EverQuest, the title that introduced millions of people to the genre of massively multiplayer online role-playing games, has gone free-to-play as it celebrates 13 years of fantasy life on the fictional planet of Norrath.

Sony Onlne Entertainment also marked the anniversary by sharing useless but entertaining EverQuest facts. For example, players have bred so many dragons that there is almost one for every square mile of Norrath. Also, EverQuest has 330 breweries – although unlike Earth, these facilities brew alcoholic, non-alcoholic and magical beverages.

On a more practical level, EverQuest players can now choose among recurring vs. non-recurring subscriptions, and free through Gold membership levels.

The anniversary celebrations continue in-game as well, with 13 new quests and things like missions that involve iconic villains and past events.

Other new features include a “Hero’s Journey” option that guides players through a series of achievements from level 1 to level 85, and improvements to navigation, tracking and maps.

“Through 18 successful expansions and countless other game updates, EverQuest has forged its place in history amongst the MMO and online game elite,” said Dave Georgeson, director of development of the EverQuest franchise. “With one of the most loyal player communities in the industry, we believe that after 13 years we need to provide them with a wide variety of ways to play the game on their terms. Players can now choose to play in a way that suits them best and continue to expand their game experience…until the next milestone birthday!”

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  1. Under the new model, players can enjoy basic membership for free, upgrade to Silver Membership for a flat fee of US$5.00, or pay a monthly subscription of US$14.99 to enjoy access to all races, in-game mail services, and myriad other benefits