RIFT Launches Prime Server (Patrons Only)
As of March 7th, Trion has officially launched RIFT Prime, starting with a single server (for both NA and EU) named Vigil. For Patrons (paid subscribers) only, RIFT Prime focuses on providing players with a RIFT experience that closely aligns with the game on its original launch. Many of the free-to-play bells and whistles as well as some of the content that came out after the game went free-to-play are absent from the Prime server. The boosts, supply crates, equipment, and bags that are normally offered for microtransactions are not available for real money credits; instead, they will be offered for in-game currency. Some cosmetic items (e.g. mounts, companions, dyes, costumes) and services (e.g. name change scrolls, guild rally banners) will still be available for real money credits. These will be special credits (called Prime Credits) which must be purchased separately from the standard credits used on the other RIFT servers. RIFT Prime is not identical to launch version of RIFT, however. Many of the quality-of-life improvements and some content features will be available on Prime, such as Dimensions, Looking for Group/Looking for Raid finders, current Warfronts, and Wardrobes. Some absent features to note include Minions, Instant Adventures, and the Primalist Calling. All characters on Vigil are brand new characters that must start from level 1 and the level cap returns to 50 (as it was on launch). At the end of the Prime server’s cycle (which Trion estimates to be roughly a year, but is not set in stone), players will be able to transfer their characters to the normal servers.
While I’m personally unlikely to dive back into RIFT at this time, RIFT Prime is an extremely interesting idea. Considering how popular third-party vanilla WoW servers were for a while, I’m sure a lot of people who will be eager to explore what RIFT Prime has to offer. It’s also a bold and innovative direction to take an MMO, which is always a pleasure to see.
That wraps it up for this month. Did you participate in the TERA console open beta? If so, what did you think? If you’re a Guild Wars 2 player, have you tried out “A Bug in the System” yet? Do you think this concept of Prime (or “vanilla”) servers will catch on in MMOs? Let us know in the comments below.