RIFT world event fizzles, Trion reevaluates approach [Updated]

What could have gone out with a bang turned out to be a mild whimper. RIFT's first world event, River of Souls, moved into its final phases today but experienced several difficulties. Players in both Europe and North America reported lengthy queue times to access the game. These queues were possibly exacerbated by the additional trial players joining for the weekend, although Trion Worlds claimed that subscribers had priority access. On top of that, some servers saw the second and third phases pass by so quickly that many players simply were not there to see it, while other servers experienced unexpected intermittent outages.

As you may expect, player discussion about RIFT's world event has heated up in the forums, blogosphere (NSFW), and elsewhere. In the middle of the event rollout, Scott Hartsman wrote a forum post in which he addressed some of these issues. Hartsman promises that those who missed out on the final portion of the event would be compensated: "Since we are very likely to end up in a situation where we have people queued who could not participate, and people who could not make the finale at all, we're already making sure we have a way to reward people appropriately after the fact."

Trion assured players that it is using the lessons from this world event to shape upcoming ones. "We're already taking what we've learned over the last week and today into account as we work on the next set of world events, and will be designing them such that full-server-population flashmobs aren't quite as likely to occur -- both for fun factor and performance," Hartsman said. "Equally importantly for the future, we'll be ensuring there are more phases that each last longer, and a more clear progression, to maximize everyone's chance of participating."

Let us know your own experience with this event in the comments below!

[Update: Scott Hartsman posted a follow-up to the event as well as a list of compensation rewards for those unable to participate.]