As we reported last night, Sony Online Entertainment dropped a few hints regarding the future of the EverQuest franchise at its annual SOE Live convention in Las Vegas. Though CEO John Smedley’s keynote address focused mainly on the firm’s non-EQ portfolio, the EQNext tidbit was a doozy.
I have to be honest with you. We have completely blown up the design of EverQuest Next. For the last year and a half we have been working on something we are not ready to show. Why did we blow up the design? The design was evolutionary. It was EverQuest III. It was something that was slightly better than what had come before it. It was slightly better.
What we are building is something that we will be very proud to call EverQuest. It will be the largest sandbox-style MMO ever designed. The same exciting content delivered in a new way. Something you’ve never seen before. The MMO world has never seen before. We didn’t want more kill 10 rats quests. We didn’t want more of the same. If you look at the MMOs out there, they’re delivering the same content over and over again. So are we. We need to change that. When we released EverQuest, we changed the world. We want to do that again with a different type of game.
Smedley went on to mention that veteran EQ devs Dave Georgeson and Terry Michaels are spearheading the project, and he promised that it would be playable at next year’s SOE Live event.
Welcome to Next EverQuest, where we discuss the future of EverQuest in its new, secretly mentioned evolution into EverQuest Next. Here we discuss and share our original EverQuest memories and discuss what should and shouldn’t be in EverQuest Next.
Feel free to discuss EverQuest Next’s release date? Forced first person, Social non instanced dungeons, Dying penalties that actually hurt, Long travel times and Hard level grinding and Guilds that actually need each other to survive. All of these things that made us suffer are also what made us remember that what we accomplished in EverQuest was well deserved and well noticed by other players in a non instanced world!
Planetside 2, after having hands on experience in beta promises non latency mass player seemless world graphics, with timed day and night cycles.
Smedley spent good part of the new-opening address outlining each bullet point, that Forge-Light will carry to the SOE’s games. The major change is SOE is lastly bidding send-off to discrete regions with the loading screens among them, but the break of the laundry, and the list of the features was full of the technical jargon similar to the real time radio city, advanced element volumetric and lighting fog.
Planetside 2 in game shot of the Forge Light Engine
What is this entire mean? Smedley ask. “Think a moment about it, Ever Quest players; and think a while about a physX engine, that built into each single part of your game-play. We have combined with the Nvidia and with their incredible PhysiX platform. It shows that we can take you the majority amazing environments and characters may be seen previously in a MMO or single-player game.
Such claim had followed-up with a still image of the character look from the Ever-Quest Next, which is internal code-name for sequel ‘SOE’ is working on, and the figure by itself was not very inspiring. But you can clearly see its expression of the annoyance on man’s face. The textured skin, and the small rise of the right-eyebrow. We didn’t see any demo of the Forge-Light in motion. But the 1st game that bounced to the mind like similarity was LA. Noire, and if SOE could carry that rank of the human sentiment to the MMO characters. Then the games complete with the Forge-Light will truly be impressive.
For the inspired director of the whole line of EverQuest, Dave Georgeson, the actual advantage of Forge Light will be in role-playing of Ever-Quest Next toon. “For the peoples that love to role-play, to stay around and communicate to each other, the facial perspicuity [so as to Forge Light will offer] is massive,” he whispered. “It provides them about everything that they desire.”
I asked over if the emote-system for EverQuest Next will be adjusted to give firmed control over the toon of your expressions and face. “Oh yeh, there is too much that I desire I could inform you right away regarding that,” Georgeson whispered. He suggested at using the technology that was revealed this year at E3 that could get images from a web cam and forward them to a character. “Even though somebody does not want to stay here with a web cam watching your facade, that peoples would not want to perform all the time, these complicated macros can be still set-up,” Georgeson whispered.
Forge Light is an exciting innovative way to take MMOs to gamers, and also will provide all types of things that are only just expected. In addition, with this in place next-generation core engine, SOE will confidently be able to build gaming worlds much more successfully.
EverQuest Next (working title) is the planned next game in the EverQuest franchise of massively multiplayer online role-playing games, a successor to EverQuest, EverQuest Online Adventures and EverQuest II. The first indication that a new game was in development appeared in a chapter written by EQ creative director Rich Waters in the EverQuest 10th Anniversary Book (2009). Sony Online Entertainment, the developer and publisher, released further details in August 2010, at which point development was still in its earliest stages and feedback was being solicited from existing EQ, EQOA Frontiers and EQ2 players.
The game will also not be a sequel or prequel to any of the games in the EverQuest franchise; it is planned to present to players a “parallel world” of Norrath, one in which some of the locations and characters may be familiar, but specific relationships and events can diverge from the official storylines of the other games. The developers have stated an intention to return to a style of gameplay more like the original EverQuest, while retaining the advances in MMORPG design that have developed in the years since that game first launched. Sony Online Entertainment has developed a new game engine called Forge Light in which EverQuest Next is designed. It has been stated this game engine focuses on lighting effects and making game characters more realistic.
It has been a long time coming, but SOE has finally formally announced the sequel to their hit franchise EverQuest which is appropriately codenamed EverQuest Next. The official reveal occured at the SOE FanFaire on August 7th 2010 in Las Vegas. The sequel had first made itself known in the 10th Anniversary EverQuest Book released in 2009 with a blurb about the potential next EverQuest game. It was also slightly touched upon in the absolutely HORRIBLE 10th Anniversary Evercracked! documentary.
The unveiling at the SOE FanFaire was accompanied by the first ever in-game screenshots as well as some impressive concept art. A brief question and answer session (more like an open discussion) also took place during the reveal. Some key points from the open discussion were as follows:
EQNext will be a “re-imagining” of EverQuest
Fully scalable graphics engine
Less Classes (than EQ2)
More engaging combat
original everquest art direction (you can see this by simply looking at the similarities of the Kobold concept artwork to a Kobold in the original EQ)
As the first EverQuest Next site out there our goal is to delve into the vast universe of EverQuest to pull from the highs and the lows from the past 11 years. With the help of you, the EQ Community, we want to help communicate what the players would like for the future of EQ! Enjoy the first in-game screenshot and concept art below!