In 2009, EverQuest creators were hard at work on a big idea. Seeking guidance from long-time EverQuest and EverQuest II players, Sony ditched all previous MMORPG models and set their sights on the future. “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…”
That sandbox spoken of is Landmark, or EverQuest Next: Landmark. Not to be confused with EverQuest Next, which will be an entirely separate game. Landmark is merely the compilation of tools Sony will utilize to build EverQuest Next. That’s right, they’re releasing their MMO development tools as a sandbox game titled, Landmark.
EverQuest Next: Landmark
From what we know EverQuest Next: Landmark will be completely free to play. Sony anticipates monetizing Landmark by enabling trade between players using real-world currencies and taking a cut. Whether or not this will be enough to keep the servers up and running will have to be determined via rigorous alpha and beta testing, scheduled to begin as early as February 28, 2014.
What we’ve seen so far has been quite impressive, likening the current build’s play-style to MineCraft at much higher fidelity. Gathering resources and various forms of crafting and creating will be the game’s primary focus. But the addition of RPG elements such as player levels, skills, experience, inventories, and auction houses will encourage player-driven commerce and create a life-blood all its own.
Players will enter the world as a human Adventurer and may choose a name, gender, face, hair style and clothing for their avatar. Although other races are expected to be available, the game is said to ship first with humans only.
While EverQuest Next will remain true to the lore and environments of Norrath, Landmark is a giant sandbox for players to build whatever they can imagine. We’ve seen MineCraft players build a 1:1 scale of the Starship Enterprise, the Taj Majal, the Titanic and many other recognizable structures, but how much better would they be in high fidelity?
Personally, I’m looking forward to Landmark. So much so that I’ve become a Founding Member, granting me early access to the Landmark Alpha, Beta, and forums, along with several other in-game items and perks. If you expect to be spending any length of time in EverQuest Next: Landmark, you might consider your own Founder Pack.
Alternatively, you can score a free time-limited beta access key in PC Gamer’s January 2014 issue (pictured above). Or comment below for your chance to win one of two EverQuest Next: Landmark Beta Keys.
Win an EverQuest Next: Landmark Closed Beta Key
RULES: Comment on this post using a legitimate email address (so I may contact the winners) before March 3, 2014 when I’ll randomly select two users with a comment on this post to receive one of two beta keys.
The first winner will receive one of my four shareable closed beta keys I received in my Trailblazer Founder Pack, the second winner will receive my unused PC Gamer beta key that includes four housing-item portraits for EverQuest and EverQuest II, depicting iconic characters from EverQuest Next and EverQuest Next: Landmark.
I hope to see you in Alpha in the coming weeks ahead! Regardless of what you’re playing, good luck and have fun!