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RPGDot 2003 Awards: Biggest MMORPG Surprise
The MMORPGDot Team, 2004-01-12


The last couple of weeks you could vote for the best RPGs and MMORPGs that have been released in 2003. Not us but you the player decide who receives the RPGDot 2003 Awards in the various categories. We thank all those who entered their votes and helped us in making it possible to select the best games of 2003.

Biggest MMORPG Surprise

Some games we play are worse than we ever anticipated, some are exactly what we expected and some take us by surprise. This award is for the games that took us by surprise and are way better than we expected them to be

The winner: Final Fantasy XI
"EQ with Chocobos" it isn't. Despite so many ways it could have gone wrong, Final Fantasy XI managed to surprise a lot of people used to aging graphics and incomplete content. What would have otherwise been passed of as just another MMOG was touted by a lot of players for the intriguing combat system, the superb visuals and cut-scenes, and a vast array of options to occupy your play-time. Final Fantasy XI is definately worth checking out, even if you have reservations about playing in the land of the Moogles.


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Runner Up: A Tale in the Desert
I don't think A Tale in the Desert appearing in the top 3 of surprise mmorpg's this year, was much of a surprise to most people. Why, you might ask? Well, the game doesn't have any combat, has a point n click navigation system, isn't set in your traditional fantasy setting, doesn't look nearly as good as anything else that was release this (or last) year and was developed by just a handful of people. Yet it turned out to be, and still is, an amazing game. If there was one mmorpg that came out this year that sparked some heavy debates on mmorpg design issues and doing something radically different, it must have been A Tale in the Desert.


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Second Runner Up: Star Wars Galaxies - An Empire Divided
Maybe it's because of the very few number of MMORPGs, or maybe it's because SWG really was a surprise on its own merit. The real surprise must have been that SWG could somewhat stand to the hype that it suffered through before its release, or to the hatred that it inspired after its release. Nevertheless, SWG is here, and it's here to stay by all accounts. Some predicted that it would fail after only a few months from people leaving the game in droves, But it proved to be the exact opposite, and SWG continued to thrive. Or maybe the surprise is that the game is getting better and better as it evolves, or perhaps it's quite the opposite and it's a surprise because some people think that it's such a bad game. Who knows? Maybe it's a little bit of all of that which makes SWG a surprising entry in this year's list of games.


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The Numbers
To make it complete we now give you the top 10 as voted by our visitors:

1 Final Fantasy XI
10,1 %
2 A Tale in the Desert
7,6 %
3 Star Wars: Galaxies - An Empire Divided
5,2 %
4 Anarchy Online: Shadowlands
4,8 %
5 Dark Age of Camelot: Trials of Atlantis
3,2 %
6 EverQuest - Lost Dungeons of Norrath
1,7 %
7 Eve Online: The Second Genesis
1,6 %
8 Ultima Online - Age of Shadows
1,5 %
9 Shadowbane
1,3 %
10 Purge
0,6 %

And 61 % of those who participated were unable to select one of the games.

We, the RPGDot team also voted to create our own top 4:

A Tale in the Desert
57,7 %
Anarchy Online: Shadowlands
19,2 %
Final Fantasy XI
11,5 %
Eve Online: The Second Genesis
11,5 %

What can I say, we just loved A Tale in the Desert and found it to be a big surprise.

Note that percentages are rounded to the nearest number.

Overview of all awards on MMORPGDot
 Best Sound
 Best Graphics
 Best Atmosphere
 Biggest Surprise
 Biggest Disappointment
 Most Anticipated
 Best Expansion

Overview of all awards on RPGDot
 Best Sound
 Best Graphics
 Best Atmosphere
 Biggest Surprise
 Biggest Disappointment
 Most Anticipated
 Dream Game
 Best RPG/RPG-Strategy Expansion
 Best Non-RPG
 Best RPG-Strategy
 Best RPG

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