EverQuest 2, RIFT, and More MMO Update Madness This Week
It seems that MMOs new and old can’t wait to roll out shiny new content this week. Already on Monday we saw Turbine’s Dungeons and Dragons Online go live with its 16th major update. Then yesterday marked the launch of two major expansions, EverQuest II: Chains of Eternity and RIFT: Storm Legion as well as a controversial content update from Star Trek Online dubbed Season 7. And tomorrow, Star Wars: The Old Republic transforms into a free-to-play game with their 1.5 patch. (That will be no drama, right?) Let’s dive in to see what new MMO insanity awaits.
Table of Contents
- RIFT: Storm Legion
- Star Trek Online: Season 7
- EverQuest II: Chains of Eternity
- D&D Online: Update 16
- SWTOR Goes F2P
RIFT: Storm Legion Brings the Thunder
One of the few remaining monthly-subscription MMOs continues to thrive. This 18 month old title released its first major expansion on Tuesday and with it came the requisite level cap bump (50 to 60), player housing dubbed Dimensions, new class trees for all the major archetypes, plus new raids and dungeons. Basically everything you’d expect from a major expansion.
I got my hands on one of the new souls during beta. The mechanical-flavored Tactician soul for the Rogue calling added a few new twists. The core of the new soul seems to be torrents which are AE cone damage effects that come in all flavors: fire, life, death, and ice. Line up some mobs in a clump and you can spread the damage awfully quick. There is also a healing aspect to this soul and you can AE cone heal as well which is a bit sloppy in big raids, but can help if the player in the most need of health is right in front of you. There were also buffs, bolts for single target damage and machines that you can drop on the ground for AE damage or healing. The other callings got a new Air-based soul to try out as well including a death magic Priest, a battle Mage, and a ranged Warrior soul.
Another improvement I experienced was the Purpose system. It basically recommended a three soul set up with the points already assigned based on a list of play styles presented to you. For example, with my Rogue I was given a choice of about 12 different soul setups, each one designed to play just a little different. The Battle Medic appealed to me and the game locked in that spec into my character and gave me the option of dropping all my new powers onto my hotkey bar. This is great for experimenting with new play styles without having to figure out how to spec out the points optimally.
Finally, I saw the new Tower of Dawn raid at E3 earlier this year and was impressed with the scale of it. Essentially, a colossus is released and crashes through a city. In order to stop it, your raid must hack away its armor. How do you do more than bite its ankles when it’s so large? Pads are provided where players can vault into the air for different attacks. Between the size of the foe and the different phases required to beat it, the raid has epic written all over it.
Is all this enough to swallow a monthly subscription fee in a time of quality free-to-play alternatives? If you already play RIFT, then you’ll love what this expansion has in store for you. If you don’t, you won’t be seeing most of these features until late in the game.