MMORPGs And You! – 1st Edition – Rift

Welcome back, My Dear Readers, to The Other Shoe. Today we start a series that should last all this week. The subject matter is dear to my heart, PC Gaming. To be more precise MMORPG = Massively Multiplayer Online role Playing Game. A little background; I started (again) playing online games back in 1998. Then I was playing (later hosting) FPS (First Person Shooter) games of Quake. I had only one computer, until 2002, so until 2002 I could only really join multiplayer games on the web. The ping, at firs, caused single frame rates. However, with time and with money that did improve.


By the time I was in Westwood I had three computers built; one was used for game hosting, one for my roommate to play and one computer for me to own on. I was quite good, back in the day. At the time of F.E.A.R. and it’s sequel (playing in tournaments over GameSpy) I was nationally ranked #1 (for ten days) and ended @ #10. My hands, then both worked, and moved faster than light. While in a shooter I was in my element. I went by (back then); Dominator Dann (on a PC platform called HEAT), Dan the Man, and Enzo Matrix (I still use that name).


EnzoMatrix - Danny

My toon, Enzo Matrix, at the Intro Screen for Rift. This is where you choose which toon you want to play.

(EnzoMatrix in Rift Intro Screen)


Those were the days, days of triple digit runs and others players crying foul! Because they did not understand the advantages of single digit ping (the server was on my Home network and three feet away) and a very fast home built computer. 2003, which was the last time I ever competed in an FPS Tournament. My hands were already messed up, I had already had one surgery (Carpal Tunnel release). Not till later that year did I find out why.


Enzo on a Spider Mount

This is a screenshot of Enzo riding his Spider Mount in Sanctum, the major city.

(EnzoMatrix on a Spider mount in Sanctum the Main City)


I then moved to trying (then avidly playing) MMORPGs. I didn’t start with World of Warcraft. Though I will be honest in that, WoW was the first MMO that I played with intent, ran a Guild, and got involved in PvP (Player vs. Player in mortal combat). By the end of the week, you will notice that ONLY World of Warcraft got left out. In this week I will not have an article just for WoW.


So, in the 90’s and early 200_’s the trend, I was involved in, was playing FPSs online. I did well and enjoyed the games. When my hands no longer functioned enough I moved to the MMOs because they can be more forgiving. I STARTED WITH Guild Wars the original one. I played anything beta testing (this is select players on select PC platforms playing a betaTest build of a game and reporting all problems hitches or falls). I played soooo many betas and short-lived games. IT was fun, but I knew I wanted more depth and involvement. I found that with WoW.


This is the Introductory Issue of this article series, but the rest of today’s article will be about the MMORPG RIFT!


(A Video of Enzo Leaving Town and Running Afoul of a RIFT!)


Rift was born of a culture already brimming with MMORPGs. There was the primary MMORPGs like; WoW and Everquest. The next tier of MMOs would include; Aion, Rift, Lord of the Rings Online, and Star Trek Online. These round out the middle of the market. Next would be the user designed games like; Guild Wars and Guild Wars 2. Then finally you have MMOs for children to cut their teeth on. They are generally referred to as ‘Family’ MMORPGs. You have seen them advertised on Cartoon Network and children’s programming; Wizard 101 and another about Pirates.


Today Rift is our game, and what a game it is. I started playing Rift right when it came out. I had heard/read about it for months and it looked to be what WoW started out. It had depth in the game (Good vs. Evil) and it was based on my favorite MMORPG of them all, WoW. Basically you are a; Mage or a Warrior, a Hunter or a Healer. You either heal you friends and party members or you fight the many monsters and Bosses that stand in your way. Mages and Hunters are ‘ranged’ fighters. They shot things at the targets while standing well back. The one up front, taking all the damage, are you Warriors and Tanks.


Enzo on Spider Mount @ Trade Center

This is a screenshot of Enzo riding his Spider Mount in the Trade & Trainning Area.

(Enzo on Spider Mount in Tade and Trainning Area in Sanctum.)


My preference is Mages and Warlocks as my hands will not permit, the fast and often furious key pushing required to stand at the front. In all these games there are Individual Quests that you complete all alone (but you can work with others, or even bring a friend) and then there are Dungeons and Instances where 7-25 players work together as one to beat the very meanest, the very strongest Bosses. They give the best loot and the most treasure, but also it gives a whole lot of pleasure. Yes, the bragging rights of owning a Boss is not to be underestimated at all.


Rift started as a monthly subscription service game. I purchased the Collector’s Edition prior to launch, so I enjoyed being a part of the Beta of this game, too. Now Rift is ‘Free To Play’ meaning just anyone can sign up and play. Just download the client and install, then update. These games they do GUIDE you on everything you do. They explain it by starting simply and making quests out of simple things to do. Get used to an interface and all of the keys.


Enzo on Spider Mount City Square Sanctum.

This is a screenshot showing the User Interface (UI) and Chat Box. Easy to use and very well organized.

(Screen Caputre Showing User Interface and Chat Box)


Sitting here, writing about this, I wonder if there is a market in teaching older Americans (like myself) how to play these games, to win. They really are fun! They really do challenge and in the end you create a you in another world that can perform near miracles.


Rift is a story driven MMORPG. It has deep plot involvement and you are pitted against an invader group. You can play either the peace loving people, or the evil twisted race. This is true for many of these games. Two species pitted against one another in a world wide war. Rift does that in spades. There are PvP (Player vs. player) arenas but it Rift they did even more. Just walking around you can bump into a rift and bad guys com flying out.



That will be all for today, my hands are tired and my neck is so very sore. I hope that you enjoy the images and videos. I enjoyed preparing this for you. As always, I know there are many places to go to read and be informed. I am deeply honored that you choose The Other Shoe.

About Daniel Hanning
I am a; writer, editor and publisher. I write, most often, articles about our space program, fun videos andpolitical works. My most recent additions are; A Week In Review, Sunday Funnies and The Adventures of Nadia. Along with The Mars Report and Lost in Space. ENJOY!

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