Revisiting Rift

Rift Tactician Dovahkeen
My Tactician AOE clearing groups of mobs in Rift.

Last week I shared my thoughts on the Rift F2P conversion slated to arrive in just three weeks. I wanted to jump in and revisit Rift before the change so that I can have up-to-date experience before commenting on how the F2P changes really impact the game.

The Rift team reached out to me to help get me back in and playing on my account.  In a matter of minutes I had my Rogue created and I was slaying mobs in the familiar starting zone.

A lot has changed.  Right from the start players get all of the souls and there are these paths players can choose which sort of templatize the experience for those looking for a hand in choosing souls and talents that will meet their playstyle.  I quickly broke my training wheels and chose a Bard/Tactician combo with a third soul that is probably not going to get a single point.  I haven’t looked up a single guide or walk-through, but looking at the talents I think this will be a great support class.  Feel free to correct me if I’m entirely wrong.

To be quite honest, I hate these starting quests. I’ve done them each a dozen times having Alpha and Beta tested Rift.  I haven’t experienced the second zone and on for the Defiant though, and just before I logged off I finished up Freemarch.  Now I’m ready to continue into content I’ve never seen which is where the fun will start.  Thankfully the rifts and bg’s were a great distraction.

Speaking of battlegrounds (or whatever they are called), my healing topped the charts every time. I was even 4x the healing of other healers carrying my team to victory.  I love being a lowbie healer.

I don’t have a ton to share right now other than my opinion that Rift has gained quite a bit of polish over the years.  Rift has this simple elegance about it that makes it feel more MMO than SWTOR — I recently tried SWTOR as well.  I’m also liking how Trion has made playing with people easier.  Instant adventures, public groups, and several tools to get people matched with others.  I haven’t had a single moment where I felt alone.

More to come as I, hopefully, make my way through the lower levels.  I’d love to see some of the content Elrar showed me during my personal tour with him just before Storm Legion launched.  The great thing about going back to play a themepark MMO several years later is that usually the devs have gone out of their way to make it accessible and easy to enjoy.

  • I am really tempted to go back to either Rift or Lotro. Rift because I actually like the game, Lotro because while the game play itself bugs me, I just love running around the world.

  • @Tumorseal: I know exactly what you mean. The only reason SWTOR is even remotely interesting is the Star Wars IP. LotRO has the world/IP as well. Rift really has neither of those things, but the gameplay isn’t bad. Rift is simple, straight forward, and traditional.

  • Rift, in my mind just works. I am having some fun in Neverwinter at the moment, but I do not see that lasting more then another week or so. I don’t even know if I will get to level cap.

    Marvel Heroes comes out soon, and some days I love it, other days I write it off. So who knows. So I will be looking into something else until Wildstar comes out.

  • I’m waiting until WildStar as well. Graev and I are going to play Marvel Heroes quite a bit because we love action RPGs (which Marvel Heroes feels like more than a MMO…). Games like Rift, SWTOR, Minecraft, etc., are good tide-me-overs. Can’t go wrong when most of the list is free too.

  • RIFT was always that “good but not great” game for me. I love a lot of things about it, but it always felt a little… soulless (forgive the pun.) Lots of fun to play, but really kind of bland in terms of investing you in the world and its lore. That said, I’ll be right there when they flip the switch on F2P. Being able to “bounce” from game to game is my MO these days, and RIFT is a great one to add to my list of temporary homes.

  • I played Rift when it launched, and raided too. And the raiding part is some of the best parts of the game, I hope you reach far enough to try it out and tell me what you think

  • I don’t know why but I didn’t liked rift from the start. The character movement especially and the animations. Also the combat feels unresponsive. Of course this is me…My opinion on the games mentioned above is

    Lotro: Bad movement/combat but the most immersive world from current MMOs

    Swtor: Good movement/combat, nice class stories, bad world and completely unimmersive.

    Rift: bad movement/combat animation, intersting class specs but not enough to outweight the bad movement for me. Also I don’t like the character models too, but that would be ok if the movement/animations felt right to me.

  • Rift is a very solid MMO but unlike some other less-polished games I found that its charms began to wear thin with repetition. The visual aesthetic is strong and I love the sense of place. It’s a great world to explore in a sight-seeing, touristic mode. Unfortunately both the lore and “plot” are uninspiring and unconvincing and the characterization of NPCs tends towards the formulaic and generic. There’s a beautiful-looking world there but it’s dead inside.

    The gameplay is similarly solid but uninspiring, the best part by far being the Rifts and Invasions. Those do rely on a busy zone to work, though, and for me they only really worked while the sense of threat felt real. Once the population thinned and it became necessary to add the various hot-join mechanics to try to build a critical mass for zone events the whole thing became too mechanical and gamey for me to enjoy. That thrilling feeling that you were rushing across a zone as fast as you could to try to reach your compatriots in time to save a settlement under threat was key to the whole experience for me. Without that the whole thing felt flat.

    I bought Storm Legion in the hope of rekindling some of that excitement but I’ve barely played at all since then. I’m probably done with Rift in any meaningful sense although I might go back and start from scratch on a new server when the F2P kicks in, just to experience the boomtime for a while. That should be fun.

  • Bard/Tac is a wonderful support soul. And as you noticed, it pumps out a ton of healing while still doing decent damage to boot.

    FWIW, typical solo builds are 4 points Tactician (for the Curative Engine), 8 points Riftstalker (for the heal-self-when-mob-dies ability), and everything else wherever you want (generally Riftstalker, Bladedancer, or Assassin, but. . .whatever). Then have your “Bardician” as a separate role for your group play. Unless of course the “bardician” is fun for you to level with. Then knock yourself out 😉

  • I doubt whether this will revive Rift. I always felt it was a game where its biggest selling point, its class system, was its biggest let down… class imbalances that were simply intolerable in pvp. Rift also needs a stable population to enjoy its raiding. I don’t think Rift will ever achieve this.

  • @John: I experienced the same thing with the movement and combat when I played a couple weeks ago for the raptr promotion. I can’t help but compare it WoW which for whatever reason no one in the past decade has been able to match in animations and combat responsiveness.

  • @Keen
    Action RPG wise DC online plays like that, i’m having a lot of fun and not spending a penny.

    also whats the blogosphere’s opinion on what Titan is?

  • Dragons prophet is rather nice, traditional but the dragon rider twist gives it a really cool feel and style.

  • @wufi

    Yeah but I don’t think the game will even be close to being ready for the May 30th OB. I’ll be playing it for a bit but..


    Just ended my last spree of playing Rift.. there are parts that are enjoyable including raiding but overall it’s sort of a place holder at best. Once you get to max level I would recommend the Volan “fight” once to see it but.. the rest of the game is Meh.. The events that they keepo running over and over are like what Bhagpuss stated in they wear very thin (I didn’t even participate in the last 4 “events”). The quests no matter what side are pretty much the same and you sop reading them after a bit. I did enjoy the Defiant story side a bit more.

    I’ll be waiting on Wilstar’s release and hope that can tide one over.

    On a side note I see that Obsidian and “the Allods team” has a new game coming down the pipe for next year. Skyforge the game is called I think.