Most people that play Rift play Rift because of the genre. They were drawn to it because it was an MMORPG. WoW attracted people for other reasons. The company for one, people have grown up playing Diablo, Warcraft and STarcraft. When these people get tired of WoW they wont bother with some generic fantasy game like Rift, they will be done with the genre, at least until Titan. Sure, lots of people do play WoW because of the genre. But most of those people have already tried Rift anyway.and Rift will soak them up.
Its not for the 'kiddies', its for the sake of easier (lazier) development.Reason #1: MoP is the final nail in the coffin for character building in WoW. Once u choose a tree, almost everything is auto-selected for you. You only make an actual choice once every 15 levels and the choice matters very little (and that IS for the kiddies no matter how you slice it).
For one, the pet fighting system. Funny how Trion is trying to combat this with a pokemon minigame of its own. Oh and adding a very large chunk of content. In general though yes, Rift has more mini-content like Chronicles and MM dungeons, but WoW (ignoring archaeology) releases fully developed content. It does less ideas, but does more content per idea, which is something Rift is seriously lacking these days.Reason #2 I have not heard of anything that MoP is doing that Rift does not already do.. but i do see things that Rift has which MoP does not.
You could argue WoW has two of the genre's most widespread innovations: a focus on solo ability while leveling and LFD. I think they are both negative innovations, but Rift's one true innovation is IAs which falls into the same category: making MMOs less about socialization that involves communication and more about instant gratification
On top of all of this, blizzard is a false king basically. They took the throne, but ruled very terribly. They took all that money and yet crawled at a snail's pace in regards to innovation of the fantasy mmorpg genre.
Also, phasing is a pretty big innovation in storytelling.
the games that were daring were almost 100% before WoW. Games like SWG and EvE that did try a drastically different take on the genre. I havent played GW2 or TSW yet so cant say for sure, buy maybe with these two games we finally have some innovation. Mostly since WoW its been nothing but unfinished products and clones.Other games dared to step out and upgrade the genre, but blizzard's advertising campaign starved those innovators out and left us stuck with blizzard's outdated and inferior product.
A Rift clone? so a clone of a clone of their game? When WoW takes ideas from other games it does so in a way that makes sense to WoW, they dont do it for the sake of doing it. Notice how they havent rushed into the whole 'dynamic event' thing yet? WAR, Rift, GW2, TERA and EQ2 all have some play on the public quest system, WoW does not. WoW has adopted a form of IA, but its a very different type of content and done in a way it makes sense in Azeroth
If blizzard comes out with a GW2 clone or a Rift clone in a year or two, i will NOT be rewarding them with money.. far too late for that, imo. They've lost all respect i could've had for them.
There is love for GW2 everywhere. And look around these forums a bit. The complaints arent coming from trolls, they are coming from people who have been playing for months. If WoW were to lose half its western customers due to GW2 they would still have 5x more subscribers than anyone. If Rift lose half their customers they would have to reconsider how they run the game financially (I am skeptical if you can fully support a sub 150k subscriber game on just sub fees alone)
P.S. last time i checked there were alot of ppl on the MoP beta forums very unhappy with the character build system.. but if you go over to the section where you are allowed to discuss other games, there is aLOT of love for GW2 and you basically get trampled by walls of text if you try to diss it.. so i think WoW has more to worry about from GW2 than Rift does.