When World of Warcraft first launched, it was difficult to explain just how astonishing the game really felt. The innovations that it brought to the table have become so commonplace over the years that we forget how stunning they really were. And when I first logged in, I had visions of what the world could support, the things that could be done, and the ways that players would get to explore hidden vistas and small corners of the world.
As it happened, World of Warcraft went along quite well for several years, but somewhere along the line the magic faded for me. I can point to exactly when, but that's not the goal because RIFT seems to catch a lot of those dropped promises and put them into the game. And it's a game of extremes, with summits and valleys aplenty, but there's enough to like that I don't mind the bad so much.