SOE Live 2014: EverQuest will release The Darkened Sea expansion October 28th

As is custom, the next EverQuest expansion was announced at SOE Live 2014. And while Thursday's keynote shared the title, The Darkened Sea, it divulged little else. Players were going to have to wait until EQ's individual keynote address later today to get any actual details. However, for those who just can't wait that long, I sat down with Senior Producer Thom Terrazas and Creative Director Akil Hooper to get an early scoop on the game's upcoming 21st expansion and more.

What do players have to look forward to? How about the return of the classic characters Firiona Vie and Lanys T'Val, a personalized looting feature, a higher level cap of 105, a new mount storage system, and eight new zones! Oh, we can't forget the dinosaurs! And did I mention that The Darkened Sea launches on October 28th for All Access members?
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EQ: The Darkened Sea


Looking back to look ahead

EQ fans might be excited for a blast from the past with both Firiona Vie and Lanys T'Vyl featuring prominently in this next expansion. But that's not the only connection to yesteryears; The Darkened Sea pays tribute to an earlier expansion, The Buried Sea. The new expansion actually takes place in the Buried Sea, adding eight more distinct zones for players to discover and explore. These include (but are not limited to):
  • Tempest Temple: with coral forests, lava, and shipwrecks
  • Caverns of Endless Song: full of sirens and the sailors they capture
  • Thuliasaur Island: a land of dinosaurs and lizard men
  • Arx Mentis: a sci-fi-looking area that is powered by magic, including self-propelled brooms!
  • Combine Dredge: a series of islands connected by magical conduits
  • Degmar the Lost Castle: a castle sunk deep in the sea and full of crazy Dwarves
Of course, with a raised level cap to 105 there will also be more items, more AAs, and more spells on top of new quests, missions, and raids.

All Access members will get the expansion on October 28th, while November 11th serves as your release day if you're free-to-play.

EQ's Tthuliasuar Island

What's mine is mine... if I want it
Terrazas detailed the upcoming advanced looting feature, highlighting both its ability to individualize loot gathering as well as how it heads off the dreaded ninja looter. Basically, the system will learn to differentiate between loot that players actually want and loot that they don't want, helping to keep bags free of unwanted junk.

When a player gets a loot window he will have the option to mark everything that's available as something they want, something they don't want now, or something they never want. Items that are never wanted are then ignored and the desired loot is automatically put in players bags. Each time a new piece of loot is found, this process will have to be completed. According to Terrazas, when in a group the wanted items will be rolled on behind the scenes and distributed to the winning party unless a group is set to master looter. Players will actually be able to get a head start on creating their personalized looting lists during beta.

Another inventory space-saving feature in The Darkened Sea is the new mount keyring. No longer will a multitude of mounts fill your bank and bags to the point you can't even find them! Instead, they will be collected together in one convenient spot.

EQ's Endless Caverns

Dressing your friends for success

Besides the expansion, Terrazas also revealed a Player Studio tidbit. Starting Monday, August 18th, players will able to submit robes for consideration to the Marketplace. Terrazas anticipates guilds may use this feature to show their solidarity and pride.
What happens in Vegas doesn't stay in Vegas, at least where SOE Live is concerned! Massively sent intrepid reporter MJ Guthrie to this year's SOE Live, from which she'll be transmitting all the best fan news on EverQuest Next, Landmark, H1Z1, and the other MMOs on SOE's roster.
This article was originally published on Massively.