News

WildStar’s big plans for 2015!

Written by Mike Donatelli on January 15, 2015

Heyas Everybody,

As you all know, 2014 is done for and it’s onto 2015 (insert hackneyed New Year’s resolution joke). I think it’s worth noting that, even though it took some doing, Carbine was able to transition from a launch studio to a live studio. Why is that important? It’s important because we’ve learned a lot and nailed down the processes that will help us deliver solid high-quality updates. As to WildStar, let’s look to the future!

Over the last few weeks, it has been awesome to see key aspects of the game, such as the soundtrack and our action combat system, gain best-in-class recognition.  However, while the awards are great, we also recognize there are important areas where we can, and must, do better in 2015 — and we are.   

Moving forward, the team has a clear and fixed focus:

  • We will encourage and listen carefully to your – the player’s – feedback and focus development on making WildStar a more fun, less grindy, game.
  • We will make these updates with both present and future players in mind, to support a multitude of play styles, durations, group sizes and levels.
  • We will invest in, enhance, and grow this game.

With these three themes in mind, here is a quick list of exciting things happening in WildStar in the first half of 2015:

  • We will be adding lots of solo and group content to the game, including new Shiphands, Adventures and dungeons. 
  • We are focusing on revamping our customization systems and adding new ways for players to add personality to their characters.   
  • We are improving the Elder game experience, offering players lots of opportunities to find new and exciting loot!

All of these changes are a direct result of your feedback and your in-game activity over the last few months. Beyond these items, we plan a variety of additional improvements. For example, many players love the sophistication of WildStar’s housing system -- but some never reach the level where they can try it out. Many players enjoy dungeons -- but some find they have not been appropriately prepared for the intensity of the encounters.  We also see examples where players are unable to fully customize their characters because the system can be difficult to understand and options too hard to unlock. 

What it boils down to is making sure that all the great content that we are adding, or that is already in the game, is more visible and accessible.

Getting more specific and focusing on our next update, The Protogames Initiative, we are adding many new features, including:

  • Protogames Academy – a training dungeon to prepare lower level players for telegraphs, interrupt armor, and boss mechanics.
  • Ultimate Protogames – an exciting new dungeon for upper level players.
  • They Came from Fragment Zero! – a level  6 shiphand that introduces players to group gameplay at a much earlier level.
  • LFG upgrades – currently, some shiphands, adventures, and dungeons are intentionally hidden or need to be unlocked. Unfortunately, this keeps many players out of the content. Moving forward, all of this content will be added to an expanded LFG tool.
  • Datascape 20 – the 40-person dungeon wasn’t getting played as often as we hoped. Not only was the content challenging, but roster management was painful. In the next update we will lower the player requirement down to 20.

Looking further ahead into 2015, we will ramp up shorter-session (30-45 minute) gaming content. The intent is to give players something they can do more quickly in game that still delivers a sense of accomplishment (and meaningful loot). Some of the things we plan in this timeframe include:

  • A new Contracts system which will provide players with short, fun objectives throughout different kinds of WildStar content, enabling them to obtain rare and exciting rewards.
  • Revising overall levelling and Elder games experiences and making adjustments to enhance story immersion, fight combat fatigue, and fine-tune our reward streams.
  • As our Raiding guilds begin to face Avatus in the Datascape, we’re working on your next challenge! A brand new 20-player experience.

This isn’t everything, not by a longshot.  We’ve got much more in store for you in the coming months, and the bottom line is that we have very big plans for WildStar in 2015.  We hope that you’ll join the conversation and help us shape WildStar’s future.

To all the players who have been with us since launch, we want to thank you personally. Thank you for the support and your passion for this game. Thank you for your feedback and your discourse. To all our past players, and those who have not yet played, we hope to see you in WildStar soon!

I wish all of you a happy and successful 2015!

-- Mike Donatelli, WildStar Product Director
 

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