come with reduced content, basic graphics, and a whole lot of headaches for the developers. For one, it would have to be a totally separate version to the current Everquest and be sold as more of an alternative rather than a substitute (perhaps funded by microtransactions?).

Still, it’s a dream. I’m leaning more and more towards accessible gaming and I can’t think of anything more accessible than firing up a browser during my lunch break at work or in an Internet café and playing a quick bout of my favourite MMO. I’m tired of having to having to have the best, top of the range PC with dozen of GBs of HD space and high speed Internet connections just so I can indulge in my hobby. Maybe one day we’ll even see full, decent MMORPGs on handheld devices or phones (but that’s another blog post).

Something like a browser based version of Everquest could also be a good move for SOE. It would allow them to re-release a timeless classic, update it’s content and repackage it to appeal to the casual gamer, and yet still keep the Everquest franchise alive without risking any harm to their current player base. It’s unlikely that hardcore players would switch over but I’d bet that it would certainly appeal to a lot of older MMO veterans or newer casual players.

Sometimes I wish I could make my thoughts a reality because in my head, this browser based version of Everquest is awesome and we’re all having a ball playing it. Here’s another thought to keep your mouth watering whilst we’re at it. Ultima. Online. In your browser.

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22 Comments

  1. Tesh says:

    They do have a bit of framework to build on with Free Realms…

  2. Aaron says:

    Here’s one that just released to open beta…

    http://www.eartheternal.com

  3. Jim says:

    I do not think that it would much of a stretch to get eq running in a browser. They would have to somehow convert it to a F2P or reduced subscription model and make the high end raids more accessible. I think it would do great. I would subscribe.

  4. Masaq says:

    The problem with most of these new so called browswer-based games is that you need to download and install a plugin – something you usually can’t do at work, school or an internet cafe.

  5. I’d get in on that in a heartbeat, especially if it were free like Free Realms. I loved EQ back in the day, but never had a solid group outside of my RL friends to play with. A browswer-based F2P EQ would probably get quite a following if Free Realms is any indication.

    Or they could just make a browser client for the existing game, making it accessible from anywhere. EQ1 is so dated now that it couldn’t take a lot to give it form.

    What I want more than anything is for a legacy MMO like UO or EQ to launch a mobile client for iPhone. That’d make my day.

  6. Ramon says:

    I know I’m repeating myself, but if you’re nostalgic for the old atmosphere (not the exact same content) of EQ, try Shards of Dalaya (http://www.shardsofdalaya.com). It’s exactly as if you take everything good from EQ, remove all the annoying bits and fix all the broken zones.

    Rough edges, yes, but if you want to relive that atmosphere, I haven’t found anything better yet.

  7. Ramon says:

    Bah, and now I remember what I wanted to say in the last post!

    Newer browsers support OpenGL directly in the browser via Canvas:3D or Google O3D, so it will be possible to write such games without the need for plugins. The older trick is to go through a Java applet like Jagex are doing with Runescape, but possibilities are quite limited there.

    So in a few years, if the current technologies move towards a standard, even better-than-EverQuest graphics could be possible. Look at the O3D demos for example:

    http://code.google.com/apis/o3d/http://code.google.com/apis/o3d/

    Not so bad.

    • Gordon says:

      Indeed and companies like Google are really trying to push the whole “no-PC required” aspect of computing. Even Microsoft are on the band wagon with their Live products. A lot of big companies believe that software will move towards being Internet based and not require local installations. Personally I think it’s a great idea.

  8. [...] of We Fly Spitfires is so excited by Quake Live that he wonders — why can’t “EverQuest Next” be more like “Quake Live” — fully in the browser, zero downloading, etc? And also, more [...]

  9. Ferrel says:

    Just a quick note here. EQ3 isn’t a rumor. I was at the panel at Dragon Con where Brenlo said it was real and has been confirmed. There is just nothing more than a small team laying out the ground work at the moment.

    My thoughts is that it will be the EverQuest game to compete with Blizzard MMO2 and Copernicus.

  10. redheadedtim says:

    Considering they’ve already done browser based w/ Free Realms and rumor is that the FR “engine” will be used to support a Star Wars Clone Wars based MMO, I don’t think it’s much of a stretch to see EQ3 be browser based. I do think it’s a stretch that it would be like EQ1. In terms of how it plays anyways. I don’t see SOE making a game like EQ1 or Vanguard ever again. In terms of leveling etc. No one is going to load a browser game to camp a spawn. A more RTM type EQ I could see. Not sure if EQ1 fans would be a fan of an “easier” EQ type game. Then again, I never played EQ1 b/c my Quake guild (woot Muppet Clan) described their EQ time and I was turned off from that. /agree that good quests and an smoother leveling curve would be something they would aim at.

  11. diltarget says:

    why not creat a browser rts old kingdoms of everquest
    2000years before eq3
    1500years before eq2
    1000years before eq
    500years before eqoa
    the age where many kingdoms are around and you choose a race of norrath and build your kingdom in a zone in eq mmorpg games

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