Trion have broken from the mould of other free-to-play MMOs by choosing to avoid paygates and pay-to-win items. Instead, all the content is available to free players, with only elements like extra character slots and cosmetic items coming with a price tag attached.
It’s a progressive approach, one outlined in a new free-to-play features trailer.
For a while there, Rift was the post-WoW subscription success story to beat. No longer. As of this week, it’s simply one of the more exceptional fantasy MMOs you can potter about in for free, or something close to it.
Trion Worlds are introducing something quite curious to the new, free-to-play Rift: Rift Exchange items, or REX. They’ll form the basis of a new in-game stock exchange that Trion say will provide an avenue for free players to obtain items and services from the Rift store without the use of real money.
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Rift has been the great (read: only) new subscription MMO success story of the decade, launching in 2011 to applause and a flood of direct debit details. But by mid-2012 subscriber numbers had begun to wane. In October Trion Worlds launched a new initiative with gaming social network Raptr to draw in fresh meat. In essence, the initiative saw players bribed with in-game items to keep playing. The result? The planes of Telara ran red with metaphorical new blood, and players began to play for longer too.
Starting on Thursday, Rift's land of Telara has been taken over by the Carnival of the Ascended, bringing with it pets for your pets, carnival games and class changes.
The full list of changes is copied in below but the biggest alterations which 2.2 brings is the new Planar Attunement Tier 3, Planar Attunement of War Tier 2, and the Planar Attunement level cap lift, increasing it to 1079.
Rift's Carnival of the Ascended won't just be hitting the Tempest Bay this year but will spread across all of Telara, bringing with it hats that can be worn at a jaunty angle and colourful mounts of all shapes and sizes (that's a lie, we don't know what shape or size they'll be, they could be exceedingly similar shapes and sizes).
There's also a somewhat threatening world event planned, called Steppes of Infinity zone. Ooh-er, more below.
About 40 members of Trion Worlds’ in-house development team were laid off yesterday, an affected employee has told Gamasutra. The job losses reportedly leave the Rift team at around two-thirds strength.
If you’re a Rift fan, Storm Legion is the biggest of deals. Two ginormous new continents, an island stronghold city for both Guardians and Defiant, ten more levels and an expanded Ascended class system. All today.
And if you’re not a Rift fan? Golly, you ought to just come and see the size of some of these bastards.
Since launching last year, Trion Worlds have been regularly updating RIFT with content patches filled with dynamic changes every couple of months. Now RIFT's first proper expansion, Storm Legion, is ready. And it's huge. The latest update 1.11: Tempest Rising has already set the ball rolling in the lead up to Storm Legion's launch, unleashing a four-staged World Event and some pretty extreme class changes. But what's included in RIFT: Storm Legion? And why should you play it? Here's everything we know.
Storm Legion, Rift’s first expansion, is going to come with player housing. Only it’s not just player housing, but an entire sandbox of tools to build and create the perfect living space: something that’s entirely unique to you. Trion just couldn’t stand to do what everyone else was doing, so they decided to do one better.
Since Rift’s launch in February last year, Trion’s popular and very warmly-received MMO has received almost constant updates, the development team releasing major content patches every two months. While any two of those updates combined would be more than a match for any other game expansion, Trion are now about to introduce Storm Legion, their own idea of what constitutes an expansion, and it’s big. This weekend, a beta event will give players a chance to explore the Eastern Holdings, the City Core and Seratos, as well as try out the Dimensions and Hunt Rifts, and we’ve got 500 beta keys to give away. Yes, 500! For a chance to claim yours, and to find out more about Storm Legion, read on.
Rift: Storm Legion pre-orders have been open for just over a month, but only now has the Steam-particular coining - the pre-purchase - come to pass. Do it now, and there’s a Steam-exclusive in-game gift in it for you.