Few MMO games survive without at some point adding an expansion. By
their very nature, the virtual worlds in which we play must continue to
evolve to keep player interest.
However, developing an expansion for a game is no easy task. In order
for it to be successful a lot of consideration needs to be given to
where players are in the game, and what is needed the most at the time
of the expansion. Perhaps most importantly, for players to feel like
they've spent their money well in buying the expansion, it needs to
have satisfying content - and lots of it.
Over the past ten years we've seen hundreds of expansions, but for our
gaming buck there really was a short list of expansions we felt really
brought well-timed value to the game, forever changing it in a positive
EverQuest: The Planes of
Villains (Paragon Studios)
Wrath of the Lich King
came at a time when raiding was a somewhat new, but
major focus in MMO games. Shortly after EverQuest
introduced raids for the first time ever gamers couldn't stop talking
about raiding and focused their entire gaming time on getting well
enough geared to be able to raid.
Planes of Power
was perfectly timed. In addition to adding some of the best raid zones
in any game to date, the entire expansion was progression based. Your
raiding guild or group had to successfully complete trials and raids in
order to gain access to the next zone. And if you were the top raiding
guild on the server? You had the entire zone to yourself. This
expansion was a way to finally indisputably compare e-peens
worldwide. This wasn't something that could be done in a week. No, to
progress through PoP, it took months, or even years.
Progression raiding and unlocking has been drastically tuned down in
our games over the years, if not all together brought to near
extinction. But in 2002, and arguably to date, there was no greater
satisfaction than being able to defeat Quarm, the final boss of
EverQuest in The Plane of Time.