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OK this is going to be my last Rift post for a while. I know I’m straining the patience of my friends and I’ve clearly over-taxed the patience of other people. (If you think Jennifer was rude here you should read some of her tweets about me. She confirmed to Petter that she was talking about me. Such a mean thing to say.) The funny thing is, when I was “up” on Rift people were mad at me, now I’m feeling a more moderate reaction to it and people are still mad at me. Some people just enjoy being mad, I think.

The problem is that it’s really hard for me to convey the differences in the game that I’m seeing, but let me re-post this image:

Click on it to enlarge it, please. You see how many invasions were crawling all over the zone at one time? And back then each invasion was a linked set of elite mobs. It’s hard to say for sure but I count about 42 invasions roaming the zone at one time. 14 earth rifts open and a lone fire rift. 10 friendly defense forces deployed. It was EPIC! And maybe the servers are still hitting this kind of numbers in other zones or at other times and I’ve just been missing them; that’s entirely possible. I hope that’s the case, in fact.

And y’know, maybe that was too many. People were complaining that they couldn’t get anything done BUT dodge invasions. If you didn’t like the game that way, you’re absolutely entitled to your opinion and, at least from what I’ve seen, Trion has heard your concerns and acted on them.

Me, I liked it that way. I’m probably in a minority. But if you can imagine what it was like “on the ground” during these invasions maybe you can start to understand the differences I’ve been talking about.

And that’s it. I’ve worn out my Rift welcome and then some. For those of you who’ve engaged in lively debate over these past posts, thank you very much. It’s nice when we can have different opinions and still be civil to each other.

See you in release.



Comments:
30
  • OMG, I can’t believe she went on and on about you on Twitter. Is she one of your jilted lovers? You got some serious game if her panties are that twisted over you. All I gotta say.

  • Good lord no, and I’m not anything special. I’m not the first one she’s gone off on and I’m sure I won’t be the last, either.

  • Oh wow, I wondered for a second if it wasn’t just some joke. Surely no one can be so bitter and angry at any one person! So that was why Petter was so upset earlier today.

    For what it’s worth, I wasn’t mad when you were “up” on Rift and I’m not mad now that you’re moderate. I wish you wouldn’t stop blogging about Rift because I enjoy reading your thoughts on the game, but well, seeing how you seem to attract these kinda extreme reactions, I guess I can’t blame you either. Hope we can still talk Rift on Twitter, or on my blog, because I’m actually hoping for your help one of these days. Well, your opinion and advice on clerics, actually.

  • I played Beta 5 and Beta 6. I found the invasions to be a lot of fun but I thought they were a bit to often. Multiple times a day seemed like over kill to me and took some of the cool factor out of it. If this was just something that happened a few times a week or even just once a day it would make the event less annoying for those who do not want it and make the event something to look forward to for those who do enjoy them.

  • Omgosh, I cannot believe that somebody would be so mean and nasty about a freaking blog post, especially one that was in no way antagonistic. People like that need to get over themselves. Your blog is your own and you don’t have to change your posts to fit her (or anybody else’s) standards.

    I don’t have a problem with your Rift posts at all, be they filled with excitement or with concern. I hear what you’re saying regarding the frequency and intensity of invasions, and it does seem like they’re happening less frequently than before. Whether that’s a good or a bad thing remains to be seen. But I do agree that the tone of the game seems to have changed between Beta 4 (when I started) and Beta 6.

  • @MMOGC — Sure, I’m always up for talking about the game with you or anyone on Twitter or anywhere. But I think at this point with 2 weeks & 2 days to go until early launch, I’ll just save up my blogging mojo for when we don’t have the “It’s beta, they’re testing” variable in the mix.

    @Jon — “Invasion fatigue” could be a real danger, it’s true. Playing for a couple days every couple weeks is a lot different from playing day in, day out like we’ll be doing after launch. OTOH, it was cool when you could just totally ignore the quests and level up via chasing rifts. Do the quests on your first character to squeeze all the lore goodness out, then chase rifts to level up alts. I hope that’s possible in launch.

    @Moxie — Thanks for helping me to believe I’m not crazy about the tone of the game changing, and for the support. It was a rough day in blogging land for me, honestly. The good part is that for every extreme commenter there’re are a bunch of rational people wanting to have a discussion even if they disagree. It’d be really boring if we all had the same opinions, after all. :)

  • I’m relatively impartial in this particular case, seeing as I had my issues with Rift back then as well but have since changed my tune after running a rogue.

    That said, I do think your previous post felt a teensy bit whiney, and that set off the “dagnabbit alarms” in other people.

    I respect you, and I respect Nerahla, and disagreements aside, I think the two of you are great people, even if you can’t patch things up. :)

    I look forward to reading more of your thoughts on Rift, as I am planning to try a DPS cleric (if one exists) in Open BEta. :D

  • Wow! I don’t follow the twitter feed but it sounds as if things became pretty intense. I hope you get back to blogging soon about Rift and other things.

    Personally, I probably would not have even looked at Rift early on without your blog. Your insight and enthusiasm about the game made this jaded gamer take notice and want to try it for himself. :) I look forward to seeing your future posts.

  • The thing about MMOs, and one of the major reasons I play, is they’re not static. Game play evolves and changes as the devs figure out what works, and what doesn’t. Right now, footholds and such despawning absolutely minimizes the signature feature of the game. That said, I’m sure in time that will change. Hartsman is pretty savvy and I have quite a bit of faith in him. Eventually I hope to see zone wide impacts when failing against a zone boss or other assorted features that take some of the static out of the diku gameplay.

    That said, I’m still having fun playing alpha and trying out various builds (and boy can you gimp yourself!), crafting and exploring – it’s actually cool the player is rewarded by exploring too, what with puzzles and chests yielding some really nice rewards.

    As for the other stuff, I’m glad you can split elite rifts. I duo, and I like to see how far we can go without grouping. Before it was impossible to do Rifts until the zerg showed up, and then it wasn’t as fun. (I’ll never understand players who insist challenge can only be found in a group. For example, If you group all the time, it’s much easier to build your character, simply maximize whatever role you’ve chosen. Solo/duo or even small groups you have to balance survivability with dps and the game takes on an entirely different mechanic. But I digress.)

    Now with careful planning and such we can start one of the elite rifts on our own with a few people. Even the non elite rifts, if you get past the bonus stage, the bosses that spawn are tough. In some cases really tough.

  • I do think you are a bit in the minority. That does seem like a ridiculous amount of rifts. I would get annoyed with that many. It takes the specialness out of a rift. What I would like to see is about 4-5 rifts an hour and 1-2 massive invasions a week. Just to keep a rift a heart pounding experience. Too much and people will ignore them and get sick of them.

  • João Carlos said:

    Ok, Ok, other alpha tester talking about the game… now it is Blackluck.

    Are you sure the NDA was not lifted? It is too many leaks at few days…

  • We’re allowed to say we’re in alpha, just not go into details, which I haven’t. And the information I’ve related are from zones that have been available in since beta 5.

  • You won’t see me in full release, ’cause I’m a whiny bitch-ass LOL.

  • Rift is not scratching any of my itches that are not currently being scratched elsewhere so I am holding off on this until I hear something that changes my mind. I like the game, it is solid and enjoyable. I like the devs as they seem eager to please and quick to respond. I hope the game is a smashing success.

  • I started reading through her tweets. What a terrible person.

    The point of blogging is that everyone has their own opinion. The point of comments is that people get to respond if they disagree. The only person making anyone look bad is her making herself look bad.

  • WoW…she DID go overboard now, didn’t she.

    But, her expletive driven commentary shows her ability to formulate a true and legible argument. I think I will unfollow her now.

    I understand your point, and this post makes me feel like I understand more of what you are saying. But, I am worried it IS because it’s still beta, and Trion is trying their best to find the perfect “medium”. How are we not to know that the next beta may just ramp up the invasions again?

    How about we agree to wait it out and see if Trion understands what to do here, or if they plan to coddle to the “we want it easy” bunch. I am with you, and want a challenge, but not so much that I throw my monitor out the window.

    Open Beta in about a week…then we will know for sure.

  • Yup, waiting it out makes sense. And Blackluck makes a good point that even after launch, if things seem too easy they can ramp up the challenge, and if too challenging they can scale it back a little. Maybe I just need to have more faith in the devs. :)

    Thanks again, everyone, for your comments and your thoughts!

  • This is what I’m thinking, the devs are dynamically feeling the players out. Notice how they quickly change things? They are on their toes. I hope it lasts. I hate to see companies put on a good face in the beginning and then fire everybody the second the game doesn’t maintain 10000000 players. As long as the keep tweaking the events quickly to make it feel like UO live event, I’m happy. They better take a slower thought in class changes. Save those for big patches.

    I read Massively’s post about the differences between WoWvsWARvsRIFT and what I think that is the most different is the AI. RIFT actually has been the first MMO that has taken a step forward in PvE AI. My biggest problem with WAR was the stupid AI. Everything seemed so planted in that game. RIFT has more movement than WoW and wayyyyyyy more than WAR. The hills are alive in RIFT and I like it.

  • Hate to say it, Scary, but I just want to tone down your hype a bit – PvE AI was present in games like Ryzom and (the now cancelled) Chronicles of Spellborn years ago. It’s far from the first MMO that has taken such a step. :)

  • Those games sucked… Jk. I was speak as games normal people can relate to (me). In the Massively post they only talked about WAR and WoW, I didn’t want to veer too far from that post. Sure there are MMOs that have awesome AI and single player games that have unmatched AI (Black vs White), but to dumb it down, WoWvsWARvsRIFT, RIFT has a step forward with it’s AI with WoW very close.

  • @Petter
    “PvE AI was present in games like Ryzom and (the now cancelled) Chronicles of Spellborn years ago.”

    As Scarybooster said…those games DID suck.

    Even better though, both Ryzom and Spellborn are two examples of games who tried to be innovative..you know, the other reason people are putting down Rift.

    And look where they ended up.

  • Right, then I understand what you mean. :)

  • @OpenEdge
    Well, their overall quality and where they ended up don’t really have anything to do with it – their AI was more complex than in most other MMOs. Especially in Ryzom. I’m not arguing, I just reacted to Scary’s “first PvE MMO that has…”-comment.

    Are people putting down Rift for being innovative?

  • From what I can gather of how the dev team talks that’s one of the points of Rift to take MMO’s up a notch. The question remains, will that notch be significant enough to garner a sustainable player base? Guess time will tell ya?

  • Sorry for double posting, missed out on some of the comment action.

    @OpenEdge – from my observation over the last few years it seems like a lot of games that push the envelope get criticized harshly and or totally ignored. Rift is going to be controversial just because they’re doing something new. For the most part even because they just ARE something new.

  • Just like to mention that I don’t really think Rift is being innovative at all. They’re taking existing mechanics and adding a little twist. That’s not really innovation. The 3 soul thing is just an offshoot of talent trees and multi-specs. The Rifts are just offshoots of public quests. In fact, I’m hard pressed to say their “dynamic” content is really dynamic at all. The Rifts spawn in predetermined places, though in a random order, the actual world doesn’t change, a layer is just placed over the terrain for a certain amount of time and the Rifts really don’t have a lasting impression. No town will be demolished and have to be rebuilt by NPCs or PCs if they go unchecked. The most that’ll happen is mild annoyances with NPCs dying, possibly.

    Dynamic content would be to allow the Rift Invasions to tear down outposts and to allow the rebuilding of those or the building of new ones. Dynamic content would be random locations for Rifts AND random spawns coming out of them instead of the same phases each time. Dynamic content would be to allow PCs to build player cities and actually use up resources like surrounding trees and animals. Can you imagine if people hunted a specific critter to extinction? What if a player town logged all their surrounding trees and had to get more from a rival town or … the Plane of Life?

    Yea yea, people would grief but hey … it would promote server communities to try to keep their server in order. Imagine … this would make servers actually different. What if on one server a particular area was just forested out and became a desert plan with its own nuances. You’d be surprised how many people want to save the world. It’s right up there with people who want to destroy it. Take a look at any super hero game and while you may think there’d be more villains, in my experiences, there’s way more heroes.

  • That’s an interesting point, Wiqs. I was listening to the Rift Watchers podcast this morning and the guys were talking about the new despawning invasion rules and ‘resets’ and both agreed “Well of course it has to reset.” and I was thinking “Why does it have to reset without player intervention?”

    I guess the answer is: In order to be commercially successful. At least in a quest-based game, you need the quests to always be there and be completable.

  • Yea but there’s multiple ways to deal with having a quest in the game. Doesn’t always have to come from the same person or go after the same objective, unless of course it’s a pivotal plot / lore quest, in which case there’s other ways to deal with that as well :P

  • […] with the general direction of the game, even if some folks from earlier betas (such as Pete of Dragonchasers) are wishing it had the epic feel of betas […]

  • Ok, yes, I’m gonna comment about Rift, so sue me lol.

    I see your point. If your expectation is total chaos and you like it and thats what draws you to the game then if they reduce that chaos by 20 to 50% then it total changes the feel of the game. I was one of those that wanted more controlled and less chaos, but only when it came to the total destruction of quest hubs and healers. I don’t want stuff to be handed to me, but I don’t want to be banging my head against the wall either. But again, we don’t really know what they will do at release or if they plan to have some servers that are more chaotic than others, which would be nice, so you get the best of both worlds and you can capture a larger audience to your game. (Capture might not be the right word there)

    However, to lash out at you because of your opinion is crazy. I know that my current position is for people in beta to tone down the hype or hate, but you are entitled to your opinion and for some one to post on your blog in a personally negative fashion about an opinion that you might have of a game that YOUR playing and then to take it to the twitterverse when people come to your defense of that negativity is plan crazy, people need to get a freakin GRIP on reality sometimes. I like having a different opinion from others, if at times its a bit on the angry side, but I would never lash out at someone personally because they didn’t like a game. I mean, how crazy is that. I don’t like spinach so are people going to be hating on me or unfollow me on twitter because I don’t like a certain vegetable. Come on, crazy people, rein in the chaos.