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We're celebrating EverQuest's 13th birthday! Beginning at 12:01 AM PDT on Friday, March 16, 2012, we will be launching EverQuest Free to Play. Your Way. This year we are combining it with one of the most exciting things to happen in the history of EQ. Mark your calendars and get ready for one huge celebration, with 13th Anniversary events and the transition to free-to-play both coming on March 16!

To celebrate EverQuest's 13th birthday, players will be able to embark on anniversary missions and quests. Stop by the Plane of Knowledge to join the celebration. Just look for the festive anniversary d├ęcor to get started.

There are thirteen new themed quests, including a spectacular mission as some of the greatest villains of EverQuest, a raid to stop a familiar face from gaining ultimate power, and over 40 events from past anniversaries.

In this update, we will also launch the Hero's Journey. All players upon logging in will receive a book which guides them on their adventuring. New content and achievements have been added for this journey.

Also, new map functions have been added to the game. Using the Find feature not only shows you the path to your destination in the world, but also the path on the map. On top of that, you now have the ability to click on your map and have a path appear to that spot both on the map and within the world. A new zone guide will also help players find how to get from zone to zone within the enormous world of Norrath.

When we announced that EverQuest is going free-to-play, we noticed that you had a few questions for us. We gathered as many of your questions as we could and the answers follow. Be sure to check out the official FAQ if you don't see your answer below.

Q: Will there be any reduced pricing plans if we wish to get the Gold membership but want to pay for more than one month at a time?

A: There will be reduced pricing plans for multiple month reoccurring subscriptions.

Q: Will there still be Gold payment options other than monthly?

A: Yes.

Q: What happens to accounts paid up past March? Do they not convert to monthly until they expire?

A: They will convert over to Gold membership until they expire (or are renewed).

Q: My two accounts are set to pay automatically. Does that mean I will be eligible for the 500 SC every month?

A: Automatic payment means the accounts are paid with a reoccurring method and are therefore eligible unless you change your subscription method.

Q: In order to keep Gold status, it stated that I would have to have a reoccurring account?

A: You don't need a reoccurring membership to gain Gold status; you do need reoccurring to receive the 500SC a month.

Q: EverQuest II used to have a Platinum subscription level. Will EverQuest be adding this subscription type?

A: There is no plan to add a Platinum subscription level to EverQuest.

Q: What impact does this have on an SOE All Access account?

A: SOE All Access will get gold equivalent membership.

Q: Is SOE All Access still available?

A: SOE All Access is still available.

Q: Will we still retain access to the other games as well with the same Gold level access that we have with SOE All Access?

A: Yes.

Q: I have SOE All Access, so I already get 500 SC from my EQ2 account. Will I get an additional 500 SC from my EQ1 account?

A: You'll get the 500SC monthly grant for each paid recurring subscription you have. It's not based on how many games you play. For example, if you have a paid recurring All Access subscription, and you play EQ and EQII, you'll get 500SC per month. If you have a paid recurring EQ Gold membership and a separate paid recurring EQII Gold membership, you'll get two 500SC bonuses each month.

Q: What can I use the extra SC for?

A: You can use the SC to purchase future expansions or you could use the SC to purchase subscription time (although that would be non-reoccurring and so wouldn't continue to generate more SC).

Q: Any restrictions on the monthly 500 SC with Gold accounts?

A: There are no special restrictions for the 500SC.

Q: What is going to happen to my 11 character slots account? Am I losing the three extra slots that I paid for?

A: If you purchased extra character slots you'll still have them.

Q: Will the 6th year anniversary price still be available to people who are grandfathered?

A: These deals will continue to be honored as long as the subscription doesn't lapse.

Q: If I am on the $99.00 Anniversary special, will I get 500 free SC once monthly or once yearly?

A: Specials are given to accounts monthly.

Q: If I pay for one month of Gold to try out different races and classes, if I were to lapse to Silver or Free, would I still be able to play those characters?

A: If you do not have the unlocks for those races and classes, you would need to purchase them to continue to play that character (as a player who does not have characters grandfathered in).

Q: To purchase Silver, must you only spend 500sc in the store or must you buy an "upgrade kit" for 500SC.

A: Silver is not a reoccurring charge.  It is a one time charge of 500SC.  You must buy the upgrade as a separate purchase.  Spending 500SC in the store on other items does not qualify you for a Silver membership.

Q: Assuming that both accounts will have to be Gold, what will happen if a character transferred is not one of the classes or races that is unlocked for that account?

A: If both accounts are gold there is no need to unlock race or class options. They are automatically unlocked in that case.

Q: In the free-to-play FAQ, it says that if you have more than four characters and your account lapses to Silver, then only the four most recently played characters will be playable and all others will be locked. In the webcast, when discussing grandfathering, it was said that all characters will be playable but you will not be able to create more characters above the cap. Can we please have confirmation of which this will be?

A: Both. If they are new characters, they will have the normal Silver restrictions. If they are older characters from before the grandfathering you will be able to log them in.

Q: What happens if your subscription lapses and you are level 95? With the loss of access to Veil of Alaris, do we lose the five levels?

A: If you are a Silver (or Free) member, you can still purchase Veil of Alaris and level to 95. Level is restricted by expansion, not by membership. Additionally, Gold does not come with Veil of Alaris, so you will have had to purchase the expansion in the first place to get 95.  Your level is restricted by what expansion you own, not your subscription level.  If you purchased Veil of Alaris when you were Gold, you will still own that expansion when you become Silver.  At the transition to free-to-play, all members, Free, Silver and Gold, will own all expansions up to and including House of Thule.  Veil of Alaris will continue to be a separate purchase.

Q: If a current active account has missing expansions, will they gain up to House of Thule automatically? Will this be the same for inactive accounts that return to Gold subscriptions?

A: Yes. All accounts will be flagged up to House of Thule.

Q: I noticed that the EverQuest matrix shows only House of Thule even at the Gold level. Does that mean that the Veil of Alaris expansion is still only available for an additional fee per account?

A: House of Thule will be given to every account and Veil of Alaris will be a required purchase to enter that content.

Q: Let's say you have a Silver membership and you buy an extra unlock, then you transfer to Gold, where you wouldn't need the unlock anymore, and then you transfer back to Silver. Would you still have the extra Silver upgrades?

A: Yes. You retain the unlock flags on the account even after you go Gold. The unlocks just have no effect while the account is Gold because everything is pretty much unlocked. If you go back down to Silver, the flags are still there.

Q: Will Free and or Silver accounts be able to initiate or accept trades from friends? If there are trade restrictions, what are they?

A: There are no trade restrictions other than what you can carry. When two players try to trade an amount of money that is greater then what one account can hold, the trade will be cancelled. When a player tries to send another player money that would put them over the cap, it will return the money to the original sender. When a player tries to withdraw too much money from a plot it will not allow them to withdraw it.

Q: Will claimable items from Veil of Alaris be claimable on Silver accounts?

A: /Claim will still be claimable for Free and Silver accounts. There is a possibility of some items that are /claimable being flagged prestige, but not at this time.

Q: Can my main account use SC to pay for a separate Silver account or purchase an expansion for a separate Free account?

A: No. SC is currently associated with a specific account, and so it can't be pooled.

Q: If I were to make a character on Xegony that is not of the race or combinations listed in the FAQ, and then my Gold membership lapses out, do I become Silver or free-to-play?

A: If you have an active membership before the change over, your account will revert to Silver when your account lapses from Gold.

Q: Will Free and or Silver accounts be able to buy from the bazaar?

A: Yes, Free and Silver will be able to buy from the bazaar.

Q: Will Free and Silver accounts be able to set themselves up in trader or barter mode.

A: No, Free and Silver cannot set up in trade mode.

Q: What is the cost to buy a playable class not included in the Free or Silver account?

A: We have yet to release these details. It's a one time unlock purchase.

Q: I understand that if my account lapsed a few days, I would not have access to all my backpack and have bank limits until I re-subscribed with my EQ game card. What will happen to the items in my extra slots I no longer have access to?

A: The system doesn't automatically send back items from your base inventory slots or shared bank until you log into a character on that lapsed account. So, if you were to have a few days where your account lapsed, as long as you re-sub before logging in, your items will say right where they are. You can safely go to character select.  Once you select a character and press "Enter World," the items for that character in slots that you no longer have access to will be sent to you through the parcel system.  Other characters will be untouched.  Also, new characters won't have anything in those slots, so you could also create a new character and safely play with it.

Q: Will you get a warning that your account has lapsed from Gold prior to logging in?

A: There is a display of your membership level at the top of the screen on the character select screen.

Q: I paid for the Seeds of Destruction expansion pack for the Mercenaries. Why should that now be limited to me if I go free?

A: Previously if you purchased Seeds of Destruction and had no subscription you wouldn't be able to use mercenaries. Now you can use some mercenaries without a membership.

Q: How are Mercenaries handled if someone downgrades from Gold to Silver membership.

A: The Mercenary just suspends itself. Then the player can make whatever decision is appropriate for their situation.

Q: If we already have the J5 mercenaries before it goes free-to-play, can we continue to use them or will they be downgraded to apprentice if on the Silver pass?

A: Mercenaries are not available to you and will suspend themselves.

Q: What is the cost to unlock journeyman mercenaries and the subsequent awesome quest line in Seeds of Destruction to upgrade them J2-J5?

A: The only way to use Journeyman Mercenaries is to first become a Gold Member. You do not have to complete the requirements of a previous tier to get the next tier, but Seeds of Destruction is very linear. In order to do the quests and missions or raids, you may have to do the previous ones.

    • For Journeyman Tier 2 complete all of the following quests and missions
      • Familiarity is Key
      • A Dread Challenger
      • Beat the Blackburrow Boss
      • Stop the Contamination
    • Or all of the following raids
      • Malarian Queen
      • Stop the Ascension
    • For Journeyman Tier 3 complete all of the following quests and missions
      • Bitter Victuals
      • Rain of Ruin
      • Safe Passage
    • Or the following raid
      • Bloody Kithicor
    • For Journeyman Tier 4 complete all of the following quests and missions
      • Audience with the Warmaster
      • The Price of Knowledge
      • An Impenetrable Shield
      • Defeat the Dragonbane Phalanx
      • The Brood of an Emperor
    • Or all of the following raids
      • Kurn's: Claiming Felbane the Dragon Slayer
      • Kaesora: A Council Divided
      • Jaled`Dar's Sacrifice
    • For Journeyman Tier 5 complete all of the following quests and missions
      • Whom Frogs Destroy
      • Murdunk's Last Stand
      • The Wrath of Korascian
      • Retinue of the Frog-God
      • Find Your Allies
      • Disrupt the Siege
      • Champions No More
    • Or all of the following raids
      • The Fall of Toskirakk
      • The Brothers Zek
      • Eriak's Downfall
      • Rallos Returns

Q: Will I lose my rank 3 spells if I go free-to-play?

A: If you go to Silver from Gold and have Rank 3 spells already scribed, the effectiveness of that Rank 3 spell used will only be at a Rank 1 level. You won't lose the spell. You'll only get the effectiveness of a Rank 1.

Q: Will I lose my platinum pieces and items in the bank or shared bank?

A: Shared bank slot items will be mailed to you through the parcel delivery system. You also will not lose any platinum that you already own.  You will not be able to gain any more platinum if you are over the limit.

Q: What is a Prestige Item?

A: Prestige items are basically a subset of items that are limited to Gold members. It's a new flag that can be added to items, similar to lore, no-trade, no-rent, etc. Currently prestige items are upper tier items from the last two expansions like raid or top tier group items. Mostly all augments are prestige (excluding House of Thule zone augments, epic augments, and quest augments from the Heroes Journey, and the vendor melee augments in starting cities).

Q: Will items added to the game after Seeds of Destruction will be considered prestige?

A: Seeds of Destruction is where we started making items prestige. The higher tier items from Seeds of Destruction and on are prestige items. The lower Tier gear in expansion from Seeds of Destruction and on are not prestige, so there are some useable items from each expansion.

Q: Are House of Thule augments or defiant augments prestige items?

A: House of Thule augments are prestige.  Defiant augments are prestige at release.  We will change that in the April 2012 patch, and they will not be prestige.

Q: What happens when a raider quits EQ and has all the prestige items equipped? Do those items just disappear when that person comes to back to raid again?

A: Gear you are ineligible to use will go yellow. You don't lose it, you just can't use it. There will be no benefit from wearing it.

Q: If you do this retroactively to items that are already dropping, can you give us a big time-frame warning?

A: If you remain Gold they will remain usable. Previously, if your subscription lapsed, you would be unable to use any gear. Now, there is some gear available to you if you are not subscribed.

Q: Can free players attain more AA points?

A: A free player can have unlimited AA, but they have to gain the AA while they are Gold.

Q: Can a Free player equip Seeds of Destruction + gear or will it be destroyed?

A: Lower level tier items from Seeds of Destruction should be equitable. If an item can not be equipped it will turn yellow and you will be unable to equip it. Items that are already equipped will turn yellow and you will gain not bonuses from using them. Items will not be destroyed.

Q: Should we ever get the auto-granted AA, how will that relate to the limits on AA for the Free and Silver accounts? Will the auto-granted AA count against their limits?

A: No, they would just be free.

Q: Is there a SC option to increase the AA cap?

A: There will be purchasable AA cap raisers.

Q: Is it possible to include a returning player pack or token that allows a returning player to hire one mercenary for free?

A: All players will receive some form of welcome pack. All memberships will receive a free mercenary and Bayle marks. Silver and Gold memberships will also receive a new mercenary skin.

Q: What about veteran rewards?

A: Veteran Rewards will accumulate regardless of your membership level as long as your account is eligible to play. So if you have an account, and it goes Silver, it will continue to accumulate Veteran Rewards. Similarly if you start up a new account after going free-to-play it will start accumulating Veteran Rewards right away, even if it doesn't convert from Free right away.

Q: Should I activate all my orphaned accounts for free so I can get their veteran's rewards?

A: You won't have to activate them; we'll do it for you. As of our conversion to free-to-play, this account will become a Silver account, and will start accruing veteran time.

Q: Will free-to-play or silver members have full post access to these forums?

A: Yes, they will. We want them to have the same level of participation in the community as every other player.

Q: Will we still get free Legends of Norrath cards each month, or has the SC replaced that with the reoccurring subscription?

A: Yes, if you sign up for a reoccurring subscription you will still receive the monthly complimentary Legends of Norrath cards.

Q: If a character is in the range of say 30-50 when the new quest "Hero's Journey" is released, will they be able to join the quest line mid way? Will it be easy to find where and how to pick up the quest line?

A: Yes. They will receive messaging instructing that they can join the journey.

Q: Are you going to fix or replace the EQPlayers site?

A: There will be a new site launched with articles and information.  The player inventory and stats portion of EQPlayers will come at a later time.

Q: What will the upgraded EQPlayers look like?

A: The new EQPlayers site will be completely rebuilt. This will take some time; the player data portion will not be available on release. The news portion of the EQplayers site will be transferred to the upcoming EverQuest.com website (on release).

Q: Is there going to be a special free-to-play launch pad?

A: There will not be a special free-to-play LaunchPad. Patching the game will still occur though the current LaunchPad.