New blog alert! Guildie and general smart guy Ellyndrial has started an MMO blog and I think you should read it! That Angry Dwarf talks about MMOs, the gaming business, and other things that make him angry.
At this point everyone, whether they play the game or not, knows that Trion iterates RIFT extremely quickly. The result, as a player, is that you get a lot of stuff thrown into the game. Most of it works, some of it works with subsequent tweaks, and a small number of additions never go anywhere. It also means that a number of features can seem oddly familiar to folks who play other MMOs. Crafting from the bank appeared shortly after SWTOR launched, and a version of large scale PvP between three factions appeared suddenly just before the launch of Guild Wars 2.
My point is that RIFT is no stranger to quickly adopting the popular features of other games. And yesterday, while starting the new Autumn Harvest event quests, I had the feeling that they had done it again, this time lifing some of the features of GW2′s “dynamic event” system. Tricky, Trion.
To be fair, RIFT has already said that they are looking making questing more interesting in Storm Legion, in large part as a response to consumer interest in Guild Wars 2. They’re introducing “Carnage” quests, which are essentially quests that you just get from being in an area or working on a task that automatically get turned in when you’re done. There have also been vague promises of less emphasis on quest hubs and more dynamic questing.
So then we come to the Autumn Harvest event that started yesterday, and the quest given by perennial fan favorite Atrophinius to “help 15 of [his] minions”. Perhaps I’m just seeing ghosts, but given that RIFT has always followed a WoW-esque style of questing tell me if this sounds familiar:
- The player is not told how to help minions, but they can run around the Harvest area and observe things that NPCs are talking about or doing.
- There are a number of ways to help minions, including killing some dudes, looting some shinys, and kicking turtles around.
- Turtle-kicking, at least, is not bound by the mechanics of tagging. Anyone who gives a turtle a kick on the way back to its den gets credit, and no one is in a party or raid group.
My experience went like so: I heard Atrophinius shouting about how his turtle-creatures had gotten loose. A few minutes later (and some distance away) I saw one of said turtles and remembering the shouting I went over to look at it out of curiosity. As I approached, a special skill popped up on my bar that allowed me to kick the turtle. I kicked it, a light bulb went on over my head, and a bunch of us had a grand time playing turtle soccer, essentially.
To me this seemed like a big departure from previous quests in RIFT, and one possibly influenced by Guild Wars 2*. I’ll be interested to see if some of this more fluid questing makes it into Storm Legion proper.
* Which means the same limitations, too — there was no communication between the turtle-kicking zerg members.