EverQuest Next Landmark dev diary shows all the materials you'll mine and craft

EverQuest Next Landmark , the free-to-play world-builder that Sony Online Entertainment is releasing as a sort of playable proof of concept for EverQuest: Next, inches closer to completion. Signups for the beta test started a couple of weeks ago, and now a new dev diary walks us through some of building materials players will have to work with.

“When you begin the game, you begin with a copper pick,” lead designer Darrin McPherson says in the video, “this copper pick will enable you to use and access all of the tier-one materials and resources in the world. These resources include things like tin. And once you've gathered enough tin and iron, you'll be able to make an iron pickaxe.”

There's a surreal quality to listening to someone spend two minutes describing Minecraft without saying the words “mine” or “craft,” but I assume there are a bunch of legal reasons why he can't drop the M-word. Bound by no such restrictions, I can go ahead: it's Minecraft without the endless cubism and pixel-graphics.

And actually, I think that's great. I've been bored stiff by every MMO that ever dared to put me on an invisible treadmill, and letting me bash a hole in the side of a mountain is the best way to get me interested in exploring a world again. A full-blown Everquest MMORPG with the world-altering abilities of Minecraft with sharper graphics is a fantastic pitch that I'm sure McPherson would use if he could.

Check out all of our coverage from the big Everquest Next reveal, and sign up for beta testing at the EverQuest Next website .