We on the EverQuest II team are excited! We’re less than a week away from launching our Fifth expansion, The Shadow Odyssey! For some on the team, this will be the first title that they’re credited on. For others, it’s another box on the shelf that joins a vast array of excellent titles bearing their name. Everyone on the team shares feelings of joy, triumph and pride as we prepare for next Tuesday. Very soon, you will be able to experience the fruits of our labor over the past year.
The work that goes into an expansion pack is an enormous and highly-coordinated event. There are many people beside the Development Team involved. Sure, there are Artists, Designers and Programmers who make the content, but many other departments at SOE contribute too. We have a Quality Assurance team that meticulously tests all of the new content and previous content as well. Our Marketing and PR departments are responsible for getting the word out and proliferating news of the great features. The Internationalization group (or i18n as we call them) translates thousands upon thousands of words into other languages to portray items and quests to other cultures around the globe. The Compatibility Lab tests the software on many different machine configurations and verifies that the DVD installs correctly. Our Community group interacts with the players and the Beta Testers for feedback and excitement. Finally, our Distributors work with the Retail Channels to get the game boxes onto the shelves and eventually into your hands.
Launch Day is always heavily anticipated, but it’s a busy and tiring day. This will be my seventh expansion pack launch, but make no mistake: every one is different and there is no secret formula. Launches don’t always go smoothly, but we have an excellent and capable team here at SOE. Last year during the Rise of Kunark launch, I blogged the days activities on my personal blog. This year I plan to do the same, but through the magic of Twitter. However, unlike the 8am time to be in the office last year, I (and several other members of the various groups mentioned above) will be at my desk dark and early at 3am.
We on the EQII team are looking forward to next Tuesday and the opportunity to bring you The Shadow Odyssey!
Joshua “Autenil” Kriegshauser
Technical Director, EverQuest II