Many of the new players who come to Fed2 now are actually old players returning after a long, long absence. Delighted to find that the game still exists, some of them spend time reminiscing about the old days, of when they first played Fed in the early days of classic Fed on the web, back on AOL or even earlier.
Here's an email that we received a few days ago, that sums up the long-lasting appeal that Fed can have.
About a billion years ago, I stumbled across Federation while fooling around with the cluttered nonsense that was AOL Dialup. I think I was probably 10 or 11. I remember thinking space was cool, and so I logged on and began what turned out to be a two-year obsession with one of my favorite games of all time - original Federation.
There were only a dozen of us or so then, and the Snark puzzle was still a big secret. I remember not knowing what a "spanner" was (I'm American) and it was literally years before I finally figured it out. I spent weeks and weeks on the workbench designing my planet long before I even had figured out how to make my factory work. I remember finally purchasing my "dream" ship - loaded to the gills with the best computer, the strongest lasers, the most powerful missiles... only to be blown into smithereens by some Duchy owners' powerful bot. I ended up dead-dead more than a few times - my mother couldn't understand. I remember staring blankly at some sort of vending machine that was involved in a puzzle, locked in a battle of wits with a computer that refused to understand the meaning of, "GIVE ME THE #$%# KEY PLEASE!" I remember doing laps and laps and laps around the solar system looking for... something... that kept jumping around and refused to be found. I remember the unbelievable satisfaction of having created my first batch of commodities, and then later of finally sending my planet into orbit... and the immediate loneliness that followed.
I remember printing out the entire Fed manual. I also printed out the entire Duchy listing and pasted it to my wall so I wouldn't have to thumb through when trying to find a planet.
In short, it was a blast.
Now I'm 22 and a "Random Page" search on Wikipedia has brought me full circle back to the new reincarnation, Fed 2. My excitement is barely containable. Thank you for keeping this game alive.