EQ Next Landmark alpha begins tonight

It's here! Sandbox fans have been waiting with bated breath for EverQuest Next Landmark's alpha announcement, and now we finally have it: EQNL will open those alpha doors tonight! Players who purchased the appropriate level of Founder's Pack (Trailblazer or Explorer) will receive a link via email with instructions on downloading and getting into this testing phase, which is touted as less testing and more interacting with the devs to help direct the actual development of the game. Director of Development Dave Georgeson stated:

Later today, we will begin the Alpha for EverQuest Next Landmark and open up the game to our most committed and passionate players. This is the earliest point in the development process that we've ever let players into a game. We are empowering these players to do much more than test the game for bugs. For the first time, our players can join alongside us as part of the development team. They will have a significant voice in how the final game takes shape."

Founders should be on the lookout for their golden ticket... er, email... that will enable them to dive into the new sandbox and get building. Those who don't currently own a founder's pack can still purchase one throughout the alpha stage; in fact, SOE's John Smedley promises that the studio "will offer a full refund to anyone not satisfied with the Alpha." And in case you were wondering, yes, this alpha is under strict NDA. While waiting, check out the latest Landmark screens in the gallery below.

[Source: SOE press release]