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Game Reviews
'EverQuest: The Planes of Power'
By: Sony Online Entertainment
(Windows 98 + NT + 2000 + Me / ASIN: B00006JZXR / $25.99)

Features:Includes 'EverQuest' game and 'Planes of Power' expansion. Exciting new quests and challenges await even the most experienced players. Two planar cities provide hubs for travel and player interaction and further character progression makes players even more powerful. Note: This game requires an Internet connection and charges a monthly fee payable by credit card or pre-paid game card (sold separately)

Description:Everything you need to begin adventuring in 'EverQuest' comes in this box, which is both an expansion pack and the core 'EverQuest' game. 'EverQuest: The Planes of Power' introduces 'EverQuest' players to an arching story line through the 'Planes of Power,' home of the gods of Norrath. Hundreds of new items, quests, and encounters will keep even the most revered players challenged and enthralled.

Verdict:This game is truly wonderful. It is a shared experience in fantasy swords-n-sorcery role-playing where you can team up with others from across the world. The graphics are very nice, the music now works well and the character models are quite detailed. Most of the quests have quite a bit of thought put into them. And the classes are getting more balanced. (Don't listen to some of the long-time players who have become disenfranchised. While the content design and class balance decisions may not be popular with the classes being "nerfed", I feel Verant is doing a fair job of balancing availability against quality.) I do have some minor complaints: laggy zones, over-equipped alternate characters (this a real problem in PvP servers), and some unrealistic NPCs. For example, vendors are always open and always available and always have the same core set of wares. Also there are no regular townsfolk and few young NPCs. As a role-playing vehicle, the environment is still intriguing. Unfortunately every server seems to have a few immature players who don't even try to roleplay, or worse talk out of character to the whole zone regularly. Even with its shortcomings, I plan on playing this game for the next couple of years until I tire of it ! But, I don't think I'll tire of it anytime soon !
'Speed' Geist