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I like to savor the levelling experience, and frankly find the end game content of most MMOs boring. Raids and PVP do not constitute fun to me, and dailies are a soul killing grind.

Observations from a returning wildstar player

Well, here we are; the free to play launch. And here I am, happily playing along a year later. For those who might remember me, I was here in the Beta and after launch for a few months. I doubt anyone will remember me though, I'm wasn't the most vocal person on these boards.

 

Anyway, enough introduction. I wanted to catalog some of the good and bad I saw since I've returned. Word of warning, I don't have any characters at 50 as of yet. I'm not that fast and I level slowly and at my own pace. I like to savor the levelling experience, and frankly find the end game content of most MMOs boring. Raids and PVP do not constitute fun to me, and dailies are a soul killing grind.

 

Anyway, with all this in mind, on with the show!

 

Good:

 

I'm quite pleased to see a few classes rebalanced (especially Esper, I remember how bad a shape they were in at launch), and the increased levelling speed is a wonderful bonus.

 

The relaunch has indeed brought in the much needed new blood that was required for the game to continue. While I worry the first week or so of problems might chase the less patient ones away, hopefully things will smooth out as we progress. Besides, when demand outstrips supply by THAT much, you know you've done something right.

 

The fact the cash shop encompasses only cosmetic changes is a real plus in my book. While right now I can't afford what's there (personal finance reasons), I can see myself taking advantage of some of it in the future. The other...  will talk about in the other section.

 

The revamped tutorials were a pleasant surprise too. Yes, I'm an experienced player, but I went through the basic and advanced tutorials to see what had changed. The most basic one is pleasant and should be very good for first time MMO players. The revamped arkships and their tutorial streamlining is good, but I will admit I miss some of the flavor of the old version (Like the Exile Bar and the Dominion Church, not to mention the museums). Still, this is more direct and far more able to draw in the new player. I will note the Dommy side is by far my favorite revamp, changing the infiltrator from just a guy that gets shot down in a cut scene to some cute Aurin you have to chase all over the place really adds a good bit of flavor.

 

A minor thing that I really think is good, how the abilities were reshuffled a bit to give a second interrupt to every class (I think, I've tested this on 3 classes, not all) at level 10. The protostar academy to teach players how to USE these interrupts is a good idea as well, but I fear it is poorly implemented. Every time I checked it out, it was completely empty, and most new players were simply getting their new guns and running off, never bothering to do this important bit of instruction. Even I haven't managed to do it, because no player seems to stick around long enough to bother with it. This might work better if there was an optional single player mode for this. Don't force the group content on those who aren't interested, just to teach a fundamental skill...

 

New shiphand missions, and starting earlier on! And that first single player dungeon...  please PLEASE do more of these! They are just so much fun!

 

Anyway, that's all I can think of for good right this moment. Now...

 

Bad:

 

Back in beta we were told that the original intent was for ever race to be capable of being every class, but you ran out of time to implement it, specifically noting you didn't have time to finish the animations. It's been a year, and this hasn't been addressed at all? Seriously? Three races can only be 3 classes (Aurin, Granok, Draken), while humans get all 6. Mordesh get 5, and the remaining 2 races (mechari, Chua) get 4. This isn't even close to "okay". Honestly, whatever lore reasons you've come up with to cover this in the meantime mean zilch to players who just want to play the race they think looks cool, and the class they think they'd like. It's long past time this was addressed (and no, Lore doesn't address it AT ALL). Even if it's just one class in one race at a time, moving slowly along, it would be better than no progress at all!

 

Unfortunately the community is still as divided as I remember when I left. Back then it was the "filthy casuals" and the "elite raider" types going round and round. Now it's the "vets" vs. the "Free to play noobs". Seriously, there needs to be some way to smooth some of this out. I understand Carbine can't do much about it, but the elitism on the boards here, and sometimes in game, will only hurt the population.

 

Carbine's answer to the lock box, Madam whatever-her-hame is (Fay, I think). Seriously. Just let me BUY what I want!! Don't make me struggle with an RNG and my own terrible luck just because I think one or two things in there are cool. Either let me buy it straight, or I simply won't bother buying at all. Period.

 

The UI. Sorry, but this really needs an overhaul. I keep breaking parts of it just by adjusting the size downwards by %10 (the worst offender is the scanbot customization window). And worse, parts of it break for no apparant reason! I can only imagine how confused some newbie would be when the "Challenges" part of the UI breaks like it did on mine the other day.

 

Paths are in dire need of an overhaul. I know this one is on the "to do" list, so I won't harp on it much. but at the least a way to swap out of paths we find out we dislike without having to reroll would be appreciated.

 

Prices. The ingame prices have gotten absurdly inflated, especially for dying clothing and repairs. This really needs to be addressed and reduced. I think you expect us to be pulling in more in game currency than we really are...

 

Too hectic. The game tries a little too hard to be in your face and amped up at all times. Please, give us some spots where we can catch our breath, or just relax and quest a little bit. Others have made this point better than I can, but I wanted to add my 2 cents worth on it as well. An entire MMO pumped up to 11 is just exausting. It should ramp up and down with the story arcs, otherwise you just become numb to the whole thing. This is bad, especially when the story is trying to make us care.

 

The Aurin stampede. 'nuff said.

 

Really, despite my complaints, Carbine has a good game on their hands. Once they get the experience smoothed out and the lag tweaked, it should enjoy a second coming for at least another few years. At the least, they learned some good lessons for the next game they try to make...

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