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Rift (Rift)
Trion Worlds | Official Site
MMORPG | Genre:Fantasy | Status:Final  (rel 03/01/11)  | Pub:Trion Worlds
PVP:Yes | Distribution:Download | Retail Price:Free | Pay Type:Free | Monthly Fee:Free
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Rift Column: Overwatch Keep and Piñatas

By Paul Crilley on February 24, 2012

Hello there, dear readers. The first order of business today is to congratulate Trion Worlds on their BAFTA nomination for best debut game. Quite an accomplishment. I've always dreamt about winning a BAFTA. And an Oscar, but a BAFTA first, because they're from my home country, and they're usually hosted by Stephen Fry, who seems like he might be a nice chap to have dinner with. I have a daydream where I'll win a BAFTA for best screenplay, and Stephen and I will head over to the Diogenes Club for drinks and engage in witty conversation while movie producers offer me vast amounts of money to write their movies. Although, in all likelihood, the reality would be that I'd trip on my way up to collect the award, realize it's not even for me, that I misheard the announcer, and have Stephen Fry throw me off the stage in a blind rage.

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Anyway, back to Rift.

We've started the run up to Carnival of the Ascended, and the first world event associated with it is the piñata hunt.

Those #$%@%^^ piñatas. I hear the clarion call over my speakers, hit M to check out the map, and spot one of the piñatas miles away at the other end of Silverwood. I start my trek across the land, cutting and slashing my way through goblins and satyrs and sprites, only for it to disappear by the time I get there.

Screw this. Hang on. I'm going to fire up the game again to try and catch one. You guys deserve to know what the deal is.

Success! I spotted a floating balloon icon in Overwatch Keep of all places. Maybe the Aelfwar elves are gearing up for a party. Anyway, I galloped off at speed, and snuck up the mountain to slip into the Keep undetected. Evil elves surrounded me on all sides, but I cunningly weave around them, using shadows like cloaks, becoming one with my surroundings. Basically, being a ninja.

And then in the courtyard I spot it. A floating balloon that looks like Maelforge. And someone is already there! Stabbing away at it like a kid at a birthday party all hopped up on sugar. Well no one steals my piñata. I charge forward and delve into the battle, leaping into the air and smacking that balloon as if it was the dragon god himself. The Aelfwar elves all around keep their distance, which was nice of them. I have a feeling they were having fun watching Caedryn struggling to reach the balloon. If they had cell phones in Telara, then I have no doubt a youtube video would have popped up by now.


That fox with the antlers you see in the picture? Not mine. Really.

Anyway, Caedryn eventually bursts the balloon. And what does he get for all his effort? Glass beads that I can trade in and something called "Riotous Living". The description says it allows you to "throw your gold in the air like you just don't care." I beg your pardon? Throw my gold in the air? Like I just don't care? What am I? Insane? I'll keep hold of my gold because I very much do care, thank you very much.

Anyway, task completed, I slip back out of Overwatch Keep. But as I go I stumble into Argent Glade where I find the quest giver, Loras Tivan. Loras is a bit of an optimist, you see. He still has hope that Prince Hylas's better nature can be appealed to. He wants Caedryn to head into a cave system beneath the foundations of Overwatch Keep, kill the goblin Tongue Chewer, then saw his head from his still-twitching corpse and present it to Vigoth Phar in Overwatch Keep as some kind of sick peace offering. Apparently, Hylas allows audiences to those who prove themselves worthy, so giving him a head in a box Se7en-style will appeal to the psycho in him.

I might as well. Got nothing else on for the moment, as I'm still waiting to join a group so I can complete the Profane Priests quest.

So I sneak back into Overwatch Keep (they're a bit lax with the guard patrols these guys) and find the entrance to the cave, where I slaughter a few stinking goblins before facing off against Tongue Chewer in a fierce battle of equals.

Actually, it wasn't really. He was pretty easy to kill, and Caedryn collected the head and trotted back into the daylight to present it to Vigoth Phar like an overenthusiastic kitten bringing a dead shrew home.

His response? "One goblin head? In battle, our squires decapitate these vermin until the forest runs red with goblin blood. This is nothing; a trifle. Yet, your ambition is worth some regard, I suppose. Rarely does anyone make it past our defenses. Instead of killing you, I shall listen to your proposal."

He listens, and offers to take me to Prince Hylas himself so he can consider my offer of peace. I think this is a bit of a joke on his part, because he tells me that if I stray from his side I will be torn apart by the guards. Then he proceeds to run through the Keep, with Cedryn struggling to keep up.


"Come with me if you want to live."

He leads Caedryn through the warrens and ramps of Overwatch Keep, passing wolves, mystics, satyrs, Aelfwar guards and all other kinds of Fae creatures who I'm sure would like nothing better than to rip me to shreds. He eventually leads me up to the top of a tower where Prince Hylas himself stare broodingly over the forest. He deigns to listen to my offer, then quickly brushes it aside.

"The High Elves abandoned us to serve the Vigil's Ward," he says, "but the Aelfwar remain true to our obligations, guarding the forest against the goblins. With Greenscale's magic, we can protect the forest and extend its roots across Telara."

So no dice. He then dismisses my honor guard and tells me I have to make my way out of Overwatch Keep on my own, a task that is frankly going to be impossible and will surely result in me getting killed.

So I jump over the wall instead.


"Hahaha. Stupid Hylas. Never thought I'd do that, did you? Now if I can just summon my steed to get me to a healer. I'm sure my shin bone isn't supposed to be sticking out like that."

I return to Loras with the news. He is not happy. "It seems rational approaches will not end this crisis," he says. "We must beat Hylas at his own game."

I cannot wait to see what absolutely brilliant plans he comes up with next. Offer Shylas up as a hostage? Perhaps dividing the forest into two halves? One half for them and one half for us? Or perhaps just offering to abandon Silverwood to House Aelfwar.

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Chronicles of One Telaran
Chronicles of One Telaran is a unique guide to adventuring in Rift told from the perspective of master storyteller and novelist, Paul Crilley.
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