Sony finally showed off Everquest Next last weekend. After years in development, a lot of people were beginning to question if it was vaporware, but oh man it was worth the wait.
Up until Friday, Wildstar was the only new MMO on the horizon that really had my attention. After watching EQNext footage and hearing the plans, Wildstar now has some serious competition.
If you've missed the announcement, the biggest deal about EQNext is that we'll finally be getting an MMO with destructible environments. Thanks to voxels, you'll alter the world around you in the course of battle, and actually dig and discover new areas. Certain things like core cities won't be destructible by players (but still by monsters) for obvious reasons. Different features will regenerate over time, at different rates, to keep the world from becoming completely barren.
The ability to truly interact with your world, on a Minecraft level, has always been absent from games that continually promise their players a chance to "have an impact on the world around them" etc.
It's hard to tell from the trailers, but even with EQNext taking a number of steps to push MMOs forward (free-to-play, destructible environments, skill-based multi-classing, dynamic world events), if they stick with the old lock-target and mash buttons style of combat, I'm going to be sorely dissapointed. I feel that real-time combat like TERA has is far more engaging and the traditional MMO combat now feels boring and dated in comparison.
Apart from just how good the game looks, I have a deep nostalgia for the Everquest franchise, which was the first MMO I ever played back in 1999. And I played EQ religously for years. I enjoyed Everquest 2 quite a bit as well for a time. There's a fondness for that world that no other MMO will ever be able to trade on. With everything combined, to say I'm excited for EQ Next would be putting it mildly.