It’s been very interesting watching the new footage and information that have been coming out from E3 about Rift: Planes of Telara. I have been half-watching this game since it was called Heroes of Telara and only had a tech demo to its name a year ago. Then, as now, I am impressed by the graphics – among the closest to my idealized fantasy style as I’ve seen to date – and the notion of events that change the world around you, villages that can be destroyed, rifts that send different enemies out into the world each time and whose rewards grow greater with every warrior that steps up to fight the threats involved.
Of course, a year ago ArenaNet was executing some radio silence on Guild Wars 2, and has since resurfaced with a fairly comprehensive description of their own dynamic events (among other things). While I am still very interested in R:PoT, it has fierce competition for my heart in GW2, in which I have a fair amount of commitment invested in the lore and inhabitants of that MMO universe. Neither game has revealed a release date, though it is probably safe to say we won’t see either until 2011. I can only hope that with both games promising a new kill-ten-rats-free game mechanic that gamers have been craving for some time now, there is enough room in the MMO-verse for both to satisfy their respective fans, and perhaps get more than a few to cross over between the two (an easier accomplishment than with other games since GW2 will not require a subscription).
Surprisingly, I feel that Rift is not getting the magnitude of exposure that it seems GW2 has drawn, and I do wonder why that is, since Rift does have some impressive names to call from its roster, including Scott Hartsman. I often hear comparisons drawn between GW2 and SW:TOR, but we may be looking at a Power Trio to hit the MMO world in 2011 rather than the duo folks have been discussing. At any rate, I look forward to seeing more of Rift in the months to come. It certainly is a gorgeous game, and due to its fantasy setting is easily my second choice for MMO investment before the sci-fi Old Republic.
*I have corrected the game title for Rift: Planes of Telara; as pointed out to me, it is the Planes that are plural, not the Rifts.