World’s first MMORPG <The Kingdom of the Winds>’s very first version is now available since last 27th of May.
Nexon has restored the original version and let gamers play it to feel nostalgia for the old days. The restoration was begun since 2013 July and JungJoo Kim of NXC CEO, Jake Song of XL Games CEO, SangWon Jung of Nexon vice-president and other founding members participated the project. They talked about how it went and obstacles they faced during the project at Nexon Developers Conference 2014(NDC14).
Since <The Kingdom of the Winds> is the oldest MMORPG in commercial service in the world and has gone through 1,000+ updates for last 18 years, they did not make finding the very initial data of the game. They did not even have any data including a source code they need in order to restore the original. Frankly, no one even remember what it exactly was.
They tried finding source codes first and fortunately were able to find old CDs which recorded graphic data of game version 1997, server data of 1998, and client file of 1999. These were the very first data of the then game in commercial service. They were able to successfully restore the old game of version 1996 after searching old database from a gaming magazine published in 1996.
The project was initially started to exhibit the old game at Nexon Computer Museum, but they decided to make it online because it is an online game which is a game of multiple players.
A last hurdle they faced after the successful restoration was Shutdown Law. In 1996, there was no such law and no players’ age in the old DB. Therefore Nexon decided to shutdown the whole server from midnight to 8 a.m. in order to prevent any dispute that might be arisen.