What was your 1st online multiplayer game (i.e. not a LAN-party)? What equipment were you using?

At University, I played a handful of multiplayer games.  But, always on the University's LAN — or directly on a node or cluster, via terminals in a computer lab.

I played my 1st online multplayer game, in 2001.  Although I had a (relatively) new 20" Nokia CRT (1600x1200 @ 75 Hz), I was playing on a PC which barely met the system requirements. On an IBM ThinkPad T20 (Pentium-III 750 MHz and 512 MB RAM) — with a DVD/CD-ROM drive and a 56K-modem — I connected, via dial-up ISP, to the game servers for:

DELTA FORCE: Land Warrior

DELTA FORCE: Land WarriorDFLW ScreenshotThis FPS game had many "new" features.  Many were, of course, graphics-related: lighting, shadows, and reflections off textures.  If the weapon equipped had a scope, players could see hazy reflections of what was behind them — including the sun, the moon, and the stars.

Not only did the weapon-models appear "realistic", but they appeared on-screen in front of the player — with weapon-sway, which increased with faster movements.  In addition to the typical array of weapons, DFLW touted one unique weapon: the XM29 OICW¹ (Objective Individual Combat Weapon).

Playing a multiplayer FPS doesn't require much bandwidth — even today.  But, 56 Kbps was pushing the lower limits.  I had to equip an LMG, every match, to compensate for the terrible lag I experienced.  "Pray-n-spray".

Early in 2002, I finally got home broadband (5 Mbps down; 3 Mbps up).  Lag was no longer an issue.  I could use any weapon, effectively.  But, cheating had made almost every match unbearable.  One example: invisible opponents would run around the map, knifing me and all of my teammates.  Why only knifing?  Because muzzle-flashes were not made invisible by the cheat, so they abstained from using guns. smh

¹ See the Wikipedia entry for XM29 OICW.

  • Very first? Ultima Online followed very quickly by Everquest.

  • Very first? Ultima Online followed very quickly by Everquest.

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