The everyday blog of Richard Bartle.

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11:31pm on Friday, 8th April, 2011:

Evenings Free Again


I made it to level 50 in Rift about an hour ago. Look, here's the screenshot:

Thanks to the wonders of Rift's technology, I can also show you the video:

Having made level 50, I then spent half an hour liquidating my in-game assets prior to deleting my account. I would have deleted it there and then, but I got a congratulations from the one other player with whom I'd ever had a conversation in the game, so I thought I'd send him my stuff. I'll delete the account tomorrow, to give him a chance to pick up the mail.

My last quest actually summed up several things I found particularly tiresome about the game.

Firstly, it was one I had left over from several levels ago, but it got knocked off the top of my quest list by an automatic zone-wide quest I had no option whether or not to accept, and I'd changed zones before I noticed I hadn't attempted it.

Secondly, it involved setting fire to 6 harpy nests, which had an accompanying quest to kill 12 harpies. Only 12? Each damned nest I came with 2 or 3 harpies, I got attacked by 3 or 4 simultaneously walking between them, and even when going to hand in the quest I got into another one of those tedious attacked-by-one-then-along-comes-another sequences so that in the end Iwas standing in a pile of 4 dead harpies and then another one attacked me about 3 seconds later. I think it's supposed to be exciting when this happens, which it might be if it didn't happen with such monotonous regularity.

Thirdly, when I finally escaped the harpies and returned to town to hand in the nest-burning quest that was due to make me level 50, there was a minor invasion going on and my quest-giver (no-one else!) was being eaten by a giant scorpion. It had entered Fortune's Shore and made a beeline for him. I had to kill it and its five hangers-on and wait for him to resurrect before I could hand in the quest. Oh joy.

Fourthly, when I did hand in the quest and made level 50, another quest lit up over another guy nearby, telling me to go over to another place which I'd already found under my own steam and done all the quests from. This wasn't as bad as in Iron Pine Peaks, where I somehow managed to do the second half of the zone's main story quest line before I did the first half, so found myself running around picking up clues hinting at the existence of an ancient army that I'd already prevented from being summoned.

Lest I give the impression that I don't like Rift's design, I do actually like most of it — it's just parts I don't like. The class system is pleasantly flexible, the rifts do add something, the artefact system makes travel more interesting, it feels complete, it has some nice interface touches that the likes of WoW would do well to rip off, and Trion (the company that developed it) is very attentive. It's a bit like WoW for grown-ups.

That said, I'm glad to have my evenings back again...

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Copyright © 2011 Richard Bartle (richard@mud.co.uk).