After leaving comments on several blogs about RIFT and why I won’t be giving TRION my hard earned cash, I thought I might elaborate on these posts on my own blog. Because I still feel a bit sore after the disapointing beta-experiences.
See, I was initially pretty excited about the game. It sounded like a lot of fun and people who were already playing in the beta weren’t getting tired telling me just how awesome it is. So I went and made a player account in the hopes to get a beta-invite. Which — much to my surprise — came pretty fast.
I was impressed by the character generation. I really wish WoW would offer these kind of customization.
I spent my first RIFT-evening with two friends on Argent, a roleplaying server. That there were roleplaying servers seemed like a good sign. This first evening I really had a blast playing with my two friends. We were slowly questing our way through the first zone after the starter area. The quests themselves were run-of-the-mill, kill-ten-rats type quests. A first minor disappointment. We hoped that the quest quality would improve at higher levels. The rifts themselves were a lot of fun in the beginning but as the days passed they quickly lost their appeal, until at the end of my beta-experience I thought them downright annoying. Especially at times when I had to turn in quests, the turn-in area was overrun by Rift-creatures, and my calls for help only got me a unsympathetic “Do it yourself, noob.” Obviously I wasn’t the only one who got tired of rifts fast.
Which brings me to the community aspect of the RIFT beta — which was pretty bad: the people I encountered. When I wasn’t able to play with friends, which happened often as they were pretty tied up in workstuff at that time, I was going through a little hell. Early on I have made the mistake of telling in chat that I did not hate WoW, but liked both. WoW a little better because that was where I had my roleplaying buddies. Which was obviously the wrong thing to say.
The rabid mob immediatley tried to tear me several new orifices for daring to like WoW. This wasn’t a one time experience but happened on a regular basis. Whenever the chat turned to comparing the two games I would pipe up with my view. I don’t let myself be silenced in real life, so why should I start to let myself get silenced in a game. The reactions ranged from mild “lol” to excessively abusive attacks. RIFT seemed to bring quite a host of fanatics to the yard.
Grouping brought a few bad experiences as well. Whenever I would tell them to please not abuse the word rape, not fling around the word gay in a derogatory manner, I would get chewed out. When I let slip that I am a woman I got chewed out (“lol, girls suck at playing games, gtfo) and creepy attempts at flirting were made (Im sur u got big boobs. I like big boobs). Appealing to the GMs because of the harrassment didn’t help. Quite contrary, when I reported a bunch of players because of rp griefing I got told by a GM to not bother them with “rp crap” because they had “more important stuff to do.” Yes, that happened on a rp server. What also happened was that I was told by other players that “freaks” like me “should be locked in a house and the house then should be burned over my head.” Lovely.
And all the while TRIO’N’s GMs did nothing to help. Not ingame, and not on the forum the one time I went there and opened a thread where I complained about the abuse and GM inactivity. The thread quickly became a hate-fest, where I was told to “go back to WoW, faggot.”
And that is exactly what I did. The thread, by the way, was gone after half an hour. Maybe a mod deleted it.
My RIFT experience could be subsumed as “an underwhelming but not bad game experience that was ‘spiced up’ by the nastiest bunch of aggressive asshats I have encountered in a long while. I think, dear readers, you can understand why I am not too keen on throwing money in TRION’s direction.
I am looking forward to Guild Wars 2, though.
[EDIT]: Oh my, I totally forgot about the women’s armor. The armor for women in the game doesn’t appeal to me, because it is of the plate-thong variety. Which is a big put-off for me. My characters are resurrected, battle-hardened champions. Why would they run around in armor that is purely cosmetic and does nothing to protect them? TRION, as most MMORPG companies, caters to the “male, pre-pubescent voyeur” customer. A relic of the past, because — at least in WoW — the player base is much more feminine and diversified.
As a woman, and a roleplayer I feel slightly insulted by being stuck with skin revealing armor. If the developers cannot be arsed to design alternative, decent armor, or give the players the choice between sensible and sexy armor for both genders, they do not deserve my money.