My return to RIFT has been a rocky road. Although I love the game, I've major issue with PvP post level 50. This is a lengthy bit of feedback I've presented to Trion in hopes that someone important will read it. Please take this with a grain of salt and realize that I'm a gamer. I'm not posting this to be mean, rude, or confrontational. I truly want RIFT to succeed and I believe these suggestions might help. Here's the feedback:
I've got to say, honestly and without prejudice, RIFT has some of the worst PvP I've ever participated in. RIFT PvP focuses on the worst aspects of PvP found in other MMOs. I'm going to list the major issues found in RIFT PvP by comparing it to other games. This is not to insult Trion's work, but to illuminate these problems with pertinent examples and comparisons.
1) Gear is far too important; specifically valor.
A PvP focused stat sounds great on paper. It’s a way to keep PvEers at a disadvantage if they don’t PvP at all, and it’s a good way to meter someone’s progress through PvP. In practice; however, valor makes the prestige ranks all about gear. This creates a gear gap between levels. A player that leveled up in prestige with everyone else is fine. His competition was usually close to his level, matches were relatively even, and warfronts weren’t runaway victories or losses. A new or returning player is faced with insanely powerful opponents that can not only negate most of a new player’s damage, but also one or two-shot the new player. That’s a problem that mainly centers around the way valor operates.
Resilience in World of Warcraft caused a similar issue. Players stacked with this stat are just more resistant to other players. A gamer that hit 85 first and has more time to play is going to murder a fresh 85 with no gear. Fortunately though, a fresh 85 can turn to crafting to help. Crafting professions can make an entire set of gear that offers a decent amount of resilience. By spending a little gold, a fresh 85 can have a little hope in starting their PvP journey/grind for PvP season gear. Since RIFT relies on prestige ranks, this option isn’t really viable to the player. All possible gear options, and enhancements, would and are restricted by rank. That’s unfortunate for both the R1 player and the R8 one. Perhaps, a scaled back rate of valor would be better. For example, the R1 set has 10 valor, the R2 set has 12 valor, the R3 set has 14 valor, etc. Keeping the valor numbers closer together through the ranks would make the gear mean less. Players would still get upgraded stats, especially normal stats, while earning a little PvP valor as they go.
Continue reading on StoneCauldron for a different format.
2) PvP Rifts use a poor system and reward the unopposed.
I’m on a PvE server. There’s a reason for that. I don’t enjoy uneven and unwanted fights. PvP Rifts are a neat way to introduce more open-world PvP, but they were built in a simply stupid way. Aside from taking a big dump on the lore of RIFT, PvP rifts ruin zones when they happen. Keep in mind that this is from a PvE server perspective. There are several issues with PvP rifts. Raid rifts are never opened as raids anymore. When a PvP Rift is open, the questing area is destroyed. They serve no PvP purpose considering one side usually goes unopposed; it’s just free favor and prestige for a group of players. That’s not PvP.
Regrettably, Trion wants people to PvP rift more than warfront. Huge bonuses accompany doing very little in a PvP rift while warfront favor and prestige was greatly reduced. Not to mention, the exploiters of these PvP rifts seem to have gotten off pretty easily. One player wrote on the official forums that Trion told him that it wasn’t that big of an issue (this player had supposedly copied and pasted a Trion email). It said, “We do not consider this to be an extremely malicious and/or egregious exploit” (forum post). That made me cringe.
I would remedy this issue by removing PvP rifts and reintroducing them in an RvR lake akin to Warhammer Online’s. Keep your PvP out of your PvE zones. Although this won’t ensure competition between the factions, it would up the odds if other quests, objectives, and WAR-like opportunities were introduced alongside the PvP rift.
Continue to PvP, the gear gap and poor PvP in RIFT, part 2