EverQuest Next no longer working with AI company Storybricks

EverQuest Next had ambitious plans for its AI system. But any work the development team does from this point forward will be without AI team Storybricks.

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Since Sony Online Entertainment became Daybreak Game Company, it's felt like more and more bad news has emerged by the day, between the voluntary and involuntary personnel departures. Over the weekend, another major domino has apparently fallen. as the EverQuest Next team has apparently parted ways with emergent artificial intelligence company Storybricks.

"We are not working with Storybricks any more," senior producer Terry Michaels said on the EverQuest Next Twitch channel late Friday (via Massively Overpowered). "We made the decision that it was in the best interest of the game to take that work in-house. They did a lot of work for us and we'll be utilizing that. It's not like that work is lost."

Storybricks' contributions to EverQuest Next and Landmark were detailed during last year's SOE Live event. A panel was dedicated to detailing the lively NPC characters that would react to the world around them, while also acting on their own sense of self-interest. NPC behavior and reactions are also based on the influence of characters they come across, focusing less on scripted behaviors. While Michaels is assuring fans that Storybricks' work to this point is being preserved, the AI company's departure is yet another shakeup for the development team on what's quickly becoming a rocky development cycle.

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
    February 23, 2015 6:00 AM

    Ozzie Mejia posted a new article, EverQuest Next no longer working with AI company Storybricks

    • reply
      February 23, 2015 6:46 AM

      I bet they just changed their name to ShittingBricks

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      February 23, 2015 7:34 AM

      I fucking knew it. The game is fucked now and will probably never see the light of day

      • reply
        February 23, 2015 8:25 AM

        ding ding ding! We have a winrar!

      • Ebu legacy 10 years
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        February 23, 2015 8:59 AM

        God dammit.

        At least GW2 hasn't been ruined yet.

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          February 23, 2015 9:31 AM

          That's not saying a whole lot.

          • Ebu legacy 10 years
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            February 23, 2015 2:31 PM

            Yea, I fully expect the buyout to fuck the game over soon (I just started really playing a couple weeks ago), but for now it's good fun.

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              February 23, 2015 10:04 PM

              Gw2 isn't SoE.

              • Ebu legacy 10 years
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                February 23, 2015 10:44 PM

                Right...and?

                Oh, NC Soft also had a buyout or something. All the internets were having a bitchfest about it, I mostly ignored it.

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                  February 23, 2015 10:49 PM

                  It wasn't really a buyout and not related to losing revenue. It was a power struggle between the two partners NCSoft and Nexon. Nexon purchased a large stake a few years back and were trying to take on the management role.

                  It cost Nexon 688 MILLION DOLLARS to buy a 14.9% interest.

                  Management and power struggling, no buyouts or major loss of revenues

        • reply
          February 23, 2015 10:13 PM

          GW2 isn't under the Sony umbrella.

      • reply
        February 23, 2015 11:08 AM

        Pretty sure I told you guys this over a year ago. Sry.

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      February 23, 2015 7:54 AM

      This has all the signs of the new overlords deciding too much time has been spent on a game that is nowhere near shipable state. Now, playing devil's advocate, it could very well be the game's development was spiraling out of control and was one of the main reasons Sony decided to dump soe. But, whatever the reality is, it certainly feels like they are being pushed now to just get it done and out the door.

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        February 23, 2015 8:38 AM

        Reminds me of SWG.

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        February 23, 2015 9:33 AM

        I'll say this: It certainly appears to game was off in the hinterlands and not getting proper development. They seem obsessed with Landmark and got off task. Having said that, the game was doomed the moment the company was purchased I imagine. It's going to be a fucking mess and nothing promised will be delivered, just another themepark mmo.

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        February 23, 2015 11:11 AM

        Actually, what really happened was they were going full-steam-ahead with EQN and then they had to lay a shitload of people off a year or two ago. So they focused on releasing Landmark to help A) make up the content shortfall and B) generate some revenue in the meantime

        Since then they've been hemorrhaging money, and finally got sold/bought out. They just lost 40% more staff as a result of the buyout.

        If EQN ever sees the light of day it'll be a miracle. If EQN is good...well....I'd say that's probably impossible at this point.

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          February 23, 2015 11:16 AM

          That makes sense. And either which way it all points to a lot of trouble for eqn

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          February 23, 2015 7:11 PM

          I honestly don't think there are any more serious MMO's in development after EQN, at least nothing worth while I've heard about. There's the Camelot game, but yea, not putting much faith in that one just yet. EQN was *it*. I just had this horrible feeling they were wandering in the desert lately...

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            February 23, 2015 10:31 PM

            Don't forget Crowfall! Big announcement tomorrow too. But it is still in early phases of dev. Also Skyforge if you're into something a little more faster paced/theme park. And ofcourse Black Desert Online if you're into stuff like Archeage or Korean grinders. But yea, there is nothing that I know of coming that promised the complexity of EQN (especially with the voxel stuff), but Crowfall is close.

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      February 23, 2015 8:27 AM

      We just need to come to terms with the fact that we will probably never get another EQ game that is on par with the first one.

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        February 23, 2015 10:20 PM

        Well, we will. And there are a few in the works. Even a few in the works with full loot Ultima Online style. The problem is that they won't have such a sprawling userbase as they are targeted to what is now known as the 'niche', whereas in the days of EQ it was basically 'THE MMO' (not a niche, and much like WoW is now in terms of popularity)

        See:
        Shrouds of Avatar (Richard Garriot and ex UO execs)
        Camelot Unchained (other big names)
        Crowfall (more big names)
        The Repopulation (very much more indie than the above) but is basically SWG 2, but even deeper with the skills/crafting/open-endedness

        We have a themepark sci-fi/fantasy one coming which will please faster paced fans: Skyforge

        And pretty amazing looking Korean grinders (if you're into those) like Black Desert Online

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      February 23, 2015 9:07 AM

      waiting for this to be reannounced as a MOBA.

      Fuck, man, this was supposed to breathe new life into the genre (for me at least). Now it's just going to end up being trashed or booted out for a quick cash-in attempt, isn't it.

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      February 23, 2015 11:16 AM

      My guess is that EQN got off the rails, and laying off Georgeson and doing this is to bring it back to some order. There has been so little information about the gameplay in years that it makes me think they've been off running down some rabbit holes chasing interesting ideas, and we were never going to actually get a game out of them.

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        February 23, 2015 2:36 PM

        As much as I liked Georgeson and his enthusiasm, many of the EQ1/EQ2 vets are happy he is gone. As none were happy with some of the major decisions that he propagated.

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      February 23, 2015 1:29 PM

      More like NeverQuest!

    • reply
      February 23, 2015 5:39 PM

      Sad but I wish there was just one more mmo to look forward to where I pre read all the lore, hang out on official forums, pre order the game, agonize over server, pick different server at pre launch because of long Q, play in a daze for a month, quit, then follow news of patches for next two years. No I'm serious. It's kind of a nice, weird process and I've gotten used to the cycle over the last decade. Just one more come on...

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        February 23, 2015 10:26 PM

        It really is almost unavoidable. They can't 'overcompensate' hardware TOO much for launch weeks, resulting in excess of equipment and wasted money once the servers stabilize with core populations. But you also can't under estimate, something I'm sure which is impossible to balance.

        As for patching due to bugs, well, sample sizes change in an instant from betas to a 'full launch' and people are ever so clever.

        Not really sure what can be done unless something is in beta forever. But with MMOs, they are constantly ever evolving beasts. Even the successful ones are basically in 'beta'. Compare the popular ones now, back to different stages of it's retail life time. They've all really changed.

        Hell, in WoW you would have to run if you got an add on the ol' huckleberry farm, run for your life and try to sit down and pop a loaf of bread before they caught up and you died. Now when you click the 'login' button, you spawn into the world like a shooting star and obliterate everything around you. Once you gather your bearings, you basically get 3 attacks. Devastate, Nuke or full heal everything around you. No matter the class.

        (Ha ha ha, not so serious but if we ARE comparing...)

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