Introducing WildStar's Dominion Races and Stalker Class

Today marks the shocking season finale of WildStar Week on the Ten Ton Hammer channel, as we take you on a virtual tour of the Dominion faction, its playable races, and the new Stalker class.

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WildStar Week Episode Six
Introducing WildStar's Dominion Races and Stalker Class

Today marks the shocking season finale of WildStar Week on the Ten Ton
Hammer channel, as we take you on a virtual tour of the Dominion faction,
its playable races, and the new Stalker class. For those of you just
tuning in, be sure to consult our

target="_blank">complete programming schedule to check out the rest
of our WildStar Week episodes.

Before we dive into the action, I’m pleased to announce that members of
the Team Hammer ground crew will be on-site for Arkship
2013
this weekend. As such, this series has been renewed for another
season, so you can expect my full report on the event and a lot more
heading into next week.

If you’re a current WildStar fan, simply curious as to what makes the
game tick, or are just tuning in for the first time, be sure to leave any
questions you like us to bring along to the event in the comments at the
end of this episode.

Speaking of…

Introducing the Dominion

I’ve had to bite my fingers throughout the past week of WildStar
coverage, as they’ve been itching to write about the Dominion. If the
Exiles in WildStar represent the loose collective of expirates who have
been forced to flee their home worlds, then the Dominion is the seemingly
evil empire that forced them to flee in the first place.

Mind you, I wouldn’t automatically lump the Dominion into the full-on
black hat category. Rather, they simply covey a distinct sense of
entitlement. As such, they see it as their right to deplete the resources
of any world that they see fit, regardless of the negative impact it may
have on the native inhabitants.

That brings us to the central conflict on the planet Nexus, where your
adventures in WildStar take place. The Exiles found this world and decided
to settle there, but it didn’t take long before Nexus was on the
Dominion’s radar. Being a resource-rich world, Nexus is ripe for the
picking in the eyes of the Dominion, and they aren’t about to let the
Exiles stand in their way.

The Playable Races of the Dominion

At present there are three known playable races for the Dominion:
Cassian, Draken, and Mechari. The official video introduction for the
Dominion races can be seen below.

Note that this video – much like the Exile races intro video – hints at a
fourth playable race. Viewer speculation as to what it might be commences
in 3, 2, 1…

Cassian

width="250" src="http://www.tentonhammer.com/image/view/248256" alt="WildStar Cassian Female" />

One of the biggest things I had to dance around for my hands-on
impressions last week is that I spent a good chunk of time playing as a
cassian. Official lore for the Cassians stats that:

“Gifted with ambition and intelligence, the humans of planet
Cassus experienced a period of rapid technological advancement more than
two thousand years ago, leading to the development of space flight and
interstellar exploration. Such achievements caught the attention of the
Eldan's mechanical servants the Mechari, who brought news of these
remarkable beings back to planet Nexus.”

I suspect that the cassians will appeal to gamers who prefer to stick to
playing characters with the most recognizably humanoid appearance. That’s
par for the course in most MMOs, so it helps that humans are represented
in both factions to help prevent any factional imbalances that could
otherwise skew player populations towards one faction or the other and
have a negative impact on PvP as a result.

To give you an idea of the size and scope of a single playable zone in
WildStar, I spent roughly 2 hours exploring Deradune on one of my
characters which resulted in uncovering only about 1/5 of the overall map,
shown below:

width="620" src="http://www.tentonhammer.com/image/view/248255" alt="WildStar Deradune Map" />

Draken

width="250" src="http://www.tentonhammer.com/image/view/248257" alt="WildStar Draken Male" />

If I were going to use a single word to sum up the Draken playable race,
it would have to be ‘badass’. In fact, that exact word is used in the
official lore for the race:

“Forged in the heat and dust of their savage homeworld, the
Draken have come to Nexus to prove they are the most badass warriors in
the galaxy. Eviscerations, disembowelments, and decapitations will
definitely be involved.”

The Draken were the latest arrivals to the Dominion party, having been
actively recruited three centuries after the Dominion was originally
founded. Well, at least that was the original idea. The Draken originally
resisted the Dominion forces, and it wasn’t until after the High Clanlord
Zhur was bested in gladiatorial combat that the Draken became faithful
servants of the Dominion.

As the official lore explains, “For the Draken, the journey to Nexus
represents the ultimate test. Not only is the fabled planet rumored to be
the home of exotic, savage creatures that will test their skills in the
hunt, but it is also the front lines of the intensifying war with the
Exiles. The reigning emperor Myrcalus the Vindicator has claimed Nexus for
the Dominion by right of the Eldan blood that runs in his veins, and the
Draken have vowed to help him.”

Mechari

width="250" src="http://www.tentonhammer.com/image/view/248258" alt="WildStar Mechari Male" />

If the Draken represent the bestial warrior race of the Dominion, then
the Mechari are the mechanical killing machines engineered to kick ass and
compute names.

“Engineered by the Eldan themselves, the Mechari are a race of
highly-efficient killing machines that make it their business to
eliminate traitors and spies on Nexus. Sense of humor? Not one of their
strong points.”

Killer robots are somewhat of a rarity in MMOs, so I’m glad that Carbine
has crafted a race that will allow me to explore the deeper aspects of
what that really means. As with the other playable races, the animations
and character models for the mechari are top notch, and help give me that
true moment of pause when it comes down to trying to decide which race /
class combo I’ll want to play first in the live game. To be honest that’s
another major rarity – at least for me – in new MMOs. Most of the time I
naturally gravitate down a very distinct and clear path, and only much
later on do I begin to explore alt characters from different races or
classes. Amazingly, that’s not the case with WildStar as I intend to
explore each of the playable races in earnest.

As the official lore for the mechari continues, “The discovery of Nexus
was a momentous occasion for the Mechari, and they hoped to finally be
reunited with their creators. But the Eldan were no longer there, their
fate one of the galaxy's darkest and most enduring mysteries. Despite this
disappointment, the Mechari continue their eternal vigil over the empire,
ensuring its continued dominance on planet Nexus.”

Introducing the Stalker
Class

On the surface, the newly revealed stalker class is kind of like
WildStar’s answer to a more traditional rogue class. If you’re the type of
MMO gamer who enjoys being stealthy and dishing out massive melee damage,
then the stalker will be right up your alley.

Some of the unique twists on the tried-and-true rogue formula for the
stalker include the usage of technological abilities along with their more
direct claw attacks, such as the use of proximity mines. Abilities such as
Shadow Dash also help keep the stalker highly mobile – something that is
traditionally one of the major tradeoffs for stealth and concealment.
Likewise, the Partial Camouflage skill allows you enter a partially
stealthed state and allows you to use stealth only abilities, but also
doesn’t end on taking damage.

width="620" src="http://www.tentonhammer.com/image/view/248259" alt="WildStar Draken Stalker" />


Itching to learn even more about the Dominion races and stalker class?
We’ve got even more info, lore, artwork and more headed your way soon,
along with our coverage from Arkship 2013!

In the meantime, enjoy this video for the song Dominion by Sisters of
Mercy. It was stuck in my head throughout my hands-on time last month, so
I figured it was only fitting that I spread the love. Enjoy!



To read the latest guides, news, and features you can visit our WildStar Game Page.

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About The Author

Reuben "Sardu" Waters has been writing professionally about the MMOG industry for eight years, and is the current Editor-in-Chief and Director of Development for Ten Ton Hammer.

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