Rift: Planes of Telara

Official home page here.

Got in the latest beta phase #5 and been trying this one out. It goes live 1st of March so it’s not that far off, and the game looks and feels pretty complete and bug-free already. Not quite sure if I want to buy it, but it does seem pretty good fantasy MMO. I especially like their class system where you pick 3 souls and mix and match their abilities to create your own class, and it even makes sense in the context of the game’s lore.

I’ve only gotten to level 16 so far, aiming to at least hit 20-ish or so and try out the first dungeon before the beta events end and the game goes live. It feels very WoWish, which is mostly just good because there’s not much point in reinventing the wheel. Graphics are more like WAR’s, though, and I kind of miss WoW’s clear and colorful if more simple look, and especially WoW’s exceptional animations and combat sounds. Maybe they’ll still improve those, who knows.

Any other Dopers interested in this or trying out the Beta?

I played the first four betas, skipped this one because i was getting tired of doing the same stuff over and over and had already pretty much decided i am going to be playing. The class system is what makes this game, specially now that WoW has simplified and homogenized their classes to the LCD. The actual Rifts are fun and a welcome diversion from the quest grind, which is frankly needed because that is one area that they lag in compared to WoW. I love the graphics, the sounds could use some help (in wow my rogue makes satisfying crunching sounds, in Rift its more like swishswishswish. All in all this has the polish and content to be a success, not 12 million subs success but there are enough people tired of WoW out there who will be willing to give this a good shot.

Yup, my biggest problem with WoW was always that I hated all of the classes. Rift is pretty much the opposite of that. I’ve tried half a dozen combinations between the last beta and this one and enjoyed them all. Probably going to throw in a pre-order this weekend; who the heck knows if this will be a long haul thing or a flavor of the month thing, but there’s enough there to make it worth at least one levelling up.

I managed to play a couple hours of this beta. I was impressed at how smooth and polished the game was given that it is still in beta. Many games are released live in worse shape. I’m sure there’s a lot of tweaking that still needs to be done, but the game is very playable and fun in its current state.

The soul system is a good idea. It’s very similar to how powersets work in City of Heroes. I can see a lot of replayability in trying different combinations.

So beta is wrapping up tomorrow and I am still on the fence after only playing for a few hours. What do you guys that made it farther into the game think about it? I haven’t played an MMO since I spent all of 2005 playing WoW addictively and decided to quit for my own good. I think I’m at a point where I’d like to give a MMO a whirl as I have a lot more video game self-control these days. Does this look like the best thing out there so far or do you think I should I try to play WoW again since there’s 5 years worth of new content and it’s proven to be enjoyable in the past?

If I were you I’d probably choose WoW. It’s still a better game, a lot of people are just sick and tired of it after playing it more or less constantly for 6+ years. They redid all the old content in Cataclysm so if you start again, even the first 60 levels will be mostly fresh quests.

Question for those who have played:

I watched the video trailer thing, which had spectacular graphics. I’m assuming game play graphics aren’t quite that good, yes?

They’re fairly good. I was playing on the lowest quality you could possibly do and it looked pretty good to me. I have a few screenshots I’d be willing to upload if you’re interested and I can ask a friend with a better computer to take some screenshots.

Rift is a nice diversion from WoW, but with my current computer I doubt I’ll be making the switch. I think I’ll keep an eye on it and if it’s still doing well a few months from now I’ll pick it up once I get my new computer up and running.

You can just search Youtube and get a bunch of actual gameplay videos to see for yourself. :slight_smile:

I’m going to play it, but I must admit there are a few things that kind of turn me off of the game.

The animations. Mostly, they’re bad. The jump animation, in particular, looks floaty and oh-so-ten-years-ago.

The effects. These vary. Many of the effects are good, like the rifts and the fires, but a lot of the spell effects are washed out and very generic.

The class system. Yeah, I know, a lot of people think this is the game’s strong suit. I liked it at first, but it’s kind of bothering me now. Sure, it looks like there are something like 32 classes (four classes, eight (?) souls). However, since you an collect additional souls for your class, and swap them out as you go up in level, it kind of means that there are really only four classes- Warrior, Mage, Rogue, and Cleric. Any Cleric, for example, is ultimately just like any other Cleric. I actually find myself wishing we had to pick a set of souls and specialize.

Itemization. Have you noticed that most classes seem to start out with some good looking gear… but it’s rapidly replaced by more and more crappy-looking stuff? As a Mage, I started out with a rather snazzy white tunic… which was almost immediately replaced by a boring brown robe.

There’s just so much to do, all the time. I can barely get a quest done before a Rift opens up in my area. And if I’m grouped with my wife, and we get too close to the Rift, suddenly we’re in a raid group with everyone else in the area. I wouldn’t mind this too much if we could just leave the area and automatically be the only ones in our group, but it never happens that way- if we get too close to a Rift, and then leave, we have to quit our party and then rejoin. Really, more annoying than anything else.

I suspect that the first week or so, it’s going to be really hard to start out as a newbie. There’s going to be a swarm of other players, all trying to do the same quests, and many of the quests rely on picking up the same object, or trying to kill the same creatures, that everyone else is trying to get. Get ready to stand in line waiting to kill a boss creature- I’ve already seen it happen.

Minor complaints, really, but they do annoy. Still, I’m getting the game.

I can’t imagine how this could ever be a bad thing. If you don’t like the class system there really isn’t any reason to play this over say WoW though.

I think it’s the way that Rift events automatically pop up in your quest tracker that bugs me the most. It’s really just a minor complaint, however.

Has anyone figured out how automatic ranged attacks work? My rogue automatically uses a bow at range, but then switches to his sword whenever the target gets into melee. My mage, however, won’t automatically use his wand- as soon as I cast anything, he switches back to his staff, no matter how far away the target is. Sure, there’s the “Toggle Ranged Weapon” ability, but it doesn’t seem to do anything.

Oh, another annoyance- if all my rogue has is ranged abilities, then I can’t use them in melee range. I have to back up a bit to use them, which is something WoW dropped years ago.

I note that it still has the utterly brain-dead lack of auto-facing that annoyed me so much in WoW and LotRO. Seriously, you have a target selected, and you trigger an attack–is it so hard to automatically turn the character to face the target? Really? I know it’s easier to go “clunk” and flash a message on the screen, but other games solved this years ago.

I haven’t really played it enough to voice any other complaints. I do like the concept, at least, and the class system seems to have potential if they don’t screw it up too badly. So far, too much of it seems to be “Kill X of Y” (and the cleverly disguised “Gather N of P by Killing X of Y”), but that’s just in the starting area, so I don’t know if it’s representative.

hmm no they didn’t, hunters still can’t use ranged abilities in melee range.

Really? I could swear they did. Maybe I’m just remembering them drastically reducing the “too close” range.

Oooh! Thought of something else that really bugs me- that damn Cleric pet. You know, Tinkerbell. I really wish they’d gone with a ball of light or something, instead of a two-foot Kewpie doll with beehive hairdo and wings.

What I found is that rift/invasion events level you up fast enough that even just doing them occasionally resulted in my usual “do every quest in the zone” mentality meant that I was doing quests a couple levels below me even by the teens.

Which is good, as it means I can conceivably skip content with one toon and catch it with the next, replay value is always good.

I’m pretty sure there’s a setting somewhere to prevent automatically getting joined into public groups.

Yeah, there will be lines for named quest objectives, but in the last beta, I found the respawn rate to be sometimes too aggressive–I’d have new mobs pop before I could loot the previous mob, even as a melee class.

Lack of face/stick was driving me mad as well as a warrior, particularly during large invasion events. Yes, I have a mossy shambler targeted, there are 5 of them here and with all the effects I can’t always see which one has the red circle/arrow. And as soon as I figure it out and engage, either someone knocks the mob back or I get knocked back. (I can’t wait to get that Paragon anti-knockback ability, particularly against those stupid goblin bastards).

So what did people enjoy playing? I pretty much always play a dual-wield tank if it’s viable, so I went Paragon/Riftblade/Warlord, though I’m not sure if I’ll swap Champion in somewhere and just not spec the 2H stuff.

And while I didn’t do much with it beyond the intro area, I found that on the Cleric side, Justicar/Inquisitor/Warden seemed pretty nasty, at least for when you’re solo.

I tried rogue classes even less, and while I see what was mentioned above with having to backup when I started as a marksman, I just quickly slotted something that could use combo points at melee range and that took care of it. It was only a 3m min range (at least for the abilities I saw), so it’s only an issue if you’re solo in a role with no pet, or screw up and grab the aggro when you shouldn’t.

Played the last 3 betas. I found it easy to pick-up, with a nice rate of progression. My main problem was with the classes. as already mentioned each of the four over-classes has 9 sub-classes. However (at low-levels at least) there didn’t appear to be much difference between a lot of these sub-classes.

Also as you can obtain all 9 sub-classes by level 14-15, and purchase 5 different line-ups for them, there’s no enticement to be unique. I would have liked it if they limited your options more at low levels, but perhaps at level 20 or 30 you could sacrifice 2 or three of your current sub-classes in exchange for a single one from another branch altogether. For example a rogue could trade ranger+riftstalker+marksman for the beastmaster warrior class. It would help make your character more unique in the world.

My only other real gripe was in the Defiant faction. All the backstory is about the Defiants use of technology. So I was hoping that Defiant PCs would have a technological bent. Nope all exactly the same as their Guardian equivalents. I realise that with so-many classes balance is a problem. Perhaps though it may have been better to give each side fewer, but more distinct classes to differentiate.

My final impression was good, but not enough of a draw to make the subscription worthwhile. I might look back in 6 months, see how the communities developed and see if there’s more variety between classes. In the mean time LOTRO and DDO will fill any MMO needs I have.

That was a quality of life change they made several betas back. Before there was a lot more “support” classes that were simply not viable for leveling, but lots of people would still pick them because they really wanted to be a dominator or a warlord or whatever so basically every single class got low level nukes/attacks to make actually leveling them viable. Yes it makes classes a bit more homogenized in the beginning but the alternative would have led to unnecessary frustration for new players. It is in fact only at low levels were this is a problem, they did a good job of making each soul have it’s special flavor even if most of them have to follow the same basic mechanics in the end.

Hunters used to have about a five foot area around them were a target would be too close to use range abilities but too far to use melee abilities on, this was greatly reduced a while back. I named my faerie nohomo.

Ahaha! I like that, guess it’s the best you can do with the available source material - if I ever play a druid in Rift I’ll totally steal your idea. :smiley: