The following compilation of screenshots are a conversation between Daglar and a guildie of mine who doesn't come to the forums much, while testing some of the new 1.8 changes in PvP. Here is the conversation.
This is extremely troubling to me. Essentially, even though he wasn't very detailed in his responses, we can basically derive from here that:
1. The devs are aware of the disparities between PvP and PvE gear, especially between weapons, but they have no plans to address them because they can't figure out an alternative. With ID coming in 1.8, a new tier of raid gear will be introduced, increasing this gap and essentially requiring any competitive player to PvE.
2. There will be no new PvP content in 1.8 (I assumed this, anyway).
3. This one was my favorite - leaderboards will be a casual-friendly system because Trion does not want to hurt the bad players' feelings.
I like RIFT, but I honestly don't know where to go with this. It's not just the points that were addressed directly that bother me, but rather what the entire conversation implied. The fact that a PvP tier set will not be releasing with ID just tells me that they don't really care at all. Furthermore, as I feared, the game is becoming more and more simplified to cater to the bads instead of to reward the skilled. For instance, instead of implementing an actual ranking system that stimulates competition, they create a system that reflects time played. Additionally, more and more specs are being eliminated in PvP (mine included), pigeon-holing us even further into one optimal spec.
So, for those of you who have been left in the dark, this is the direction of PvP in RIFT. I'm afraid it will only continue to get worse until it is slowly removed from the game, or at least made so pointless that nobody participates anymore (not competitively, at least). Ultimately, I posted this because I want the PvP community to be informed, since there is so little communication between us and the devs anymore. So, by all means, make your own conclusions based on the above conversation screenshot, as these conclusions are only my own.