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Trivia / Asheron's Call

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  • Keep Circulating the Tapes: A rare video game example. After Warner Brothers announced the game's shutdown, breaking a promise with the player base to open source the Asheron's Call server and client software, the AC community banded together to "packet sniff" hundreds of billions of data packets between the client and servers in the game's final months, allowing software engineers who played the game to recreate the server-client protocols that made the game work. This, combined with the meticulous notes that the community kept during the 17 years the game had monthly patches, allowed for 3rd party server software to be created; now years after the game shut down hundreds of player ran servers can be found.
  • Screwed by the Network: Multiple times. Initially, they couldn't find a publisher as Sony was pulling in favors to ensure that their MMORPG wouldn't have competition. Microsoft stepped in to publish it in exchange for effectively owning the rights to everything involved... and then proceeded to run the game into the ground over several years.
    • Asheron's Call had a (not undeserved) reputation for being full of botters, people using 3rd party programs to play the game. When asked why, it turned out that Turbine had wanted to ban botting for years and had fixes ready to go, but Microsoft vetoed them every single time, due to some of the botters running 10-15 accounts at the same time.
    • Asheron's Call 2 had the in game chat system break down. Turbine had a fix within hours... but Microsoft refused to allow them to push it for months. The fact that Microsoft was starting to push Mythica, what amounted to Asheron's Call 2's replacement, at the same time, did not go unnoticed by anyone. Turbine was eventually allowed to fix the chat system, almost a full year later, but the damage was done and AC2 closed shortly afterwards.
    • During the game's sunset years, Turbine publicly pledged to release the game's server and client source code as open source, allowing the game to continue forever even if the official servers had to be shut down. Warner Brothers, who purchased and ran Turbine into the ground, ended up breaking this agreement. Several rumors as to why exist — the most common being that the original founder of Turbine had a poison pill involving Asheron's Call, giving him an absurd financial windfall if the game hit certain milestones.
  • What Could Have Been: The founder of Turbine and original project lead of Asheron's Call stated (during the game's shutdown) that if he could get Warner Brothers to release the IP, he would create an Augmented Reality mobile game similar to Pokemon GO or Ingress, only using a hybrid between MMORPG and Augmented Reality — portals (and their dungeons) would have real world locations associated with them, pushing users to visit them, for example.
  • The Wiki Rule: