I’ve yet to really look into Rift because, well, it’s an MMO in pre-beta, so right now the devs are telling you it’s gods gift to gaming, and they have the feature-list and staged videos to prove it! I did however watch a video over at Massively, and aside from watching yet another game with ‘stand and mash’ combat (the fight with the giant), odd/poor collision (the dagger pvp part near the end), and a general sense that the animations look a little off, I do have one question about the rifts themselves.
The concept of a rift opening to take over a village sounds very cool, especially with the landscape actually changing to reflect the attack. Bonus points for having various rift factions who can (hopefully truly at random) fight each other if they cross paths. For some reason NPC vs NPC battles have always been interesting in my book.
My question is what actually happens to that occupied village? I get that it looks different and has enemy mobs in it, but what else? Are all friendly NPCs killed or driven off? Is the village ‘disabled’ in terms of NPC functionality (quests, shops, etc)? When the rift is defeated/closed, does the village reset back to normal? Is there any lasting effect, based on how hard the village was hit and how long it was under occupation? Do its inhabitants remember the invasion, and react at all to it? Is there a lasting impact for being the guild or individual who did the clearing?
I ask because if the answers above are ‘not really’, then how are rifts any different from WAR’s PQs, if said PQs were all kill-the-mob based and spawned randomly? (Granted, spawned randomly itself is a nice step forward, but is that it?) What exactly is ‘dynamic’ about Rift? Or are we talking dynamic by themepark standards, in how WAR is ‘dynamic’ in terms of capital city conquest: you can burn the city, but a day later it’s all back to square one, with no real change a day/week/month/year later?