EverQuest II Game Update 63: Skyshrine Hands-On
ByDate: 04-25-2012 Views:
Once again the fine men and women at SOE have cranked out another major game update for their beloved classic MMORPG EverQuest II, and this one should be a dream for players everywhere. Enter GU: 63, also known as Skyshrine, which will be a major companion piece to EQ II's 7th game expansion, Destiny of Velious. Last week Holly Longdale, a producer for EQ II, and Carlos Mora, a game designer for EQ II, took us on a tour of Skyshrine and showed us the sights in what might be the biggest content-oriented game update in EQ II's history.
The new content begins in a place called The Withered Lands within Velious. Formerly known as The Wakening Land, The Withered Lands is a dangerous place where players will find a sickly magical corruption taking hold of the land. The Withered Lands itself will include over 100 quests, several new models, and content that can be played solo or with a small group as well as raid content and raid versions of much of the included content.
It should also be noted that The Withered Lands has many zones and mini-zones that are all very unique and very beautiful, with different monsters and different surprises awaiting eager adventures. Players will find corrupted killer plants, giants corrupted to the point of having branches and tree bits for body parts, muck creatures that will rise from swamps seemingly out of nowhere, and even dragons flying overhead, merely trying to slow them down or generally disrupt the land. The Withered Lands is huge, and holds a lot of surprises that should delight Norrathian veterans far and wide.
The goal of The Withered Lands is to piece together the mysteries of the tragedy plaguing this area; but also for players to make their way up to the Skyshrine, an ancient dragon city that houses dragons from the Claws of Veeshan clan. Players will find the Skyshrine besieged by evil forces, and will walk into a chaotic battleground right away that will remain persistent from the beginning of exploration to the end – and even beyond the end. Players will be able to jump into the action and cross blades with the many dragons and guardians and villains as they see fit, but Skyshrine will also include a series of epic quests with Heroic Group and Raid instances that will allow players to piece together the unlikely story of how such a fortified city could come under attack -- and how the siege could get so ugly.
The quests to discover the cause of the attack will allow players to travel back in time to a peaceful Skyshrine before the siege, where they will be disguised as draconians and can take advantage of the city's amenities. Players will have to visit the dragon prophet Lendiniara, who has foreseen the attack on the city, and utilize her gifts to find the source of Skyshrine's sudden assault. During their visit in Skyshrine, players will also be able to form a raid to discover the dragon masters who had disappeared from the area, and they will do so in the depths of Lower Skyshrine near the end of Skyshrine's content. The biggest bonus, however, is that players will be able to see some old, familiar, and powerful faces from EverQuest I, and will even be able to thrash some all over again. Such faces include the dragon ancient Vyskudra, who has been given more depth overall and importance to the storyline in Skyshrine.