I thought I'd give potential developers or artists a bit of an idea of the build environment and tool set I work with to make Rift.
I do most of my development in Windows using Visual Studio.NET. All of the code is in C++ and I'm pretty strict about sticking to the standards. Rift should build in Linux and in fact up until about a year ago I did most of my development in Eclipse. I haven't tried to build in Linux for a while now, but the point is no Windows API or Windows only libraries. I make use of a bunch of open source libraries, which you can find listed on the Thanks page. I also make use of some of my own tools, most importantly the KlassModeler, which I use to handle all my class design and headers. The main source itself is split into a game engine and the game layer. I make an effort to keep the two split apart in the hopes that maybe at some point the engine could be used for another project.
First off, I am NOT a 3D artist. I am a hack who has been sort of forced into the role. That said I do all my work using Blender which I really enjoy. It's a great modeler, it's cross platform, and it's free. I used to use AC3D for all my models, and the engine still loads the AC3D file format. I moved to Blender when I started getting into normal maps, which are sort of difficult in AC3D.