EverQuest 2 celebrating 10th anniversary with Altar of Malice expansion

EverQuest II is getting ready to celebrate its 10th anniversary with one of its biggest expansions to date.

7

The Year of EverQuest also extends to the long-running Everquest sequel, EverQuest II. In fact, EQ2 is about to celebrate its 10th anniversary in November. SOE has enjoyed a fruitful year with its MMORPG, releasing new zones for the Kingdom of Sky expansion, adding new heritage quests, adding prestige homes for Oakmyst and Darklight, and debuting some new content for Nights of the Dead and Frostfall, among many other additions. Now EQ2 is ready to celebrate its anniversary with its 11th expansion, revealing Altar of Malice at this year's SOE Live, which also stands to be one of the game's biggest expansions to date.

Like the original EQ's upcoming expansion, Altar of Malice will likewise revolve around demigoddess of hate Lanys T'vyl, this time taking place along the Shattered Sea. The player will be making contact with the Far Seas Trading Company to broker some deals, but will encounter a disaster along the region. The central mystery of the expansion involves finding out what laid waste to the Shattered Sea.

The new expansion will allow players to level up to 100, while adding 14 heroic zones, six raids, six advanced solo zones, two contested zones, two overlands, and four new avatars of the gods. Prestige abilities will increase to level 100, as will the Guild level. The expansion will also add a tradeskill apprentice, grandmaster spells, and some rare ancient scrolls spells. Altar of Malice will also introduce a new playable race called the Aerakyn. These winged dragonborn will feature unique attack animations, as their wings will grow and develop as they level up.

The new zones include the Tranquil Sea, the site of a bulk of the devastation. Players will also find themselves exploring Deathweave Isle and Broken Skull Bay, a region filled with pirates, and the Phantom Sea, home to a group of priests and priestesses known as the Primordial Malice. Another new area is an underground island called Zavith'loa, a world filled with dinosaurs and the pygmies that depend on them. Much of the conflict will come to a head at Castle Highhold, the home of the Far Seas Trading Company, which is under siege.

There are some other new features to look out for from EQ2 over the course of the next year. New level-agnostic dungeons for level 20-89 players will be added this fall, with proportional loot available for all participants. Rare Heroic Loot merchants will be added around that same time, while players will also be able to sell their collection items for Status. PvP players should also be on the lookout this fall for the first 6v6 Heroic Deathmatch mode, which will take place on a plane filled with environmental traps. Also, there's a new mount coming to EQ2 and its design is based on rabbits. The first leaping mount is coming soon to the game.

The development team is also looking into 2015, with new public quest content expected to release in the next year. Fabled versions of previous expansions will also be released, while players looking to find one another will be able to do so by crossing servers.

And of course, EQ2 will celebrate its 10th anniversary with a special heroes festival set to begin in November, with 10-year veterans getting a special Isle of Refuge prestige home, complete with a starter population pack. That's also the time when Altar of Malice will drop. Expect the new expansion to release on November 11.

Senior Editor

Ozzie has been playing video games since picking up his first NES controller at age 5. He has been into games ever since, only briefly stepping away during his college years. But he was pulled back in after spending years in QA circles for both THQ and Activision, mostly spending time helping to push forward the Guitar Hero series at its peak. Ozzie has become a big fan of platformers, puzzle games, shooters, and RPGs, just to name a few genres, but he’s also a huge sucker for anything with a good, compelling narrative behind it. Because what are video games if you can't enjoy a good story with a fresh Cherry Coke?

From The Chatty

  • reply
    August 15, 2014 7:00 AM

    Ozzie Mejia posted a new article, EverQuest 2 celebrating 10th anniversary with Altar of Malice expansion.

    EverQuest II is getting ready to celebrate its 10th anniversary with one of its biggest expansions to date.

    • reply
      August 15, 2014 8:06 AM

      I'd really like REAL information about EQnext other than the random turds they've been dropping about regarding landmark. Seriously, getting old.

    • reply
      August 15, 2014 9:08 AM

      So tens years later has anyone been able to play with the graphics turned all the way up? I remember the devs talking about how they designed the graphics engine to scale with newer, more powerful gaming PCs.

      • reply
        August 15, 2014 12:47 PM

        The game only used one core of your processor until maybe 2 or 3 years ago they finally started moving other tasks (like shadows and such) to your other cores. I haven't played in a couple of years but it seems like the couple of guys they hired to redo the engine had some passion about it so they probably made some decent progress.

        • reply
          August 15, 2014 3:16 PM

          They didn't. They actually scrapped the "big" shader revamp, in fact I think there's a new client on test at the moment with performance improvements.. the first improvements in about 2 years IIRC.

    • reply
      August 15, 2014 9:15 AM

      Such a under rated game, its one of the best expressions of D&D to date... people talk crap because they simply have no idea, and havent spent the right amount of time in the game.

      • reply
        August 15, 2014 12:48 PM

        Definitely one of the best MMOs still around, but the raiding is just ridiculously difficult. To the point that you have to be a programmer and know how to write your own scripts and custom UI's to be able to defeat certain bosses. I.E. had to run a 3rd party program in the background to parse damage text so you know when certain attacks are coming and you have to let everyone on vent or TS know it's coming, what kind of attack and element it is so they can buff appropriately. Or a better example is you have to parse damage text to do a CERTAIN PERCENTAGE of damage per second on a particular boss and if you do too much damage or not enough damage then your whole raid will wipe. Meanwhile you're getting one hit killed by AOEs. It's total bullshit. I imagine anyone who actually made it to the final raiding boss areas must have felt an overwhelming sense of accomplishment.

        • reply
          August 15, 2014 1:42 PM

          ACT? I was always the guy doing that crap for my guild. I gave up after the Destiny of Velious expansion. I was already sick of instant failure conditions from one person messing up, and then the raid zones were mostly duplicates of each other with some different lighting.

          • reply
            August 15, 2014 3:09 PM

            Aye, ACT is invaluable. I had a ridiculous amount of Text To Speech triggers at one point to make life easier when jousting etc. A lot of raid guilds use Raidhub or whatever so you don't have to worry about that crap now.

            Raiding got ridiculous after they introduced Crit Mit (The Shadow Odyssey) but I really enjoyed raiding in Sentinels Fate, felt like they struck a good balance there, along with arguably one of the best end-game raid encounters ever designed (Roehn Theer).

            DoV was stupid, especially when they released Plane of War which (iirc) after a year people still couldn't clear because it was so buggy. You know it's a sad state of affairs when the WW1 Raid guild in a game quits because the content is so buggy and tedious (coupled with a declining population)

            The latest expac (Tears of Veeshan) has actually been really accessible and fun.. EQ2 is a fun game to play at this point to be honest. The solo/heroic/raid content all use the same zones/instances but with just enough difference to make it more challenging so if you play solo, you won't be clueless when you do the heroic stuff etc. Means you see the same layout a lot but that's not necessarily a bad thing. In some respects I hope Altar of Malice continues that trend.

        • reply
          August 15, 2014 1:56 PM

          Yep, EQ2 is still my favorite MMO ever, but I never got into the raid game, too bad it was so hardcore.

      • reply
        August 15, 2014 3:32 PM

        I wanted to love it, but the atrocious performance and crappy UI made the game a chore to play.

      • reply
        August 15, 2014 4:02 PM

        I loved the game play but the art, models, etc were incredible inconsistent. Also on a side note the musical score if one of the best in a game.