Having played Daybreak's Everquest (I even got my original account back from 1999) and Star Wars Galaxies emulator, the nostalgia only lasts as long as it takes to realise the world is dead. No West Commons market or crowded Aviak Village, just me soloing in an empty world. Similarly with SWGemu. Brilliant renditions but the original atmosphere is long gone.
I enjoyed Beta Realm more than anything. Rushing to level 20, getting wiped, rushing even faster to level 20, Killing the first ever Kilrog, farming demon blades, etc. etc. it was a blast. I didn't really get into the grind of 1,000 levels - it had no appeal. As The Realm was my first MMORPG, it was also the first one I fell out of love with, from being obsessed to being unable to even log on. Unfortunately, I took it out on Stephen on the forums, as the loss felt dreadful and I needed to dump it. Since then, I realise it happens to all games eventually. I wish it was not so.
I think Stephen's idea of a new game with the same flavour is the way to go, given the above and all the legal issues.