For more than a year, RIFT players have endured some fairly non-inspiring animal companion models. The Rogue’s Razorbeast comes to mind, especially, as does the Beastmaster Warrior’s Primal Companion. The Ranger’s pig is probably among the top 10 ugliest MMO animal companions ever, and the purple cat, well, never really seemed too ferocious, especially when paired with a geared-out level 50 Warrior. Luckily, Trion’s finally tossed pet lovers out there a bone, and has updated a few of the pet models.
This data has been recently discovered on the PTS, and as such, a release date for these models is currently unknown. So far there have been updates for all three Ranger pets, both Beastmaster pets, and both Druid faeries. The Satyr model and Mage pets have not received new models yet, although it’s completely possible that they will in the weeks to come.
The models are, of course, subject to change. Here’s a preview of how they currently look on the PTS:
Beastmaster Warrior – Lesser Primal Companion:
Beastmaster Warrior – Greater Primal Companion:
It’s definitely nice to see an armored version of the cat for the higher level companion, which was always one of the problems with the purple cat. The higher level purple model wasn’t any cooler than the lower level model, and thankfully, this one is. The armor spikes and kitty-mohawk are nice touches.
Ranger Rogue – Razorbeast and Dire Wolf:
Ranger Rogue – Raptor:
The Raptor looks like it might not be completely finished yet, since it’s lacking the armor that the other two pets have. The Razorbeast is definitely an improvement. Special thanks to Slipmat on the official forums for these screenshots.
Druid Cleric – Lesser Faerie:
Druid Cleric – Greater Faerie:
The faeries aren’t bad. The two variants are similar, but still have a notable amount of differences between them. They’re a different style than the current faeries, which is interesting considering the fact that this style seems to deviate slightly from the faeries found around Telara. This may mean that Trion intends to place this new faerie model somewhere in the future, as well.
All of the new models seem to have a new static animation, as well, that they perform every now and then while standing still. The primal cat companions scratch their ears, and the faeries will randomly land on the ground and look around. They flutter slightly above the ground normally, similar to the current models.
All-in-all, the new models are welcome. It’ll be interesting to see what Trion comes up for the various Mage calling pets, because those are in need of some facelifts as well.
It’s great to see that Trion is in the process of making aesthetic changes like this. Character and companion models have a larger impact on the game than many people think, and it only makes common sense. Players want to enjoy their characters, and part of the allure of paying a pet-based calling is the ability to control a ferocious, unique animal companion. I’d still personally like to see a few more companion options within all of the pet-based callings, and some additional abilities and utility added altogether. This is a nice step in the right direction, however.