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NYC Gamer's Day Preview

Michael Bitton Posted:
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We recently had a chance to stop by the Gamer’s Day event Trion Worlds put on here in NYC in order to check out some of the developer’s upcoming titles. I was fortunate enough to take part in a guided tour of RIFT’s first expansion, Storm Legion, during the event. From lore to gameplay to a slew of new features, this is a packed expansion, and we’re excited to share the experience with you.

The dragon Crucia has been lying in wait and secretly making her plays over the course of the original RIFT storyline, but in Storm Legion, she will finally launch her plot against Regulos and the Ascended of Telara. Crucia, of course, is the Queen of Storms, and the Storm Legion, originating from the Plane of Air, are her foot soldiers. In the events leading up to the expansion’s launch next month, players will take part in mistakenly setting her free as part of a new in-game world event and dungeon encounter.

The expansion itself is bursting at the seams with additions to the game. To start, Trion Worlds is set to triple the size of the game world with the addition of two new continents, Dusken and Brevane. The former is a corruption of the Plane of Death, whose landscapes are grim and dark. Dusken’s flora and fauna have also been subject to a sort of flesh-crafting. Encountering trees made of bone or creatures that look like they’ve been pieced together with different bits of flesh will be commonplace here.

The latter, Brevane is quite the opposite. Brevane is a corruption of the Plane of Life, and it’s here that you’ll experience nature unleashed. These zones are vibrant and colorful and feature  wild overgrowth without boundaries. It’s easy to lose yourself admiring the beauty of Brevane, but you’ll quickly be reminded by the gigantic sprawling vines strewn throughout the landscape that nature can be equally as dangerous as it is beautiful. If you’ve played the ‘Shivering Isles’ expansion pack to The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, the contrast between the two continents should be familiar.

Storm Legion also adds another 10 levels to the game, raising the cap to 60. It’s important to note that Trion Worlds has packed so much content into this expansion that it will be up to you how you attain those new 10 levels. If you’re particular to either of the two new continents, you’ll be glad to know that there’s enough content in each to get you to 60. So if you’re not into the whole death thing in Dusken, you can just as easily skip it or save it for another character.

It’s not just quest content that will get you there, either. Trion has also included seven new dungeons in Storm Legion that you’ll be able to tackle along the way. These dungeons will also be available in endgame configurations once you’re at the level cap. If you’re into raiding, there are three coming with Storm Legion, but you’ll need to gear yourself up to tackle them.

Storm Legion will also add Volan, the Colossus, to the game. Volan is an absolutely gigantic creature and facing him is reminiscent of the sort of colossi battles found in the PlayStation 2 classic, Shadow of the Colossus. Getting Volan to spawn will require a concerted effort from many players and the same is true for the actual fight. Volan is covered in armored plating that can be destroyed by individually targeting different areas of his body. Hitting Volan in unarmored areas will result in bonus damage, but he’ll be smart enough to protect his weak areas, swiping at players that get near his unarmored legs, for example. The Volan fight won’t be static, either. This creature may be big, but he is incredibly mobile. Volan will thrash his way through the zone, breaking down walls and opening up new areas for players to explore in the process. We didn’t get to see the event in person, but fans were able to get a glimpse of the fight as part of the Storm Legion trailer released during this year’s E3 2012. Basically, if you’ve ever wanted to take part in a Godzilla-style fight in RIFT, Storm Legion’s got you covered.


If all the above wasn’t awesome enough, there are also four new Souls available in Storm Legion; one for each Calling. Rogues can look forward to the versatile Tactician. Mages can jump into the fray with the melee Harbinger. Warriors can barrage enemies from afar with the Tempest. Clerics will look to close the DPS gap with the Defiler, though this hasn’t been officially unveiled yet, so we can still only speculate about the specifics of this new Soul.

Last, but certainly not least, is Storm Legion’s ‘Dimensions’ feature. Dimensions are essentially instanced player housing, but that’s really an oversimplification. Dimensions aren’t just about building your pretty little house on some pre-designated plot of land. No, each ‘Dimension’ is literally a slice of different parts of the game that players can customize in absolutely ridiculous detail.  There will be hundreds of objects available at launch to use in decorating your particular Dimension and you’ll have access to a robust set of tools that allow you to manipulate said objects in a variety of ways. You’ll even be able to place a variety of vendors or other special items such as a telescope that will change the appearance of the sky (assuming there is a sky in the particular dimension you’re working in!).  Trion is also offering script support so that players can essentially put together pre-fab scripts to generate specific creations (assuming you have the requisite items in your inventory).

There are other additions, too. For example, you’ll also find new instant adventures, Hunt rifts, a new Chronicle, capes, new puzzles, collectibles, achievements, and tons more. Storm Legion is a concerted effort on Trion Worlds’ part to give players as much of the stuff they’ve been clamoring for as possible.

The depth and breadth of the content on offer is consistent with the breakneck pace of content additions made to RIFT since the game launched and the emphasis in Storm Legion is on giving players choice. While 10 levels may not sound like much, Trion intends for these levels to progress at a slower pace so that players can take the time to really enjoy the experience and the number of ways to achieve this speaks to their desire to keep it interesting.

RIFT: Storm Legion launches on November 13 and is currently in closed beta.


Michael Bitton

Michael Bitton / Michael began his career at the WarCry Network in 2005 as the site manager for several different WarCry fansite portals. In 2008, Michael worked for the startup magazine Massive Gamer as a columnist and online news editor. In June of 2009, Michael joined MMORPG.com as the site's Community Manager. Follow him on Twitter @eMikeB