The interest for RPGs was laid in my cradle very early. At the time of the Super Nintendo it was games like Secret Of Mana, Secret Of Evermore, Lufia, Zelda or Terranigma, which let me dive into worlds for hours every day, which fascinated me again and again.
When a colleague introduced me to a Playstation for the first time, I got to know and love games like Diablo or several Final Fantasy games. With the first PC my RPG game collection grew massively. I spent most of my time in Diablo II - Lord Of Destruction and World Of Warcraft. In Diablo I still own a barbarian with several thousand game hours on a USB stick. Oh my god, did we love this game during the summer vacations. But also many movies, series and anime like Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, Sword Art Online, Record of Lodoss War, Inuyasha, Attack On Titan, Goblin Slayer and many more captivated me and shaped my creativity for the fantasy realm.
Minecraft Legend as a solo project.
In 2014, I came across a modpack called Hexxit through multiple suggestions from viewers and was in love right from the first second. Subsequently, I started the solo project "Minecraft Legend" in the modpack. The concept of the project was to build a city, similar to CraftAttack. Viewers could additionally suggest quests with rewards on YouTube through the comment function. I then picked two to three comments from these and completed them in the next episode.
During this time, there was a livestream with an average of 7,000 - 8,000 viewers. In addition to several quest suggestions flying through my chat, people kept asking if there was a possibility to play along. This made me realize that I am not the only one who is interested in a Minecraft RPG.
First own Minecraft Legend Server
There weren't many RPG servers in Minecraft. The servers that already existed on the market were either not well implemented or only available in English. That's why I decided to create my own Minecraft community server.
A few weeks later, the time had come. With a small team of developers, we released a Minecraft server that was absolutely disastrous. We were burning for the idea of getting something great up and running. So the community and we didn't really care that the server wasn't working properly. At the center, we had a huge tree that we called the Tree of Life. This tree was modeled after a Warcraft III tower defense map, where you had to protect the Tree of Life from destruction by ever-growing waves of monsters.
In addition, players were able to travel to the four realms of different races via the Tree of Life. The races included humans, elves, dwarves and zandars. The Zandar people originated with YouTuber Zander, whose influence ensured that Legend is where it is today. But more about that later!
Each people had its own building world and individual building style. Regularly there were tasks from the gods Angus and Alkatar, which had to be mastered by the players. Therefore, hundreds of people built huge sanctuaries together for weeks and let gigantic cities rise from the ground. An extra farm world was provided for the resources. Such community actions have always been what made Minecraft Legend special and promoted community cohesion. In my World Of Warcraft days, this was exactly one of the characteristics that have shaped me the most to this day. In World Of Warcraft Classic and the first addon "The Burning Crusade", almost nothing was possible alone. You had to learn to maintain contacts and to behave respectfully towards each other, even if you only knew each other via the Internet.
I think that this has led to the massive success of Minecraft Legend so far. There have been many friendships formed through Legend over the past few years. There is even a couple who met through Minecraft Legend and are now married.
When the server was up and running for a few days and players were diligently building their cities and completing the gods' tasks, I built in another goal for players. It should be something very special, which should bring them fame but at the same time again promote cohesion. The idea for the Nexus was born. This should be a game mode that takes place only once a week and challenges all four races to fight for the capture of a large sanctuary.
We set it up with command blocks at the time and it was doomed to fail before it even started. But we didn't know any better at that time! When the time came and the first Nexus was to take place, over 10,000 viewers gathered in my first stream! Everyone was waiting for the moment that the countdown went to 0 and the battle would begin. However, nothing much happened except that it lagged and the entire server crashed. Still, the community celebrated the whole feeling that had built up around this whole event. They were ready to wait for another attempt next week.
The problems of the first Minecraft Legend server.
The rapid success of the community server also had its downside. The pressure to create something bigger and better, in connection with all the bugs and problems, meant that there was a lot of burden on us.
Leading and organizing such a project needs to be learned. At the time, I didn't know what that meant either. When you love something and are passionate about it, you want to make it as perfect as possible. This led to me making some mistakes and even one of the developers deleting the entire server. This was a major setback for the whole project and the community was severely disappointed. Builds they had been building day and night for weeks were all gone in one fell swoop. Life has always been a learning process for me and making mistakes is part of learning. If you do something wrong, it is important to ask yourself what you did wrong. That's the only way to do it better the next time.
Shortly after the deletion, Zander and I met on Teamspeak and talked about the whole situation. Actually, after the whole debacle I had no interest to try it again. Especially it was hard for me to trust people again shortly after that happened. Zander, however, was always very eloquent and gave me new courage. Despite the bitter setback, he advised me to continue. He showed me why I was doing it and that it was something that made me who I was. In that conversation, he instilled in me principles that I still adhere to today and for which I am very grateful.
Minecraft Legend - Rise Of The Phoenix
Days and weeks passed, a new team was found and Legend was built again. This time it was going to be bigger, better and more creative! The project was to shine in all its glory and rise like a Phoenix from the ashes. Minecraft Legend - Rise Of The Phoenix launched in 2015 and surpassed everything before. Smallest streamers who participated suddenly had several thousand viewers. The Minecraft category was almost always at number one on Twitch at the launch and during the Nexus event.
All the participants had masses of fun. Players could only get on the server through a wildcard. There was no other way to handle those amounts of players. In one way this made Legend very special at the time, in another it went against what I really wanted, community and cohesion. When the hype died down months later, I sat down with the team. We discussed what we could do better to give players a more immersive and better experience, and most importantly, give everyone a chance to be a part of it.
The team grew and the foundation was laid for a first truly great Minecraft Legend MMORPG server. For a year, we worked tirelessly with the team on Legend Awakening. It was to be the first Minecraft MMORPG of its kind, heavily inspired by World Of Warcraft. Areas, quests, classes and so on should be added after release.
After we published information about the server again and again, the interest of the player community grew and so did the demand for a release date. At some point, the pressure became so great that we tried to get a first playable version of the server up and running as quickly as possible. Unlike Legend - Rise Of The Phoenix, this time it was so that players could buy access to the server through a store. This way we wanted to finance the development, technology and other expenses behind the server. The release was, as expected, a complete success. The community even managed to completely paralyze the store for buying access. Our servers also went down for a short time. Somehow, we managed to handle everything so that 3,000 concurrent players could actively enjoy Minecraft Legend Awakening.
Through the support of the community, we made 130,000€ in revenue in the first month. However, we made the same mistake that many development studios and publishers make nowadays. We released the server way too early, so hardly any of the planned content was available. Unlike Legend - Rise Of The Phoenix, there were new farm world dungeons that gave players their first unique items. A few Battlegrounds, reputation factions with rewards, daily quests and that was it.
Shortly before the release of a gigantic update that was supposed to bring in randomly generated dungeons, similar to the rifts from Diablo III, the server went offline. The too early release caused us to lose 80%-90% of our players a few weeks after the release and not generate enough revenue to keep the server running longer. After a year, all the money we needed for development, server technology and various other expenses was used up and we had to close the server. My team at that time did not have the necessary experience, so the server did not achieve the desired success. To this day, I think that one of the biggest problems was the selection of my partners, who were not as passionate as I was.
Legend in Hytale
After the closure of Minecraft Legend Awakening, it had become very quiet around Legend until one day Hypixel Studios announced its new game Hytale. Eike "xTheCriiZix", one of the team members at that time, who I count as one of my best friends today, approached me. He asked me if it wouldn't be a good idea to give Legend another try in Hytale. When I saw the game, this thought popped into my head relatively quickly. However, memories of the past came up very quickly. We disappointed a lot of players with Legend Awakening, which I'm still very sorry about today.
Besides YouTube and Twitch, setting up such a time-intensive project was actually no longer an option for me, as I wanted to focus fully on my streams and videos. I don't know what drove me to give it another try back then. Probably it was the trust to the people I wanted to take this attempt with. Eike (xTheCriiZix), Jam (jamcookiex3), Tobi (j0key) and Muterulo joined the team as builders back then and relatively quickly emerged as very capable leaders of the build team. These four guys shared the same passion for Minecraft Legend as I did. So for the organization of the build team we now had capable people, however one of the biggest weaknesses in all the builds was our development. This is where I got in touch with Hendrik (dahendrik), who had previously worked at another server. Since I knew that he had quit there a long time ago, I asked him if he would be interested in helping to build Legend in Hytale. Hendrik was right on board and had a lot of interest and especially a lot of contacts to good developers.
We spent a lot of time during the first weeks to build up a team that could handle the whole project. However, none of us really knew when Hytale would be launched. There was no release date and a timely release was not in sight. Since some team members were already starting to become inactive because there was nothing to do, we discussed the option of just trying again in Minecraft until the release of Hytale.
This time, however, we had decided from the beginning that Minecraft Legend would not be given any release date or anything until the day it is 100% ready and could launch at any time. Minecraft Legend is meant to take you into a fantasy world that will captivate you. All the experience of the last years and passion for RPGs should flow into this project and in the end give you the chance to escape from your everyday life. Even if it's only for a few seconds or minutes, we want to immerse you in a world so unique and fantastic that you won't want to leave it.
For 2.5 years now we have been working on this server with a team of about 100 people. A lot of time, passion and heart blood has already gone into the whole project, so I would like to take this moment to say thank you.
Thank you to the entire team behind Minecraft Legend. Thank you for sacrificing so much time every day to implement my crazy ideas and putting yourselves through all this stress. Even if there are sometimes disagreements, you never let me and the project down. Thanks a lot for that!
Thanks to Eike, Tobi, Jam, Hendrik, Kev and Lusu, who put so much passion and commitment into organizing such a time intensive project over the last 2.5 years.
Thanks to Zander, who gave me courage back then and always brought me back on the right track, even when I wanted to give up. You are still one of the most formative people I have met.
I would also like to thank you, the community! You have been supporting and promoting this gigantic project for seven years now. We are moving in very big steps towards a fantastic alpha, which will show with how much passion and heart blood the team has worked the last years on the current concept. You are the true legends and without you Legend would not be what it is today, thank you!
- Your Gamerstime