Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Somebody Out Maneuvered Vanilla

While the MMO community has been watching for further developments in the WoW Vanilla initiative, Trion has actually gone ahead and implemented their own version of "Vanilla RIFT".

Called RIFT Prime, it was implemented a month or more ago and is for subscribers only. The idea behind it is to provide more of an original RIFT experience, but with some newer amenities (portions of the cash shop) still around. RIFT Prime is starting out without expansions, and will slowly add them over time to simulate the progression of the original MMO.

From my perspective, this is a grand idea for these two MMOs. RIFT and WoW are two games that would be well served treading down this path as they have a player base who pines for the original environment, although in WoW's case I could make an argument that they could have servers that stop at AQ40, the end of BC, and the end of Wrath, and people would be fine with that. In LOTRO's case it might be worthwhile to see something like this happen, but I'm not so sure that it is in as dire need of a reboot like the Vanilla WoW project would be, and an original SWTOR would be actually counterproductive given that SWTOR really found its legs about 1-2 years into its run.

The ironic thing is that Funcom is doing something similar with Age of Conan in that they've created a brand new server for people to play on, but it's only temporary and mainly done for rewards.

But still, kudos to Trion for making a bold move.


  1. Before you wear your arm out patting Trion on the back, remember that SOE/Daybreak has been doing this sort of thing for more than a decade. I think Scott Hartsman was still at SOE when they did the first EQ progression server.

    Meanwhile, Jagex has had an old school RuneScape server for a few years now as well.

    I applaud Trion and look forward to what Blizz will do with WoW on this front, but remember who has blazed this trail already.

    1. Absolutely SOE should get credit --I don't play SOE games, so that's why I didn't put it out there-- but my point was that while everybody is focusing on Blizz, Trion went ahead and did it without all of the general gamer buzz that Blizz tends to attract.

      And, to be honest, given all the crap that Trion gets flung their way (such as the ArcheAge and RIFT P2W stuff, which is among the worst decisions I've seen) they deserve kudos every once in a while.

    2. And Runescape, I really actively try not to think of that game given all of the spam e-mail the blog has gotten over the years about Runescape. The spam that's pathetically obvious malware attempts such as the old "WOW EXPAC EMERALD NIGHTMAARE" (misspelling intended) is one thing, but the numerous variations of "Play Runescape! We're the Best!" gets really tiring when we'd never even mentioned the game in any of our posts.