EverQuest Celebrates 15 Years: Where Were You When it Launched?

The revolutionary MMO that sparked a revolution celebrates its 15th anniversary!
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A game called EverQuest first launched 15 years ago. It was the dawn of a new era in online gaming…so where were you?

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Okay, so the game eventually came to be known as “EverCrack” and a group of recently divorced women even started a group calling out the game for ending their marriages. Yeah, we remember all those headlines. However, EQ’s contribution to virtual online entertainment absolutely cannot be ignored, and that’s why we’re celebrating.

Sony Online Entertainment (SOE) will celebrate the 15th anniversary of the legendary MMORPG on March 16, and they’ve released an infographic that details some pretty incredible statistics. Here are a few of the highlights:

  • EverQuest launched with ~70 zones. Today, there are over 1,500!
  • In 1999, there were ~13,000 NPCs in EverQuest. Today, the NPC population size of EverQuest nearly matches that of Oakland, Calif.[1] or Miami, Florida[2]: 400,000
  • EverQuest has won an Emmy and was featured on the cover of TV Guide.
  • EverQuest entered the GDC Video Game Hall of Fame in 2011
  • Less than 50% of US households had home computers or Internet access whenEverQuest launched in 1999. Those numbers have doubled today.

Over 20 expansions have been released atop the original game, and the franchise continues to push forward with new entries like EverQuest Next Landmark. This marks the Crystal Anniversary for the IP, and SOE has planned activities for its community; check ’em out at the official website.

Where were you and what were you playing when EQ debuted?

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A gaming journalism veteran of 14 years, a confirmed gamer for over 30 years, and a lover of fine literature and ridiculously sweet desserts.