Wildstar Sci-Fi MMORPG
12.10.2013 @ 09:01 #1
In 2005 a group of 17 Blizzard Employees left the company and founded Carbine Studios and started work on their first game: Wildstar a Sci-FI MMO with action combat but also the holy trinity: Tank, Healer and DPS. Since then they've added people to the team who worked on Starcraft, Half-Life 2, City of Heroes, Everquest, Metroid Prime and the Fallout series.
Unveiled in 2011, with Closed Beta starting in April this year Wildstar might be the first true World of Warcraft Clone and potential killer ( potential, calling it a certain killer already vastly underestimates the clout World of Warcraft still has going for it despite the bullshit they've been doing ).
I say clone in the sense that no game until Wildstar has done or even really attempted to do what made World of Warcraft the best MMO ever made. Namely what World of Warcraft did was take gameplay mechanics from other existing MMOs ( Everquest, Ultima etc. ) and improve on them, in some areas by quite a lot.
Then World of Warcraft offered Blizzard's amazing polish of gameplay, stability and optimization for the game. It took them years to accomplish this but they finally got it right. This is something every other MMO I've played has suffered from, the only one which came close in terms of balance, optimization and stability was Guild Wars 2 but even then I consider it behind World of Warcraft.
This is what Wildstar is doing: Taking gameplay mechanics from other games, especially World of Warcraft and Guild Wars 2 and improving on them, polishing them and creating better balance.
To break the game down:
World/Lore/Story: The game is set on the world of Nexus where one Galactic Empire called the Dominion is waging war against a group of rebels called the Exiles. It's a Sci-Fi game where you also have magic and the game doesn't take itself in terms of story, lore and story, or at least that's what I gather from their trailers.
The war between the two factions is taking place on Nexus, a very rich planet where the Exiles are making their last stand since they've come to the end of their rope and which the Dominion want to make as their new capital world
Combat/Classes/Leveling/Paths: It's somewhere between Guild Wars and World of Warcraft. You've got your usual things like in World of Warcraft such as tanks, healers, melee and ranged dps-ers but you also have dashing, sprinting and dodging all of which are important in order to survive.
There are 6 classes so far, 2 of which are still unknown. There are no talent trees instead the game limits the abilities you can have on your action bar like Guild Wars 2 but not reliant upon on the weapon you are using. I am a bit unsure how they will handle balance but we'll see with regards to that.
What's interesting to some, though I don't much care for it personally, are the various paths one can take. Paths are designed to give you specific quests depending on the you've chosen.
There 4 paths are soldier which is focused on combat related quests, explorer which is focused on well...exploring, scientist focused on studying the environment, animals and the various people in the world and finally settler which focused on building houses, settlements and protecting them from threats.
Dungeons and Raids:
The main reason I am interested in this game is due to their approach to raiding. They are going full hardcore here. Dungeons will be hard but they state they want to reward skill not time played so that you don't have to play until 4 AM to get World Firsts, or to play from 10 AM till 12 to get them.
Raids will be divided into 20 man raids and 40 man raids. In order to handle 40 man raids you will have to tackle 20 man raids, and 20 man raids will require Heroic Dungeons.
The game will launch with one 40 man raid, one 20 man raid and 5 Dungeons and their heroic variants. They will be very challenging require solid skill and raid/group coordination to defeat.
Dungeons will have a normal mode, which like in every World of Warcraft expansion since Burning Crusade will be designed for leveling, and a heroic mode designed for maximum level characters. If they keep it like in World of Warcraft then you will need some gear from normal dungeons to get in raids, though skill will always trump gear you still need some amount of gear to handle raids.
For the record World of Warcraft raiding was never about time spent: I raided the toughest dungeons in the Burning Crusade and I had people in the guild which only showed up twice or maybe three times a week due to real life commitments...in a guild which raided five days a week. They saw all the content and got the best gear. Why? Because despite not investing as much time as others they had skill and skill always trumped time and gear.
The only issue when time was a problem was with the best guilds, they raided a lot and for them it counted so I am interested to see how Wildstar will stop them from doing it: For the record limiting boss tries like it happened in Wrath of the Lich King is not a solution. These players will just get alts and raid on them to get a feel for the boss before tackling him or her with their main characters.
Some might complain: Oh I don't have time to get the gear and then raid...well then don't. MMOs are an on-going experience, not something you defeat and then quit, in fact if that happens then the MMO has failed as a game. There is plenty to do outside of raiding so if you can't or don't want to then simply don't do it. It's not a herculean effort however as some would argue.
The game will also feature Shiphand Dungeons, which will be easier then regular dungeons and scale from 1 player to 5, so you can solo them and then there will be Dungeons created through Houses.
Player versus Player:
Very similar to World of Warcraft. Arenas, 15 vs 15 Battlegrounds. The interesting part is with War Plots: Think World vs World or Alterac Valley.
War Plots are custom created Fortresses by Guilds which then fight against Rival War Plots. They feature guns, bosses, NPCs and a lot of other stuff.
Players can make their own houses, these will be instance and give you various bonuses: Gathering Nodes, XP, House Dungeons and so on. You will be able to get various recipes to make into items for your house...also you can mount a boss's head in your house.
Subscription Based with the ability to buy game time through in-game currency. Don't want to pay 15 bucks a month? Just get some gold and buy game time, the item in-game that allows you to do this will be expensive since it has to be purchased by other players for close to 20 bucks and they'll sell the item for gold, it's a nice way to destroy Gold Farming.
12.10.2013 @ 10:15 #3
No other MMO out there ever came close to delivering the awesome PVE experience in terms of raiding and dungeons that WOW offered, which is why they all failed ( besides other issues ).
Wildstar seems to be offering that experience.
This is a level 20 dungeon. I was gobsmacked but seeing something like this in a level 20 dungeon!
12.10.2013 @ 10:49 #4
But I'm not too keen on the monthly sub thing. Think that's a thing of the past by now, for example a lot of WoW players (which I guess is the target audience for this) will be put off by it and will not want to try it just because they don't feel like risking it.
Costin Moroianu said:
Then again a lot of MMOs offered amazing early game content just to fall on their faces at end game. So I'm taking that with a grain of salt.
12.10.2013 @ 11:20 #5
Don't forget the game comes with 1 free month when you buy it. If after 1 month you don't want to spend 15 bucks on it then well the game isn't for you.
Personally I am very much in favor of the subscription model versus the nickel and dimming we see with F2P titles or the lack of content with something like Guild Wars 2. I absolutely abhor micro-transactions but servers need to be paid for and developers need to gain money for making content, so to me the subscription model works the best.
I will not accept micro-transactions and subscription model which is why I am very pissed off at Blizzard.
As a World of Warcraft raider what I know about the raiding community, the old one from Vanilla/TBC days, is that they despise rewarding people that simply paid more cash then they did.
True I suppose, but the thing that encourages me is that many of them are hardcore raiders. They made a blog about how they had a meeting for only the hardcore raiders in their team...what surprised the lead developer was that over half the company showed up.
Also there's going to be Raid Attunments. I almost cried in joy when reading that. It's obvious that they are targeting the hardcore raiding niche with this game, AKA the group of people that made WOW what the best selling MMO.
If they don't deliver their MMO will die.
12.10.2013 @ 12:23 #7
Oh I'll definitely try it, just that if it comes down to playing a sub based MMO, I'll probably choose WoW, mostly because of the time invested in it. But hey, there's always the chance Wildstar will blow me away.
GW2 has content updates every 2 weeks, just depends if you're satisfied with the content they deliver. Played it quite a bit but the content is just not structured to my liking, and I missed raiding in the end.
As far as I know you can't get an edge in raids with real money. Am I missing something?
Now those I've missed, made getting into a raid so much better after doing the quest line. Like you've earned it.
12.10.2013 @ 12:50 #8
If WOW removed LFR, made different 10 man and 25 man raids instead of simply scaling down existing raids, removed Flex Raiding and added back Raid Attunments I'd pick WOW any day over any other MMO. I still hate the crap they sell us through their store and how leveling has become trivial but at least I'd have raiding.
Oh and removed fucking heroic raids challenge modes for mounts.
Personally I find GW2 content rather lackluster.
Not in WOW, but in other MMOs, the F2P ones, you do get an edge. In WOW what I hate is having all those pets, mounts etc. as vanity items for real money. Why can't we just have them in game gained via some quest chain, or purchasable from some rare vendor?
Exactly and it added to immersion instead of having all the teleportation we have now in WOW. I mean sure Portals have been in the game since Vanilla but it's gotten ridiculous.
16.10.2013 @ 12:54 #12
If you think grinding is all that there is in an MMO then your experience is quite limited.
24.10.2013 @ 12:39 #13