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I never thought I'd come to regret putting major life decisions in the hands of my editor, but that time came earlier this week when I found myself marrying fellow PCG writer Chris Thursten in Rift to try and get into the Guinness Book of World Records. The good news: we made it! The bad news: we don't have enough platinum coins to buy the divorce papers from the marriage NPC so we're trapped in matrimony. Probably forever.
Trion send word that they successfully set a new record with 21,879 marriages in 24 hours. We were one of them. It was a straightforward ceremony. Vows were exchanged, rude jokes were made about Chris's height, everyone downed ten goblets and gained the "drunk" buff at the reception, then we ran naked into a leafy life rift and enjoyed the irony of watching our hippies get hugged to death by a living tree.
In fairness, there was a benefit to getting married in Rift on Tuesday. "All participating players received the unique in-game title “The Avowed,” and hopefully snapped some wedding images to share with their children" say Trion. We did snap some pics of the ceremony, which took place in Rift's special wedding instance. Here they are.
Feb 14, 2012
I'm starting to suspect that Valentine's Day is more about seasonal MMO events than it is about intimacy or affection or spending time with a loved one. At least that's what I keep telling myself.
As we reported last week, Rift are celebrating the gift card industry's happiest day of the year with an attempt to break the Guiness world record for most in-game marriages in a day. We'll be taking part: at 7.00pm GMT tonight on the European Icewatch server, Tom Senior and I will be tying the virtual knot. This is what we are actually doing with our Valentine's evening. We'd like you to join us. Please?
We'll be forming a wedding raid near the fountain on the south side of the Guardians' capital city, Sanctum. Make your way there and look for a dwarf in a tuxedo called Burt - that's me, and if I look nervous it's because I'm about to marry a colleague on what amounts to a dare.
None of this would be possible without the help of generous players who've made sure we're in a position to throw the wedding of a lifetime an afternoon. One of those players is a gentleman named Shadowsock, and he has a message for a former guildmate.
Aww. See you at 7.00pm, readers. Bring gifts. We could use a new toaster.
Got a special someone you quest with regularly in Rift? If you like it, put a ring of +1 endurance on it. Trion are angling to break the Guinness world record for most game marriages in a day on February 14. If you'd like to join in, GMs across Telara will be wandering around marrying people, or you can head to Hammerknell and Orphiel's Spire to use the new wedding instance.
But what if you accidentally marry someone before February 14? Don't worry, you can simply "purchase Divorce Papers from the Marriage Coordinator" and get married again to ensure your matrimony is counted in the world record attempt. The NPC also sells a book with "in-game matrimony and the wedding instances," so you can plan everything just the way you want it.
You'll have to get married between 9am PST / 5pm GMT on February 14 and 9am PST / 5pm GMT on February 15 for the wedding to count towards the record. Check the weather forecast beforehand. The last thing you want is an interdimensional portal raining fire golems onto your reception. Just think of the wedding photos.
Feb 3, 2012
I'll admit it. The first time a rift's tentacles came out of the sky at me, I squealed and ran like a little girl. A lot has happened in the year since that terrifying exchange. Scott Hartsman, Chief Creative Officer and Executive Producer at Trion Worlds, helps us reflect on all that's changed and reveals what might come to Rift in the next year.
It's easy to forget how much Rift has changed since the beta, especially with the nearly monthly updates and constantly evolving content. Just to list a few of the changes Scott mentions:
Five new raids debuted, for groups of both 10 and 20 players: River of Souls, Gilded Prophecy, Hammerknell, Drowned Halls, and Rise of the Phoenix.
Celebration weekends that provide a way to get your friends checking out the game easily, while adding bonuses to our esteemed subscribers.
Master Mode difficulty for one dungeon (as of the time of this writing) with more on the way soon (edit: NOTE! This post was written for translation before 1.7's release)
Alternate Gameplay Warfronts and Weekend Bonus Warfronts, Post-50 soft bracketing, PvP Rifts, and world PvP bonuses. And a new warfront entirely: Library of the Runemasters
A new world event every update, each with its own new zone event and frequently its own rifts
A new Addon system that enables creators to add some really great things to the game. From buff management, to custom layouts, to outfit management, to auctions, and countless others!
A new Costume system, giving you the ability to look like what you want to look like
A Veteran Rewards program that rewards loyal subscribers, and Ascend-a-Friend that gives us a way to say thanks when you get your friends on board
That is not even counting the hundreds of quality of life and playability improvements we’ve brought to the core game.
Scott doesn't just reflect on the last year, he also talks about all of the interesting ideas they have planned for 2012. Reading over everything really reminded me of how much Rift has to offer, and now it even offers some of it for free via Rift Lite.
Feb 1, 2012
Picture walking into the grocery store and taking a bite out of every delicious doughnut before choosing which is best for you. That freedom is the idea behind Trion World's new Rift-Lite: a free version of Rift with no time limits. Rift-Lite will unlock access to each faction's first few zones including Freemarch and Silverwood, giving anyone a taste of Rifty goodness before purchase. This isn't the first time we have seen an MMO offer it's first twenty levels for free. Last year, behemoth MMO World of Warcraft unlocked the early part of the game for players to explore and experience before committing to a subscription.
Rift-Lite takes a similar approach. You'll be level capped at twenty, but that's plenty of time to experience rifts, invasions, and of naked-dance parties in the capital city. If you start by the February 14th, you might catch a bouquet at one of the many weddings around Telara as Rift aims for a record number of weddings in-game. That is like the perfect date: free, romantic, and involving video games!
Patch 1.7 also has a number of pvp improvements and additional pve content including a Master Mode for the dungeon Caduceus Rise and a brand new two player Chronicle featuring the River of Souls. Once again, Trion continues to push out more content and more options to help players access and enjoy their game.
Feb 1, 2012
Shacknews - Steve Watts
Rift is following in the footsteps of some of its MMO brethren, offering a free-to-play option up to level 20. Titled "Rift Lite," the offering allows unfettered access to the game until you hit level 20, after which you can presumably upgrade to the full version with your character intact.
Starting today, you can access any server with Rift Lite, and all you need is a Trion account. This comes alongside the new patch, Carnival of the Ascended, which adds Ascended Weddings, better rewards in PvP, the River of Souls Chronicle, a new Master Mode dungeon, and revisions to expert dungeons and endgame equipment.
"In the past ten months, Rift has evolved at a breakneck pace, through seven massive updates that set new expectations for live MMOs, in features, in content, and in service," said Trion CCO Scott Hartsman in the announcement. "We think a Lite edition with no time limit is the best way for players to see what an amazing experience Rift continues to be."
This is identical to a recent move from World of Warcraft, which began allowing free play up to level 20 in June. More MMOs are moving towards free-to-play models, at least in part. Both Star Trek Online and DC Universe Online have made the jump completely. Star Wars: The Old Republic game director James Ohlen recently referenced Rift as an example of a successful subscription-based MMO alongside WoW.
High school reunions, terrible plays, and the trunk of a murderer's car all have one thing in common: they're places we'd rather be playing Rift. The new free mobile app from Trion Worlds brings these and other on-the-go moments a little more Rift from the convenience of your phone, with some pretty novel features.
The backbone of the Rift app is the ability to chat with your guild in real time. Browse over a list of your current characters, select one, and seconds later you can see (and respond to) what people are saying about you while you're at work. You can also see what guild members and friends are online, send them private messages, and make entries to the guild wall--an exclusive message board for your guild.
As I was chatting with my guildies today, I noticed that items and player abilities were being linked within the app. I clicked one and my phone immediately loaded up a picture, akin to the game's tool tips, showing me the item's stats, icon and designated equipment slot.
If playing games is more your thing, the Rift app also contains two mini-games that mimic scratch tickets, giving you the chance to win in-game rewards. I played a few games of each (tic-tac-toe and matching three of a kind) and earned various rewards, including crafting mats and collectible artifacts. It costs 1 token per game, and I started with six credits, but easily played 12 games thanks to the free replay bonuses given out as prizes. If you're in an extra large line at the DMV, you'll be able to scratch a few more games than that, as you regenerate one credit ever hour.
Another feature allows players to see what invasion events are happening at any given moment in Telara. So if that DMV line takes so long that you run out of mini-game tokens, you can at least see what events you're missing out on, close your eyes, and pretend you're there battling back baddies. Even better, the application has a customizable alarm system that can notify you the second an invasion strikes in a particular zone during a specified time.
Sure, MMO mobile apps may not make for the most productive work days, but this one does a great job of keeping you connected with the game world and your in-game family.
Dec 22, 2011
Shacknews - Alice O'Connor
If you've played Rift, or even its open beta, be aware that an account database of developer Trion Worlds has been hacked. While the naughty hackers have made off with personal information including addresses and dates of birth, Trion insists that, "There is no evidence, and we have no reason to believe, that full credit card information was accessed or compromised in any way."
Trion explains, "The database in question contained information including user names, encrypted passwords, dates of birth, email addresses, billing addresses, and the first and last four digits and expiration dates of customer credit cards."
"We have already taken further action to strengthen our systems, even as we, with external security experts, continue to research the extent of the unauthorized access," Trion says.
Account holders will need to change their password and security questions when they next log into Trion's website. By way of apology, Trion will then give your account an item to boost in-game gold game and, if you own Rift, three days of free game time.
Welcome to the PC Gamer Ultimate Christmas Giveaway! This is the biggest competition we've ever done: packed with peripherals, games, and exclusive items signed by some very important people. Why are we doing this? Because it's Christmas! And we love you.
The Ultimate Christmas giveaway will run until Christmas Eve. Every day we'll be posting about a new prize that's up for grabs, and you'll have 24 hours after the time of publishing to enter. Sadly, we're only able to open this competition to UK residents.
Our stockings are stuffed full of prizes today readers, because we have an astonishing 150 copies of Rift to give away. No, that is not a typo, one hundred and fifty lucky readers will win a boxed copy of Rift, complete with 30 days playtime. We gave Rift 86% back in PC Gamer UK 226, and you can read the US team's Rift review online. If you're planning to join in, why not check out the PC Gamer Rift Guild to find someone to play with?
Check inside for details of how to enter.
To enter, just answer this question:
In the game are portals to other planes that spew out monsters. Currently there are Air, Fire, Water, Earth, Life, and Death, but I want you to make up a new kind of Rift! What dimension does it connect to? What comes out?
The best, funniest and most creative answers will win a copy of Rift. If you win, you'll get a private message via the forums. Let us know your address and we'll send you your prizes shortly after Christmas. Remember, this competition is open to UK readers only. Also, if you don't claim your prize within three weeks of being notified we'll offer it to someone else. Full terms and conditions can be found here.
Good luck everyone!
Rift's new Instant Action feature lets high level players form a group and embark on dynamically generated quests. Each task will scale in difficulty depending on the size and strength of the group. Form one large enough and you'll be staving off hordes of enemies and wading through oceans of shiny new loot. It's an interesting way to use the tech behind Rift's dynamically generated portal invasions, and is just the latest in a huge rush of new monsters and zones that the devs have recently added.
Starting an Instant Action campaign will immediately teleport your party to Stillmoor or Shimmersand where the fighting begins. It's a feature that Trion have been planning to add for a while, but they wanted to let the dust settle after the launch of the huge 1.6 update recently that added the Ember Isle zone. The developers seem determined to keep on throwing out massive updates and continual improvements on a regular basis, which is why Rift is one of the few MMOs left still charging a monthly subscription fee.