As I am planning on playing when the game goes live, I have purposely avoided taking my character out of the first area, so as to have as much new as possible. As I’ve ground up a rogue, mage, cleric, and warrior to mid-20′s or higher, and done almost every tradeskill skill to at least 100, that means what I have left to sample is the PvP game in Rift. In a surprising twist, I’ve found that I am amazingly good at it, although I know I am bad at it. It’s just so many people have not realized that Rift is not the same as WoW, despite the familiar feel. In the past, I’ve gone out of my way to avoid the direct comparison, but after several days of playing, I cannot figure out a better way to do so.
I’ve played a lot of Black Garden, Rift’s “Capture the Flag” variant, and Valley of the Codex, which is Rift’s resource capture variant. These are both similar to WoW’s versions, but still distinctly different, which makes it very depressing when someone uses WoW’s tactics on them. Because you will lose. Badly. I was going to go into a detailed explanation of the zones, but that makes for a boring and possibly ranty post. Instead, I’m going to briefly talk about raiding the other side which is crazy fun.
On Friday evening, my (Defiant side) guild decided to visit the Realm of Fae, as many folks had never seen it, and had repeatedly heard how great it is from those of us who had played Guardian. Turns out, it’s very easy to cross to the other side, assuming you don’t just swim across the river (which you can’t btw – invisible wall). As we had two groups racing through it together, we decided to form a raid and then wander around guardian country. We quickly came upon an outpost, and finding ourselves PvP+, decided to take it out. Destroying the wardstone awarded us several deeds and a token for favor. Some players jumped up to fight us, at which point we killed them easily. They respawned and rushed us a few times, but we rode off, not wishing to be spawn campers. As we rode around, someone asked what Sanctum looked like, so we rode over. We easily wiped out the camp in front of Sanctum and shortly found ourselves in a pitched battle at the gates. Guardian players tried to bait us to the level ?? guards which we didn’t fall for, but after about 10 minutes of touch and go on each side, some higher levels popped in and finally killed us. For us, as invaders, we rezzed about half the map away, so it was not really worth it for us to go back. Instead, we went to see Fire and Life rifts, as these do not show in the lower level Defiant zones. Attacking the other side’s home city was phenominal fun, even at such a low level. It reminded me a lot like how it was to attack home cities back in the first few years of Everquest 1, before newbie guards were given steriods and rocket launchers. Every necromancer in the game killed the Ak’Anon guards, for example, and I remember staging a one-lizard coup at one point, just for fun.
As a nice touch, in case you didn’t know, each side has different rifts at lower levels, so when my guildmates saw a fire and life rift, they were very taken with them. I think my favorites are water and air, but to each his own. After closing a few rifts, we came upon a rift closure in progress and jumped in to help. For some reason, the level 9 folks went PvP+ and attempted to attack us, despite us being 10-20 levels above them. So we, like the one video on Trion’s site, “helped ourselves” to the rift closure. Again high levels, which had apparently been looking for us, rode up and we let them wipe us out as we were a bit tired and wanted a free ride home.
I really like the side vs. side PvP here, and think it adds a nice little element. While PvP is still not my thing, I have a feeling the PvP+ servers are really going to be interesting places to play, much like good old Tallon and Vallon Zek servers were back in the days of Everquest.