Rift NDA Ends

Ok, so I can finally go into some more of the details without repercussion.  Also, feel free to ask me any questions about the game and I’ll try to answer them to the best of my ability.  I’ll just start making some categories to throw information into.

Model Animation

Overall, very average.  I didn’t see anything all that spectacular for combat for either melee or caster.  It was very repetitive.  The overall movement and jumping animations weren’t bad, but definitely had an “older” feel to the animations.  Blocky is a word that comes to mind.

Spells and Overall Flashy-ness

I only had the chance to experience a few of the spells (a Reaver and Pyromancer/Stormcaller, and the planar jumping skills for Riftstalker).  All of them seemed simplistic, which I think is great.  I hate when some of my own abilities cause me to drop the framerate.

As for other environmental effects, the rifts were stupendously flashy.  Especially the water rifts.  I was hitting a horrible 6 FPS during the Defiant event when I battled a water rift.  This was, however, during a testing phase where the majority of the game wasn’t using the player’s hardware to render graphics.  Most players were lucky to get 30 FPS while playing on lower settings.

Combat Speed

Great pace for certain classes.  When I was playing the Riftstalker, I was able to keep combat going rather smoothly with very little downtime.  When I hit 20 and decided to go rifting, I could easily take on up to five level ~17 mobs on my own.  The mitigation for the class was phenomenal.  However, when I through myself into a warrior role I found myself in a much slower pace.  Perhaps it was just the soul I happen to select (Reaver in this case).  The Pyromancer had relatively little downtime, at least early on when the monsters were very easy to kill.

I would like to note that I enjoyed the warrior combat mechanic.  It’s similar to the rogue mechanics because you’re using the same “energy”, but you also have your own version of the rogue’s combo points.  Where a rogue places combo points on a target (up to five) the warrior builds up combo points on himself (up to three).  You then spend them to use specific skills, which receive a bonus from having more points built up.


I was hoping for a bit more from these than what was given.  There were a few moments when the Devs made things interesting by having roaming bands of… undeath usually, travel the roads and side routes on their way to small outposts and rifts.  Where they would meet up with whatever the rifts were pulling into Telara and crush the unprepared groups (sometimes).  Overall the rifts were great fun and I enjoyed hunting them down.  The reward system, “planar currency”, that the rifts offer is a great way to get gear.  Like I stated in an earlier post, the rifts are a great deal like PQ’s from Warhammer, except at a much faster pace.

Final Comments

I think the game will do better than most others expect.  It doesn’t do anything bold or new with the MMO genre, but it did a good job of rounding up a lot of familiarity and putting it in one place.  The Ascended system (or Soul Tree) is an updated version, in my opinion, of World of Warcraft’s Talent Tree.  The rifts, again, like the PQ’s from WAR.  There were some other likenesses to various MMO’s that players were more than happy to point out in global chat.

The game will appeal to the players who are wanting to play something new but won’t take them too much effort to figure out.  Kind of like eating red delicious apples your whole life and then someone gives you a granny smith.  It’s still an apple, it just tastes a little different.

I’m in the process of uploading some video I captured during the event.  For now, here’s the intro Cinematics (at least most of them >.>).

Defiant Time Machine

I tried to start up fraps as the video started, but it wouldn’t work until this part of the video.  x]

Guardian Hammer Strike!

Guardian hammers have devastating consequences!

– Thrangis
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  1. Have a Merry Christmas bud =)


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