Archive for March 2011

MMORPG Info Logo The Classes and Souls

Part Three of the Getting Started with RIFT series exclusively available on MMORPG Info.

“In the Ascended class system, Soul Attunement is the player’s ability to commune with the souls of Telara’s honored dead and gain their powers and abilities. Each Calling has a unique selection of Souls that can be embraced by the player, providing nearly endless opportunity to discover the path that’s right for them!”
RIFT – Classes & Callings

There are four classes:

  • Cleric
  • Mage
  • Rogue
  • Warrior

Rogues and Mages are focused on DPS, Clerics on Healing abilities and Warriors are your Tanks, although there is generally one or two souls per class that focus on other abilities.

There are eight base souls per class and one purchased soul per class which requires 2,500 PvP favor.

Cleric Mage Rogue Warrior
Cabalist Archon Assassin Beastmaster
Druid Chloromancer Bard Champion
Inquisitor Dominator Bladedancer Paladin
Justicar Elemental Summoner Marksman Paragon
Purifier Necromancer Nightblade Reaver
Sentinel Pyromancer Ranger Riftblade
Shaman Stormcaller Riftstalker Void Knight
Warden Warlock Saboteur Warlord


The militant orders gird themselves in chainmail, and march into close combat wielding heavy, two-handed warhammers, or a simple combination of mace and shield. The more arcane priesthoods, meanwhile, wear cloth vestments, brandishing symbols of spiritual power such as staves, tomes, and totems.

The primary healing clerics are the Purifier, Sentinel and Warden. The Cabalist, Druid, Inquisitor and Shaman are offensive clerics with good DPS. The Justicar is a perfectly viable tank. Druids are a pet class.

The Cleric PvP soul (only obtainable by earning favor in PvP) is the Templar.


The art of weaving magic does not favor heavy armors that distract the senses and restrict movement. Though the Mage’s traditional light cloth robes leave their bodies vulnerable, their mind is their true bulwark. Mages employ a variety of arcane items such as staves, wands, tomes, and totems to focus their spell-casting. In addition, many Mages protect themselves in close combat with a simple edged weapon such as a dagger or short sword.

All of the Mages have some DPS but the offensive callings are listed as Elementalist, Necromancer, Pyromancer, Stormcaller and Warlock. Archons and Dominators act as a buffing/support class. Chloromancer is the only Mage which has a focus on healing. Elementalists and Necromancers are pet classes.

The Mage PvP soul (only obtainable by earning favor in PvP) is the Archmage.


Rogues prefer simple leather armor, leaving them unencumbered to move stealthily and make swift escapes. In close combat, a Rogue wields a light-weight sword or dagger in each hand. Never the sort to give up an advantage, many Rogues have also mastered the art of ranged combat with bows and firearms.

Assassin, Bladedancer and Nightblade are sneaky close-range rogues. Marksman, Ranger and Saboteur offer ranged DPS. Riftstalker is a toe-to-toe melee rogue for tanking. The Bard is a buffing class and strongest in a group. Rangers are a pet class.

The Rogue PvP soul (only obtainable by earning favor in PvP) is the Infiltrator.


Warriors are melee fighters who rely on heavy plate armor for protection as they close with their opponents. Many augment their armor with large, sturdy shields built to deflect even the fiercest blow. Others forgo this extra protection, wielding massive axes, swords, and glaives to cut a swath through their enemies.

Paladin, Reaver, Void Knight and Warlord are the traditional tanks. Beastmaster, Champion, Paragon and Riftblade offer more DPS. Beastmasters are a pet class.

The Warrior PvP soul (only obtainable by earning favor in PvP) is the Vindicator.

Next: Character Interface and Statistics


MMORPG Info Logo Secret World: A Update

Back in October, we talked about the newly announced MMO Secret World, produced by FunCom. The game has been in development for nearly 5 years, but as the new trailer today revealed, this game will certainly be worth the wait. This video was unveiled at GDC 2011 (Game Developers Conference), and shows off some of the beautiful tech and features of the game.

The new website for Secret World features a few more features than the old teaser site, with a full blown media section with many different images and videos to look at. There is also some more information regarding the premise and setting of Secret World, especially the different factions and enemies you can find in the world of the game.

As for gameplay itself, a couple of videos as well as a section of the website deal with the point-based nature of the gameplay. The forums certainly seem to be blooming as more users pour in. The Secret Societies test still exists and is still the most interesting method of signing up to become a possible beta tester.


MMORPG Info Logo Online Universities – Valve

Source: Guide to Online Schools



MMORPG Info Logo MicroVolts

Third person action shooter, a phrase which makes most gamers instantly think of Gears of War or the upcoming Space Marine, is not a genre you usually expect to hear about for MMOs. This is why I had to look twice to believe it when I read about Microvolts. Microvolts is the new MMO third person action shooter made by the oddly named Rock Hippo Productions Ltd. The game features dated (but cute) cartoon graphics and went into open beta on the 10th of March. You can sign up to take part in the beta by going to

The concept of the game is certainly original: a world similar to our own has been deep in a secret war, a war for the most important of resources… a war for batteries. The toys have been at war for years over this lifeline, as well as for dominance of the MicroWorld. In the game, you play one of these toys in what is certain to be chaotic, fast-paced shooting. The game has great variety, with many weapons (including a chainsaw, for when you need to disassemble an inferior toy!), as well as many customization options and ingenious and funny character voices. [More…]


MMORPG Info Logo RIFT Factions

Part Two of the Getting Started with RIFT series exclusively available on MMORPG Info.

There are two factions in RIFT: The Guardians and the Defiant. You can not be in a group nor a guild with a member of the opposite faction. There is no means to change faction, no “betrayal” quest or similar. You must choose your faction at character creation and there is no way to change faction once you have chosen. The races are limited by faction. All the callings and souls are available regardless of the faction chosen.

Both the Guardians and the Defiant are focused on protecting Telara from the death god Regulos. However, both factions fear that the other faction is making things worse and so they war upon each other as a necessary part of saving the world.

On PvP servers, the conflict between the factions are a free-for-all, although the capital cities and key areas are defended by guards who will kill the opposing factions on sight. On PvE servers, the primary meeting point for factions is in instanced areas, Warfronts, which are similar to the battlegrounds in World of Warcraft. The Warfronts have a specific objective, for example holding possession of an item over time or capturing and holding a specific area from the opposition. Each faction gains points as they accomplish specific goals.



MMORPG Info Logo Getting Started with RIFT

Part One of the Getting Started with RIFT series exclusively available on MMORPG Info.

RIFT is a fantasy MMORPG from Trion Worlds. The game is based in the world of Telara which is recovering from the Shade War, including the damage done by a huge magical explosion.

The after-effects of this explosion include mysterious rifts – doorways from other planes – which allow dangerous beings to enter the world. The Telarans are struggling against these attacks but unfortunately the resistance is split into two factions, the Guardian and the Defiant, with different beliefs and conflicting methods for protecting Telara.

Official Sites

Fan Sites and Wikis

Character Builders

Next: RIFT Factions


MMORPG Info Logo Ghost Towns

There are many things about Lord of the Rings Online I really like. Then there is the housing, which I do not. Focusing on the positives: you can have a house. This obviously is an upgrade on games like World of Warcraft and Warhammer Online, where you cannot have a house.

That is pretty much the list of good things done.

The first problem is that while you can own a house, you cannot own two. All your characters have to share the same house.

I have five characters in the game, covering each race, but they all have to share the same Hobbit hole. Frankly, my Elf does not want to live in a Hobbit hole, certainly not one also inhabited by a Dwarf. I play on a Roleplaying server; if the topic of ‘where you live’ ever comes up in conversation, the Elf may have to depart to the Grey Havens to avoid the shame.

The second problem is size.

My Hobbit hole is a basic model, which allows me to slot two pieces of large furniture and no huge furniture at all. I do have other slots in which I can put chairs, small boxes and paintings, but as far as real furniture goes, two bits is the absolute limit. This covers items such as beds, tables, the large kegs of beer I can cook (don’t ask), the Stuffed Warg I had made and so forth. Unfortunately, I cannot really fit a single bed in a house shared by five people. This means that I personally live in better accommodation than my fantasy characters. Where is the wish fulfilment in that?

Neither of these problems is unfixable and, to be fair, there are mutterings from Turbine that the limits will be relaxed in the future. Sadly, however, they are not the real killer.

As anyone blessed with elderly relatives who watch daytime television will tell you, the crucial factor in property is location. Location, location, location, they used to proclaim, possibly to pad out word count. So, where are the houses in Lord of the Rings online located? Damn silly places.

Hobbits probably come out best. The Hobbit Homestead is a mere short jog from Michel Delving, over the festival racecourse and through fields inhabited by lethal swarms of shrews. The Dwarf Homestead is in the Dwarf Starter Zone. Is it in a nice bit? No. It is in the middle of the rusting Dourhand bit where the goblins live. No sane Dwarf wants to live in the middle of a rusting area full of goblins. Humans have it marginally better: a Homestead in the middle of the Midgewater Marshes, halfway between Bree and the Forsaken Inn. Now to my mind, if someone offers you a house and the local pub is called the Forsaken Inn, I would be looking at other neighbourhoods. Elves, however, have it the worst. Their Homestead is simply miles away from anything. Honestly, getting back from Halls of Mandos is a small trip compared to travelling to the Elf Homestead.

The developers obviously realised this could be an issue. So, in a manner which totally missed the point, they added some transport options to make the houses easier to reach. You can either teleport to your house or catch a horse from the nearest travel location to the Homestead door. What you cannot do, however, is ride that horse the other way. These are the only four one-way horse routes in the game. Rather than taking you from in the middle of nowhere back to civilisation, which would be useful, they do the opposite, which is not. It’s a problem. Lord of the Rings Online has some fantastic community centres. Bree, Rivendale, Esteldín, Thorin’s Hall: all these places brim with players, crafting, role-playing and interacting in general. If you see another player in the Homesteads however, you tend to assume they are lost.

I am not sure that Turbine can fix this last issue. The Homesteads are where they are and, unless they are radically redesigning the maps, it is presumably where they will stay, which is a shame. Because no matter what fixes they make or cool furniture they add, housing in LotRO will remain largely unused, tucked away and unvisited, full of defaulted houses acting as monuments to the system’s failure.

Read more about Jadrax’s adventures in LotRO:


MMORPG Info Logo The Mirror-Marches

(Not sure what Echo Bazaar is? Read the introduction at Echo Bazaar)

When I first started exploring Fallen London, I wrote:

I spent yesterday in a state of confusion after learning the dark secrets of a friend. My nights are still plagued with nightmares. But now I know that as long as I keep my cheerful goldfish close to hand, I will remain this side of sanity.

This is part of the learning curve for the residents of Fallen London. This is an everyday occurrence in Echo Bazaar.

However, your dreams can take you to other places and if you are not careful, you might find yourself inside the mirror.

There are three ways of entering the Mirror-Marches.

If your Nightmares reach 8 and you are holding a Memory of Light, you will be sent there automatically instead of to a State of Confusion.

You can also look through the Mahogany Mirror at Mrs. Plenty’s Carnival, at the cost of two Memories of Light. [More…]