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VWN World Review: Everquest
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World Review: Everquest


 
Main Review

Compatible with Operating Systems:
Win 98se Win 2K Win XP

World Status: Defunct


World Purpose: Gameworld

Age Suitability: Anyone, Mature Adults


World-Type

Everquest can be played either in the first or third person effectively, though there are many camera angles to chose from if a player so wishes.

The basis of the world is very much level-based hack-and-slash, though there is a single role-play server available, as well as player-formed guilds which concentrate upon role-play, but Everquest is not truly an environment designed to support such play.

The environments are full and richly detailed however, especially with the release of the later add-on packs, though this did result in a fair increase in system requirements (no matter what Sony might want its players to believe, Everquest would be hell on anything less than a 128K connection, as well as causing severely unbalanced gameplay for those less willing to pay out for the new packages.

The World in Brief

Everquest is huge as online worlds go; though the only true change is to the surroundings of the character, which seems to have little effect on the character itself. Trudging through the desert seems as equally tiring as running down some stairs, though as a level one character, running careless down the stairs can be a fairly lethal activity.

Skill advancement is through a combination of spending "points" earned upon gaining a level and usage of skills throughout the world. There is also a tradeskill section covering such professions as smithing, tailoring, fishing, baking, as well as a few others, as well as a bazaar (for those who own the Shadows of Luclin expansion) where players may sell the items they have created, found or earned for whatever amount they wish.

The gaining of levels themselves is through the traditional experience system, which as with many games is almost entirely reliant on the slaying of other creatures. There are quests that generate experience for the players, but these are fewer and far less rewarding than simply slaying creatures.

A huge problem with Everquest is the severity of the class/race combination limitations. Whilst certain limitations can be understood, those within Everquest seem excessively restrictive, especially to those willing to play a more individual if difficult role.

Everquest supports player-killing on every server, with some servers devoted to it, and others providing the standard choice of being a player-killer and being player-killed or not at all.

 

Sub Reviews

Here at Virtual Worldlets, we look at all worlds, whether for entertainment, training, medicare, industry or military use. Thus, we have the situation where different uses judge by different criteria. Below are a series of sub-reviews, each tailored to a different aspect of the world.

Explorers
For some, its the thrill of discovery, the freedom to strike out, to pioneer. Whether its mapping new lands, or exploring unknown fields of endeavour, to be first, to boldly go, this is what explorers live for.

Everquest is huge. The zones are varied to a great enough degree that exploring can be fun, but after level ten it can also become a frustrating experience, especially if you're miles from your corpse and have to go collect it.
There are vast places and areas to explore however, and many of them reveal fresh challenges and rewards to your character, an experience that is pleasurable in itself.

 

Socialisers
The social life is the life for you. To chat, to roam, to gossip all day, and chatter all night. You are the heart of the party, and you are the soul. The drive to chatter, the need to gossip, stretching out, making connections, mind against mind, heart against heart. It keeps you going, it keeps you sane.

There are an awful lot of people to socialise with in Everquest, but you'll find that most of them aren't really interested, and as mentioned above, the environment isn't particularly suited to it. Certainly there are a fair number of pre-programmed emotes with character-animations to accompany them, though you will often have to check your text box to see what your counterpart is actually doing.

Players do have as much freedom to create custom emotes as they would in any decent text-world, but there is something about reading the action whilst a motionless, mannequin-like figure stands in front of you that is quite off-putting.

 

Achievers
Work, work work. Everybody... You have this burning desire to succeed, to achieve renown, to be the best in whatever field you set your sights to. No matter what, you must be the best... What will you be? A powerful warlord? The leader of a town? You're ambitious, and crave power? This section is for you.

Everquest focuses upon the individual and everyone holds the same social class. Being level 65 gives a player no more rights than being level 1.

There is certainly room for the player who wants nothing more than to improve his character's statistics, whether it be his tradeskill abilities, his actual level or simply his collection of rare gems.

Everquest certainly appeals to the magpie tendency in some gamers, those who wish to hoard rare or expensive items, solely for the pleasure of owning them or seeing what they might look like on their own character.

The tradeskill ability in particular is an area in which many players can find enjoyment in their progression as it is totally unlinked to the players actual level. It is a pleasant change to see an environment in which having the ability to slay countless dragons and hill giants is not reflected in other unrelated skills such as tailoring. The only true limit on a player?s ability to learn tradeskills such as tailoring, baking or smithing is the size of their bank balance.

Unfortunately, tradeskills do not provide any experience in any way whatsoever, and the items a player can loot from fallen foes tend to be more useful or powerful than those that can be crafted. This means that those who do decide to embark on a tradeskilling spree must be aware that it is a solely personal progression, and the skills themselves might see little in the way of really use, though a rare few items are still considered useful from the tradeskill arena.

 

Killers
You get your fun through fighting, killing, pillaging and pilfering. From despicable thieves, through sneaky assassins, great military generals, and noble knights, you love to kill, you live to kill.

Players who enjoy nothing more than to maim and butcher will potentially love Everquest. There are hundreds of creatures to run around and slay, many of which offer up rare trophy-style drops.

For the player-killers, there are servers out there devoted to player-killing, as well as the option to have the player-killing flag set on any other server.

With the addition of newer add-on packs such as Lost Dungeons of Norrath, Everquest has become more of a killers-world than ever before, with "team missions" devoted to nothing more than entering a dungeon and spending the next hour and a half running from one room to the next killing as many creatures as possible.

 

 

Overall
Everquest is a game rather than a world, and the longer you play it the more it feels like an addiction than an enjoyment, though it is quite easy to while away hours and hours doing nothing but wandering around.

As with many online environments, Everquest can be quite a dull past time without companions, though with them it can be a fun if fairly shallow environment to play in, but it is hard to take anything that happens within the game seriously.

The customer support from Sony is seriously worrying since this is a world that people are paying to purchase and then paying again to play. There are frequently no GMs on the servers, despite the number of issues that can usually be seen to be problems with the software, and many bugs are simply never fixed. The website offers support, but very rarely is a technical support post answered with useful information, despite the huge amount of data they insist the player provides them with.

 

Rating 47.5 / 100
Newbie Friendliness
10.0
/ 15
Community Values
2.0
/ 15
Believability
4.5
/ 15
Immersion
4.0
/ 15
Administration
2.0
/ 10
Automated help
8.0
/ 10
Code Integrity
7.5
/ 10
Entertainment
9.5
/ 10

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Client OS:Win 2K, Win 98, Win 2K, Win 2K

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