Rift’s next big expansion is just weeks away with Starfall Prophecy set to launch this fall. There are no new souls or callings this time, but Starfall Prophecy is probably shaping up to be one of the biggest expansions the game’s yet seen. We met with Julia Adams-Esgrow at PAX West 2016 and got a solid first look at the new zones and systems coming to Telara.
Here’s a quick recap of the main features, for those interested:
- INCREASED LEVEL CAP: 70
- LEGENDARY POWERS
- NEW ZONES
- NEW DUNGEONS
- NEW RAID
- PLANAR ASSAULT ADVENTURES
- FORTRESS SIEGES
- LOOKING FOR RAID
- INDIVIDUAL REWARD SYSTEM
- ACTIVE UPGRADES
- ETERNAL ITEM RARITY
- PLANAR FRAGMENTS
There are five new zones to be exact, and they’re all massive – taking place on an asteroid hurtling through the sky towards Telara. You, the heroes of Telara, are there to Bruce Willis the thing and stop Ahnket from piloting the thing straight through the heart of your home. Only this time, there’s no Aerosmith earworm of a song to make you cry… at least I don’t think there is. I didn’t ask Julia.
Ahnket is the destroyer of worlds. Her comet, the setting of this expansion is comprised of several chunks of other worlds – the Plane of Fire and the Plane of Life, which she’s already passed through. There’s a main quest hub and sort of smaller city called Alittu where you start off and where you’ll take a break between fighting off the denizens of the comet.
The Scatherran Forest is where things kick off, from level 65 t 66. Then you’ll move to the Gedlo Badlands for level 67, Xarth Mire for 68, and into Ashenfell for 69-70 until finally winding up in the Tenebrean Schism at level 70. The final zone won’t open until post-launch, as it’s kind of like the Ember Isle of this expansion and also where the main raid against Ahnket will take place.
Of the new zones, we got a peek at Scatherran Forest and Gedlo Badlands, while Julia wanted to save Xarth Mire and Ashenfell for a late preview. Scatherran Forest, as you’d expect is really lush and verdant in its decor. But what’s interesting is that the comet itself, along with remnants of past civilizations litter the landscape. It’s at once beautiful and organically green and cold, dark, and metallic with electro-structures cropping up out of the ground.
Gedlo Badlands is pretty much the place I’d call home. Sure it’s all fire, rocks, and desert, but it’s also home to the goblins and a benevolent collection of Kobolds in need of a hand since they got stuck there on a pilgrimage when the comet tore their battlefield from the Plane of Fire. You’ll join the leader of the Kobolds, Cyril the Champion, in helping them ascend to a higher plane. It’s a zone where you help dog-people. I’m in.
We also briefly touched on the Tenebrean Schism, and the Tower of Ahnket itself. In short, Julia expects the 10-man content here to be some of the hardest the game’s ever produced… but to make sure everyone can play it they’re introducing their own Looking for Raid grouping tool and a much weaker version of the Tower so that all Telarans can see the story unfold. You’ll still get rewards, but nothing nearly as powerful as the folks doing it at full difficulty.
There are a load of other features also coming in to help progression of your characters past the level 70 cap. From the new Eternal Items players can work to find, to the Active Upgrade system which lets you complete challenges across Telara and the comet in order to level up your weapons, it’s more than just Planar Attunement at the end-game in Starfall Prophecy (though that’s still very much a part of the game too). There’s also the Planar Fragment system, which will act something akin to the Wardrobe System. You’ll find Planar Fragments and equip them into your weapons and armor to customize them to fit your statistical needs.
There’s a whole lore more to explore of Starfall Prophecy, and we hope to get a hands-on preview of the expansion’s dungeons and systems in the coming weeks. Until then, what say you… will you be making the trip back to Rift for the expansion?