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Images from the Rift Storm Legion Tour October 22, 2012

Posted by Wilhelm Arcturus in entertainment, Rift.
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Like some other bloggers, I was invited by Trion to go on a tour of the Storm Legion expansion.  Keen and SynCaine (can you imagine?) both have posts up about the tour already, and I expect more will pop up soon.  I will link them here when I find them. (Keen has his Part 2 up now, and MMO Gamer Chick has her tour reports under way as well.)

So for 90 minutes on Sunday afternoon, ending when it was about time to get ready for the Giants/Cards game, James
“Elrar” Nichols from the Rift community team showed me around the Storm Legion expansion.

And at the end of that, I have to ask myself, “What do I say?”

How do I sum up or expand upon what I was shown and what has already been announced?

“More” is probably the best word, because there is more of everything.  More souls, more levels, more dungeons, more raids, and more places to explore (each of the two new island has more landmass than the original game).

Quests are supposed to be “more” organic to the environment.  They are trying to step away from the hub to hub approach and put more out the field for players to find.

And there is “more” to keep you occupied when not adventuring, mostly in the form of Dimensions.

Dimensions are Rift’s version of housing.   Rift Junkies has a good intro to them.  You can have your own chunk of the world to call your own and decorate.  The level of freedom to do this is very broad.  You have EverQuest II levels of freedom (and more) to manipulated items in your dimension, as well as being able to open it up to the public for visitors.

And while the initial dimension you get… and you are handed a dimension pretty much as soon as you are done with the initial tutorial stage of the game, which is a great move and part of what made EQII housing so big… is pretty small, there are some huge ones out there.  We were in one that was basically all of the town of Granite Falls.

I think the only thing they are missing is a carpenter-like furniture crafting trade skill.

Anyway, while I could dribble on for a while about details that have been better documented elsewhere, I am just going to go with visuals.  The visuals are great, and my screen shots do not do them justice, but they will give you a taste.  Some of the places, like the raid instances, I will probably never see in game.  There are also some of the interesting Dimensions we visited among the shots.

I am including thumbnails of all the pictures after the cut so you can pick out and examine individual screen shots at your leisure.

If you have any questions, I will try to answer them.

I want to thank James and the team at Trion for inviting me.  The expansion looks great.  I hope it gets all the success it deserves.

And it is coming our way on November 13th… which in another EverQuest II twist, also happens to be the launch date for the Chains of Eternity expansion.  There are only so many Tuesdays in a given month I suppose.

Comments»

1. SynCaine - October 22, 2012

James was a busy man this weekend.

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2. Wilhelm Arcturus - October 22, 2012

@SynCaine – Indeed. And he has an expansion to ship pretty soon, with all the fun that no doubt goes with that!

Site note: WordPress.com has changed… again… how thumbnail galleries work. You can click on the thumbnails, but that doesn’t get you to the full sized version of the picture, but it does put you on a page with a link to the full size version.

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3. RimeCat - October 22, 2012

What is your overall opinion on the character and NPC models? I was seriously considering ordering the expansion until I saw the cover art. I’m not interested in dropping back a few decades into horny teenager land.

Did they give you any insight into the general tone of the quests? Do they build a story arc or are they just experience on the hoof?

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4. Wilhelm Arcturus - October 22, 2012

@RimeCat – Well, I cannot recall anybody as scantily clad as the horrible image they decided to use for the Storm Legion cheesecake pose. Seriously, what was the thought process (or lack thereof) there?

Overall, I’ve seen better character models I suppose.

The playable races are limited, and if you want a good looking human you have to go Guardian. (But I didn’t like the guardian starter area in beta, so now I have a gray Eth humanoid, a race of shy accountants, and purple Kelari and Bahmi, which are like Violet Beauregarde before and after she started swelling in Willy Wonka.)

The NPCs are fine, since you’re either talking to them or killing them.

Each zone has a series of quests that are part of a story line in that zone. They are clearly marked as such (They say “Story” and have a gold background) so you can follow just those if you want. There is an ample supply of side quests as well. But if you wanted to mentor down and soak up lore to get the story of a zone you might have bypassed, you can do that.

There is an over-arching storyline that comes from quests that start at the capital cities and culminate in the final zone, Stillmore… which I gather got that name because you might have hit the level cap, but there was “still more” story to go.

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5. RimeCat - October 22, 2012

Thanks Wilhelm. I should have provided some context. I played Rift from the beta until about six months ago and have a stable of level 50 Guardians (never finished the Warrior, but otherwise…). I agree, though, the Defiant starting experience is generally better.

It sounds like they replicated the base game NPC design and zone-based story system.

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6. pkudude99 - October 22, 2012

Hey! I like my Eth! And my Bahmi have the BEST animations! But yeah, the Kelari, don’t do it for me.

As it is, I mostly play Guardian anymore, but even there the dwarves don’t “do it” for me either, so my Guardian characters are all human or elf. Well… I would say that if I actually had played since last December…. which I haven’t. But I think I will do the $100 for a year deal they’re offering. Soon ™

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