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a short review of a trial players experience in Rift. i leveled 2 characters to 20, 2 characters to 10 - basing my experience on this and from what i gathered from the higher levels i met and spoke with in length. going for a brief summary. MMO experience is 11 years. played on Seastone PVP server.
fun. pretty varied for a western MMO. nice amount of sliders to appease most designers.
WoW clone with a twist. seriously copied a bunch of WoW skills and passed them around to different classes. pretty blatant. ex, warriors start with a charge skill, a heroic strike. rogues get evasion and poisons, etc... names of skills are even nearly identical in some cases. skill tree system with a twist but generally cloned from WoW with a blend of passive and active skills inspired by WoW and other predecessors.
nice looking gameworld and monsters.... I'm not a graphics nut and its usually one of the lesser items on my priority list of enjoyment but the polygon count is sufficient to get the warm and fuzzy fantasy brewing. armor
fine. i have a mid-high level system. i7 2600k, ATI 6950, 8gb ram. all settings maxed except for supersampling which for some reason dropped my FPS by 15. i averaged like 60fps solo. 45 in groups and high population areas.
mid-fantasy realism. basically a mix between AoC's grittier realistic armor with some occasional high fantasy flair as seen in WoW and the like. matter of opinion. there was decent bit of model diversity and overall i thought it matched the gameworld and lore well. i liked it.
poor. badbadbad. very amateurish looking. like it was the animators freshman college project. sorry to be harsh but theyre just very very bland and in some cases kinda messed up. some characters dual wield but attack mostly with 1 hand... some 2 hand weapons attack with 1 hand as well.. some animations poorly sync with effects and combat animations of the target... generally awkward feeling and was distracting. maybe the worst aspect of the game. again, im no graphics nut but in a game were combat is 90% of what you do, you better enjoy the animations. kinda ruined the nice modelling of the game world and particle effects of the spells and skills.
WoW clone. which is fine cuz i think WoW's UI is excellent. Rift's was also fluid and responsive and intuitive. includes addon support.
standard. the Rift events were fun but quickly turned somewhat stale. still, id prefer this staleness much more than WoW's current snoozefest.
good (only low level). seems to be balanced around team pvp which is far more interesting to me than 1 v 1 or arena style so i like that. the many character designs make it varied and unpredictable. World PVP is always more interesting to me as well and there is a healthy amount. i wont comment on balance cuz of course i was limited to lvl 20 but overall i didnt notice anything blatantly OP or UP. some classes i havent tried seemed more dependent on teammates though like i imagine the bard class would be.
awesome. different classes can temporarily take over multiple roles depending on situation. well done and adds alot of interdependance and teamwork. keeps your character fresh and interesting. the shining feature of the game IMO.
meh. until level 10 the game is ridiculously easy. really made playing hard for me to care or continue at first. by level 20 there is some challenge and monsters start to do more interesting things. Death penalty is WoW clone so no sense of real risk though. difficulty begins to increase and from what ive been told by high level friends, the raids are fun and challenging. I have no personal experience but i felt i had reliable sources for that opinion.
meh. wont subscribe. if the Trial Experience of a MMO is meant to hook new players, i think Rift's somewhat fails. atleast for us of course. (btw, i was doing this trial with 5 of other WoW/Eve refugees and we all kinda agree on this overall newbie experience). still, the game has strong points that elevate it, in my mind, over games like WoW, EVE, AION, EQ2, SWOTR. although i really struggled to find interest in the game after i leveled my second character, i think this game is an admirable addition to the MMO universe. definitely worth a download.