December 29 2012
Currently in beta testing, WildStar is an upcoming MMORPG being developed by Carbine Studios and published by NCsoft. Set on the fictional planet of Nexus, the game will offer a light-hearted blend of sci-fi and fantasy with very distinctive artwork. While we still don't have a release date for WildStar, the developers have released quite a few videos to introduce people to the game. This is a a start on what we know about WildStar so far.
Races and Classes
3 playable races and 3 classes have been revealed for the game at this point. The races are Aurin, Granok, and Human. The classes in WildStar include Esper, a mage-like caster, Spellslinger, a ranged damage specialist, and Warrior, a melee class that will probably assume the tank role.
One way in which WildStar hopes to stand out is by giving players a choice of Path as well as choice of class. Paths appear to consist of alternate activities that include their own quests and rewards, each tailored to a specific play style. All paths will be available to all classes and races.
Explorer - If you're the kind of player that can't wait to see what is over the next hill or around the next corner, Explorer is likely the path for you. Explorers are provided with a tracking device that leads them to nearby points of interest, where they might find a mountain to climb, a spectacular view, a jumping puzzle, or some other such feature.
Soldier - People who prefer to spend most of their time in combat may like the Soldier Path. Soldiers are assigned the task of defending outposts. Objectives can vary from keeping a friendly NPC alive, to killing all attackers within a time limit, to surviving numerous waves of enemies.
Scientist - Lore hounds and those who like gathering collectibles should consider the Scientist Path. Again you'll use a scanning device to locate unusual objects and creatures placed around the world. Deciphering these mysteries will constitute another layer of questing for Scientists.
Settler - The Settler Path is being designed for those who like to socialize. It's the Path we know least about, but it's likely to involve incentives for making and playing with friends or organizing guilds. Settlers may have deployables that buff others and themselves.
WildStar will offer a largely familiar RPG combat system and Carbine appears intent on keeping the "holy trinity" of tank, healer, and damage-dealer intact. Part of the plan is to spice things up with "momentum mechanics," which reward fast kills, simultaneous kills, an so on. In some situations players can see threat indicators on the ground warning of an incoming attack, giving them a chance to dodge, interrupt, or take other action. Their video on Combat Telegraphs illustrates how this will work.
Although not many MMORPGs make player housing a priority at launch, it looks like Carbine is putting considerable effort into such a system for WildStar. According to the Nexus Housing Initiative, players will be able to decorate, planet a garden, or even add defensive weaponry to their homes. Space issues will be resolved by having plots of land floating in the sky.