Yesterday Trion launched Rift’s Bindings of Blood Tier 3 Raids, the brand new cutting edge (or bleeding) edge endgame content for Telara’s most ardent PVE players. These brand new 20-person raids will test the willpower of even the most dedicated Rift raiders, as on the PTS not a single guild was able to fell the two big bosses: Greenscale and Akylios. Trion told us that one group did manage to drop Greenscale on the PTS, but that was weeks before the final version was put in... Bill Fisher and his team are confident it’ll be a different story on the live server, but players are always surprising them.
There are some rather mysterious forces at work in Telara, and the raids send you back into the past to try and make sure that your forebears are able to bind Greenscale when he originally was cooped up the first time. It seems that someone, or some thing, is trying to alter history itself by freeing Greenscale in the past, and that would be bad news for Telara.
Originally the Greenscale encounter, and Akylios as well (the two main bosses, alongside a host of lesser henchman bosses) were going to be similar to previous raid content... but then the devs went crazy. These are brand new fights, with a huge boost in terms of difficulty. Lots of new mechanics that players haven’t seen before are present, along with some throwbacks to the old fights. Greenscale is now an eight-phase encounter, the biggest and best bosses you’ll see in the game these days.
Hypothetically, were similar, but then we went crazy... brand new fights, very difficulty. Lots of new mechanics, and throwbacks to the old fights. Greenscale is 8-phase encounter (eight stages). They went above and beyond to make these raids the biggest and best ever. The team believes that the players are skilled and ready though these days, that their core raiders are rabid and waiting. The PTS players really drove Trion to make the best raids they feel they’ve ever made.
What Bill Fisher finds really cool is the sort of builds they saw coming on the PTS from players. The Beastmaster isn’t known for his tanking, but with one specific mini-boss encounter, the Beastmaster is now the ideal tank that PTS groups found. It’s a testament, they think, to the class design and the skill of the players to think outside the box. Oh, and by the way, the raids have been tested with the 2.7 new souls, so they’re tuned and ready for the Physician and other builds to come out in a few weeks.
Now, raiders anxious to get into Bindings of Blood will need most of Tier 2’s raid set, but not necessarily all of it. You can always go in without it, but chances are you’ll get stopped by the mini-bosses. That said, T2’s raids have been made to allow Patrons to gear up faster, and of course you could always buy the T2 gear you need from the shop. Just like T1, it’s relatively pricey, but since it’s no longer “cutting edge” gear, Trion put it in the shop for those with money to spare and anxiety over seeing the new content faster.
For defeating all the new raid content, you’ll get a brand new raid set of armor, new weapons and so forth. You’ll even get awarded a new dimension themed after the raid if you manage to beat the content.
Oh, and these are not the last new raids coming to Rift, either. Rather, this is just the beginning of Tier 3. When 2.7 launches (also titled Bindings of Blood), it’ll bring with it more encounters and the four new souls everyone is eager to play with. Greenscale and Akylios can be fought now on the live servers, provided you have the 19 friends to party up with. So head back to Telara and save it from its past.
Bill Murphy / Bill Murphy is the Managing Editor of MMORPG.com and lover of all things gaming. He's been playing and writing about MMOs and geekery since 2002, and you can harass him and his views on Twitter @thebillmurphy.