Updated Thu, Apr 10, 2014 by Lewis B
The newly released patch notes for WildStar are enormous. At a whopping 71 pages, it’s hard to even know where to begin when it comes to the list of changes, especially if you’ve yet to play the game. In this analysis I point out some of the main changes that caught my eye and what they actually mean.
- A completely revamped User Interface has been introduced to the game! The UI will continue to be polished over the coming months, so please pardon our dust.
Although no one has yet to play with the new User Interface, we have all seen it. The existing pyramid, that served its purpose well, lacked the sleakness or intuitive layout needed for effective play. The new UI is designed to keep your eyes on the prize (i.e enemies and players) and not neccesarily at the UI itself.
- Stun Breakout Gameplay has been changed. Thank you to everyone who provided feedback on this mechanic over the last few months!
For anyone unaware, the old Stun Breakout Gameplay resulted in you having to bash “F” repeatedly in order to reduce the stun time. Bad for your fingers and bad for your keyboard, Carbine have now replaced this with a bit of a Quick Time Event (QTE!) where you simply hold a random directional key down (see here!). For example, if you use WSAD, one of those 4 keys will be picked at random when stunned and all you have to do is press it. Marvelous!
- Added new character hair options in Character Creation.
- Character Creation now offers various body types for all races and genders.
Perhaps the biggest shock to everyone (not necessarily the addition of hair options) is the fact that character creation now offers a variety of body types. We don’t yet know to what degree this is (can we have fat and thin Chua?) but it’s clear that Carbine have been listening. Considering only a month or so ago it was stated it was physically impossible to implement body types, it’s clear that Carbine have managed to get over this impossibility. I’m hoping to be able to make a slightly smaller Draken female who’s a little bit thinner, but we’ll have to wait and see.
- AMPs have received a major balance pass. In general, they were previously much stronger than intended.
Unsurprisingly this change stretches to all the classes and has seen significant reduces in damage and mitigation. An Esper’s “BINGO” AMP, for example has reduced from a 33% chance to trigger to 20% while a Medic’s “Chemical Burn” AMP has been reduced from 21.6% to 9.5% (quite significant!). Although every class will see their damage come down because of this change, it’s much needed. My only concern now is the fact that healers were hard enough to kill before this reduction and although some defensive AMPs have been tweaked, I can’t see anything to make killing healers easier. One to watch.
- Abilities can now be purchased directly from the Action Set Builder, rather than requiring an Ability Vendor.
An enormous and glorious change that was well over due. Previously you had to visit a skill trainer back in a capital city or large settlement to acquire your skills which was nothing short of a pain in the backside. Now (praise the lord!) you can simply purchase them from your Action Set Builder anywhere in the game world. Brilliant.
Overall the Engineer has faired pretty well this patch in terms of dodging any bullets. Although they’ve had some numbers tweaked, the main changes have been to the Exo Suit:
- Eradication ExoSuit
- Can now build Volatility if not in combat.
- Can cast the innate while casting other abilities.
- Can only proc once every 2.5 seconds, up from 1 second.
- 22.96 damage per level, down from 10.65
- 72.51% Assault Power, down from 33.65%
- Provocation ExoSuit
- Can now build Volatility if not in combat.
- Can cast Innate while casting other abilities.
The fact they can now cast their innate while using other abilities is well overdue and a most welcome change while building Volatility while not in combat (with suit activated, I’m assuming) is a great change as well. It’ll allow for a little bit of lead up time before big bosses or players. Although the Tier 8 bonuses of Electrocute got cut down to size, that isn’t entirely surprising considering it was almost mandatory. Other notable changes primarily revolve around their AMPs and the fact that they’ve been nerfed though not as bad as I might have feared. The biggest I think is “Keep Up The Pace” which used to snare by 40% but now only snares by 15%. Ouch.
I think the Esper has done well out of this patch. They’ve had a load of items adjusted to use their correct attributes but have also seen some quality of life improvements by making some of their skills mobile. Catharsis now only has a 6 second cooldown (as opposed to 20) which works fantastically well with the new dispel changes. The bump to Phantasmal Armor might also make it worthwhile. As for the now mobile skills, Haunt and Soothe, it’ll make a massive difference to the healing and attacking functionality of the class. Haunt now provides a solid mobile Psi Point builder (though it has a cooldown) and Soothe, already awesome, is now even better at charges 2 and 3. Changes to Spectral Swarm so that it scales with the caster should also see it receive a nice damage bump. Where the Esper’s AMPs are concerned, there’s nothing too drastic but the biggest is “Reckful” (Increases Critical Hit Severity by 18%, down from 38.5%).