Rift Nightmare Rift Guide

Rift Nightmare Rift Guide by Gamdol

So I thought I’d put together a little (this is a lie) guide to help inform people about Nightmare Rift powerups, and my opinions on how to maximize their usefulness. So first, a brief introduction to powerups.

Powerups usage is the single most important thing that will get you and your group to later stages of Nightmare Rifts. Getting out of all the red and turning from all the shields won’t matter at all if you can’t do insane amounts of raid damage later on, and the only way to get there is via powerups. There are a few rules to powerups:

1) You cap out at 4 available powerups in a Nightmare Rift 2) Every stage you complete with a bonus will add one powerup to the Nightmare Rift, assuming you are below cap 3) The awarded powerups can override the ‘buildable’ powerups at stage completion

Now, here’s what each of them does. I’ll cover general powerup optimization later on. Listed from worst to best (will add other pictures when I remember to screenshot them):

Stage Negative Powerups –


Passive: Heals nearby allies periodically for a small amounts Active: Charges the enemy and does a chunk of damage to all enemies around the target


Passive: Greatly increases movement speed Active: Pulls in all Nightmare Rift creatures and applies a very powerful DoT to them

Stage Neutral Powerups –


Passive: Places a white circle around the user, which increases friendly player damage if they’re inside the circle Active: Places a circle on the ground under the target, does high damage to all enemies inside the circle


Passive: Deals damage to the user periodically Active: Does a large chunk of damage to the target, generally ~50% of their health


On use summons a Radiant Shard. The shard pulses damage to nearby enemies every small percentage of its health, with a large chunk of damage when it dies.


On use tethers the user to the original location, creating a beam that deals high, regular damage to all enemies in close proximity to the beam.


Passive: Causes all offensive abilities to trigger a high damage AoE around the user Active: Causes the friendly target to deal signficantly more single target damage for a short time

Stage Positive Powerups-


On use summons a demon that targets nearby mobs with high single target and area damage. Lasts a very long time. Would be the best if the next powerup wasn’t absolutely godly


Passive: Every ability by the user causes a ridiculously high damage pulse to all nearby enemies Active: Applies an AoE DoT to the target that pulses for ridiculously high damage

Now, what do I meant by Stage Negative/Neutral/Positive? Basically, whether that powerup, by itself, is enough to complete a higher level stage and gain a bonus (to generate a new powerup). Stage Negative powerups cannot by themself guarantee a bonus. Stage Neutral powerups can almost always guarantee a bonus. Stage Positive powerups almost 100% guarantee a bonus on the current stage, and likely on the following stage.

So how do we optimize them? First, we clear initial stages until we have four powerups available. Don’t waste Nightmare Energy building the initial spots, you’ll fill them with bonuses from stage 2-5. Now that you’ve got 4 powerups, it’s time to use them. One every stage until you don’t get a bonus. Use the lowest tier powerup you can that will guarantee a bonus for your group. This is also a good time to bring up powerup ‘replacement’.

If you have one of the Stage Positive powerups as well as one of the Stage Negative ones, you can effectively replace the bad powerup. For Demon, use it whenever it lasts forever. For Unity, use it with ~25 seconds or higher remaining on the timer (get closer to 25s the later in the rift you are). Kill your current stage with the powerup you chose. On the following stage, bring enemies to the Demon or use the Unity active on a target. The previous stage bonus will have replaced whichever one you picked up. Now, use the bad powerup and the combination of it and the previous powerup should guarantee a second bonus, replacing the bad powerup.

Bonus stages (20, 58, 108, 158, etc) also allow you to refresh or replace your powerups. You will get a bonus for completing the bonus stage, and you should be able to get a bonus on the following stage due to the enemies not being bolstered by the number of players in the rift.

Unity usage – This gets a separate section because I can’t tell you how many people I see waste this absolutely broken powerup. If you are not an Arbiter or Phys/Tact, you should probably not be using this power. Arbiter gets double bonus, using a charge generating ability and Soothing Waters (off GCD) to proc Unity twice every second. Phys/Tact has the best spammable ability to proc it otherwise. Personally, I’ve topped out around 3.3 million DPS on single target with Unity, and yes we got the bonus. Use Unity until the last possible second, then apply it to the target. It is an absolute waste to put it on the target early.

Feel free to ask questions in comments, I’ll do my best to answer them as I see them. If you like the guide and would like similar guides to other aspects of RIFT, I’d be happy to put them together to get as much information out about these types of things.

Other Rift Articles
Rift Tasuil Minion Card Guide
Rift Nightmare Rift Guide
Rift Mage Harbinger Guide
Rift Level 60 PvE Guide
Rift Warfront Gearing Guide
Rift Team PvP Tactics Guide
Rift PvP Beginner’s Tips
Rift PvP Tips and Tricks
Rift Fishing Daily Guide
Rift Infinity Gate Guide
Rift Defiler Raid Guide
Rift Defiler Experts Guide
Rift Justicar Tanking Guide
Rift Druid/Inquisitor Solo Guide
Rift Raiding Defiler Basic Guide
Rift Cleric Holy Paladin Leveling Build Guide
Rift Cleric Sentinel Guide
Rift Druid Quick Guide
Rift Cleric 61 Warden Guide
Rift Cleric Raiding Defiler Guide
Rift Cleric Shaman Guide
Rift Cleric Justicar Leveling Guide
Rift Cleric 61 Inquisitor Guide
Rift Mage Healing Guide
Rift Harb/Chloro Solo Leveling Support Healing Guide
Rift Mage 61 Pyromancer Guide
Rift Mage Necrolock PvP Guide
Rift Mage 61 Elementalist Guide
Rift Chloromancer Guide
Rift 61 Dominator PvP Guide
Rift 61 Necromancer Guide
Rift Warden Quick Guide
Rift Purifier Quick Guide
Rift Archon Quick Guide
Rift Mage Pro Healing Guide
Rift Mage Harbchon Guide
Rift Rogue Assassin PvE Solo Guide
Rift Rogue NB/Sin Leveling Guide
Rift Rogue NB/Sin Spec Guide
Rift Rogue Saboteur PvP Guide
Rift Rogue 61 Bard PvP Guide
Rift Rogue 61 Nightblade PvE DPS Guide
Rift Rogue 61 Ranger DPS Guide
Rift Rogue Easy Marksman Guide
Rift Rogue Bladedancer Guide
Rift 2.5 Warrior 61 Beastmaster DPS Guide
Rift Reaver/Paladin Tank Leveling Guide
Rift 2.5 Warrior 61 Paragon Guide
Rift Fun Leveling Guide
Rift Warrior Tempest Build Guide
Rift Warrior Riftblade Build Guide
Rift Warrior Warlord In Depth Guide
Rift Warrior Mighty Paragon Build Guide
Rift Warrior Hybrid Tank/DPS Build
Rift Warrior Perfect Solo Build Guide
Rift 51MM 15Rng Guide
Rift Raiding Inquisitor Guide
Rift Cleric Healing Build Compendium
Rift How Damage Works Math Guide
Rift STR vs DEX Math Guide
Rift Armor Math Guide
Rift Hammerknell Murdantix Guide
Rift Tips for New Players
Rift Rare Spawn Creatures List
Rift Fire Raid Guide
Rift Justicar Tanking Guide
Rift Cleric Healing Guide
Rift Basic Chloro Healing Guide
Rift Warrior Complete Tanking Guide
Rift Macro Guide

Leave a Reply