Beta sign-ups are also live.
Though it’s no secret that a new EverQuest game is in development, no further details on the game were available. However, Sony Online Entertainment on Thursday night finally came out and officially revealed the EverQuest Next project, and much to everyone’s surprise, it’s actually two games. EverQuest Next, a sandbox MMORPG and a proper entry to the EverQuest series; and EverQuest Next Landmark, a free-to-play voxel-based MMO building game that gives players the freedom to build whatever they want.
“With EverQuest Next, we’re going back to our roots – a space we defined with the EverQuest legacy – and ushering in a new era of MMOs: The Emergent Era,” said John Smedley, President, Sony Online Entertainment. “Today, many MMOs fail because players consume content faster than developers can create it. With EverQuest Next, we’re creating a living world that players are part of and empowering them to produce new content alongside the development team. What does the future hold for EverQuest Next and Sony Online Entertainment? It’s in the players’ hands, and we like it that way.”
“EverQuest Next is not the continuation of a familiar story. It represents the fundamental reimagining of the characters, lore and environments of the EverQuest universe,” said Dave Georgeson, Director of Development for the EverQuest Franchise, Sony Online Entertainment. “Make no mistake; while great care has been taken to respect the extraordinary influence that EverQuest has had in this industry and with our player community over the years, this is a boldly different game unlike anything that has come before.”
Here’s a rundown of EverQuest Next’s features, from Sony’s press release:
Destructible Environments – No modern MMO has successfully implemented destructible environments that stretch across an entire seamless game world – this changes forever with EQN. Every piece of the world is fully destructible and players will have the ability to manipulate almost all of it. They will interact with and explore the world in amazing ways; venturing down into the deep bedrock beneath the surface and using powerful combat abilities to blow gaping holes into the ground. The EQN world will extend far into the heavens and deep into the procedurally-generated earth through 10,000 years of known lore and history.
Permanent Change – Players will also have the ability to cause the world to change around them, permanently, in dramatic ways. Through the concerted effort of the world’s inhabitants, including players, creatures, and non-player characters (NPCs), city walls will be built and destroyed, large-scale wars will be fought and won, and epic stories will unfold over months and years.
Emergent AI – In EQN, NPCs will have specific motivations and preferences that direct behavior in nuanced and unpredictable ways. Players will find themselves in a world where NPC decisions are based on core values, not dictated by static spawn points. For example, Orcs may attack opportunistically because they want an adventurer’s gold, not simply because a careless hero wanders into an attack radius.
A Life of Consequence – Finally, each character in EQN will have a unique story; they will not follow a predetermined path. Instead, they will seek out adventure, fame and fortune in a constantly changing sandbox world. The game will remember every choice and action that players make and will organically deliver increasing opportunities to do more of the things players like to do … from crafting armor and exploring the wilderness to purging goblins from the forests.
Sony also announced a free-to-play sandbox building MMO based on EverQuest Next called EverQuest Next Landmark. Check out the game’s official description and features below:
The game will feature huge persistent worlds that each support thousands of other players and varied terrain inspired by the environments of EQN. Most importantly, Landmark will provide anyone who wants to participate with the opportunity to actually build structures, and eventually create other types of content, to be considered for inclusion in EQN. Landmark will enable players to:
Create Amazing Things
Build highly detailed structures with powerful and intuitive tools.
Quickly design complex projects or collaborate with friends to undertake massive shared builds. Lay claim to and control specific areas of huge persistent worlds.
Share Your Imagination with Friends
Landmark’s persistent servers will enable players to interact with and experience the collective imagination of thousands of players in a unique shared world.
Players will have compelling reasons to explore and interact with others. They will congregate at crafting hubs, build design templates to share and trade, and journey across the world to collect the resources required to build and craft.
Build EQN with SOE — Using the Same Tools
Landmark players will gain increasing access to many of the same tools that SOE is using to construct the game world of EQN.
Not only will Landmark give players access to these world building tools, SOE will provide specific guidance on what we want help building.
Through this collaborative approach, EQN may eventually represent the largest overall collaborative development effort in the history of online games. For anyone who has ever thought about becoming a game developer, here is your chance. Together we will build extraordinary things!
Landmark is set to launch this winter. A release window for EverQuest Next has not been announced. For more information and to sign up for beta, head on over to the game’s official website.
Sony has also uploaded the SOE Live Keynote to Youtube. You can check out the full reveal as well as some gameplay footages below:
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