This week I played the stock market again more than Rift.
Imagine a 24/7 live national cable channel dedicated to favorite MMORPG. The channel features panels of expert commentators and pro players chatting endlessly about the latest patch, the best ways to make money crafting, or the newest builds for PvP or raiding.
That’s CNBC. The stock market is the game, and I’ve watched the channel 5-6 hours a day this week. Yesterday Alibaba, China’s biggest company, made a slew of negative headlines, sending its stock and that of Yahoo (Alibaba’s biggest stakeholder) plummeting.
A commentator (Dan Nathan) today called Alibaba “muppet bait”, meaning a hot new investment vehicle that lures lots of less savvy investors and “dumb money” to buy it, while the professionals are selling.
This is a rather wild accusation in this kitty’s opinion, but maybe I’m bitter because I was one of those muppets. No, not so much.
I could go on for several more paragraphs on this, but the point is that Rift’s patch 3:1 “Storm At Sea” went live yesterday, and it’s got a little bit of everything – except muppet bait.
Sure, there are a few hardly-noticeable buttons on the minion panel for shuffling cards (unlike LotRO’s more aggressive UI store-festooning). There is also the Molten Thresher mount and a few new cool items for your personal housing: bank access and a raid combat dummy.
But overall, there is just a ton of good, free stuff, including a new challenging Chronicle that mirrors the T1 raid, complete with nail-biting boss battles – but in solo/duo mode. I can’t wait to jump in and play this.
Sometimes you feel like a muppet in a Free-To-Play MMO. Sometimes you don’t, and this is one of those times. I’m taking this as a good sign for the continued health of Rift on the downside of the Nightmare Tide financial cycle. I hope Elder Scrolls going F2P doesn’t hurt Rift.
This week I haven’t played quite so much, but I’m leveling my rogue alt a little bit, and I put together a cheap outfit using auction house items and some tangerine dye, which I crafted using my savant Apothecary skills. It’s an arcane paladin look, crossed with a tabby cat. Or maybe a tiger.
I also finally got an awesome dungeon drop: a purple healing trinket! This is the trinket that shoots beams of light to your party and raid to heal them while the combat is raging. I’ve always wanted to feel this special and healy, and now I do!
So thanks Trion for a great patch and for keeping it classy. Happy gaming, whatever you’re playing!