Vanguard Saga of Heroes - to be or not to be?

Discussion in 'General Gameplay Discussion' started by Sturmlocke, Aug 7, 2022.

  1. Sturmlocke Linux enthusiast playing EQ2 via Proton.

    Hail all,

    not sure if anyone has been following all the recent YT activity lately (Nathan Napalm and folks), or the article about Vanguard over at Massivelyop, but it seems like there are ppl in our community that would like to see someone bring it back from the dead, and I agree. Back then I never fully got into the game, many reasons for that, but when I finally decided that I wanted to dedicate more time to it, after it went f2p and after most of the issues got fixed ofc, it got shut down all of a sudden.

    My question to our devs: How many subscribers does an old title like Vanguard need in order to bring it back from the dead in the state that it was before it got sunset and keep the lights on (= servers online) for a small group of players (small group = a couple of thousand dedicated ppl playing and paying regularly). Not taking QoL patches or any future development like expacs into consideration, just speaking about bringing it back and keeping it on for five to ten years. Let's say instead of making it F2P, you make it buy to play or offer it for a fixed sub fee. Heck, you could even go as far as to kickstart future upgrades to the title - if and only if the playerbase is willing to pay for it upfront. Just a few ideas here.

    My question to our community: Did you give Vanguard a chance back then or did you focus your energy on the EQ franchise? Would you support reviving it or is it better to let it fade away?

    Personally I always felt like Vanguard was and still is part of the EQ franchise in a spiritual way. It's not EQ, nothing really is like EQ tbh, but it does share a lot of its DNA. Really like the idea of a complete borderless open world, ship crafting and sailing, the card games, the beautifully rendered fog and sky, the wildlife, the music, the beautiful dungeons that you can literally just walk into without zoning or loading - and much more. Seeing how the game did in fact cost millions and many, many years of manpower to create and maintain, isn't it a bit sad letting all that tremendous amount of effort go to waste just like that?

    Just like EQ1 and 2, it's old, but far from obsolete. Games like EQ, EQ2, Vanguard, SWG are a dying breed of excellent mmos for a generation of ppl that can't connect to the likes of WoW, Fortnite, Call of Duty, Asian / Anime online games and more. To me, it has never been about the numbers, but instead more about the community, quality and overall immersion.

    Interesting videos:

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  2. Sturmlocke Linux enthusiast playing EQ2 via Proton.

    Vanguard's world feels just like that to me. It reminds me of how in Jurassic Park 1 and 2 both construction sites of the park and the smaller local theatre version were just sitting there - completely unused - even though almost finished and literally merely one step away from being able to reopen and receive visitors again.
  3. Einhander65 New Member

    There is a emulator project that has been up and running for a while now.. google it and make a toon and log in. Still alot of work to be done but they have a discord and discuss everything about the game.
    23 players in the server as i write this
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  4. Sturmlocke Linux enthusiast playing EQ2 via Proton.

    Yeah, that's what Nathan has been streaming, but it's still in early Alpha, which means that the toons are going to get wiped one day. A lot of things aren't working yet either, so it's more of a demo rn. Like the idea, but I like the thought of officially reopening the Jurassic Park that Vanguard truly is to new visitors even more. Either that or some kind of collaboration between DB / DP and the community emu in order to speed things up a bit.

    Makes me wonder though, how fast could Vanguard be brought back online, if DB / DP really wanted to? Hm... *drools uncontrollably and farts at the same time*
  5. Maldaris Active Member

    Does DBG/DPG own the rights to VSoH, or did Sony hold onto those? I mean, don't get me wrong, if the game were to be officially restarted (regardless of the rights holders), I would certainly look to get back into the game. As it is, I will certainly give the emulator a look-see.
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  6. Sturmlocke Linux enthusiast playing EQ2 via Proton.

    Now that's a good question. Hopefully someone around here can give us more insight, would love to hear more.

    For sure, give it a try and let us know how you feel about it. Same here though, bring it back and I'll switch between EQ2 and Vanguard regularly. Love both titles tbh, no reason to give one up for the other, especially if they're both in All Access. I went back and forth between dcuo and EQ2 for many years, no regrets.
    Jaden likes this.
  7. Tanto Done, finished, gone.

    I played Vanguard back in the day before ftp. It was nice, a big world and nice character progression. The wife and I got to max level and did some raiding, it was a fun game.

    I may check out that emulator, and I would probably show support if it was to be resurrected. I don't really have much time for gaming right now, but I'd support a project like that for sure.
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  8. Anib New Member

    Yes please,
    Go to the basement, dust off the servers, maybe polish over the itemshop (or turn it off, which i would prefer personally) and bring them back up. Small effort (on paper), and it will probably stay busy longer than most TLEs.
    Leave the game as ist was when it was sunsetting, since it was technically in a good state.
    You would get all those people waiting forever for PanthenROTF, and a lot of TLE/TLP Players hooked longterm.
    I would definitly be in, and i would love to play a game that is not totally *** up for once, with proper itemisation and without broken classes and content. I would even buy it again and pay monthly on top.
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  9. Sturmlocke Linux enthusiast playing EQ2 via Proton.

    Here's a playlist of the BEAUTIFUL music Vanguard has to offer. Listen to those tracks... what a shame it is to let that all go to waste.

    Reconsider your decision @DBG/DPG. If fans can come together to finance a small server for Vanguard, surely you can too. A single server for no more than a thousand players would suffice for the time being.
    Jaden likes this.
  10. Jesaine Well-Known Member

    Funny. This is exactly how the resurrection of City of Heroes started; fans and an emulator. Eventually, parts of the former development team got involved. It took forever, but there are now live COH servers again. As a side note, DCUO would probably be doing better if they had copied more of COH's format instead of making the game nothing but raids. 80+ years of backstory and locations in lore, and 90% can only be seen in short raids. o_O:rolleyes:

    Getting back to the topic at hand... I missed Vanguard's initial outing. By all reports, it was a game of vast potential, BUT it had massive bugs that didn't get properly addressed until the game was all but dead in the water. EQ2 may have been partially responsible for it's failure, since disgruntled players had a quite similar game to return to.

    Given how broken Statflation has made EQ2, I'd certainly give Vanguard a serious look if it gets closer to truly resurrected.
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  11. Jovie Well-Known Member

    I liked vanguard, but if i could ask for something impossible to be a thing again, it would be the truly original eq2 launch code with the original island, the citizenship quests and neighborhoods and the class quests.
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  12. Ixian Active Member

    Vanguard and EQ Mac got killed when there was a security library upgrade across all SOE games and the time and dev requirement required to implement the upgrade in those two games wasn't worth the return on investment.

    It'd be nice if they could release the source code for Vanguard (City of Heroes is now up and running because devs leaked the source code), but even that involves some level of effort because there's likely third-party code they're legally not allowed to release, as well as proprietary code that's still in use in current games that they don't want people to see.
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  13. Sturmlocke Linux enthusiast playing EQ2 via Proton.

    Oh wow, lots of interesting information here. I didn't know that CoH was brought back from the dead, actually thought it was gone for good. I remember that a loooot of ppl were sad seeing it go, myself included (before I switched over to dcuo). I always enjoyed playing dcuo more though, mainly due to the better graphics, animations, controls, fast paced gameplay and controller support, but I do have fond memories of CoH as well. Good that it got resurrected - very much deserved.

    That said, Nathan and folks have been hard at work at promoting the game once again:

    And more are joining the fun:

    @Daybreak / Darkpaw: Let's reopen the park and see what happens. Every classic mmorpg lost is a loss for all of us here, especially if it was born with the folks that made the genre what it is today, because all of us here are part of a dying species of mmo gamers. Nowadays things have changed with a younger and new generation, but our gen still cherishes the vision, the idea that these worlds have to be a one of a kind breathing, living and engaging world focused on the community, exploration, rpg and the tremendous freedom that only games coming from you guys can deliver. Just to name a few. Bring Vanguard home pls - it deserves a spot next to the EQ franchise.
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  14. Holdolin Member

    Aye, I played from beta onward. As broken as it was, it was amazing IMO. It took all the great ideals of EQ1 and, for lack of better wording, bettered them. Would I support reviving it? Nah. There are better things commin down the pike. Vanguard was a great game, but sometimes you just gotta move on.
  15. Tanto Done, finished, gone.

    I wouldn't get my hopes up. mmorpg is a saturated genre with very little potential for growth, so many have tried and failed because the funding model just can't be done anymore. MMO games need to either have a very high price point and sub cost, an exploitative cash shop or have an absolutely massive, fanatical customer base (see FFXIV). Any new games coming into the market now will inevitably fail because of this once the hype wears off, because nobody wants to pay a self-sacrificial amount for a game, RMT kills your player numbers (see EQ2) and a fanatical customer base comes from history - there was a sweet spot, a time when the genre was new and large numbers of long term fans could be grabbed and kept. The very vast majority of mmo players today are long term players who started in the early days of the genre. There are very very few new players to attract, probably hence the EQ2 team not putting a huge amount of effort into doing so.

    Games like Pantheon might eventually be released, but I guarantee you they will in some way try to cater to the lowest common denominator so as to try to attract and retain a large number of players. Because of that, it will be too different to what long term players of EQ / EQ2 / WoW / FFXIV etc love in a game, or it'll lack the quality and lasting appeal of the established MMORPG's and the vast majority of us won't like it (See New World).

    We're dinosaurs. And the games industry really isn't interested in us.
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  16. AOE1 Well-Known Member

    It was fun and I enjoyed many aspects of the game but bring it back? Nah! As Tanto said, let it go. Move on. As for Pantheon, that is another dead project. We have been hearing Pantheon for so long it is as if it was and died when it never was to start with. Just more people investing in a dead horse.
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  17. Jesaine Well-Known Member

    People said the same thing about City of Titans and Ship of Heroes. They're up and running though.
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  18. Jesaine Well-Known Member

    Devs didn't leak the source code. Players hacked it. At first they couldn't get the combat and leveling to work so there was only Paragon Chat. Rumor has it some of the former Paragon Studios dev team (who got even more screwed than the players by the parent company) tried to help. By the time nearly everything was figured out, Cryptic FINALLY relented and released server rights as well as the last bit of server side code needed to make it work. They got tired of all the bad PR and constant pushing by players.

    The bad PR they deserved though. Cryptic did it's best to sink CoH after Champions Online was a comparative dud.
  19. Cheallaigh Well-Known Member

    i played it from the start, long before it went live and absolutely loved it... it was a gorgeous game and had a ton of promise, but it was forced-released too soon, to make cash. while it was in alpha and beta, i didn't mind the crashes, the bugs, and the random deaths etc... but, after 6 months of live, i couldn't justify paying to play a very unfinished game for certain game breaking issues(random deaths a key one), so i quit.

    i would very happily play it again, but NOT pay to play it, unless it was achieving attention and fixes as needed. i'm quite willing to pay for a working product and it was still truly a beta at best when released. we got burned with both it and landmark by sony, rather sad, because both were epic for what they did. i have a lot of very fond memories of both, but vanguard especially.

    like going to a huge bridge deciding, why not jump from it? and finding a hoop to jump through partway down... only gave a copper reward, but was a great fun find. then there was discovering you could use the various small creeks and rivers as a water slide. being able to pick a random plot of land and build how you wanted... both hubby and i were addicted to diplomacy and i adored the extremely hard original tradeskilling.
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  20. Maviarab Active Member

    It's a business, it's always about the numbers, one of the reasons it was shut down originally. Can't see that ever changing.