EverQuest Next "Holy Grail": Totally Destructible Voxel Environment
by Max Jay
Anyone remember Red Faction?
Do you remember how awesome it was to blow a hole in the wall to find a little extra room with some ammo?
Well now imagine blowing a hole in the floor to find an enormous sprawling cavern with creatures to destroy and adventures to experience.
During the EverQuest Next reveal David Georgeson showed off the voxel environment of the new game. This means that anything and everything around the game world can be destroyed.
An example: You’ve built an awesome enormous castle. You have high stone walls and in your mind it is indestructible. But only until a towering enemy, twice the size of your castle, lumbers into the area and wipes out your entire home with one mighty blow. The new system allows for every facet of the game to have a more finite feel. You have to protect the areas that you are close to, or it is possible to lose them in the heat of battle. This can give players a more personal investment into their surroundings by having to worry about every standing building having the real possibility of someday becoming a heap of rubble.
That's not where it ends though, this extends to the entire game world.
When Georgeson said “the world": her really meant the world. The playable world of Norrath has become a sprawling multi-tiered, living, breathing environment. You can be fighting an army when all of a sudden the ground can crack open from the heat of the fray and you and your allies will find yourself in a lava pit or an underground cavern, potentially surrounded by an entirely new threat.
The innovative system allows for nearly limitless possibilities within the game world. No longer is the environment what-you-see-is-what’s-there; now there are several levels below you with new monsters, new quests and new adventures to sink your teeth into.
Fortunately, broken environments do heal over time so an area can't become useless after a huge battle.
This also ties into the new game that will run parallel to EQNext, EverQuest Next Landmarks, which will allow players to build their own unique constructs and items.
This, coupled with the new flexible class system and the emergent quest system ensures that EQNext will really reinvent the MMO. So keep your browser locked on GameSkinny to stay up to day on all of the awesome news coming out of SOE Live.
What about the voxel environment excites you? Is it the ability to destroy standing buildings, the tunneling, tiered world, or both? Sound off in the comments down below and maybe I’ll let you burrow into the lava pits of Norrath with me and become awesome mole people!Originally Published Aug. 2nd 2013