I started playing Ultima Online in 1999 and I've played WoW from 2004-2006, and to date I still think Ultima Online is one of the best MMORPGs ever made.
Most people started MMORPGs with WoW and are only used to Level based games. WoW is rather uncomplicated and doesn't have a big variety of features compared to other games out there, but that's probably also why it's so successful, most people are completely lost with all the possibilities some games offers.
I tried several MMORPGs over the past 10 years but only Ultima Online really had that special something. I tried Eve Online when it came out, but didn't do it for me, maybe I should try it again.
And then there are games like Lord of the Rings Online, Age of Conan which are beautiful and have housing, but are level based. City of Heros/Villain is fun for a few weeks. Matrix, Anarchy Online, Neocron and Star Wars Galaxies have died and Planet Side is still out there and seems to be the online FPS MMORPG.
WoW was the second time an MMORPG got me going for more than a year, but it lacks of loads of features I miss.
I would love to find a game like Ultima Online again.
- Skill based, not Level based
- Open world (not linear or area based like WoW)
- Real in game economy
- Possibility to build houses and shops.
I don't really mind if it's set in Medieval time, real time or futuristic.