It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!
I'm very interested in the concept of rifts, and the game design seems very good.
But where does a game live and where does it fail in the long run? Keeping interest by adding items and levels are allright, but why have 20 different games that does the same thing?
No one wants to start over playing a new character on WOW because everyone is already level 80, have epic horses and no one run the starter instances because they get too easy when you level up. No one likes to grind. No one wants a game to take ALL their time, people want a life.
So why keep the LEVELS thing if it's in reality a FAIL? It will keep your "ACTUAL" player base interested for a while, until they get bored of the levels thing, then start to play for social - doing a few instances with friends, etc... Then drop the game.
I think the game world is too vast and not populated enough. There's not enough exploration, discovery and exclusivity in the games. Exploration is resumed to hack and bash new monsters with new quests telling you to bash more. There's not enough player-made content, there's not enough mazes, quizes, enigmas - that used to be fun!
The instances should be quizes crippled with traps that need ingeniousity and teamwork to work out. There should be mini-games in them and your level or reputation shouldn't matter how hard it is to achieve. There shouldn't just be monsters to bash in there.
For example, some mazes could lock you in if you don't complete it within 15 minutes. And the maze could be random. Completing it could give you 1500 gold. Failing could take you 3000 gold. Doing it would be at your own risk. You wouldn't be allowed to do it more than once per day. Then you'd move on to another instance, where you need to be two, and step on levers with diferent weights to open doors. Stepping on the wrong tiles would then close the door and you would have to start over. Those could be implemented between mob fights etc... Dice games, sand games, even ball games to throw in the hole at a distance could be fun to unlock chests etc...
I loved the lockpicking system of a game where you had to actualy move the metal parts acordingly to the lock to release the locket. Not just have a higher skill to do it.
I think developers need to STOP thinking about just the LEVELS parts if they want a LONG-TERM game and start to establish a BASE SOCIAL GAME with better implemented MINI-GAMES.
There was a chess board in Ultima Online for god sake, when's the last time you saw a chess board in another game?
Then there could be gambles, there could be just anything! Horse races!
Anyway, just my opinion, because otherwise, why subscribe to Rift, or Aion, or WOW, or Final Fantasy Online if it's just to level up another toon to get high level enough to kill the final boss? That's good but it should be part of something more.