Mar 282014

Wildstar Warfront


Welcome to Wildstar Warfront, bringing you news, opinions, and advice for PvP in Wildstar!

Today’s battle plan: learn what the developers have planned in Wildstar from the Reddit PvP AMA for Arenas. Tune in tomorrow for the article on Gear and Itemization, and check out yesterday’s article on Battlegrounds. Let’s jump in!



Q: For Arena’s, how long would an ‘ideal match’ last for among similarly skilled and geared players?

A: For Arenas, the match times in beta have been around 5-6 minutes long, on average. In general, we feel this is a pretty good average duration! There have been matches that stretch almost to the end of the match limit (30 minutes), but it hasn’t been a common occurrence.

I like that speed for Arenas. They need to be fast and fun, like a good piece of candy. Hmmmmmm….candy…

Q: Why did you go with the ‘Team Revive Pool’ instead of the standard Arena format of one life per player?

A: I initially prototyped the life pool as part of a bg and later applied it to the arena to account for the fact that our kill times were very short (this was before the class team started balancing for pvp). Because the kill times were so short, we couldn’t get any meaningful playtest geared toward getting map feedback. After it was added we found that the life pool added a lot of interesting elements and allowed more tactical arena play.

*picks Milk Dud out of teeth* I really like the shared respawn pool. It has a lot of meta-gameplay preprogrammed into it. Not taking a rez so your healer can get back into play or other similar situations can make for really good tactical gameplay.

Q: Is there only the one map for Arena? If yes, why?

A: Yes. What I can say is that I have been working on post launch Arena’s/BG’s content for a few months, so fear not.

I am not too worried about this. I have seen their tools. They can make maps quickly once the systems are in place and tested. One map for arenas is not a big deal anyway, since the nature of arenas is that the variation is in the enemy team, not in your environment.

Combat and Systems

Q: How do you intend to address the problem of very large/wide AoE telegraphs which deal high damage being naturally strong in PvP, without gimping the classes which use them in PvE, where the size of the telegraph isn’t really a big deal?

A: We have been introducing line of sight blocking structures to help you break up some of these massive fights. The new props added into Walatiki and Halls are to address this. Much of this comes down to map design when you have this type of combat system. We’re taking a lot of our learning with us for future game types.

I don’t mind the amount of telegraphs in PvP actually. Sure, it is a madhouse, and it is absolutely insane if you are in the middle of it, but there is going to be such an emphasis on positioning and situational awareness, that a good player will not find themselves caught in the fray too often. Adding elements of line-of-sight helps in the skill for this as well!

Q: Do you have any plans to restrict the creation of characters to ‘one faction only’ on PVP realms?

A: On PvP ruleset realms, we DO currently restrict creation to one faction.

This really improves faction loyalty, so that is awesome!

Q: Cross Faction Chat (/say, /yell): Any chance to enable this on pvp servers?

A: As for cross faction chat, the current implementation is staying (no communication across factions). However, we do value your feedback on it – we’ve had many discussions internally on this topic.

Hurry, go tell them you want cross-faction chat! It exists in the lore, there are some NPCs that you can overhear talking to each other, and I think it is necessary…nay, crucial for a good PvP community. Nothing lets you learn to respect your enemies like getting to know them like people. I know, I know, there are downsides too, but you’ll have to let me know what you think in the comments!

Q: Any chance for a low gravity PvP map where you jump alot higher? You could put all sorts of jumping areas in it to make it challenging for people to move around.

A: I actually prototyped a low gravity battleground a few years ago and what I found out is that low gravity is awful for PvP. It didn’t lend itself well to combat … or moving in general.

I am gonna be honest, I am disappointed that they canned this idea! I love the concept. Maybe if they made it so you could have activate-able grav boots that suck you back down to the surface! That would be fun. I’d hate to see them give up on this!

Q: For the ratings is there a separate rating system for BGs and Arenas or is it all under one rating? In addition, are there normal and ranked rating systems or just ranked?

A: Each system has it’s own rating. So you’ll have:

  • Personal Battleground Rating
  • Personal 2v2 Arena Rating, Team 2v2 Arena Rating
  • Personal 3v3 Arena Rating, Team 3v3 Arena Rating
  • Personal 5v5 Arena Rating, Team 5v5 Arena Rating
  • Personal Warparty Rating, Team Warparty Rating

Holy ratings, Batman! It sounds like a lot of things to keep track of, but the UI has them all split up. I think an addon that puts them in one place would be cool though…kind of a rating-monitor.

Q: Is the prestige reward rate equal in all three PvP types? For example, if I spend 1 hour playing battlegrounds will I earn the same amount of prestige as if I had spent an hour doing arenas or warplots?

A: We’ve recently rebalanced the reward rate for Prestige and other PvP rewards from instanced PvP matches. The goal is that Battlegrounds with longer average match times will give more rewards and those with shorter average match times will give less rewards so that, on average, you will get the same amount of rewards over time regardless of which PvP match you participate in.

I swear, it was like these were plants that asked questions. Carbine basically got to tell everyone the patch notes for the upcoming changes this next beta weekend! I think that time spent in PvP should be rewarded appropriately, so this is a good move on their part. XP should be metered out in a similar fashion.

Q: For the whole duration of the beta I havent seen people Qing for “Practice Grounds” (as I understood its non-rated battlegrounds) and everyone from lvl 6 been Qing for “rated” BGs.. So, is it intended that you can join RBGs by solo-Qing from lvl 6 or there will be some restrictions (Practice BGs 6-50lvl, RBGs 50+ lvl, or smth like that) after launch?

A: Practice Grounds will be your go to. We’ve changed (internally) rated battlegrounds to only be level 50. You should see this change on the next major beta update.

This is not a bad idea. Blowing your rating early in your character’s life could really suck. You want to have all of your skills and AMPs before you start gambling your rating.

Q: What do you think it is that delineates Wildstar’s PvP from other MMO PvP systems? What makes Wildstar’s “special”?

A: I think our combat system is the major bit that makes WildStar PvP awesome. Telegraph play and movement (double jumping, dashing, sprinting) play a major part in how we design WildStar PvP experiences. It’s also really fun – clashes feel frenetic (aiming, movement) and combat requires more skill than in other MMOs. I also like our limited action system. The choices when going into Arena feel more deliberate and strategic (working with your teammates to complement abilities).

I agree with all of these. It has a chaotic feel that requires skill not just in the playing of your character, but in the logic and common sense to get out of Dodge when things are going south. If you get caught in the fray, that is partly because they trapped you and partly because you trapped yourself.

Q: How do you plan on keeping open world pvp functional while keeping gear discretion? Swtor had an issue where pvp stats did not apply in open world. [Author’s note: this is not actually true, SWTOR’s PvP stats did apply in OWPvP] How do you have this setup?

A: PvP stats function in both instance PvP and the open world.

This is absolutely crucial for any future OWPvP systems they put in. Remember, if there is no PvP stat, then raiding gear is the best gear for PvP since the stat budget is higher. This would suck, since people who wanted to OWPvP would be stuck raiding to get geared for it.


What did you think of their answers? Any questions that I might be able to answer? Let me know in the comments!

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