Free to Play MMO: EverQuest Next Revealed!

Sony Online Entertainment's new MMO game is being developed to be different from all others.

During a Las Vegas event, Sony Online Entertainment gave its first details about its grand vision for the upcoming massively multiplayer online game called EverQuest Next.

As a free-to-play MMO, EverQuest Next aims to evolve the MMO genre.

Sony revealed that EverQuest Next has been in development since 2009. Two years ago, the company made the decision to "rethink core creative and technical aspects of the design" and begin with a new approach to the game. As a result of this approach, Sony claims that EverQuest Next will be unlike any other MMO game for a variety of reasons.

EverQuest Next tries to go beyond your everyday normal MMO with fully destructible environment physics that apply to "every piece of the world", more advanced AI and an open-ended storyline that will force the player to face the consequences of their actions and decisions. Speaking of the story, EverQuest Next will be a continuation of the familiar Norrath narrative, but will represent a "fundamental reimagining" of characters, lore, and environments in the game universe.

The development director Dave Geogeson said:

"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."

One of the games features is something called "multi-classing." There are no levels in EverQuest Next, but more than 40 multi-tiered unique classes will be available at launch. Players can mix and match abilities from each class to create a distinct character. It will also feature emergent artificial intelligence, which means non-player characters (NPCs) will have "specific motivations and preferences that direct behavior in nuanced and unpredictable ways." Lastly, each character in the gameworld will have a unique story instead of following a predetermined path.

EverQuest Next's has a unique world-building tool called EverQuest Next Landmark. It will be available to the public this winter. Landmark enables players to create structures using Player Studios Software from Sony and share or sell their creations with friends. Sony will even give detailed instruction regarding a few things it needs help crafting from players.

Landmark will be released as a free download this winter. It will serve as the gateway to EverQuest Next.

Unfortunately, Sony has not yet announced a release date for EverQuest Next.

Published Aug. 4th 2013
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