This may annoy some people, so apologies in advance if you are triggered. I last played live in 02, quitting the game a bit after Luclin. In that interim, played some other games including a brief stint in WoW, but mostly was busy with life. Returned to live EQ a few days ago. It has changed a hell of a lot, the place is barely recognizable. It now has a lot more in common with WoW as I remember it than the EQ of old. Great fun for the first couple of days to ride around on a level 85 and slap Kunark dragons around, solo raiding ToV. Had a blast. Then, on with the grind, let's get a few levels and gear up... This is where it became WoW. Which isn't all bad, some of the interface improvements are out of sight and the world itself looks spectacular. Why not have at hand the quest info conveniently reminding you what you need to do? Same diff as having a browser open on some site or forum giving up the info. And at first, lack of downtime from "rest" seemed pretty swish too. And, hm, no death penalty now? Respawn with all your gear and druids (my class) have a rez. So rather than be set back hours and hours of progress, I'm set back mere minutes, with no needing to develop a relationship with other players to help get a rez. Good... I think. At first. This is why I quit WoW. First impressions of WoW: looks great, and feels like you're flying first class, what with all those penalties and inconveniences removed and the game spoon fed to you. Gear flows thick and fast, a new upgrade every time you run through a dungeon, awesome!.... at first. Then you notice there is no suspense at all. Running through a dangerous zone in WoW does not get your heart racing like trying to, say, creep through the dreadlands as a level 20-something in EQ used to. And loot dynamics in EQ? Wow the pleasure and joy of getting an item with, say, 10 more AC than what you currently wear. Let alone when you snag that first seriously good item. With WoW, eh, you can mouth breathe and button mash through any dungeon run and you will get some unearned, easy come easy go piece whose name you can't even remember an hour later when something better drops just as easily. The exp grind - and, I'm in a group of two. He's boxing 3 toons, and we have 2 mercs, ripping up the mobs mindlessly and without any danger as the exp bar noodles slowly along. I'm longing for a good sebilis group, one that's clicking along like a well oiled machine, everyone doing their jobs with precision, which was the only way to make it work. The pride of being a competent player and recognizing when others were likewise. That satisfied feeling as you eventually gate back to sell the gems, pausing at the EC tunnel to see what you can grab with your stuffed pockets. Now two hours of grinding in a zone which looks like a lazy man's parody of Plane of Hate, only without the danger, and I realise there hasn't been any fun at all. Loots have dropped, lots of them, but they are meaningless. Required levels on items mean I can't pass them on to a twink and let him ride through the game in relative easy mode, but why would I want to anyway when the entire game is already in super easy mode? I remember a couple of WoW raids I watched my brother playing after I'd quit that game and reflecting that there was no skill involved at all, just a willingness to tolerate tedium. Old EQ raids had aspects of tedium too, but you had to stay on your toes, and in some situations, if someone made a mistake, the whole raid wiped. You had to be switched on. It was tense all the way through, and when that huge statue of zek (or whatever) ran into camp, your heart was beating fast. And if you got that item, it made your entire week, and you never forgot that moment. The rush of gratitude for the guildies who helped you get there, the feeling that you had accomplished something, not just mouth breathed and button mashed. And by the by, I guess there was no way to avoid the pay to win scenario here. I'm sure developing and running this game i. How strangely hollow it feels, though, to be on the new progression server and 2 days after Kunark is released to see half a dozen different people selling fungi tunics for 4 Krono apiece. Dota have a pay system for strictly decorative and ornamental items, which doesn't effect game integrity in the least. A guy who has spent $1,000 in game is in an even contest with the guy who spent $30. Not so here, and although that will not change with my (or anyone else's) complaints, it is just a little sad. No excitement over loot, no tension and suspense over death. Sad to see what has become of (imo) the most immersive game ever created. Guess I will pass through the familiar zones like a ghost remembering old times until we see if Brad can work his magic again with a new world.