Archive for February 17th, 2011

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Rift: Artifact Finding

February 17, 2011

Ooh, shiny!

Have I mentioned this hour that I love fluff in my MMOs? I believe there’s an inner completionist in all of us, and sometimes I think I can see mine. And she is a rabidly possessed, insane and obsessive-compulsive little girl.

Which is why I’m surprised after all these weeks in the Rift beta I haven’t talked about the Artifact Collections system yet. Bottom line, I want to marry it. And it’s not just about filling out those empty slots over time, though there is something very gratifying about finding an artifact you’ve never seen before. I also like it because it encourages players to travel off the beaten path and it appeals to the explorer in me.

Finding artifacts is as simple as that. Explore. Poke around. Look high and low. Stick your nose into any dark corner you see. Along the heavily traveled roads you will no doubt find some artifacts, but the majority I’ve found are placed in out-of-the-way places where an artifact spawn point is likely to be.

Yesterday, I was dithering about Scarwood Reach when I noticed that telltale flickering light in the corner of my screen. I headed over and realized how lucky I had been to see it. It was well hidden, nestled in the hollow of a tree stump. Problem was, it was a big stump. The artifact was situated well above my head, far too high for me to reach. I saw that there was a taller structure nearby, a ramp of some sort, and I went up it to try to jump into the stump. The distance was just barely what a well-timed jump could manage. After failing the first half dozen times, I finally made it. I looted my prize and was pleasantly surprised to see that not only did I find an artifact to add to a new collection, a separate collection window had appeared informing me that I had found one of the rarer artifacts to be uncovered in Scarwood Reach!

This hat. I wants.

Since this is beta, I haven’t been putting as much effort as I possibly can into finding artifacts, but I do stop every time I see one to pick it up. Guess I haven’t been to Meridian lately to turn in my completed collections, because I received my first handful of Lucky Coins as rewards the other day. I was confused as to what to do with them, until I interacted with the artifact collector and in a startling moment of clarity realized that the coins were currency. With them I can buy all kinds of wonderful things like musical instruments, vanity appearance armor, mounts…

And companion pets. Oh noes, my life is over.

If my pet collecting addiction and past experience is any indication, the more fluff there is in a game, the longer I stay with it. And admittedly, I’m not very used to seeing too many of these little extras in new games, especially not in betas. While it’s important to me, I also understand how stuff like this can be delegated to the bottom of the to-do list when other major features and systems like PvP, crafting, instances and overall general content should take priority. So I have to say I’m once again impressed at how far Rift has already come.