Thanks to the awesomeness that was PAX East 2013, we know a whole lot more about WildStar than we did a mere few months ago. There’s one slight problem, however. That information’s kind of spread out between various sites and hidden in long-ish videos and podcasts. We’re here to help. Here’s our guide to what we currently know about WildStar. We’ve used lots of bullet points and attempted to organize bits of information just to make things a little easier to read.
At the very end is a list of all the sources we used to come up with gigantic list o’ juicy tidbits. Source videos and images are also embedded throughout. We’ve also left out story/lore type information due to players naturally having different spoiler thresholds. If you noticed we’ve missed anything, feel free to drop us a line in the comments section below! We’ll be updating this as new information continues to surface.
Last update: 8/3/13.
See Change Log at bottom for information on updates.
The Dominion – “A powerful, interstellar empire that prides itself on kickin’ ass.” These are the bad guys, kind of, who want to kill everyone who isn’t them. A large, looming empire who uses fear as a tactic to overrule. Religious.
The Exiles – “A motley crew of refugees, outlaws, and mercenaries.” These are the good guys, kind of, but are also sort of the underdogs. They’re on the run, basically, and banded together out of necessity.
Races are locked between the two factions. Some classes can only be certain races, which are shown below. There are eight races total.
- Human: Standard human race. Available Classes – Warrior, Stalker, Esper, Spellslinger
- Granok: Hulking giants of living stone. Available Classes – Warrior
- Aurin: Small, agile bunny-looking things with long tails. Available Classes – Spellslinger, Stalker, Esper
- Mordesh: A race that has been changed into zombies through alchemy gone wrong. Available Classes: Warrior, Stalker, Spellslinger
- Cassian: A type of human race. Available Classes: Warrior, Stalker, Esper, Spellslinger
- Draken: Fierce beasts with horns and long tails. Available Classes: Warrior, Spellslinger, Stalker
- Mechari: Sentient mechanical beings. Available Classes: Warrior, Stalker
- Chua: Small rodent/Gremlin-like creatures. Classes: Spellslinger, Esper
- There are six classes. Two of which are currently unknown. One of these unknown classes is the game’s main healing class.
- Each class gets a specific weapon and armor requirement.
- Roles are specific to certain classes. Each class (so far) can do at least two roles.
- Some classes are restricted to certain races (see above).
- Warrior -
Roles: Melee DPS, Tank
Weapon: Tech Sword
Armor: Medium Armor (upgrades to Heavy)
Ability Resource: Kinetic Cells. Some attacks/abilities generate Kinetic Cells, others spend them.
Primary Attributes: Brutality (DPS), Tech (Tank – grants additional threat)
Examples of known abilities: Survivability cooldowns, taunts, charges, yanks, abilities that regenerate shields.
Roles: Melee DPS, Tank
Armor: Light Armor (upgrades to Medium)
Ability Resource: Suit Power
Primary Attributes: Brutality (DPS), Tech (Tank – grants additional threat)
Examples of known abilities: Stealth, bombs, pounce (movement displacement).
Note: Stalkers used to use Finesse/Dexterity, but according to Gortok the Stalker DPS stat is now Brutality.
Roles: Ranged DPS, Healer
Armor: Light Armor
Ability Resources: Mana and Focus Points
Primary Attributes: Moxie (DPS), Insight (Healer)
Examples of known abilities: Summon creatures, charm enemies.
Roles: Ranged DPS, Healer
Weapon: Dual Pistols
Armor: Light Armor
Ability Resource: Spell Surges and Mana
Primary Attributes: Finesse (DPS), Insight (Healer)
Take a peek at our guesses for the two unannounced classes here. It looks like we’ll be seeing a cannon user (DPS/Tank) and staff user (Healer/DPS).
Primary Attributes -
- Brutality (previously Strength): Warrior (DPS)
- Finesse (previously Dexterity): Spellslinger (DPS), Stalker (DPS)
- Moxie (previously Magic): Esper (DPS)
- Tech (previously Technology): Warrior (Tank), Stalker (Tank)
- Insight (previously Wisdom): Spellslinger (Healer), Esper (Healer)
- Grit (previously Stamina): All classes if they want additional health.
- Strikethrough: All classes if they need +hit.
- You’re able to allocate primary attributes yourself as you level (see screenshot above), which means we should be able to build awesome customizable specs (Ragnarok Online, anyone?).
- There are also secondary attributes.
- There are these things called Milestones, which are passive bonuses you can unlock by achieving thresholds in certain attributes. Every class is a little different. In some cases, you may want to stack primary attributes to unlock certain milestones, in other cases you’ll want to pile on secondary attributes in order to unlock something else. This lets you customize your playstyle.
- Strikethrough, which is the game’s hit rating attribute, will be something for max level DPS/tank players to work toward.
You’ll able to choose one Path per character. These kind of represent gaming playstyles. Whether you like to explore, kill all the things, socialize, or tinker with things that may or may not go boom can affect how you play the game entirely. Paths can have an effect in PvE and PvP.
- Explorer – Gives you special exploration objectives for exploring grey areas of the map, placing markers at certain points, and discovering hard-to-reach areas that may contain special goodies (jumping puzzles). Gives you special doors and access points only Explorers can unlock that open up areas/tunnels to explore (other players can gain access to these areas, but not open the doors to them). These tunnels make traveling sometimes much easier.
- Possible mission types include: Cartography, Expedition, Scavenger Hunt, Surveillance, Exploration, Operations, Staking Claim, and Tracking.
- Scientist - Studying the environment (with the help of a cute lil’ probe!) and performing experiments on plants, organisms, relics and more. Possible missions include
- Possible mission types include: Analysis, Biology, Catalog, Diagnosis, Archeology, Botany, Chemistry, and Field Study.
- Soldier – Kill all the things. Gives you objectives for protecting NPCs, killing waves of enemies, scouting out super powerful enemies, completing public events where you kill stuff, and more.
- Possible mission types include: Assassination, Rescue Op, Holdout – Conquer, Holdout – First Strike, Demolition, SWAT, Holdout – Security, and Holdout – Protect.
- Settler – The “social” path essentially. Constructing and upgrading outposts. Establishing banks, transportation networks, and extra vendors and buildings such as hospitals. These buildings are in addition to the normal array of vendors, questgivers, etc. Settlers may have to work with other players to build these items, which is why it’s a little more social than the other paths. If there are a lot of Settlers around, the bonuses will increase. They also get a bonus to help build up their house a little easier.
- Possible mission types include: Expansion, Supply Cache, Public Service, Civil Defense, and Infrastructure.
Path content is about 20% of the questing content. You gain Path XP for completing Patch objectives and challenges. XP grants you rewards as you progress. One example reward for an Explorer is a jetpack or speed boots on long-ish cooldowns. One example reward for a Soldier would be a special weapon that grants an extra power you can use every now and then.
Combat, Controls, and Abilities
- There are rewards for obtaining kill streaks.
- You can dash and double dash during combat using double tap, which is crucial for avoiding attacks and effects.
- You can sprint by holding SHIFT. Sprint and double dash use a resource similar to stamina that’s shown on-screen in a circle and will eventually deplete.
- You can also double jump, which can be handy for avoiding stuff and for getting around quick.
- Loot falls like a loot pinata kind of, all around your character (I keep thinking of Kingdom Hearts for some reason…). You can hit V to suck it all to your character.
- The holy trinity (tank, healer, DPS) is definitely in place. There is the ability to have multiple specs and swap between them (details unknown).
- You can only have a limited amount of abilities on your hotbar (7 looks like?), but have many to choose from. Abilities are bought with ability points that are earned through leveling (they’re bought at an Ability Kiosk). You kinda have to pick and choose between learning abilities, especially at higher levels, but you’ll eventually gain way more than you can use, which means you must pick and choose for each encounter as well. Abilities can be swapped between on the fly while out of combat.
- Telegraphed abilities are a huge part of the game. Think of these as the big red circles that are common in most MMOs currently. You’ll want to get out of red ones, but stay in green ones. Red are enemy/environment AoE damage/crowd control effects, green are heal effects from other players. Blue effects are your own and work nicely on some attacks for AoE farming, etc. Telegraph attacks also serve as a good way to communicate with party members about what you’re going to do next.
- There are lots of dangerous telegraphed abilities out in the wild (and even more in raids, dungeons, etc.). Some are environmental hazards, others are from enemies. You’re rewarded for dodging them and interrupting with bonus XP and special buffs that help you even further. You’re also rewarded in the form of Fervor, which is a buff that makes you extra strong and extra fast, which in turn allows you to score kill streaks easier.
- You can drag enemies into environmental hazards and attacks from other enemies so they take damage.
- Enemies will vary (and progressively get more difficult) quite a bit while leveling, both in fighting style and difficulty.
- Characters can equip shields which act like a temporary source of damage reduction.
- Most abilities use skillshots (think League of Legends) instead of standard targeting mechanics. Healers will also utilize skillshots and will never have to only focus on the UI while healing.
- Movement is always emphasized during all parts of the game, even for healers.
- Some healing particles will be dropped on the ground and picked up by other players, other effects will be skillshots that players must be in in order to receive the brunt of the heals.
- Racial abilities will be in place, but they seem passive in nature and may only effect the costs of other abilities and similar ideas. (Source)
Exploration and Leveling
- Players can level through questing, PvP, or dungeons.
- Zones in the game world are seamless without loading screens between them. The only exceptions are the starting areas and areas that are on different continents of Nexus.
- The level cap is 50.
- Zones each have recommended levels and set levels, so players can travel a bit if they want something more challenging, easier, etc.
- Datacubes can be found while exploring that give away bits of lore.
- Questing is pretty standard, except the story in quests is told in little chunks of radio voiceover, NPC chatter, etc., instead of huge blocks of text that need to be read.
- Quests can be turned in in the field via comm calls. Questgivers will also call you if you happen to run by them without noticing them and give you quests that way.
- There are a handful of vehicle quests, etc.
- There are dynamic questgivers that will move around a zone and set up in different areas.
- There are lots of random goodies to explore out in the wild, including giant crystals in the air that can be hopped across using low gravity or hidden merchants and questgivers that can be unsurfaced. There are also special dynamic areas called Discoveries that will sometimes spawn a random mob, unlock an instanced area, spawn a little buff station, or start an event that encourages players to drag enemies to a certain area and mass kill stuff for lots of rewards.
- There are also zone-wide public event objectives that players can team up to work toward that grant zone-wide buffs.
- In addition to quests, there are also challenges, which are pseudo-quests that automatically pop up on your screen, giving you the option to say, kill 8 bad guys in X seconds or climb to the top of a certain tree in Y seconds. If you complete the challenge within the allotted time, you’re rewarded goodies via a slot machine type window that pops up and lets you choose between XP, reputation, and cash rewards. You’re also given a chance to redo the challenge if you miss the timer.
- When you die, you’re given an option to pay to res where you died once every half an hour, or just run back from the holo-crypt, which is essentially the graveyard.
- While running toward quest objectives, you can toggle on a little holograph around your character that points you in the general direction you should head in. You’ll still have to look around a bit once there to find the exact objective location.
- There will be lower-gravity zones that allow you to jump really high and require you to change how you move and fight.
- There will be a system in the environment that allows you, for instance, to coast naturally down a stream on a current.
- Each zone has a world boss that will take between 15-20 people to finish off.
- Each zone will have a different reputation system. In certain zones, for example, you’ll be able to kill certain enemies when close to special NPCs in order to gain reputation with that group.
- Depending on what type of server ruleset you choose, you may find yourself flagged for PvP in zones belonging to the other faction. Find out more here.
- There will be dungeons, max-level veteran dungeons, raids, adventures, solo instances, and public dynamic events.
- Public dynamic events are out in the open world, found in each zone. Events vary. Some, for example, cause goodies (and enemies) to fall out of the sky as meteors.
- Solo instances will be for solo players.
- Dungeons and veteran dungeons will be for 5 players, are instanced, and will focus on combat primarily. Veteran dungeons will be more difficult.
- Even the leveling dungeons seem fairly complex as far as mechanics go according to early press reviews. Carbine’s goal for the amount of time that players should spend in a dungeon is around an hour. (Source – Arkship EU review)
- Adventures will be for 5 players, are instanced, and will focus on many activities including combat, exploration, and optional objectives that require a little more strategy.
- There will be both 20-man raids and 40-man instanced raids. Yep, 40-man!
- 40-man raids will be for the hardcore, that 1% of players who want the really tough stuff.
- Raids will not focus on central or unique storylines, which gives the team more freedom to create difficult raid content without feeling like tons of players are missing out.
- The story content that takes place at the level cap will all take place in solo instances.
- 20-man and 40-man raids will be entirely different and feature different loot tables. A 40-man guild might have to progress through the 20-mans first, but there will also be alternative ways of obtaining gear that’s somewhat similar to 20-man gear (with less stats), including gear that can be bought by unlocking certain achievements. This will help players catch up a bit. (Source @ 9 mins in)
- The best gear in the game will come from 40-man raids. It will be entirely unique.
- Vendor gear will allow players to fill in gear gaps. Best in Slot (BiS) gear will never be on vendors. (Source)
- There will be a LFG/LFD tool for all 5-man content and non-ranked PvP content. The tool will be cross-server, but will feature a checkbox that players can select to only allow them to be matched with players on their own server.
- There won’t be a LFR tool of any kind.
- There will be something similar to raid attunements that players will have to work through in order to prepare themselves for raiding.
- There will be battlegrounds, arenas, ranked battlegrounds, ranked arenas, possible world PvP, and Warplots for PvP players to take part in.
- You can completely level by participating in battlegrounds if you want.
- There will be a cross-server matchmaking system for most types of PvP. Normal battlegrounds and normal arenas will feature a “match with same server only” checkbox option.
- There will be 2v2, 3v3, and 5v5 Arena matches. Teams must be organized beforehand, similar to World of Warcraft’s system. Players can only be in one team per match size.
- Arena matches won’t be single elimination. Each team will share a certain amount of respawns that vary based on team size. Once all players and respawns are dead and used up, a winner is proclaimed.
- The gear progression system for PvP will be similar to the PvE gear progression system. Warplots will grant the best PvP gear in the game.
- PvP gear will feature two PvP-specific stats– one that increases the offensive power of damage against players, and one that reduces damage from other players. (Source)
- PvP and PvE gear are entirely separate. Players won’t have to PvE to PvP and vice versa.
- There will be, however, options in the crafting system that let players make their PvE gear better for PvP and vice versa.
- Warplots are elder game (endgame) PvP battles that take place on special, large plots. Players can customize everything from the environment to walls, deployables, and the types of enemies that can get in the way of players. Warplot customizations seem fairly elaborate.
- Warplots matches are 40 vs 40. They’re designed with the hardcore PvP group in mind. Strategies, building techniques, and organized teamplay should win the day.
- Players can also enter the matchmaking system to take part in Warplots.
- The owner of a Warplot must agree to a battle beforehand.
- If a player’s Warplot is conquered, the Warplot actually gets destroyed and the conquerors gain some of the goodies that were on it.
- The first Warplot is free when you reach level cap. Obtaining the necessary materials and components for building things on it may take some time and adventuring, however.
- There seems to be some kind of point system in place for Warplots that’s kind of like an item cap. This will keep players from building too much stuff.
- It’s possible to even put a raid boss on a Warplot. It won’t be quite as strong as in the raid. It will also cost quite a few points.
- There is the potential for world PvP yet due to the server types being added. See here for more info.
- Battlegrounds will feature match sizes in between 10v10 and 15v15.
- Leaderboards are high in priority for launch. Spectator mode and shoutcasting support will be post-launch additions.
- Housing’s available fairly early in the game, starting at level 6.
- Houses kind of evolve as you progress, shifting from a tent into a basic house then into something pretty awesome.
- Houses are single-player, instanced, and on a floating island of sorts.
- There’s a quest chain you get after obtaining your housing area to clear it of baddies that just happened to come with your plot of land. There’s even a boss you’ll have to defeat.
- Players can free-form move objects on the inside, including adjusting the sizes and exact adjustments of individual objects. You’re also given building blocks for larger structures. You can even turn things upside down, build in the air, build additional levels in your house, etc., much like RIFT’s system.
- Many items are dynamic and adjust to the game’s day/night system. Some items even move around and vary as far as their animations are concerned.
- Outside is more particular. You have “plugs” which allow you to build special additions that are useful for players including farm plots, mining nodes, crafting stations, areas that can spawn rare items or rare mobs, and Warplots.
- Daily quests can be obtained in your housing area, including daily quests that encourage you to take part in other areas of the game you haven’t explored (PvP for PvEers, for example). You’ll then get extra special rewards for diving into unknown territories.
- Raiders can also access portals to raids or gain buffing stations.
- You get increased rested XP when you log out inside your house, more XP if you have lots of special goodies.
- Housing goodies come from everywhere in the game including monster heads as trophies, drops off enemies, and quest/challenge rewards.
- There’s an entire craft dedicated to make housing goodies with the help of an NPC. Crafters can also speed up the building of some housing features.
- You can set your housing area to be open to the public, open just to friends, closed, etc. You can’t currently allow friends, etc. to help you build your house, but this may be changed in the future.
- If you know you’re going to be away for a week, you can give your friends access to your housing area so they can do your dailies, farm your nodes, etc.
- Public events can happen in housing areas.
- There’s a whole system of meta achievements for completing housing-related objectives.
- Every character can have their own special house. Alts do not get access to your other characters’ houses. This means that each character can only have one house.
- Each race will have a special style of house (and maybe other housing features as well).
- There is currently only a single plot size, but by the time the launches, there by be more.
Tradeskills and Circuit Board Crafting (CBC)
- To gather resource nodes, you basically just hit things until they bust open with loot. If you have a certain tradeskill, mining for example, you’ll gain a special weapon that lets you “kill” nodes much more quickly. Everything’s a loot pinata!
- Monsters can even be hidden inside resource nodes.
- We haven’t seen much on tradeskills yet, but the Survivalist seems to be in charge of finding/planting seeds for farming.
- Crafting will feature mini-games of some type.
- There’s an entire craft dedicated to make housing goodies with the help of an NPC. Crafters can also speed up the house building process.
- Crafters get some way to make PvE gear a little better focused for PvP and vice versa.
- The modding/Circuit Board Crafting system in WildStar looks pretty elaborate. Players are able to take a piece of gear and add in different chips that add attributes, passive effects, and additional effects such as Challenge Chips that haven’t quite been explained yet. The combination of certain chips will grant set bonuses. Crafters will presumably play an important role in creating chips. More more info on this system, check out this developer blog.
- Random CBC chips found in gear will allow players to customize gear that may not be ideal for them and also take out chips that can be used in other gear. This makes drops, overall, much more useful in WildStar. Raid drops, for instance, will have thousands of possible random chip possibilities. This also makes obtaining BiS gear a little more difficult, which is the intention. (Source)
- You can set up multiple social “circles” that let you invite Y group into your housing area and invite X group along for PvP, for example. You gain extra rewards by doing activities within your circles.
- There’s a night and day cycle.
- WildStar, in general, is designed with veteran MMO players in mind. Multiple aspects of the game feature complex systems that are simple enough for new players to get the hang of, but provide additional opportunities for veteran MMO players so they won’t get too bored. One example given was the possible stacking of quests, challenges, path objectives, reputation farming, and public group quests. Doing all separately is okay, but experienced gamers will naturally try and do all at once, which is far more efficient.
- Character customization options seem fairly broad, with a few sliders to change bone structure and character proportions, etc. There will be limits in place, however.
- There will be mounts in the game as well as flying mounts that will become available at max level.
- The user interface will be completely customizable and player addons will be allowed.
- There’s an achievement system and guild system in the game (and guild achievements).
- There’s an in-game calendar feature.
- There’s a wardrobe-type feature that lets players put on costumes. There seem to be multiple costume slots so far.
- There will be a full dye system in place. There are around 160 dyes currently and most are likely to become available via an unlocking system with a few high-end dyes possibly as consumables.
- Endgame, which the WildStar team calls elder game, will definitely be the main focus of the game.
- There are many quirky/goofy sides of WildStar found everywhere in the game, whether it’s humor in the story, quests, or in the enemies themselves.
- The current character naming convention (this may change) allows for 1-word names that also allow numbers.
- The game will use partial phasing for some areas, which means environmental effects, etc. may differ from person to person, but ideally players should always be able to see each other except in instanced content. (Source)
- Current release date: The team is hoping for the game to release sometime in 2013, but will ultimately release the game when it’s ready. (Source)
- More beta invites should be going out every month or so for now. Players will be invited in chunks of around 1000.
- WildStar will have vanity pets. (Source)
- All we know about Carbine’s plans regarding a pricing model for WildStar is that the team plans on following a hybrid payment model. This means that some aspects of the game may follow a free-to-play system, but there may also be an optional subscription. Details are unknown at this point, but giving players options seems to be the idea here.
Future Content Releases
- The team plans on doing large monthly updates that add in new dungeons, instances, and other large content drops every month. They want to add in a new solo instance every month for sure.
- All of the above embedded videos as well as this developer interview (the audio part, notably).
- All of the official WildStar videos, pages, and beta patch note releases found here and here.
- Zam’s Hands-On With WildStar.
- StrategyInformer’s WildStar Preview.
- PAX East impressions and interview from WildStar Central.
- Racial housing designs found at WildStar Central.
- Stat allocation screenshot found at WildStar Central.
- ZAM’s PvP interview with Jen Gordy.
- This Gamebreaker interview video.
4/5/13 – Originally created.
4/8/13 – Added additional Settler and racial ability details. (Source)
4/15/13 – Added notes about partial phasing, release date speculation, crafting mini-games, and update on beta invites. (Source)
4/16/13 – Added Chua race speculation. (Source)
4/17/13 – Omitted information regarding Dregg as a playable race speculation via Twitter update.
4/18/13 – Added random information bits from this leaked patch note developer forum Q&A including information on vanity pets and Settlers.
4/25/12 – Added information on PvP gear and specifics on battleground group sizes. (Source)
4/28/12 – Clarified 40-man vs. 20-man raid information.
5/3/13 – Added Carbine’s goal for dungeon time length. (Source)
5/5/13 – Added Change Log.
5/13/13 – Added bit about zones being seamless for the most part as well as elder game gear information revealed in this thread.
5/31/13 – Updated Attributes to match the beta patch notes and added in additional Path info and mission types. (Source) Added additional info on dye system. Added in hybrid payment model update. (Source video)
6/2/13 – Added information about Strikethrough. (Source) Made note of the Stalker DPS stat changing to Brutality. (Source) Clarified War Plot/raid info.
8/3/13 - Added information on the Chua and Mordesh race reveal.