This from a source in San Diego:
When it came to the packaging for Secrets of Faydwer, the EverQuest team wanted to continue with the retro theme and create a look that would feed the nostalgia for the original EverQuest release.
They borrowed the WayBack machine that the EverQuest II team used so successfully with Echoes of Faydwer, but had some problems with the settings. Instead of 1999, they went all the way back to 1979 and ended up with this:
Only having limited access to the WayBack machine (as part of the Sigil buyout, Brad gets to use the machine whenever he wants to go back to 1997-2000 and relive his glory days) the EverQuest team tried to go with what they had.
However, Smed himself ended up dismissing the design with only the terse comment “something a little more contemporary perhaps?”
The rumored side-effect of the whole affair is that, after you have installed the expansion, you can go to Hogcaller’s in West Freeport at the right time of the night on specific dates and see the floor light up and hear the BeeGees‘ classic “Stayin’ Alive” (now the unofficial EverQuest anthem) play.
It was however categorically denied that an NPC named Tony Manero would show up in a white suit and dance… at least not every time.