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The image below is an at-a-glance look at the difference between stylized and realism character from a few different MMO's.
I think many of us forgot how blocky looking EQ was when it shipped. At the time most of us thought it was awesome, of course now it looks very dated. EQ2 took the realistic characterization look, it was a huge improvement over EQ but it come at the cost of having to use a beast of a machine to get it to play smoothly. To this day I feel that hurt EQ2 in the beginning... not everyone could run the game.
World of Warcraft on the other hand, the perfect example of stylized looks - whether you like the art style or not is near timeless. I added GuildWars 1 & 2 shots for comparison as well. The original GW looked very good at launch but is is starting to show its age a bit. GW2 looks fabulous and should hold up for many years with their "painterly" look.
Looking at Everquest Next, one can see SOE wanted to ensure a long shelf-life. The models are superb, whether you like the art direction or not. The game engine should run on a multitude of computers and we should be able to get many, many of these stylized characters on the screen at one time.
Looking at the image below at-a-glance... I don't see how anyone can say the characters will not be sufficient as avatars to allow us to enjoy EQN. I feel SOE made the right choice in their stylized look. It will ensure the games looks fresh years from now.
Judging by the reveal videos, the EQN engine is far advanced over anything we played - at least as much as having all the features in one game. And we as the players will get to help shape our game world. No other MMO have ever done that. EVER. I am looking for to EQ Landmark and trying my hand a making something worthy of being submitted to EQ Next.
With all that said, I think the game-play is where EQN is going to shine the most. I am looking forward to how the actual game will play. What rules will be in place etc... It will be a magical time for us MMO'ers - if you let it.