TenTon Hammer has been able to grab Scott Hartsman and get him to answer a bunch of question regarding the current development of Rift: Planes of Telara. We do get some new insight in things like end-game raid progression.
Ten Ton Hammer: How much thought has gone into end game at this point, will it ship with raid content already in place?
Scott Hartsman: Absolutely, we have some end game elements that have been in testing, if you count warfronts, when we started raid testing and expert dungeon testing, it’s been several months now. We have two separate roadmaps, one for 1 to 50 and a much more detailed one for level 50 onward. We are intentionally making a game that doesn’t need to have the 1 to 50 content extended to create gameplay. We want the 1 to 50 leveling to take as much time as we have available content, we don’t want it to be a grind.
We aren’t going to be one of those games that plays one way in beta and then you get to launch and it’s like, hey everything is now 10 times longer, enjoy the launch game! People would rightfully freak out and that would kill a lot of the fun in the game. We have been pacing the game the way we want it to play in alpha and planning out what end game tiering will look like after that. We have two tiers of expert mode dungeons, we have got raids both interior and exterior, we have the PvP instances, we even have end game level crafting and reputations. You will be able to log in and have your choice of six or seven things you can do, we don’t want to get in the trap of being a game where folks feel like they have nothing to do. One half to two-thirds of our design team has transitioned to end game already and our QA team is actively running their own playtests that they can get feedback right into the designers hands.
It looks like the Rift Team is putting a big focus on the end game product and allowing the leveling process to be clean and neat. At the level cap, outside PVP, you will have something that looks like World of Warcraft with a few tweaks. Tiers of expert (heroic) level dungeons, tiers of raid instances, and crafting. We will have to wait and see if they bring anything new to the crafting world.