Saturday, June 4, 2011

Rift, Level 50 PvP

I'm going to be blunt: This is a disaster!

But listen to my story. Some weeks ago I created a Warrior in Rift. His name was Geneslav. Geneslav was to be a two-handed weapon guy. I already wrote about him a few days ago.
I had problems with the heavy reaction-based gameplay and I solved it by writing macros. Now, these macros were damn powerful. I can honestly say that I won about 80% of BGs. I rocked the statistics even when we lost. Except for a few rogues, who could kill me in stunlock, a few clerics, who could out-heal me and a few good mages with more cooldowns up than me, I was an unstoppable killing machine. I entered BGs that seemed lost and by asking a healer to focus on me, I killed the entire Guardian camp on my own. You don't believe me? Well, I don't blame you. But believe me this: I made a difference, it was fun, even though a bit absurd at times. And sometimes, before the battle started, my enemies would yell: "It's Geneslav again!".
I'm not saying that this is how it should be. I was obviously having an unfair advantage. Anyway ..

This ended abruptly at level 50 and it wasn't unexpected. I knew perfectly well that it would be hard as a melee to survive when you were missing any valor (=resilience). But what actually happened, was much, much worse.
Instead of a 1.600 crit, I suddenly crit for about 900 on most enemies. That means that anybody being healed would suddenly be impossible to kill, let alone healers. On top of that, the enemies healed for much more! And I died much, much faster! I was basically acting as cannon fodder. Geneslav, the hero of the level 1-49 BGs, suddenly was a joke; a sad joke.

But I don't give up that easily!
Realizing that a dps specc was hopeless, I created a tank-buff, utility specc. I would pull enemy healers into our group and root them. And I would buff my group with all sorts of +15% casting speed, +30% health, etc. Now, here's the problem: To do this buffing, I needed to hit people. And for that to happen, I needed to be in melee range. You might assume that being a tank I survived a bit longer, and yeah, about twice as long. Unfortunately, the healers just run away from me. There're all kinds of anti-slow / anti-root spells. And dieing twice as slow was still very fast.

So, I was a bit more useful than before, but I was still rather useless.
I did this for about two hours. Then I realized something else. Every BG I participated in during my two-hour lvl50 Rift PvP experience was extreme. Either they camped our graveyard, or we camped theirs. There just weren't any good matches anymore. My guess is that the extreme item progression just destroyed BG-PvP in Rift. Just like in WoW.

I loved to venture into dungeons, come out with a new weapon and then put it to use in PvP. Just like in WoW, this gameplay completely changed at level 50. And just like in WoW, at maxlvl a several weeks-long grind starts with the goal to become viable again. And just like in WoW, the more extreme the item progression the more extreme the battles.

Since Rift maxlvl PvP is a disaster, and since playing BGs was what was most fun about it anyway, I might just as well start World of Tanks. If it just weren't f2p. I can already see me looking flabbergasted at extra powerful munition .. for € .. no, thank you.


  1. You should really go ahead and try WoT. It's just a well-made pvp game which is brilliant in short to moderate bursts (exactly the match-length gameplay you just wrote you liked).

    While some of your F2P arguments may apply to it, it is entirely possible to have fun even if you choose not to support the company.

  2. Skyve, I'm actually downloading it right now. There're just no more options. No AAA-virtual worlds to be seen anywhere. Just emptiness.

    About supporting the company: I wouldn't dream of supporting the company. That might encourage it and others to add even more munition for €. If they made a separate game with a "donate button", I'd happily spend some hundred € if I like the game. But with microtransactions - no way.

    Anyway. You might see some WoT coverage on this blog soon. ;)

  3. Someone's going to try to burn me for saying this, but I'll say it anyway:

    I wish game developers would stop putting PvP in PvE based games without giving it fundamental thought just so they don't lose out on the BG-crowd. It's casters vs. melee all over and over and over again, and every time people are fooled into thinking they can meaningfully PvP in these games and complain when they realise it's the same old sausage again. Darkfall is honest about what it is. WoW, RIFT and countless others aren't.

    Pre-emptively agreed on gear scaling exacerbating the issue. Yet another reason PvE-oriented reward systems (pre-emptively agreed on those being faulty as well) don't mix well with balanced PvP.

  4. Rem, I wouldn't throw the baby out with that bathwater. I played Rift BG PvP with a mage and a warrior now. Both were ok until maxlvl. The mage could at least do something at range and would only explode when attacked. The warrior was completely useless.

    But level 1-49 was absolutely ok. And I love the concept of earning your PvP equipment in PvE.

  5. Oh, I didn't mean earning PvP equipment in PvE to be a problem, but the application of the same principle of escalating gear quality often found in PvE (not good there already) to PvP rewards (where it does even more damage).

  6. "But level 1-49 was absolutely ok."

    As long, that is, as you are on the business end of an OP soul combination, rather than the receiving end.

  7. You might be right, Roq. I played Chloromancer/Warlock as mage, which was extremely OP. But then, so was the Champion with macros.

    Actually, I also have a cleric at lvl 30 and he seems to be unable to die in warfronts, or anywhere.

    And I've met several roques who consistently killed my warrior in a stunlock if I didn't unstealth them before the opening (which is not easy, obviously).

    It could be that all callings have some OP soul combination and it's fun to play the game as long as most opponents did not chose this combination, but you did.