October 1998: Dial Up Wide Area Network Games Operation (DWANGO) shuts down.
In the days before the Internet (yes, there were days before the Internet), how in the heck did people play games together across the expanse of this great nation? Well, if you enjoyed DOOM in New York, you might have connected to your DOOM-playing friends a few states over via DWANGO. Originally called the DOOM Wide-Area Network Games Operation, this fee-based system initially had players dial into servers based in Houston, Texas, in order to access DOOM‘s multiplayer features. DWANGO proved popular enough that its creators eventually set up almost two dozen servers across the county.
DWANGO servers serviced players of DOOM, DOOM II, and Heretic in 1994 and 1995. With the release of Quake in 1996 however, came online access and multiplayer over the Internet. Even so, DWANGO chugged along for a few more years before finally ending operations in late 1998.
Are there any DWANGO users out there? What was the service like? Share with us in the comment section!