Boring things on the me front. Continued to walk, rapidly melting snow continues to create water hazards at various points, but it's been productive. I'll be hitting the gym hard this weekend to make sure my monthly weigh in doesn't embarrass me.
Carbine has posted up over the last three days their summary of PAX. They seem to have had a good time. There is a series of videos on the Wildstar YouTube account which while not giving any critical information about the game, do show the relative enthusiasm the team has for what they are creating.
I have a notebook here with all the things that I learned at PAX. Several items are crossed out from being game play related or housing related, but there were some other tidbits that came out from questions that were asked in the panel, on the floor, or in the secret lair. Check beyond the cut if you are curious.
Will the UI be Modable:
This was covered in a Blog post, but it was asked in the closed door fan event. The fan who asked about it expressed concern that they did not like how in World of Warcraft UI Mods become essential. I may dig deeper into this topic, because I feel it's an important issue that people have contrary opinions on. For now I will say that Jeremy Gaffney addressed this by explaining that they don't want to provide artificial blocks into the game that coders will just remove with mods anyway. The example he provided was monsters who are significantly higher level than you won't just have a skull, it'll say what level they are. He also explained that the combat design in Wildstar is aimed at making it less about "playing the UI" and more about playing the game.
Quest Helpers and Floating !'s
The same fan offered concern over the number of !'s they were seeing in the quest hub and they wanted to know how quest guidance worked. They felt in SWTOR they just accepted quests and then followed the mini map with no context. The team offered a PR-ish answer on this one pointing to a combination of quest hubs, hidden/found quests and dynamic pop up quests skirting around the quest helper issue. I have my own thoughts on this. If you felt quests in SWTOR did not provide enough context, perhaps you should have pressed the space bar less. This is another issue that I could probably do a long post about. It's in your hands, if you want the context, read the quests, breath in the world around you.
Player Taxi's travel in real time much like Warcraft's flight paths, but there are different unconnected areas that will require zoning much like the Warcraft ships or Zeppelins.
Flying mounts are a thing that will exist. I personally am against flying mounts, I feel they shrink the world and remove a degree of danger and discovery from travel and form resource hunting. Limiting them to certain zones that are designed for them is fine, I think they can be fun to fly, but using them without restriction lessens the investment in the world.
They showed us a zone that had reduced gravity. That's not something I've seen in other MMO's (though I have been told that EQ1 had things like this.) Having altered physics as a possibility could lead to some very interesting applications.
The team discussed the raid shake ups that they can do. Adding environmental hazards to boss rooms, or adding and removing certain abilities to keep the encounters fresh.
A random question led to an interesting reveal on armor customization. The armor sets will be pretty limited in appearance. Light, Medium and Heavy armor sets, not individual designs for each class or for each race. But! There will be a system in game that will allow you to alter your current gear to look like other items including any of the armor that NPC's have through the world. So if you want to wear a Dominion uniform or traditional Aurin garb you can.
Combat Finesse: (I think that's what they called it)
When you perform skillful maneuvers you are rewarded with both encouragement in the form of pop up announcements of "Combo!" or "Evade x4": and the like, but also through buffs that you can maintain and stack by continuing to be awesome. It will be interesting to see how this develops and how it is limited in group content.
That's it I think! Great PAX, Great showing! I still have tons to talk about. Two items above are great candidates. I have a pro-group finder rant I have been gathering data for. I want to talk about one statement made at the Future of Games Panel at PAX and how it relates to Wildstar. And just today there was a Uplink Analysis that was posted alongside the PAX summaries, and there is another one in the hopper that was posted on a fan site forum on Monday while I was flying back from Boston that I haven't even read the question to yet. When I eventually run out of things to talk about maybe I'll just exercise more!