So you can hardly have missed all the RIFT talk lately. RIFT is the latest MMO of the moment and is getting some serious hype from the MMO community right now. And to be quite honest, I would say justifiably so. From what I’ve seen on the beta myself it looks to be an exceptional well made game, incredibly good fun (once you get out of the starter zones) and has massive potential. The random rifts and invasions are brilliant and the most dynamic and interesting PvE since, well I don't know when. Is it a WoW killer? I doubt it very much, the only game that will kill WoW is the one that Blizzard make to do so, but RIFT is looking to be an extremely viable alternative. At least for people with half decent PCs, that’s something that WoW always has over new release MMOs; you can run WoW on a broken calculator.
RIFT has also been hyped by some people as a WAR killer. Certainly my WAR server of Karak Norn has already seen some major guilds declare they are quitting WAR and moving to RIFT, but it's not killing the game in reality. Karak Norn has been crazy busy recently, new guilds are stepping up and the circle continues. There were big name guilds that vanished before, others take over, tis the way of things. Of course RIFT isn't out yet, but the end is not nigh. It's just people think they're so important that them leaving means everyone else will. Plus of course some people are self justifying their own opinion and many others are just trolling for shit and giggles. Personally I don't put too much faith in forum banter and anyway, I see the games in very different lights.
In WAR every time I log in I can get into a PvP fight in seconds, I can then continue fighting other players pretty much non-stop until I decide to log off. In RIFT this is quite simply not an option. There is PvP, but it is much more like WoW’s. It has Warfronts (battlegrounds/scenarios) and it has openworld PvP, but it doesn’t direct you into PvP like WAR does. The game isn’t about PvP, it’s about PvE. And like WoW it does have PvP options, but they are very much secondary to the PvE focus. WAR is completely the other way around and for me I need to have that instant PvP option. It’s something I’ve always really liked about WAR, having a reliable fight whenever I want it.
I also need a PvE fix now and again, a change of pace and relaxing distraction. WAR used to provide this, albeit in buggy fashion, but has now lost that option and I’m missing it far more than I expected I would. I’m not going to go into the detail now, but Tomb of the Vulture Lord is broken again and actually irrelevant to anyone of RR80+ anyway, so the only thing we have is the new renown grind. Plus for those of us with a more "normal" amount of spare gaming time, the carrots we’re chasing are items that we won’t be able to equip for months. Kinda dull. Basically WAR has a lot of issues right now, the gear gulf is so terrible its beyond belief, it’s very zergy and the carrot/stick/grind balance is knackered. I’ve got quite a lot to write about what people are saying, what I think is wrong and what needs to be done, but that’s another series of posts. In short; Mythic have got a LOT of work to do to get the game back on track. BUT they CAN DO IT! Can't you. Yes you can ;)
Having said all that… That instant PvP thing in WAR is something I just can’t do without and simply can not get elsewhere. It’s just so damn “real life friendly”.Yes, the RR80 grind has put me off my Chosen and alas all my DPS alts are shelved now that they’ve all been made utterly useless by 1.4 and the gear issues. And yes, my “Having impact below level 80” post feels a little bit hollow now :/ BUT there is a redeemer! I’m enjoying playing my Shaman, since as a healer the fact that his gear is utter shite compared with the RR90+guys hitting for STUPID damage and mitigating almost everything doesn’t matter so much. I’ve not got to kill anything and I still get renown from healing.
So moving forward I will be playing RIFT and WAR. Different horses for different courses. I'm not alone in this, quite a few of my lot are going to try it out and there's a lot of old Kill Frenzy players that quit WAR who are also going to RIFT. Which in turn means I will be starting up a version of KF in RIFT, but not at the cost of WAR. The plan is to have active guilds in both games. Gonna be some interesting times ahead.