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EverQuest 2

EverQuest 2, EQ2 for short, is a 3D fantasy MMORPG set in the world of Norrath 500 years after the events of the first EverQuest game. With 20 races and 26 classes, EverQuest 2 offers more variety than most MMORPGs.

Publisher: Daybreak Game Company
Playerbase: High
Type: MMORPG
PvP: Duels / Arenas / World
Release Date: Nov 9, 2004 (NA/EU)
Pros: +Astonishing variety of classes and races (20 races / 26 classes). +Huge game world. +Great character growth system with Alternative Advancements. +Plenty of quests.
Cons: -Controls and interface can feel clunky. -Dated graphics engine.

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Overview

EverQuest 2 Overview

EverQuest 2 is a fantasy MMORPG from Daybreak Game Company and the sequel to the first EverQuest game, which helped pioneer the MMORPG genre. With a ton of races, classes, character customization, and all of the features you’d expect from a modern MMORPG, EverQuest 2 is a game that draws you in. Even though it has a ton of quests, players have the option to create a Level 90 character right from the get-go. What’s not to like?

EverQuest 2 Key Features:

  • Awesome Class Variety there are 20 playable races (of three differing alignments) and 26 classes to choose from.
  • Extensive Skill and Trait Trees one of the most in-depth skill progression systems of the MMORPG genre, along with traits, race abilities, and more.
  • Sample High Level Characters a cool feature of EverQuest 2 is that players are able to try out Level 90 characters to see what certain classes would be like.
  • Lots of Content there's a ton of content for players to play through, so you won't ever be left with nothing to do.

EverQuest 2 Screenshots

EverQuest 2 Featured Video

Classes

EverQuest 2 Classes

Races:

  • Good Alignment Races: Dwarf, Fae, Froglok, Halfling, High Elf, and Wood Elf
  • Evil Alignment Races: Arasai, Dark Elf, Iksar, Ogre, Troll, and Sarnak
  • Neutral Alignment Races: Barbarian, Erudite, Freeblood, Gnome, Half Elf, Human, Kerra, and Ratonga

Classes:

  • Fighter Archetype: Guardian, Berserker, Paladin, Shadow Knight, Monk, and Bruiser
  • Priest Archetype: Fury, Warden, Templar, Inquisitor, Mystic, Defiler, and Channeler
  • Scout Archetype: Beastlord, Dirge, Troubador, Ranger, Assassin, Swashbuckler, and Brigand
  • Mage Archetype: Wizard, Warlock, Conjurer, Necromancer, Illusionist, and Coercer

Fighter Archetype (Primary Stat – Strength):

  • Warrior:
    • Guardian – Guardians are a defensive melee class. They have the highest armor in the game and are capable of absorbing huge amounts of damage. Despite their tankiness, Guardians can still deal formidable damage. Guardians can use plate armor.
    • Berserker – Berserkers are an offensive melee class that focuses on dealing as much damage to their opponents as possible. They are capable of doing powerful AoE attacks, and despite their emphasis on damage, are capable off tanks.
  • Crusader:
    • Paladin – Paladins are a unique hybrid class with heavy armor that can support themselves with their healing magic. They may not deal as much damage as other melee classes, but they can stay alive the longest. Paladins can use plate armor.
    • Shadow Knight – Shadow Knights are the opposite of paladins. They are an offensive melee class with dark magic. Shadow Knights can use plate armor.
  • Brawler:
    • Monk – Monks are a versatile melee class with light armor, high damage, and high attack speed. They use leather armor.
    • Bruiser – Bruisers are a melee class that focuses on dealing damage to their opponents fist-to-fist. They can only use leather armor, but their damage output more than makes up for their lack of defense.

Priest Archetype (Primary Stat – Wisdom):

  • Druid:
    • Fury – Fury focus on both defense and destruction by utilizing the magic of nature. Aside from simply healing, Furies can buff their allies to increase their damage. Furies use leather armor.
    • Warden – Wardens are a supportive class that can cast healing magic as well as cures to diseases and poisons. They also have supportive buffs that boost their allies' defensive power. Wardens use leather armor.
  • Cleric:
    • Templar – Templars are a supportive class like Wardens and Furies, but with a heavier emphasis on defense as they can use plate armor.
    • Inquisitor – Inquisitors, like Templars, can use plate armor while supporting their allies through healing and defense-augmenting magic.
  • Shaman:
    • Mystic Mystics are shamans with healing and offensive magic. They use chain armor.
    • Defiler – Defilers utilize ancient rituals of dark magic to weaken and harm their enemies. They are a good mix of offense and defense. Defilers use chain armor.
  • Shaper:
    • Channeler Channelers use bows, command pets, and heal. They are a priest-type class that uses leather armor.

Scout Archetype (Primary Stat – Agility):

  • Bards:
    • Dirge – Dirges are bards that utilize tunes of misery and sorrow to demoralize enemies. They primarily stay behind the frontlines to buff their allies with defense and strength buffs. Dirges use chain armor.
    • Troubador – Troubadors are bards that focus on songs of inspiration and heroism to buff their allies. Like Dirges, they sit behind the frontlines and protect their allies from a distance. Troubadors use chain armor.
  • Predator:
    • Ranger – Rangers are masters of nature and the outdoors. They specialize in using bows from behind the frontlines to deal damage, but can also use poisons and dual-wield up close. Rangers use chain armor.
    • Assassin – Assassins are like Rangers, except they utilize poisons and deal incredible amounts of damage with stealthed attacks. Assassins use chain armor.
  • Rogue:
    • Swashbuckler – Swashbucklers are the quintessential rogue class in EverQuest 2. They utilize their sneaky attacks to deal tremendous amounts of damages to their enemies before fleeing to the shadows. Swashbucklers use chain armor.
    • Brigand – Brigands are more brutish rogues that utilize intimidation and brute force to strike their enemies down. Brigands also use chain armor.
  • Animalist:
    • Beastlord – Beastlords use animal companions in combat to help slay their enemies. Beastlords use chain armor.

Mage Archetype (Primary Stat – Intelligence):

  • Sorcerer:
    • Wizard – Wizards are the quintessential magic damage dealers in EverQuest 2. No other magic user can outdamage them against single targets. Wizards use cloth armor.
    • Warlock – Warlocks use death and decay to inflict poison and diseases on their enemies. They have powerful AoE spells and use cloth armor.
  • Summoner:
    • Conjuror – Conjurors utilize elemental pets to destroy their enemies. They also command fire, water, earth, and air magic. Conjuror use cloth armor.
    • Necromancer – Necromancers are masters of the dead and can use their dark magic to control the dead. Necromancers use cloth armor.
  • Enchanter:
    • Illusionist – Illusionists distract their opponents with confusion and misdirect spells. Illusionists use cloth armor.
    • Coercer – Coercers paralyze their enemies by setting them in a mesmerized state. They can also mind control their opponents to do their bidding. Coercers use cloth armor.

Full Review

EverQuest 2 Review

By Toan Layne

EverQuest 2 is a 3D fantasy MMORPG developed and published by Sony Online Entertainment. It was released on November 9, 2004 with a subscription-based model, and it became F2P in July, 2010. The original Everquest put Sony Online Entertainment on the map, and to a certain degree, helped shape the MMORPG genre into what it is today.

Getting Started

EverQuest 2 takes place in the world of Norrath, 500 years after the first EverQuest game, in a parallel universe. Yes, it’s weird, but the good kind of weird. Most of us have probably never played the first game (I know I didn’t), but if we did, I bet we’d be stoked to revisit old areas and see them in a new light. Anyway, the world of Norrath is torn apart between forces that want to rebuild it and destroy it. Players will get to choose which side they want to align with.

Speaking of which, when creating a character, you start off by choosing your class. You have the four archetypes: Fighters, Healers, Scouts, and Mages. Then there are specific classes, such as Guardian, Berserker, Dirge, etc. You will then choose your race. Once again, there is a lot of variety here, with twenty races to choose from and 3 alignments: Good, Neutral, and Evil. Depending on which alignment you choose, you will be limited to certain starting cities. If you are Neutral, you can start in any city. Once you’re done with that, you go on to customize your appearance. Character customization is done through sliders, but there aren't many features players can influence. Overall, the character creation screen feels stiff, but given EQ2’s age, and the sheer number of classes and races available, EQ2 gets a pass. I can't imagine all these classes and races being perfectly balanced for PvP, but even so, I really like the variety.

Feeling That Age

Once you’re in the game, you’re good to go. If you’ve played any MMORPG in the past decade, EQ2 will be immediately familiar. Use WASD to move, left-click to look around, and right-click to turn the character. You then go on with the tried and true formula of: get quest, do quest, turn in quest, rinse and repeat. However, the game’s age does show in both the graphics department and in the general feel of the game. Once again, stiff is the word I’d use here. I found the attack animations to be less responsive than I would have liked, and turning the camera and moving felt “unnatural,” so it'll definitely take some time to get used to. Even with the graphics turned up to extreme, the visuals looked a tad grainy. With that being said, from a design perspective, the zones and landscapes look great, with the appropriate dose of “epic” added in. I really liked the vast feeling of the world as I explored and quested through the zones. The zones look even more grand when on a flying mount.

Death in EverQuest 2 is very much like your standard MMORPG. Unlike the first EverQuest game, players don't lose experience upon death. Instead, their gear takes a minor durability hit that can must be repaired after 10 deaths for a small fee. There is a minor experience debt that must be paid after dying before being able to gain further experience, but it's minor and nothing like the original game. I've heard tales of players actually losing a level upon death in the original EverQuest.

The Progression System

It seems that EverQuest 2 wanted to blow the competition out of the water through sheer numbers when it comes to progression. Starting off, skills are learned automatically as you level up, but they are upgraded through the use of Skill Scrolls. Skills start off at the Apprentice rank, and they can be upgraded to Journeyman, Adept, Expert, Master, and Grandmaster. Some skills are also attained through the repeated use of certain weapons. On top of that, each race has a set of racial abilities, and these racial abilities have their own talent tree called Traditions. Every 10 levels, players receive 1 Tradition point, which is then spent in the Traditions tree. There are more Traditions to choose from than there are points, so players will have to make their choices wisely.

Next, you have character traits, which improve one attribute every 8 levels. You then have new abilities to choose from every 10 levels past Level 14. You will get four abilities to choose from at Level 14, and then a new set at Level 24, and so on. Dizzy, yet? Don’t be, there’s more! Finally, you have Alternative Advancement (AA) points. These points are gained by converting experience points, completing quests, killing bosses, looting certain treasures, and exploring. AA points can be used to unlock special abilities and skills. AA points are there to ensure that progression doesn’t stop at max level. As you can see, the amount of customization available is mind-boggling, allowing players to tailor their class specifically to their needs. And of course, respecing is always an option, in case you want to redo it all.

PvE, PvP, and Crafting

You will never be at a loss for quests in EverQuest 2. After all, it’s there in the name, right? There’s a ton of content to go through while leveling, and when you get to the end-game, you have instances and raids waiting for you. When it comes to PvP, you can expect all of the modern comforts, such as duels, arena combat, battlegrounds, and good old open-world PvP. When PvPing players on the opposite faction, there are level restrictions to how many levels you can have above your target to prevent mindless lowbie killing. It's actually a neat feature, because a lot of Korean MMORPGs with open-world PvP/PKing let players attack lowbies. Rewards for PvP include titles, coins, items, reputation/faction increases, and experience.

When it comes to crafting, EQ2 has 12 trade skills which can be learned at Levels 9 and 19 at a local Crafting Trainer. The trade skills include: carpenter, provisioner (food and drink), woodworker, weaponsmith, armorer, tailor, alchemist, jeweler, sage, tinkerer, adorner, and transmuter. These trade skills improve upon use and players can turn a profit by selling what they craft in the auction house.

Revenue Model

EverQuest 2 does not have your run-of-the-mill free-to-play model. You can have a free or gold account. The gold account comes with 5 additional character slots, early access to new content, double the amount of alternative currency earned in-game, 15% more coin, 10% increase to mount speed, members-only items, access to all spell tiers, full access to the in-game broker (auction house), unlimited chat, full access to the in-game mail system, access to all of the guild functionality options, and a prime spot when it comes to customer service. The fee for a gold account is $14.99/month, with discounts if you purchase in bulk. Other restrictions on F2P accounts include certain races and classes, which can be purchased with Station Cash (cash shop currency) and skill ranks are restricted to the adept level.

Another interesting feature that’s worth mentioning is the Level 85 boost that you can use when creating your first character. You can create this character regardless of account type, but the F2P restrictions will apply. Players also have to purchase expansion packs, which sometimes have two editions (standard and collector’s), with the collector’s edition coming with a ton of in-game items, including armor and mounts. Restrictions can also be lifted through the Marketplace (cash shop), where players can also find furniture, cosmetic items, prestige homes, mounts, character renames, server transfers, and so on.

About that Level 90 Boost...

One unique aspect of EverQuest 2 is that the game allows players to start at Level 90 by creating a Heroic Character. Level 90 Heroic Characters come fully equipped with powerful epic gear, tons of alternative advancement points, and even a flying mount. This option also lets players experiment and see what every late game character class looks like right from the start. I actually think giving players this option is an excellent feature and something more games should do. Without this option, too many players would try EverQuest 2 and never get to experience the fun late game content. EverQuest 2 has been around for 11+ years and that means 11+ years worth of expansions and patches, so there's a lot of late game content that developers want players to experience. I should mention that even though free-to-play users can create Level 90 characters from the get-go, they can't level them beyond 90 unless they purchase them. The Altar of Malice expansion pack increased the level cap to 100, so players who purchase Heroic Characters still have grinding to do on their own. Even though free-to-play users can't keep their heroic characters, they can still create them to see what every late game class looks like and create a normal character knowing what each class is capable of.

Final Verdict – Great

EverQuest is one of the forefathers of the modern MMORPG, and EverQuest 2 has received a lot of love from players from around the world during its day. The question is: does it still hold up in today’s MMORPG landscape? I think it does. Despite its age, EverQuest 2 offers tons of content, a huge variety of playable classes/races, and so much more. The Level 90 boost feature is unique, too, and lets players jump right into the end game content. Some of the free-to-play restrictions can feel like a drag and the game's interface can feel overwhelming at times, but EverQuest 2 is still a fun game and is definitely worth checking out.

Screenshots

EverQuest 2 Screenshots

Videos

EverQuest 2 Videos

System Requirements

EverQuest 2 System Requirements

Minimum Requirements:

Operating System: Windows 98 /2000 / ME / XP /Vista / 7 / 8
CPU: 2 GHz Dual Core CPU or AMD Equivalent
Video Card: Nvidia GT 8800 series or better
RAM: 2 GB
Hard Disk Space: 20 GB

Recommended Requirements:

Operating System: Windows 98 /2000 / ME / XP /Vista / 7 / 8
CPU: 2.5 GHz Dual Core CPU or AMD Equivalent
Video Card: Nvidia GTX 300 series or better
RAM: 4 GB
Hard Disk Space: 20 GB

The "official" system requirements for EverQuest 2 are unbelievable inaccurate. EverQuest 2 is a demanding game, but any modern PC bought after 2006 should be able to run the game smoothly. The above system requirements are a simple guideline. Running the game on the highest resolution at "extreme" settings requires a more demanding computer.

Music

EverQuest 2 Music & Soundtrack


Additional Info

EverQuest 2 Additional Information

Developer: Daybreak Game Company (Previously known as Sony Online Entertainment)
Game Engine: EverQuest 2 Internal Engine (Proprietary game engine)
Closed Beta Date: July, 2004

Foreign Release(s):

China / Taiwan / Korea: April, 2005 ( Launched as EverQuest 2: East through Gamania)
Russia: September, 2006 (Akella)
Japan: 2005 (Square Enix)

Several localized versions of EverQuest 2 have shut down. The version available through Daybreak Game Company's official website is the global version of EverQuest 2 with no IP restrictions.

Expansion Pack(s):

Desert of Flames: September 13, 2005
Kingdom of Sky: February 21, 2006
Echos of Faydwer: November 14, 2006
Rise of Kunark: November 13, 2007
The Shadow Odyssey: November 18, 2008
Sentinel's Fate: February 16, 2010
Destiny of Velious: February 22, 2011
Chains of Eternity: November 13, 2012
Tears of Veeshan: November 12, 2013
Altar of Malice: November 11, 2014
Terrors of Thalumbra: November 17, 2015
Kunark Ascending: November 15, 2016
Planes of Prophecy: November 28, 2017

Development History / Background:

EverQuest 2 was developed by American-based game developer and publisher Sony Online Entertainment (now Daybreak Game Company). EverQuest 2 is a direct sequel to the enormously popular EverQuest game, which helped pioneer the MMORPG genre. Within 2 years of launch, the original EverQuest game reached 400,000 subscribers and Sony Online Entertainment realized the value of the franchise.

Development for EverQuest 2 began in 2000, only a year after the first game's launch, but the game was publicily announced by Verant Interactive (owned by Sony) in May of 2002. EQ2 was expected to launch sometime during the winter of 2003. This release date was later pushed back and EverQuest 2 officially shipped on November 4, 2004. The game won numerous awards and was the first MMO to feature voiceovers for NPCs, with the game featuring over 130 hours of dialogue. EverQuest 2 originally launched as a traditional subscription-based MMORPG, but went free-to-play through the EverQuest 2: Extended Edition in July 2010. A year later, EverQuest 2 went straight up free-to-play and dropped the extended edition title. Since EverQuest 2's original 2004 release date, the game has seen the launch of over 11 expansions and numerous adventure packs.