Exclusive: A look at RIFT's Saboteur

You can call them rogues, thieves, scoundrels, but by any name they're stealthy little bastards. RIFT's Rogues are no exception, with the difference being that the soul system allows them access to several unique flavors of sneaky little bastard. There are the backstabbing Assassins, the sniping Marksmen, and the defensive Riftstalker all under the same overarching aegis, allowing players a wide variety of different options. But none of them yet has been the truly annoying sort, the one who looks to be finally caught flat-footed just as you realize he's been playing you the whole time.

Rounding off a week of new soul previews is the Saboteur -- and while it might seem a bit less glamorous to come last, that's exactly how the Saboteur would want it. An expert in preparation and subtle traps, the Saboteur is vulnerable without time to prepare his various battlefield modifications, but immensely destructive if he's in control. Click on past the break for more backstory and information on RIFT's resident schemer.

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Overview

The Saboteur is a cunning Rogue who uses explosives and other incendiaries to cripple opponents and control the battlefield. With proper preparation, a Saboteur can destroy enemies without ever giving them a chance to join battle.

Strengths

Saboteurs mold the battlefield to suit their needs, and with careful planning, a lone Saboteur can overcome the most formidable foes in one explosive instant.

Weaknesses

A Saboteur requires significant preparation to launch each devastating assault, and is quickly overcome if confronted in direct combat before every trap is in place.

Background

The golden desert hold of Laethys had but a single weakness: the western gate. The gate faced a canyon, spelling certain doom for any army foolish enough to march from the west. Not even the smallest team could pass through the canyon unnoticed, so destroying the gate had to be a one-man job. Or in this case, one woman, thought the Bahmi Saboteur Kushi Tolui as she finished affixing charges to the gate's support pillars. Wiping sweat and dust from her brow, she crept toward the central brace.

"You!" She whirled at the cry. A trio of sentries stood behind her, desert sun flashing on their spear-points. "It would be wise to surrender."

"Wise, maybe, but no fun at all." Kushi grinned and threw a small canister toward them, which ruptured into a cloud of choking gas. Littering her path with caltrops, she made a break for the brace.

Reaching the center of the gate, Kushi set about constructing a bomb, hands moving faster than the eye could see. The sentries were not far behind. One of them triggered a mine she had set, the explosion knocking him clear off the gate, but the other two were undeterred. She sighed. "You just don't know when to quit, do you?"

As the first of them closed to melee, Kushi surprised him by reaching out and sticking a small object to his chest. He peered at her in confusion before clubbing her with the butt of his spear. The second sentry joined in, and they wore her down with brutal blows. Bloody and battered, Kushi finally collapsed. One of them snorted at her and asked, "Is that all?"

A smile spread across her cracked lips as she winked at them. It was then they noticed the dozens of small metal objects sticking to their persons. They looked at her and then at the bomb sitting beside her. "You wouldn't," the foremost guard stammered. "You'll be caught in the explosion!"

Kushi looked out to the canyon behind them. The Telaran forces marched through the chasm. The paladin Amardis rode at their head, armor gleaming in the hot sun. Meanwhile, Laethys's minions swarmed the canyon walls, and in the distance, hordes of ogres approached from behind. If the gate didn't drop, they would be overcome.

She stood, spitting out blood, and said, "I am ready to meet my ancestors. Are you?" Kushi detonated the charges and leapt from the wall.

The gate fell before the Telaran army with a many-colored explosion. Beginning with a massive concussive force at the heart of the gate, the fire spread quickly, triggering a chain reaction that dropped all its supports. It crumbled into a messy pile of wood and flame, opening the lair of Laethys herself.

As the dust settled, Kushi's body became visible near the wreckage. Amardis ran to her side. Coughing, opening an eye, the Bahmi wheezed, "It's done?"

"It's done," said Amardis with a smile. "Laethys is ours."

Quotation

"You think you've got me right where you want me, but the truth is you just stepped right into my trap."

This article was originally published on Massively.