A lot of shake-ups have been happening in the gaming arena as of late. The latest news is that EverQuest Next is shutting down after Daybreak Game Company announced that they are discontinuing development on the MMO.
Over on the official developer’s website, Daybreak’s president Russell Shanks issued an open letter to the community about the future of EverQuest Next… or rather, the future it won’t have.
Shanks honestly wrote about the game and what the actual hang-up was, stating…
“For those familiar with the internals of game development, you know that cancellations are a reality we must face from time to time. […]
“In the case of EverQuest Next, we accomplished incredible feats that astonished industry insiders. Unfortunately, as we put together the pieces, we found that it wasn’t fun. We know you have high standards when it comes to Norrath and we do too. In final review, we had to face the fact that EverQuest Next would not meet the expectations we – and all of you – have for the worlds of Norrath.”
The game was extremely ambitious, aiming to combine the classic MMO structure of theme park exploration, questing and leveling, with the new generation of voxel manipulation and emergent player control over structures, the environment and housing. Things just didn’t work out for them the way they thought, but it hasn’t all gone to waste.
According to an update from The Escapist, the Landmark toolset that’s used to create structures and objects using voxels in EverQuest Next will live on. The tool will launch in full this spring, with executive producer Holly Longdale explaining on the forums that Landmark is launching in the spring of this year for PC…
“The creativity of the Landmark community and the potential for telling stories in this digital world is beyond what we imagined. Our vision for Landmark is to provide a place where you can create ANYTHING, tell your own stories, and share your creativity with other players. We are wrapping up a HUGE game update for Landmark with LOTS of new additions and improvements, some of which you’ve already seen in sneak preview posts from Emily “Domino” Taylor on the forums. We are excited about what’s to come for Landmark and we can’t wait to see what you think.
“The Landmark team has a lot to do before launch this spring and we’ll continue to keep you informed!”
I’m curious what they plan on doing with Landmark? Will it become a game of some sort? Will they use it to design other games? There’s a lot of potential and possibilities there.
While it’s sad EverQuest Next bit the bullet, it’s better that Daybreak recognized that the game wasn’t going to live up to standards and to pull the plug instead of feeding into a hobbly-legged project that would vomit and straggle its way out of the gate like some kind of mutant abortion with a sign roped around its neck that reads “I know I’m Not Fun, But I’m Trying”.
In the meantime Daybreak still has Planetside 2 and H1Z1 to tend to, so they still have plenty on their plate as far as MMOs are concerned. We’ll also see what they do with Landmark when it goes live this spring.