What’s a good old MMO, if not a game set in a heroic fantasy universe dripping in high medieval aesthetics? From World of Warcraft to The Elder Scrolls, not to mention The Lord of the Rings Online, bizarre monsters and humanoid creatures take center stage amongst wizards, elves, and crusaders. Now and then, a sci-fi title like Dual Citizen and Star Wars the Old Republic sets out to outer space.
Yet MMORPGs based on real historical periods are hard to come by. The exploits of the Roman legionary and fiery Viking warriors make for fascinating action in the gaming medium, though. But the good news is, history buffs can still find a range of titles to feed into their MMO passion in a slightly more grounded fashion. So, here are some historical MMOs worth trying for an action-heavy co-op journey back in time.
Life is Feudal: Your Own
Catering to up to 64 players per gameworld, Life is Feudal grants you complete freedom in building up your own server and rules. So, terraform away and tunnel fortifications to shape the world around you. As its name strongly hints, the game doesn’t stray too far from the usual medieval formula of most of its MMO counterparts. But this sandbox RPG takes a more historically accurate approach to the genre. No dragons are in sight, nor are there any trolls and goblins lurking around.
Placed in a realistic and highly detailed feudal setting, the game feels like a bona fide medieval simulator, whose survival aspects play out on the existential threats of life in the Middle Ages. Seasonal weather directly affects your life for better and worse, while antagonistic players may surge to ransack your lands. A player damage system based on actual human anatomy only elevates combat’s authenticity and hardships. If no longer updated, and quite niche at that, this hardcore MMORPG still deserves a shot for its challenging cooperation features and overall depth.
The Roman Empire has long inspired the gaming industry. And it was high time for a Roman-centred MMO to pay tribute to the eternal glory of Rome. This historically accurate MMO lets players become true Romans and experience the thrills of fierce and feverish gladiatorial combat. Collecting and training gladiators, you take on fellow players to prove your fighters’ worth – and keep them alive and lucrative just a little while longer. CaesarVerse even allows you to interact with famous champions of the arena, such as Commodus and Spartacus.
From the Punic Wars to the fall of Rome, factual events also make their way into the game. Beyond its mere historical vibe, CaesarVerse adds yet another uncommon element to your run-of-the-mill MMO as it uses blockchain technology. This play-to-earn game features unique collectible NFTs to trade for cryptocurrencies or enhance the stats and abilities of your roster of gladiators.
Vikings: War of Clans
In Vikings: War of Clans, players cooperate to build the strongest clan out there. Training troops and upgrading your strongholds, you aim to capture every kingdom’s place of power and rule over the entire land. So, join groups of hundreds of teammates to participate in clan competitions, gather resources to develop your infrastructures and attack rival towns. A mobile game originally, this strategy title meets MMO rolled out a browser version for all PC gamers around. And in creating this free-to-play multiplayer game, developers carefully researched the day-to-day life of early medieval Scandinavia.
After decades of relative disinterest within the gaming world, Vikings have indeed come back with a splash. Assassins Creed Valhalla and God of War: Ragnarök did much to reignite the hype for the Norse civilization. The iGaming industry also jumped on the bandwagon with free slots like Age of Vikings and Hyper Viking. Adding a Nordic feel to your standard pokies, these games require no download and work seamlessly on mobile. For newcomers, they’re the perfect opportunity to gamble without risking money. And thousands more fun slots await on the best online platforms like Vegas Slots Online, alongside other classic casino games.
Historical MMOs may be few and far between, but they still represent a compelling sub-genre for ancient history enthusiasts. Some titles take realism up a notch, while others build upon real events to craft a story. Of course, no video game will ever equate to a 100% accurate history lesson – and an MMO even less so. Still, MMOs set against a historical backdrop bring a nice change of pace to the genre.