There has been a lot of talk lately over Trion’s game Rift in the video gaming community but the big question still remains. Should I get this game? Well I was finally invited to Beta 5 and got a taste for myself.

Now what exactly is Rift? Rift is a new MMO that is coming out March 1st with some unique features. Starting off you create your character choosing one of the 4 classes: Warrior, Cleric, Rogue, and Mage. (I’ve got to say character customization is severely lacking. Most of the features you are able to change only affect your head/face but when you’re in game with 50 other people, it doesn’t really matter. I’m still waiting for them to allow physical changes I guess.) The beginning zone is very newbie friendly and almost everything is explained by the tooltips. If you are a MMO veteran this should be no problem for you. As you level up you are able to pick up more souls (up to 3) for your pleasure. Please refer to here for a soul calculator. For the people who have experience in World of Warcraft, souls are basically your talent trees. What makes this game quite intriguing is the abundance of souls to choose from. Currently there are 7 but I’m not sure if Trion will be adding more. (Hopefully there will be.) Another thing I wanted to mention is that just like WoW’s dual spec system, Rift offers up to 4 “roles”/specs to allow you to be as versatile as possible.

While you quest to level up there are invasions and rifts that occur throughout the world. The rift/portal feature is not entirely new if any of you guys remember Aion however you cannot go through the rifts/portal in Rift. The rifts then proceed to spawn invasions which are basically groups of monsters with one boss which will head towards one location (usually a town) and destroy anything in its way. To close the rifts you must kill all the monsters in the rift area and go through 5 stages. If you are able to close the rift within the set time a bonus boss spawns for extra loot. The loot is based off your contribution. If you sit there and only kill 1 monster, don’t expect some epic gear. You can stop a rift or invasion by yourself if you’re capable of, but be prepared to have 50 more players joining in on the fun.

Some of the issues I’ve already thought up of are:
1.Comparing the first day to the second day of beta, I’ve already noticed less and less people participating in the invasions and rifts. While these are fun and all, it gets a bit repetitive and I can see why some players would rather just continue questing. Now I know that the loot from the rifts are worth getting, I’m still slightly worried that less and less players will stick around to do them.
2.As I said before, character customization if fairly lacking. Changing facial features won’t do much unless you plan to play the game face to face against others. Maybe some height/weight/physical shape diversity would be good.
3.What does the end game offer? This is probably one of the important issue since if there isn’t much to do at end game, what was the point of leveling your character then? I’m going to be guessing the typical raids and pvp but even then, will there be anything new?
4.PvP in this game needs some work. Now my first few runs in the battlegrounds were fun and all but around my 5th match I felt like there were some classes that stood out way too much opposed to other classes.
5.Currently all the “caves” in this game are identical. Not interesting at all :|

What I’ve enjoyed:
1.The graphics. Right off the bat I noticed that the scenery in this game is amazing. The character details are acceptable and so forth but when you zoom out and take a good look at everything with max settings, you’d be quite happy at how good it looks. If you’ve played Beta, the first dungeon/instance “Realm of Fae” is certainly very unique and very eye catching.
2.Familiar feel. Just like most MMO’s out there, I log in and press W expecting my character to move forward. All the key bindings are user defined so you can basically use whatever is most comfortable for you. The layout is also user defined. Don’t like your health bars up there? Well then drag it and resize it to where you want.
3.Ease of leveling. In my opinion games are not meant to be hard work. I don’t plan to sit in my chair and grind for an hour to level up. I’d rather do quests and that’s exactly what Rift offers with a good amount of exp too. You will not find yourself quest-less, stuck at 50% to level up and having to kill monsters until you reach the next level where new quests are available.
4.Early mount=less running. At level 20 which is by no means a lot of game time, you are already able to get a mount which will ease your traveling. I’d hate to play a MMO where you had no means of getting to where you want faster.
5.The amount of players. Its quite an experience when you have 50 players in the same place as you joined for the same cause.

I’ve got to say this game, even though in Beta stages, felt like a complete game for me. It was very fun and immersive. Sometimes while I was questing, I got so distracted by helping out by stopping the invasions and closing the rifts that an hour has passed and I’ve barely noticed. As of now, I’m still undecided but there is still Beta 6 left and I’m eager to see if this game is really going to be worth it!


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