Begin deze maand maakte Sony bekend dat er meer dan 300.000 mensen zijn die Everquest spelen. Zoveel mensen passen er niet eens in mijn huis. Moet je nagaan hoeveel mensen opgaan in deze fantasy wereld.Earlier this month Sony Online announced that EverQuest had reached over 300,000 players since its launch in Feb. '99. FGN Online spoke to VP Brad McQuaid about the

future of this MMORPG and the rapidly expanding genre.

FGN Online: Why has EQ become so popular over the last year?

Brad McQuaid: I think it's the combination of a

very immersive 3D world, encouraged cooperation between players, and a focus on game balance and mechanics. And as the game space grows, with more and more players jacking into the Internet every day, you'll see EQ's popularity continue to rise as well.

FGN Online: What factors keep people playing EQ nearly two years after its release?

BM: MMORPGs need to focus on character development, encouraged social interaction, and exploration. I think EQ does well in all three categories, especially recently with exploration. We're just about to launch The Scars of Velious, EQ's second expansion, and the size of the world, the detail, and the number of quests and NPCs with whom to interact is becoming staggering.

FGN Online: Why are people still signing up for the game? BM: We believe there are still all sorts of people out there who would love to play an MMORPG but really just don't know such games exist. With the growing number of Internet users, coupled with the fact that MMORPGs tend to be around for years (as opposed to weeks or months), it's actually not that surprising that new players are still signing up every day. Welcome in the realworld