A recent comment asked for a screenshot. I’m a bit delinquent in getting a couple, but here they are.
I logged in this morning and noted “Everything’s orange. Hmm.” Wow. Everything was really, really orange. Here I was looking for the lush green I saw last time,for my screenshots, and it’s all orange.
Turns out the starter zone is on fire. Under assault from the plane of fire.
The orange spirals are where the planes have touched down, and the crossed swords are where groups released by the touchdowns are wandering “loose” in the countryside. They follow roads and are bent on destruction. This is all dynamic and last night none of them were there.
Well, that explains the sunrise. The zone is on fire.
This is my Druid. Being a Cleric, he wears chain mail. Being a Druid he’s got some healing spells, but he seems to be more offensive than healy. A different Cleric I’d made earlier, a Justicair, had a quick heal, and an AOE heal. Which is useful in rift battles (and pvp I’d assume). With my Druid, in the battle I joined shortly after I shot this (in the Rift behind him actually), I tossed a heal (since healers ought to heal) and I was surprised to see the long cooldown on my only heal. Not a healer type at all in that case. (At least not at level 9.)
There are four primary classes: Mage=Cloth, Rogue=Leather, Cleric=Chain, and Warrior=Plate. Within each class you have a large variety of play styles. Your Rogue can go with twin daggers and poisons to be a Bladedancer, or he can become a Ranger with a pet and bow/gun, i.e. Hunter. Your Clerics can be offensive with spells, a Shaman, melee, a Druid, or offer up more healing prowess, Justicair. Mages range from Warlocks and Necromancers to Druidic users of nature (called Chloro-something) to heal. And Warriors range from your shield bearing tanks, two two-hander users (ala Arms), twin blades of destruction (ala Fury), to one with a pet (ala Survival Hunter, but in Plate). You start with one concentration, and you’re quickly asked to select two more trees to go with the first. Obviously the higher you go in your tree choice the better you are in that area of concentration. (Going up in the tree opens up new abilities down in the roots. You’d have to see the tree to understand.) Anyway, what seems complex and/or new is actually very streamlined and the wife and I picked up the game mechanics very easily.
Anyway, back to the screenshots. The tortoise mount is from the Collector’s Edition.
As I’ve already alluded I am really enjoying what I’ve seen of Rift so far. The wife joined me in the final Beta and we’ve gone and pre-ordered already.
The details in the world are beautifully drawn. If you think the Defiant side is a little dry, plains and few trees, consider that you’re heading into the Eth (think arabic) homeland as you leave your starting area. So, from a geographic standpoint, that makes sense.
On the Guardian side you appear to be heading into what is a very sylvan environment with lush trees and groundcover. (The fire rift directly behind me has washed out all the greens.) It’s otherwise a very lush and cool environment.
You can’t appreciate the armor my Druid is wearing in the screenshot, but the chain mail is very shiny and the best I’ve seen in a game.
I was playing a dark elf Ranger last night, in the Eth starting area, and their deal, that of the dark elves, is they are refugees from some islands. Their “city” is a village on the coast made of the rafts they came in on. The board walks and planking look great, and the shallow sea it sits in feels warm as you go out and hunt alligators for a quest giver.
The wife and I have enjoyed what we’ve seen. It has played without a hitch, and looks Great!, on both of our machines, an older PC running Vista and an iMac running Bootcamp and XP. Like I said, we both pre-ordered. And I really, really look forward to seeing the rest of the world. (And getting those dang fires put out!)
I went back in and the green’s back. Here’s some more screenshots.
The green is back. (And you can really see the detail in the armor.)
With a vengeance. Off in the distance is an attack by the plane of Life.
This is my dark elf Kelari Rogue Ranger. (The latest tunic leaves a little to be desired. This isn’t a chain mail wearer.) (And lots of collector’s editions out there given all the tortoise mounts. I’ve otherwise seen horses, gazelles, bear-things, and a couple of other different mounts that folks can ride.)
This is the plains I mentioned. The nearby quest givers state this was the Marches, or furthest reaches, of the Eth kingdom. So it must get drier further along.
So that’s my two elves. One High Elf Druid on the Guardian side, and a Kelari dark elf on the Defiant side.
I’ve also got a couple of humans.
Firstly, the Mathosian, a Mage.
There are a lot of pets in this game. Each class has a tree which offers a pet. Some heal, some fight, some do a little of both. Heavy here makes a decent little tank for this cloth wearer.
This is my Eth, the desert dwelling humans. This guy is a warrior going the tank route.
(And all the screenshots show the UI. Which is very good looking and very customizable as to placement and sizing of items.)
These last two pictures show the divide between the two sides. Defiant on one side, Guardians on the other. There is a bridge between that they’ve destroyed, and both sides are deploying cannon fire (the green incoming) against each other.
Anyway, I hope that’s given you a small taste of this new game.