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Rift Cross Shard Features

Introduction

When you play any online role playing game, you are probably connecting to one of many different servers. This is the way the game can keep the populations smaller and grouped up, rather than have everyone in one massive cluster on one server. This not only helps the players, in that you have some room to breathe, but it also helps the servers since it significantly reduces the amount of work they have to do to keep up with the load.

While most games do not have any features that work across the servers, Rift is different. Some of these were added well in to Rift's life, but they are there now and they are well worth exploring. Through this guide we are going to take a look at them.

Cross Server Chat

The first thing I want to look at is cross server chat. You should be familiar with how this will look because if you have been in to a war front in the past, you are playing those with other people that may be on a different server. You will easily notice this by seeing what their chat name is. If their name has an @server attached to it, this means they are playing from a different server than you are. If they do not, it will just show their name.

Now, while you could chat with people from other servers from the war fronts, there is another way to do this as well. This is to join their chat channels! Yes, you have read that right. So how does this work?

The way to join a chat channel is to type in the command /join channelname. Now, if you are wanting to join a channel from a different server, you just append their server name to it, much like how the character naming works. So let us use the level 1-29 chat over on Wolfsbane as an example. To join this channel, what you would type is /join Level 1-29@Wolfsbane. This would allow you to view all of the chat that is going on in their channel, and you can talk to them like normal. So even if you are not playing on the same server as you usually do (like if you have an alt on a different server) you can still keep up with everything that is going on in your home world.

If you decide to leave the chat later, you do this the same way as any channel as well, with the command /leave channelnumber. So in the example above, if the new chat ended up being number seven for you, you would simply type /leave 7.

Note that you can only be in a total of ten channels, so you need to be careful with which ones you want to join or you will have to start dropping a couple to make room for new ones.

Cross Server Friends

Being that you are able to chat across the server boundaries, it would make sense that you can also make friends with those players, right? You can do this using the same method as the chat channel joining, by adding your friend with the @servername attribute. So if your friend's name is marelsh and he is on the server Wolfsbane, his true name is marelsh@Wolfsbane, and that is what you would put in when you want to add him to your friends list.

The same method above is how you put people on ignore as well, though with the ignore function you can also use the chat (click their name and then choose to ignore). Just keep in mind that there are limited amounts of ignore space, so if you are in a lot of different channels with people you do not like, you may want to think about your decision again!

Cross Server Grouping

So we have covered the chat and the friends parts now, but there is another awesome feature here. You can also group with players on another server! You may be wondering why this even matters, since you can not go from your server to another one, but this is useful for running dungeons, raiding or doing anything else that involves instances.

Instances do not appear to be hosted on a server by server basis (as you can see when you join an instance and then your server shuts down but you are still alive and well inside the instance). Instead, they are hosted in a more central method to where all servers can access them. For this reason, you can group up with some friends (or people you have just met) and if you all enter the same instance you will be able to join up with each other. For example, if you all enter River of Souls, you will be put in the same instance.

This opens up a lot of doors because it means you can form raids easier by pulling people from multiple servers, and you can have cross server guilds that work together in an alliance type fashion. The possibilities from this are pretty much endless.

Conclusion

I think this covers the cross server things you can do. It is worth noting that you can not trade items to people from other servers, regardless as to how you are meeting up (for example you are in a raid), so if you are looting items you want to ensure that you mean to, as you will not be able to pass them off to the proper person if you end up making a mistake and they happen to be on another server.

The system is pretty neat and hopefully it gets expanded in the future to hold things like cross server guilds and such, but as it is now it is still extremely helpful. It is nice not being limited to just the people on your server, but being able to hang out and communicate with people from other servers as well. This has always been available through the war fronts and the dungeon looking for group system, but this pushes it over the top and gives many more options! So enjoy the system and go out there and make some new friends!

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