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Thread: Why did Rift fail?

  1. #1
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    Why did Rift fail?

    A few things: I am in the middle when it comes to difficulty. I played EQ at release and I never felt I deserved any loot other than what was won but I hated waiting hours for a rare to spawn just to get a key piece. With that said, I do appreciate some of the relaxed mechanics that have been adopted. I don't have as much free time as I used to. I didn't play Rift at release, I was too absorbed in WoW at that moment. But now I am having a lot of fun with this game that I somehow missed on realese. So ...

    What happened? The game has great graphics, it seems to cater to the WoW crowd and EQ2 crowd (my wife loves player housing). Was it not like its current state on release? It has rare nameds, collection nodes, random world events, housing and the main story is well written.

    I'm not a schill I am just genuinely curious. It seems like whoever developed this game hit all the high marks* but was unable to attract enough players to maintain a monthly fee. What gives?


    * EQ was my first MMO so I am only judging things by what the market has become, not what it was when I started MMOs.
    Last edited by sunhillow; 01-12-2014 at 07:16 PM.

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    ᕕ( ᐛ )ᕗ Eorkern's Avatar
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    Because it sucked.
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  3. #3
    Failed Idea Big W Powah!'s Avatar
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    Rift failed for the same reason Vanguard failed; At the last minute, they went back on their shit and made it a quest-grind WoW clone. Rift in beta, while the core systems were the same, as much more about fighting off invading planar forces. I did all of like 4 quests outside the tutorial in Rift beta, the rest I went rift/invasion hopping.

    Little Timmy Casual bitched about not being able to complete his quests and Hartsman & Co. caved. Fuck them for it. I don't know about rift in its current state, but seriously, fuck Trion for what it became on release day. I know Scott used to frequent these boards, and probably still lurks. To him I say; This isn't a shot at you or your company directly, just a passionate fan disappointed in what happened. I had huge hopes, and was let down. So much so I barely made level 30. I can safely say that Rift had the biggest potential of the games released recently.

  4. #4
    Administrator Draegan's Avatar
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    Well to be fair, it was always a quest-grind and the invasion/rift system in beta was turned up like to 1000x. In the Alpha, it was mostly what you saw in live.

    What really did the game in was an awful AA system, an abortion of a token collection system for gear and planar engines, and a development team that completely fucked up a very interesting class system. If you want me to go into further detail let me know.

    That being said, the game didn't fail, it just failed at being a WOW-killer. It was quite successful and remains successful to this day.

  5. #5
    Registered User Szeth's Avatar
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    Rift was awesome at release. 5 man instances were difficult, even after getting a decent amount of gear, and the achievements inside of them were equally difficult and fun to achieve.

    Then they made the 5 mans into shitholes, nerfing goddamn everything that was difficult about them. That was the day the music died.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Szeth View Post
    Rift was awesome at release. 5 man instances were difficult, even after getting a decent amount of gear, and the achievements inside of them were equally difficult and fun to achieve.

    Then they made the 5 mans into shitholes, nerfing goddamn everything that was difficult about them. That was the day the music died.
    I really loved the difficulty of the 5-mans early on, but they really did take too long (the shortest one took about 1.5-2 hours if you were still gearing up). It ultimately made it really hard to get enough people geared to do the raids, since really people could only do 1-2 5-mans per day. I'd have rather seen them shorten them up but kept the difficulty.

    I've posted it here before, Draegan is right about the class devs being incapable of managing what started as a pretty cool soul system. I didn't make it to the AAs patch (just got 1/2 way through HK as the main rogue tank in one of the top 5 guilds) before their quickly-swinging pendulum of class balance plus a lack of enjoyable things to do outside of raids drove me away.

    They also did a very poor job of mixing PVP and PVE balance, ultimately screwing over both by balancing them together. I honestly don't know why abilities don't have two separate functions for PVP and PVE in every MMO (e.g. "Snaring Bombs - PVP, slows target down by 50% for 2 seconds and deals 150+2x Str. PVE slows target down by 75% for 25 seconds and deals 150+3x Str"). That would be the easiest way to balance things without fucking it up for either side.

  7. #7
    Registered User Devnull's Avatar
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    Especially agree with the comment on the over usage of token systems in MMOs. Some thoughts other than the standard content issues:

    - Bland and uninspired visual style and effects.

    - Gamebryo engine with terrible animation clipping and spell effect culling at launch. Also no AA.

    - Split player factions

    - The dynamic rift event tech was reduced to a repetitive grind because Trion was afraid that players would whine about their gameplay being interrupted by it.

    - Limiting souls by class. There should not have been 4 base classes and players should have been allowed to unlock all the souls in the game through various methods. Epic questlines to unlock souls would have been fantastic.

    - The skill bloat at launch was unbelievable. Of course there will be some redundant skills with the soul system, however there should have been an active skill limit in place or some other mechanic to limit redundancy. You'd have 10 line macros full of skills that you just spammed. Again, if all souls were available to all players, they could have had souls much more focused and not had to include the full gamut 1-50 abilities in each soul.

    - Felt like the game tried to be everything. The PVP matches felt tacked on and were extremely frustrating and the classes were not well balanced for battleground style PVP. Why even have it? The spontaneous would pvp was pretty fun on its own.

    Edit: Here's a macro that was common at launch.

    #show crushing blow
    suppressmacrofailures
    cast massive blow
    cast frozen wrath
    cast sanction heretic
    cast lightning hammer
    cast bolt of radiance
    cast crushing blow
    cast bolt of judgment
    cast vex
    cast jolt
    cast glory of the chosen
    cast fated blow
    Last edited by Devnull; 12-02-2013 at 08:20 PM.

  8. #8
    Registered User Thengel's Avatar
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    It didn't.
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    I wouldn't say Rift failed exactly, but it certainly wasn't as big success.

    To me the game failed to have a "killer" feature, it was just an extremely well done average at everything game. I prefer a game that has a few memorable features, and a few bad ones than something that is just forgettable in almost every ways.

    The rift, invasions and zone events were the only memorable thing about the game...but as people said they were nerfed because people found it interfered too much with their questing.

    It could have been a great game, but ended up being just good enough.

  10. #10
    Registered User Tol's Avatar
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    For me personally, it was because it was absolutely indistinguishable from wow at launch. I throw the term 'wow clone' around a lot, but holy shit this felt more like wow than any game I've ever played, right down to the aesthetics and game engine. There were rifts, yeah, but I was pretty much over that from WHO already. The class system was supposed to be its big thing, but at launch every class had like 1-2 viable builds, with a lot being broken to the point of feeling mandatory. It kind of came down to it feeling like "why the fuck am I not just playing wow? There's more content, I have more invested in it, and this game feels completely the same but will probably die soon."
    Last edited by Tol; 12-02-2013 at 08:35 PM.

  11. #11
    live it! live it! an accordion's Avatar
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    Skill bloat - already covered.
    Terrible questing system - walking into town and seeing five exclamation marks above NPC's heads is very tedious.
    Uninspired WoW clone design for no reason - dual factions, exact same bag system, tons of skills that are the exact same (though to be fair they had at least some creative ones).
    Movement and response time of button presses was inferior to WoW.

    I think the last two can be applied to pretty much every failed MMO and several upcoming ones too.
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  12. #12
    Administrator Draegan's Avatar
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    Out of that whole post you saying "exact same bag system" made me laugh. Damn trion for copying their bag system!

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    As someone who has come back to RIFT a few times, and tried a different focus (PvE, PvP, finally Raiding ewww) I think I can throw my opinion into the hat:

    Graphics horribly optimized - I'm still getting 15 FPS in the new Dendrome fae town, just for example (other MMOs I get 60-144FPS to match my refresh rate)

    Soul system could have been much more - epic quests to unveil new ones, no restrictions no classes. They neuter even the current one. On my mage, I found a neat build that would let me get two passive skills to reduce my pet's GCD by .5, so it effectively had a 0.5 GCD. Was fun as hell, and still not top DPS but nope, that and everything else was nerfed. If you didn't dump all 61 points into one soul, you were gimped. Sooo...whats the point?

    Raiding - I tried once again with the FoH board guild, and dreaded logging on for raiding. I think I stopped logging in when we had to do a twin fight or something, and it was 10 minutes of boredom, and when the boss was at 5% or something, he'd do an attack that took 2 people to nullify it. Whether it was lag or them failing, we'd fail and get one shotted. So dull!

    AA system - I remember in EQ, loving when my shaman got the disease based root AA that was a knockback. It was so fun rooting things normally magic immune, and knocking bosses back! In Rift we literally get 100s of AA levels of just +0.0005% dps or something (ie +1 vengeance when I already have 1500). /yawn

    PvP - It had its moments, but when I came back a month or so ago, almost noone died. Everyone played range, even warriors. It was just a low scoring heal fest and dull as hell. Gear used to be almost raid quality so it helped in PvE, but they nerfed that too. Why?

  14. #14
    Registered User Neki's Avatar
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    To be honest, I enjoyed Rift at release

    The 5 man instances were challenging and boss mechanics were well done even though some were a bit buggy (yes I am looking at you, Caelia the Stormtouched. Fuck her stupid lightning animation)

    The first raid instance (Greenscale's Blight) was fun too. Infiltrator Johlen was a cool fight as was Oracle Aleria.

    When they nerfed the 5 mans, it just got boring fast and I lost interest along with many other people in the 'casual forum guild

    /salute Embers of Heaven

    Apart from EQ and WoW, Rift was one of the few MMO that I've played for more than a couple of months
    Last edited by Neki; 12-02-2013 at 09:03 PM.

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    I thought Rift had a million+ subscribers at launch (edit: was a million accounts, not necessarily subscribers or box sales)? It just became a ghost town shortly thereafter, and I don't remember anything else big launching that summer after Rift, only SWTOR in December.

    People here and elsewhere I have seen describe the game as soulless, and it really was. It still is. I mean, it had decent enough - and different enough - lore behind it, but the major heroes and villains just didn't resonate like, say, Antonia Bayle or Uther the Lightbringer or Mayong Mistmoore. It was like, Asha Catari, who gives a shit? Just another exclamation point.

    I played the shit out of it that summer, and still play a bit even to this day, but to me it is just a placeholder until something else comes along. Hard to put my finger on what's missing; I do feel for sure that the endgame grinds - for faction, currencies, what have you - are pretty fricking serious and feel more like work than fun little diversions.

  16. #16
    Tiger Roach Nija's Avatar
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    Bro, do you even Rift?

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    Registered Smurf Selix's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Big W Powah! View Post
    Rift failed for the same reason Vanguard failed; At the last minute, they went back on their shit and made it a quest-grind WoW clone. Rift in beta, while the core systems were the same, as much more about fighting off invading planar forces. I did all of like 4 quests outside the tutorial in Rift beta, the rest I went rift/invasion hopping.

    Little Timmy Casual bitched about not being able to complete his quests and Hartsman & Co. caved. Fuck them for it. I don't know about rift in its current state, but seriously, fuck Trion for what it became on release day. I know Scott used to frequent these boards, and probably still lurks. To him I say; This isn't a shot at you or your company directly, just a passionate fan disappointed in what happened. I had huge hopes, and was let down. So much so I barely made level 30. I can safely say that Rift had the biggest potential of the games released recently.
    I'm with this guy. PvEvEvP rift farming was where it was at for me. I didn't care about quests (Although a hero quest/solo quest line for story would have been fine) but the rest of the time I wanted more involved and more creative massive Rift farms. PvPvZ. GvGvZ and so on. I wanted rift farming to start at one zone, flow throw multiple levels to a boss, and move right into the next zone. I wanted multiple zone objectives that many teams could participate in to change the overall outcome of the Rift events in different ways. Small teams could target certain high value/hard objectives and zerg groups could rush obvious areas for general rewards. Even a few scattered solo objectives around the zones. Overall event rewards determined by overall cooperation, achievement and progress. Maybe the at certain levels if the overall players were to effective the enemies would get smarter about smashing you in between them and so on.

    Guilds/raids could all be focusing on hard side objectives for high value risk/rewards goals and racing against each other while the zerg in the middle does it's thing and everyone in the zone gets to participate in the whole process while seeing the best of the best go at it and earn bragging rights.
    MWS Natural "As an online discussion grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving black people approaches 1."

  18. #18
    Tiger Roach Nija's Avatar
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    I didn't play because I played a Bard in beta and they nerfed the everloving shit out of that class before launch. Over-reaction like that really puts me off.

  19. #19
    Registered User Bacon's Avatar
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    It certainly wasn't the WoW killer it was hyped to be. Since switching to F2P and available on Steam, it's seen a flood of players. Whether folks stick around (probably not) is yet to be seen. I jumped in for a bit and I had a good time with friends. It's not the second coming, but free is in fact free - without all the "want feature x? then fucking sub, cunt!" that swotor bombards you with.

    I personally enjoy theorycrafting and making that "perfect build." More and more MMOs are leaning towards the casual cookie cutter classes unfortunately. If I can play this without a sub for a while until something new to this genre finally comes along, why not? I had heard reports that their numbers have been at their highest since the game's initial release. I know with it F2P that's not saying much. Looks like they're making some moola, because the latest State of the Game Address looks optimistic.

    I'm sure my rose tinted glasses will fade, and I'll discover it for the piece of shit that it is. At least I won't be wasting money on a box or sub fees. /shrug

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    My DicK is BlacK TecKnoe's Avatar
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    never tried this, getting a new PC have an itch for an MMO whats the most OP class i just wanna rape shit.
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