We remember the battles of Bloody Kithicor. The older adventurers speak to the newer ones of the days when it was safe to cross the forest at night, the days before the wars came and tore the dead from the ground. Now only the boldest adventurers dare to cross the unholy grounds of Kithicor at night.
We remember the fall of Grobb. The ancient Guktans, children of Marr, crawled from the depths of Guk and marched upon Grobb. The trolls were sent north to Neriak with an eternal fire in their eye for their homeland.
We remember the god-battles of Lesser Faydark. The avatar of Tunare and the avatar of Cazic Thule battled upon the cursed lands of Lesser Faydark calling heroes of both light and darkness to their sides. The outcome of this battle, different in each of our splinter worlds, changed the face of the Faydark for some time.
Dynamic events set Everquest apart from other traditional games. We never watch the landscape of Final Fantasy or Baldur's Gate shift, grow, or collapse unless it is part of the linear story. Everquest isn't a story, however. Everquest is a world, and events like these prove it.
Two weeks ago, a knight of Tunare stood on the bridge of Felwithe and asked for aid in locating Firiona Vie. Pieces of her cloak and evidence of her travel lay about the old lands. Further investigation revealed a dark plot surrounding the Tower of Frozen Shadows in the Iceclad ocean. Powerful beasts roamed the icy lands and a guardian barred all entrance into the dark tower. Even the sky spoke of great evil.
Now dark elves spy over the Dreadlands. Who knows where this will lead, but one thing is for sure; like Bloody Kithicor, the Fall of Grobb, and the god wars of Lesser Faydark; the world of Norrath will not remain the same when these times are over.
So now the future lies in our hands. Will we at least witness these changes? Of the three events mentioned above, I witnessed none of them personally. I did hunt down and return pieces of evidence of Firiona's travel. I helped the parties seeking to rescue Firiona from the tower by turning in pieces of evidence among the ruins of the Tower's beasts. I have seen the scouts of Dreadlands. Yet few others seem to see this.
So now we uncover another strange behavior I have witnessed for a long time. A lot of players tend not to try anything new, instead preferring to hunt in commonly known and safe lands. We lose sight of the forest through the trees. Our chance for the safe acquisition of levels, AAs, and gear takes us away from some very entertaining one-time events. Many will miss these events because they either do not hear of them, or do not care to witness them and leave their safe Wall of Slaughter group.
I noticed this same behavior at the beginning of each expansion. People didn't seek out MPG and Riftseekers when Omens came out, they went to Fire and earned their levels and AAs there. People continued working on LDONs and everyone wanted to finish their epic 1.5 as fast as possible rather than see some of the deeper lands of Kuua. Perhaps my narrow view only sees these types of players, but sometimes it feels like we forget what we really seek. We hunt down new higher numbers instead of seeking new adventures.
Over the next three weeks, we will see a great shift in Norrath. If you seek it out, you can witness this change and fight alongside your allies in the battles ahead. When these events are complete, you will never have the chance to see them again.
Speak to your friends, to your guild, and to your groups, and let them know of these changes. Put together a small team of explorers and seek out these strange signs. Take your raiding force that threatens the same beast you destroyed a dozen times before and attack the creatures you will never have a chance to see again.
Remember that this game isn't only about levels or AAs or gear. It's about fun. In this case, the fun has a lifespan and it will never come back again. Don't miss it.
24 January 2005