Wednesday, February 23, 2011

To Rift or not to Rift?

The Rift beta is over, and the head start launches tomorrow. I'm trying to decide whether to subscribe for a bit or not.

In a lot of ways, my decision has surprisingly little to do with the game itself. Rift is a good game. Instead of the title question, the real question I'm struggling with is:

To tank/heal or not to tank/heal?

My favorite part of these games is group content. Group content needs a tank and a healer. I highly doubt that Rift has done anything that will make those two roles more prevalent.

But none of the tank or healer souls really attracted my attention. They all seemed rather boring. So I'm left with a conundrum. If I want to indulge in group play, my best option is to roll a tank or healer. But I'm not very enthusiastic about the tank/healer souls, and the dps souls seem more interesting. But if I go dps, I resign myself to a poor grouping experience.

Edit: To clarify, I'm talking about the time wasted looking for tank/heals before starting, not the actual experience once the group has been assembled.

The one build I actually liked was a Warrior Champion/Beastmaster/Riftstalker build. Two-handed weapons with a charge, a pet and a little elemental damage. But you know that build will be pretty pointless in group play.


  1. Why does dps automatically equal a poor group experience?

  2. Hmm. I should have made that more clear. Once the group has formed, the experience is fine.

    It's the hanging around for hours going "LF tank/healer" in general chat that I can't stand.

    If you play tank or healer, you complete groups and you can start playing immediately instead of waiting.

  3. Did you ever try the Cleric tank?

  4. Yeah there is a Cleric Tank you can try, the Justicar I think it is. Heard it works well as a cleric tank though i have never personally tried it.

  5. That's the other thing. I've been through the hybrid wars in WoW. I don't really believe that the cleric tank, mage healer, rogue tank or rogue healer will be truly viable, especially at endgame.

    I've been through all this before as a paladin in WoW. I rather feel like avoiding it this time around.

    You know that, regardless of whatever else happens, Trion is not going to let the main Warrior tanking and Cleric healing souls become substandard.

  6. Rift seems to be designed around the idea that everybody is a hybrid, what with the 3 soul thing.

    I played a Justicar "tank" type in the Rift betas, although I never actually tried to tank in anything more than the elemental invasions. I could hold aggro (mostly) due to a buff much like Righteous Fury which increased the threat of my damaging abilities, and there were more talents and abilities at later levels that would increase chance to block and damage reduction, etc. It had interesting self-heal and group-heal aspects too.

  7. I would think "Rift" would be the one game where this wouldn't be a problem. With the soul system you seem to be able to tank/heal/damage with any type of character. I didn't progress beyond small groups and open field rifts content, but I tanked on a rogue and healed on a mage. Maybe endgame will be different, however, it looked like you could do anything with anything.

  8. if you Rift on the Belmont server, defiant side. I'll do the tank/heal part that you aren't doing :)

  9. It's fairly easy to unlock extra souls like WoW's dual spec and you can have four of them.

    I'm planning on being a tank, healer, assassin and ranged dps and doing all of them well.

    I don't anticipate having any issues finding groups.

  10. Hmm I wonder if that shows good or bad design in the game.

    If the Healer classes don't appeal to people that like healers in other games, will they appeal to more people or less?

  11. The Justicar soul as a cleric seems a competent Tank/secondary healer for group play, though I didn't do much more than elemental invasions in the brief time I was able to play the Beta.

    Maybe this was just an isolated case in the beta, but I actually tended to find groups were heavy on healers and lacking DPS more often than the other way round.

    (US PvP-RP Server - Guardian)

  12. The Rogue tank is crazy fun. I mean really really fun and good for PVP server. If you are worried about end game though (may or may not be an issue)go with the cleric you have 3 healing styles. I am sure you will find one you like. I mean you dealt with Pally healing for how long. Clerics options will keep you entertained. O BTW long time reader first time poster.

  13. But this is where Rift shines. You unlock those souls and you level with the DPS. You then unlock a second role and you have the tank setup for groups. It takes 2 seconds to swap with no cooldown.

    Its too early to tell for me tel how tanks will play out in the game, but its like this for all games. I am sure tanks will be needed and in Rift you dont have to worry about how you spec as long as you carry both DPS and Tank souls.

    I have built both a pure healer cleric and a pure tank warrior. You will just rely heavily on groups and that is what your after so, rift on.