Very Old Online Games and their Communities

I’m really interested in online communities tied to software that is dated but still running.

I MIGHT be in the planning stages of an original documentary series about really old online games (or chat environments) and the communities that still exist in them. Every episode will focus on a different software, and will consist of an interview with someone who’s a part of that community or has an interesting angle on that community.

We already filmed a “pilot” in WorldsChat. We know someone who might be interested in participating for an episode about the queer furry community in Second Life.

This is a discussion thread about communities like this, and also I’d love to get some suggestions for the series. Does anyone know any other oldschool online games / chat environments that they’d like to nominate for this kind of treatment? If you would like to be interviewed, or if you know someone who would be great to interview, either respond in this thread, or send me a private message! I’m conducting interviews within the software itself, talking via a web call, and screen capturing it.

Here’s a clip from the film about WorldsChat’s community:

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I’m not associated with any of them but check out MOOs and MUDs too. Here’s a list from Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_MUDs, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MOO#Notable_examples

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well i was pretty fucking involved with gemstone, the oldest online game for a while

I remember when this came up the first time what kind of info are you looking for

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Yeah, I mentioned this in the discord a while ago, but now I’m further along in the process and I wanted to mention it on the forums.

I’d love to hear more about what you find interesting about Gemstone and about your experiences with it!

I’m currently prepping a clip of the pilot I can put up so folks can get an idea of what this series will look like.

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OK, I added the clip to the OP! The animations and text box on it are from @HOBO!

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The only old game that’s still around that i also played is Graal. I have no idea how the community is, I haven’t touched it in 15 years probably. I’m guessing it’s…not very interesting honestly.

gonna find some stream stuff for gemstone to see if i can show myself playing the game

your movie ruled i forgot to say anything im gonna watch it again though. documentaries are my favorite and this is top ten i wanna double feature it with Vernon florida

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Thanks so much! Vernon Florida rules so hard, I love Errol Morris. Would be an honor to be screened alongside that movie.

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And yes, I would love to see you streaming Gemstone if you can find it!

Maybe you’ve already seen this but if not

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yeah, Vernon, Florida is a good comparison

Yes, Avatara is amazing! That film was actually a huge inspiration on this project!

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Last I checked Furcadia was still going

Here’s a cool article about it from 2018

And here’s a post I wrote on another forum from about a year ago when I found it:

I just read this article by a certain Blake P. over at the VRV blog about the life, rebirth, and long death of Furcadia, an ancient MMO I played a little bit in the late 90s.

Amusingly, I knew very, very little about furry culture at the time and didn’t really understand that I was participating in something called a furry subculture back then. It was merely the only free graphical MMO I was aware of. I was very attracted to it because of its world-building/uploading features (and the fact it worked okay with my 56k modem). The ability to create colorful, navigable fantasy mini-worlds and houses that would be visitable by other players in real-time was the realization of a dream for me.

It’s interesting to see that the community still exists twenty years later, though it’s becoming ever more the ghost town. Some people have apparently maintained a continual and frequent presence for basically all 22 years of the game’s existence!

Personally, I never got that deep into it. I never forged any real lasting friendships with other users, and the only one I really talked to much in-game was a real-life friend I knew in high school, who I believe was also mostly interested in building interesting-looking fantasy spaces.

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askljsdkfjd i guess my streams are gone so enjoy the song that plays every time you start gemstone in the old launcher while i think of what to post about

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Darn! I’m especially curious about any aspects of this software that are “cinematic” or visually interesting. I looked into Gemstone a little back in December and I think it’s super interesting, but I’m struggling to think of how I could portray it in a short film, as it’s all just text. I couldn’t simply screen capture someone walking around it the way I could with other software.

Does neopets count

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It’s very close to the kind of thing I’m interested in, but it’s still juuust popular enough and enough of a household name that it’s an edge case. If it had a more cinematic, persistent 3D environment kind of thing going then I’d be all in on filming it though.

Furcadia is still going, I worked with Dr. Cat at two different companies if you’re interested in getting in contact with him OSB.

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what was the online game that was really chill low poly enviroments and you just floated around a cool 3d world trying to find a ‘spinner’ they uploaded a level like every day til it went offline

i think it started with a t?

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Woah, that’s awesome! He’d be a great person to interview. I’ll learn some more about Furcadia and get in touch when the time comes!

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