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During SOE Live fan event that took place in Las Vegas yesterday, John Smedly, president of Sony Online Entertainment officially announced EverQuest Next, the long anticipated MMORPG in the EQ franchise. He also introduced a new project called EverQuest Next Landmark, basically a new development tool that will allow players to design their own world.

Landmark will be released this winter as free download and will be the “gateway” for Everquest Next.

“Today, many MMOs fail because players consume content faster than developers can create it” said Smedley. “With EverQuest Next, we’re creating a living world that players are part of an empowering them to produce new content alongside the development team”

The first part is about “Your EQ Story” and a beautiful sandbox painting. The EQN part begins at 26:06.

There will be no levels in EverQuest Next, but more than 40 classes will be available at launch, allowing players to mix abilities from each class in order to create a unique character. The game will feature a living world (something similar with Guild Wars 2) filled with destructible environments. Most of the quests will be dynamic while monsters will have likes/dislikes and general motivations for their behavior and actions.

Georgeson is trying to create a system that allows players to develop an individual story. “We want people to develop a long, detailed history of their character, so that when they tell others that story, they actually care, as opposed to ‘Yeah, yeah, I did that quest”

So we have a lot of ideas that we saw in other games like: a living world and weapon based skills from Guild Wars 2, a mix of classes and talents that we saw on Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn and a no-level system similar to Secret World; mixed with the EQ feeling to build a new revolutionary MMO.

EverQuest Next launch date wasn’t announced yet, but you can sign-up for Beta on the official page.

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