Thursday, August 8, 2013

Wednesday Weigh In - State of Beta

I have been pretty focused on my job, the one that pays for this internet connection. I bought a 250 pack of note cards to make flash cards to help memorize the details of my upcoming certification test. I ran out of cards and I'm not even half way through chapter one. At least I'll have something new to do on the elliptical.

So that's been at the front of my mind this whole week without Soda...mostly, I seem to have had 4 cans....ok 5, I sneaked one into my work bag this morning. Way better than before, but still needs some work. The headaches are gone at the very least. I was going to bike into work yesterday but I woke up with a massive charlie horse. This turned out to be a massive boon because if I'd biked to work I would have been stuck there until about 10:30p last night when the violent thunderstorms finally passed. Ok, ok, I am way full of excuses this week, but I did have good success, I'm back down to 220.2, which is no miracle, but it is moving in the correct direction once again.

The Wildstar Wednesday update this week talks to us about what is going on behind closed doors with the beta test. It looks like they are going to be tackling some pretty big systems based on the feedback they've gotten from beta testers.

The first major change is to how Mob tagging and quest credit works. From what I saw at PAX East Wildstar worked very similar to World of Warcraft as far as tagging and bagging goes. Player 1 attacks target X, Player 2 sees target X turn gray alerting them that they will not get any credit for damage done to this target. Player 2 is still free to help Player 1 destroy X, but only player one will receive benefits. A question raised in the fan panel clarified that certain "boss" type quest targets would have shared tagging so multiple players could contribute and complete the quest without having to wait in a line for spawns. This, according to Donatelli's post has been a hotly debated topic on the beta forums.

The solution that Carbine has developed is...certainly different. It's complex, so you may want to shoot over to the post and read the full description; I'll do my best to summarize.

No longer will you be asked to "kill 10 skuls" instead you will be asked to "go kill skuls"

You will have a bar that will fill up based on the amount of experience you've earned killing the targets. Making this change allows them to remove mob tagging. Now if you help someone out, you'll get a piece of the pie. The post outlines a few concerns that the beta community has brought up concerning support characters with this system in and out of groups.

This is a unique approach and I'm interested to hear how it feels when the next beta rolls around...and there's the rub, beta is shutting down for a bit while they implement this and a new player progression system. They expect the beta to return later this year. How much later? No one can say. I think we may see the release date of this title slip past 2013...but as I've said before, giant changes to World of Warcraft game in the final months before launch. Talent Trees and Rested Experience weren't a thing 6 months prior to launch, as just two examples. It could still happen, but as Gaffney has said, launching an MMO early is a great way to set fire to a pile of money. So we can all just lean back, and find something else to keep us busy while we wait for a solid performing MMO.

What do you think of the new approach to kill and collect quests? What game are you going to play while you wait for Wildstar?

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