Earlier this week I mentioned that I had started playing EQ2 again on a whim (that’s how it starts). I decided to dust off my 96 defiler and work on some older quests. I never completed the previous expansion (Altar of Malice) and while I did cave and buy their newest expansion (Terrors of Thalumbra) I wasn’t quite ready to dive back into things. The point of this rambling being that I’ve missed a lot of changes over the years and had no idea where to start. Video games do a bad job at telling you what has changed since last you played. Sure, you could try to go to their web site and find a list of all the patch notes, but it’s not going to explain things in depth because patch notes are meant for people who are actively playing, and it’s a lot of information to take in at once. Places that do present to you the changes in a fantastic way are typically fan sites.
I love fan sites. I think they are the bread and butter of any game, and the communities that surround them are amazing. They can include any professional or non-professional site that is run by – you guessed it, a fan. One of my favourites for EQ2 happens to be EQ2wire which includes the latest changes along with author commentary. I don’t always agree, but I don’t always have to. The site itself is good, the owners work hard at it and have a passion that shows through. My absolute favourite part of their ‘Wire Network’ though is of course the u.eq2wire.com portion. This lets me take an in-depth look at my characters, the quests they’ve completed, what major quest chains I have yet to begin, what gear I’m wearing, adornments, and basically everything that I could ever want to know – and what’s even better is that I can search for other characters. Something I’ve done in the past when I was curious about a specific build someone may have been using.
I think it’s important to show these types of sites that you support them, that you enjoy what they do. All too often you start using a site only to have the creator take it down for xyz reason, and then those resources are lost forever. Vanguard was a fantastic example of this happening and it was always sad when a fan site vanished.
Other EQ2 sites I absolutely love and use any time I’m playing include:
Of course there are a few blogs here and there that still talk about EQ2 as well, like my friend Bhagpuss. I used to really enjoy ZAM as well, but the network has since let go of all my favourite people which sucks because they were amazing and passionate. Don’t forget to support that small fan site that you use, even if it’s just a little notice to the authors that you appreciate their work. It does make a difference.