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The Franchise at 15

Victor Barreiro Jr. Posted:
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Nothing says, “Everquest is awesome!” quite like a picture of Omeed Dariani riding the 1970s Batmobile. Everquest has come a long (really long) way since Omeed and his Batmobiling ways. In one sense, this is because Omeed now has his very own Everquest Live loveseat, and also because Everquest has grown in its own way over time, culminating in the development of Everquest Next Landmark and Everquest Next.

Today's discussion won't be too serious, but aside from noting the current Sony Online Entertainment All-Access Program FAQ, I'll also be taking a quick dive into the recent Everquest Live video with the important tidbits.

All-Access Pass!

SOE announced additional information for the all-access program that will go live by April 16 or so. While the basic information remains the same, they have clarified some of the benefits, and what you need to keep the good stuff going when you buy into all-access.

The first important bit is that multi-month memberships still need to sign in monthly for their 500 Station Cash (SC) stipend. SOE will be setting up UI features on the marketplace to make picking up the SC easier, and they'll also be making account management easier so you can track the billing for your all-access pass without running around different sites like a crazy fellow.

The account management will also be improved in such a way that multiple memberships will have the time migrated into an equivalent all-access membership. “Once the Memberships are merged,” SOE writes, “the recurrence duration (1, 3, 6 or 12 months) and rate will be based on the oldest membership on your account.”

For those playing Landmark, the important thing to note is that Landmark will be part of All-Access, but not on the implementation of the All-Access program. SOE notes, “In-game Landmark Marketplace items and Founder’s Packs will also not be available for the All Access discount until the program officially includes Landmark.”

The company is also looking to find ways to make the buy-in for Landmark as an all-access game more interesting. I'm hoping a free subscriber-only cosmetic might be in play for this, much like Funcom's monthly votable cosmetic for The Secret World subscribers.

Some Excellent Additions

Chances are you'll be reading this after the Landmark update goes live. That was scheduled to happen on March 20 at 10am Pacific or 1 pm Eastern and it comes with bug fixes and some important additions to the game.

You'll be glad to know that aside from bug fixes, players will get some fast travel options, allowing for teleportation to the Hub, to one's claim, or to a friend or his claim. Aside from teleportation, the game will also introduce a party system for grouping and will be testing an in-game mailing system.

The End of the World

Unannounced on the stream is one big tidbit that everyone may want to remember: the date for closed beta. Chances are likely that, if you're reading this, the information is already available but it bears repeating: closed beta will start on Wednesday, March 26.

As such, SOE also wanted to let folks know that March 23 will be the last day of Alpha, as they need to prepare for closed beta on March 24 and 25.

What this also means is that they'll be wiping everything except character names, appearances, templates, and items purchased through Founder's Packs or the marketplace. SOE recommends saving templates for your homes, as well as individual templates for parts of your home so you can build it piecemeal as you acquire new resources.

While SOE will save claim templates, they recommend the individual templates so can actually make better progress.

Here's to 15 years of Everquest and to the start of Landmark's closed beta! /cheer

Victor Barreiro Jr. / Victor Barreiro Jr. maintains the Everquest Next column (and formerly the Devil’s Advocate column) for MMORPG.com. He also writes for news website Rappler as a technology reporter. You can find more of his writings on Games and Geekery and on Twitter at @vbarreirojr.



Victor Barreiro Jr.

Victor Barreiro Jr. / Victor Barreiro Jr. maintains The Devil’s Advocate and The Secret World columns for MMORPG.com. He also writes for news website Rappler as a technology reporter. You can find more of his writings on Games and Geekery and on Twitter at @vbarreirojr.