Wednesday, May 22, 2013


Today, NCSoft--a publisher you might recognize from other MMO's like Guild Wars, Lineage, or Aion--released a couple of new videos discussing one of the many cool features of their newest project, WildStar.  WildStar, as you might guess from the pedigree, is also going to be a massively multiplayer online RPG, this time with a sci-fi/fantasy bent and what I feel can be best described as a "sexy Disney" art style.  And I am completely freaking pumped for it.

Today's videos discussed the "Path" system.  Paths are kind of like character classes, and are chosen in addition to them; while the class dictates how your character fights and what gear he or she uses, your choice of Path lets you define what kind of side content you want to experience.  Soldiers get missions to go out and prove themselves badass against huge bosses or waves of enemies; Explorers get to do jumping puzzles or find hidden areas and scour them for loot; Scientists get to scan all of the things and are rewarded with items, XP, and most importantly, lore; Settlers support their fellow players by building shops, fortifying towns, making vehicles, and generally just being the kind of awesome roadie that would make Eddie Riggs proud.

It sounds cool on its own, yeah, but it reflects the game's overarching philosophy: it's an MMO for people who liked World of Warcraft and its clones, but who got to the endgame and ran headlong into the Wall of Endless Grinding.  Maybe that doesn't sound terribly ambitious to you E.V.E players, but as a guy who starts foaming at the mouth whenever someone says the words "Golden Lotus," it's right up my alley.

The combat itself seems to incorporate a lot of the movement and positioning that made NCSoft's previous release, Guild Wars 2, really fun to play for the first, oh, thirty hours.  Dodging, jumping, strafing, blocking, it's all in there.  The Path system will, in theory, add a ton of variety to spice up the level grind, tailored to players' personal preferences.  And the devs have opted to return to the Holy Trinity of MMO design (tank, healer, DPS), which should make the game's dungeons and end content significantly less frustrating.  And by "frustrating," I mean "GRAAAAARGLBRGLBRGL DIE DIE DIE."

The "WildStar Flicks" videos are undoubtedly a big part of the reason I'm so excited for the game.  From the initial announcement trailer, starring Ben Grimm, Flynn Rider, and Twilight Sparkle, to the individual videos introducing the classes and factions, Carbine has pumped each "flick" with a ton of appealing personality and humor.  Even the non-CG DevSpeak videos radiate enthusiasm.  WildStar really seems like a genuine labor of love.

Oh, and there's player housing.  Not just player housing, but customizable, expandable player housing.  No neighborhoods, sadly--it seems Lord of the Rings Online still holds the crown in that department, not to mention a couple of others--but being able to deck your place out with crafting stations and resource nodes makes me a happy geek.  I love crafting in most games, as long as it's not just a massive and ultimately pointless drain on time and resources.  (Cough, WoW.)

So, yes.  I'm excited.  And some day, presumably some day within the next several months, I'm going to be building taverns and storefronts across the face of Nexus.  Feel free to stop by and kick up your feet.  Maybe Carbine will even rip off LotRO's music system, and we can have ourselves a jam.

Click below the break if you'd like to see some of those videos I was talkin' about, all gathered in one convenient place.

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