What comes with the 5th year celebration? A new expansion pack, and Rift 3.6 is detailed here.
Each year, Rift releases their "Carnival of the Ascended" -- this year coinciding with the release of Rift 3.6. With a 3.65 GB download patch, we are getting 5 new souls, new quests, buffs and nerfs to the existing classes, and better multi-core support.
In the Ascended Soul Pack DLC, you get a new soul for each of the existing classes. Mage gets "The Frostkeeper", a single target healer similar to Physician for Rogues. Primalists, which came out with the release of the Planetouched Wilds, are getting a ranged single target DPS spec called "The Maelstrom". Clerics are getting "The Runeshaper", a ranged single target DPS that uses runes and symbols to attack their enemies. Rogues get a dual target melee DPS soul called "The Shadeborn", which uses marks to let damage flow to a secondary target. (Are you the type to hide behind your allies? Good luck trying to get this thing off). Finally, Warriors get "The Warchanter", a single target healer that sings to heal.
It doesn't stop there. A performance increase was added with the multi-core improvements, which have seen a increased frame rate by 50%. So you can kick the graphics settings up a notch and not affect your gameplay.
There are new rewards given for logging in each calendar month. Log in 21 times in a month and collect shiny rewards. But don't worry if you miss a day, you can collect the same reward the next day.
The last change coming this update is to Planar Attunement. Planar Attunement --if you play Rift -- is a system within the game that allows you to continue leveling up after you hit the level cap. Experience you get turns into PA, which can be used to level up cool new abilities or stat upgrades.
The abilities include resistance to the different elements, which when combined can allow the player to come back to life instantly after dying. Other abilities given can increase your attack or spell power, give you health when you are attacked, or burn your surroundings. The experience level was moved from 1427 to 1709!