Sony Online Entertainment today unveiled the next installment of their flagship MMO series: Everquest Next.
“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,” Dave Georgeson, director of development for the EverQuest franchise, said in a press release. “Make no mistake; while great care has been taken to respect the extraordinary influence thatEverQuest 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.”
The new EverQuest abandons traditional leveling up in an MMO in favor of over 40 distinct classes with multi-tiered abilities, specialized weapon skills. Said abilities can be mixed and matched, tailored to each player’s preferred style.
Environments in EverQuest Next will be fully destructable, and the world itself with be subject to permanent change (for example, the destruction of a city’s defenses may linger) as influenced by players, events, and NPCs. These non-playable characters will be more than just quest assigners; they’ll be equipped with fully emergent AI that drives them to behave based on their core values instead of their basic function.
SOE also released a handful of videos showcasing EverQuest Next, two of which I’ve embedded below: one that shows the world and characters, and one that shows the game’s combat mechanics.