Character Changes and Economics: Improvements In EverQuest II

Scott Hartsman, Senior Producer of EverQuest II, discussed some of the recent improvements of the popular MMO game in a recent interview regarding changes in character progressions. When asked about discarding the Archetype system, he replied that the new character progression would provide a more enjoyable experience for gamers. He acknowledged that the Archetype system was a worthwhile experiment, but said, “… In practice itÂ’s just so much more satisfying to be able to dive right into being the Berserker, Necromancer, or Shadowknight that most people approach the game wanting to be in the first place.”

Plans for “racial” experiences were also discussed. One of the changes players will find is that each village has a quest line describing the characters race, its historical background, and how it fits into the world of Norrath. This should prove helpful to newbies, or people who haven’t started a new character. Essentially, there will be greater differences,  between the various races of Norrath, going beyond appearance.  Players will learn more about their characters by completing these”racial quests.” According to Hartsman: “If youÂ’re a Barbarian from Freeport, youÂ’d need to prove you can be intimidating by defeating someone else in a screaming match. If youÂ’re a Wood Elf from Qeynos, youÂ’re taught to be respectful of nature and pay homage to a fallen Elven hero.”

Hartsman also made some interesting comments about Norrath’s economic system. He says, “Our goal is to ensure only a certain level of scarcity that drives achievement and fun, as opposed to us aiming for a fixed distribution of currency.”  Understanding that (as in the real world) an extreme maldistribution of wealth would cause serious problems, Hartsman has set the goal of removing just enough coin to avoid hyper-inflation, while allowing average characters to gain a reasonable amount.

Scott Hartsman, Senior Producer of EverQuest II, discussed some of the recent improvements of the popular MMO game in a recent interview regarding changes in character progressions. When asked about discarding the Archetype system, he replied that the new character progression would provide a more enjoyable experience for gamers. He acknowledged that the Archetype system was a worthwhile experiment, but said, “… In practice itÂ’s just so much more satisfying to be able to dive right into being the Berserker, Necromancer, or Shadowknight that most people approach the game wanting to be in the first place.”

Plans for “racial” experiences were also discussed. One of the changes players will find is that each village has a quest line describing the characters race, its historical background, and how it fits into the world of Norrath. This should prove helpful to newbies, or people who haven’t started a new character. Essentially, there will be greater differences,  between the various races of Norrath, going beyond appearance.  Players will learn more about their characters by completing these”racial quests.” According to Hartsman: “If youÂ’re a Barbarian from Freeport, youÂ’d need to prove you can be intimidating by defeating someone else in a screaming match. If youÂ’re a Wood Elf from Qeynos, youÂ’re taught to be respectful of nature and pay homage to a fallen Elven hero.”

Hartsman also made some interesting comments about Norrath’s economic system. He says, “Our goal is to ensure only a certain level of scarcity that drives achievement and fun, as opposed to us aiming for a fixed distribution of currency.”  Understanding that (as in the real world) an extreme maldistribution of wealth would cause serious problems, Hartsman has set the goal of removing just enough coin to avoid hyper-inflation, while allowing average characters to gain a reasonable amount.

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