With EverQuest's nineteenth expansion pack, Rain of Fear, launching on November 28th, MMORPG.com caught up with with SOE's Adam Bell for a brief interview about the fantasy MMO's 13-year successful history.
MMORPG: How has EQ adapted to other core MMO mechanics that have been introduced over the years? What do you think was the biggest change to the game?
Adam Bell: We continue to adapt to our players. Some mechanics from other games have made it to our game, as many of ours have made it to other games. We have kept to our core of game-play, while giving features players want. With so many features we've added over the years, it's difficult to point out any one feature that is the biggest! In my personal opinion, I think our biggest change was to allow hover mode. Hover mode allows players that are killed by NPC's to "hover" over their corpse for 5 minutes to allow another player to resurrect them without them ever leaving the zone they are in. Without this, when players died, they immediately zoned to the place where they set their spirit to go.
MMORPG: The notes for the expansion seem to add a lot of customization to players. How do you see players changing their avatars with this new expansion?
Adam Bell: One of the biggest aspects of customization in the new Rain of Fear expansion is the new way we are granting items. The visible items, normally called "armor" are items that are seen on a player when they wear it. These will continue to be character class specific. Other items, often called non-visible items, or "gear", are still tailored for particular class combinations as they have in the past, but we are now allowing any class to wear them. This will allow players to fine-tune some of their statistics in ways that are not in our direct plans, but may suit the particular player in a way they prefer.
Players often utilize items or value statistics in ways we can't predict or expect. That's one of the beauties of working with such an informed and passionate community. There are constant discoveries and re-evaluations going on amongst our players as to what they think (the best) of anything is and the new system will allow them to itemize as they see fit.