Rift: Planes of Telara Reader Submitted Q&A #6 – Equipment and Itemization

Updated Wed, Nov 10, 2010 by jeffprime

Rift: Planes of Telara

Previous Rift Interviews

In this sixth exclusive interview with Trion Worlds, Ten Ton Hammer asks about gamers’ favorite things, loot and gear! To learn more about the fabulous items that you can get in Rift: Planes of Telara, we sat down with Drew Clowery, Game System Designer. Many equipment related topics were discussed such as loot drops, armor sets, looting systems, rarity of loot, and many others. If you have any questions you wish answered in a future interview, please post them in our official Rift forum.

Ten Ton Hammer: Are there armor sets and bonuses?

Drew Clowery: This is something that I, personally, really want. But that doesn't mean it will get in right away. We're not planning on having armor set bonuses at launch, but we will be paying close attention to the community feedback during beta and beyond.

Ten Ton Hammer: Do you have an idea of how many armor sets are available?

Drew Clowery: I have a pretty good idea! I work with those guys regularly. (laughs) We have 48 different models, and then each model has a number of texture variants. Those texture variants can dramatically alter the way the model looks. There are 48 underlying models where the physical geometry looks like this, and then a large of texture variants which changes the look of the whole item. We have quite a few.

Ten Ton Hammer: Do all armor pieces have a visual component? Say you’re wearing an earring; will you be able to see that earring on your avatar?

"Loot is a really big element in these games. Getting new and exciting gear is really important.."
Drew Clowery: We decided not to do that. There’s really a really low rate of return for the workload on a lot of those. It’s hard to see rings, earrings, or belts. When you’re looking at characters in a MMOG, you tend to be looking at them from a distance away, and you don’t get that really close up view that lets you see little details like that. As a result of that, we decided not to put the work, and it’s a substantial amount of work, into modeling each and every one of those items. That said, you have 6 different visual appearance armor slots, plus weapons, which appear visually on your character. So there is a good deal of visual character customization, and we really tried to focus in on the areas where we would get the biggest bang for our buck.

Ten Ton Hammer: Will dungeons have better gear drops than rifts?

Drew Clowery: In general, rifts are theoretically easier than dungeons because there’s no population gap. You can keep brining in more people until your video card melts. Because of that, rifts are considered easier and we try to distribute items based upon the difficulty of the content. If a 5 man dungeon can only be done by 5 people and there’s a certain level of difficulty, it’s going to have loot of that difficulty. If there’s a rift that’s a 5 man rift of comparable difficulty in terms of completing it, we’re going to grade it as being slightly less difficult because you can bring it 6, 8, or 20 people in. At the same time, if you’re doing a 10 to 20 man rift event, which is harder than a 5 man dungeon, we’re going to grade that harder, but not as hard as a 10 to 20 man raid event, where you can only bring in that specific number of people.

Ten Ton Hammer: Are the classic restrictions of cloth, leather, chain and plate in place?

Drew Clowery: Yes. It may be beneficial at times for a warrior, let's say, to equip leather with high stats to do more DPS if that's the role they want to play, but generally speaking, they'll want to stick to the armor type of their calling. Your tanking breastplate won’t be too desirable to you DPS warrior.

Rift: Planes of Telara

Ten Ton Hammer: So, is there world loot, which is random drops off of creatures?

Drew Clowery: There absolutely is. We have the noun-of-adjective items, like the Sword of Awesomeness, and those can drop anywhere in the world. Those are really good for leveling characters and filling in gear gaps where you might have missed a particular quest and don’t have a cool set of boots, which this type of loot will cover up. Perhaps you did dungeons, but you didn’t get the loot you wanted. These drops are gap fillers.

We also a good number of handcrafted items which drop randomly in the world. Generally, the handcrafted items are specific to one monster, one set of monsters, or one region of the world. We do that to reinforce the flavor of those areas. It’s not as exciting to kill an earth elemental and get the goblin king’s sword. We want to keep those things in a more localized, flavorful place. Obviously, the exception there is if the earth elemental is in the goblin king’s fortress. We try to keep things in a specific, flavorful area and those items are handcrafted, which means that they’re generally a little bit better and a lot cooler.

Ten Ton Hammer: Are their tiers of loot, such as white, green, blue, and purple?

Drew Clowery: Yes. We call it rarity. The common loot is the normal things that you can’t equip, such as vendor loot, consumables, and trade skill items. Then we have uncommon loot, which is most of your wearable armor that gives you stat bonuses as well as rarer consumables. Then we have rare and epic loot, with rare being I worked really hard to get this and epic being that I worked really, really, really hard to get this. It’s a pretty standard thing. We didn’t want to fix what wasn’t broken.


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