Upcoming PC game WildStar is "one of the most feature-complete MMOs" of the past 10 years

Producer Stephan Frost also defends the game's subscription fee, saying the game is like HBO in that it offers "premium content."

According to producer Stephan Frost, upcoming PC MMO WildStar is "one of the most feature-complete MMOs" of the past 10 years. That statement puts the game up against the genre-defining MMO World of Warcraft (2004), as well as games like EverQuest II (2004), Lord of the Rings Online (2007), and Star Wars: The Old Republic (2011), among others. Frost made the comment in an interview with IGN about the game's subscription fee. Defending the fee, Frost said WildStar is like HBO, in that it offers "premium content."

"We decided to go with the subscription fee because we are a triple-A game," Frost said. "We are one of the most feature-complete MMOs to be coming out in the past 10 years. HBO, for example, is premium content. It has great shows like Game of Thrones and True Detective. They don't charge extra for those things, they're just charging that sub fee and people gladly pay it because it's good. If it wasn't good, they wouldn’t pay for it."

Frost said WildStar developer Carbine Studios is "looking at it in the same way." He maintains that players will find enough content to enjoy right out of the gate upon release next month, and pointed out that Carbine plans to add new content to the game month after month. "You'll see every 28 days new content coming in at a regular pace," he said.

Frost teased that Carbine may release a major expansion for WildStar some day, but that's not the studio's goal right now. "The only thing we're doing is trying to keep people in the game and keep them happy with new content," he said.

Comparing WildStar's subscription-based model to others (but without naming names), Frost said WildStar's is "extremely fair, and nothing's hidden behind paywalls."

WildStar is unique in that paying for game time with real money isn't the only way to keep your subscription active. Through the game's CREDD system, you can also use in-game money to buy a subscription. Frost said this option is aimed more at hardcore players.

"Yes you have to buy the box and yes you have to pay $15 a month, but if you're a hardcore player and you play a lot, you can use your in-game money to purchase a subscription and that way you can be playing for free after you buy the box," he said. "The great thing about it too is that if I don’t play that often, but I come in and I buy some CREDD, which is effectively a subscription, I put it on the auction house and somebody buys it for a ridiculous amount of gold, I can then take that gold and buy whatever I want because I don’t play as much as that hardcore player. To me that seems extremely fair for having a subscription fee."

WildStar's open beta started today and runs through May 18. You can visit the game's website to sign up for the beta, and if you've already participated in a previous WildStar beta, you'll also have access to the current open beta. WildStar launches in full June 3.

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and you can follow him on Twitter @EddieMakuch
Got a news tip or want to contact us directly? Email news@gamespot.com

Written By

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and is a big UCONN athletics fan.

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Discussion

146 comments
Tentaculat
Tentaculat

WildStar would've been an awesome game if it had been released like 5 years ago.

aretwodeetwo
aretwodeetwo

I'd like to know how many of these people saying there is no good endgame raiding, have even made it past level 20.. I'm going on a limb and saying NOT many!


Please refrain from bashing something you haven't even experienced.. thanks

boringdork
boringdork

As someone who plays *ALL* main MMOs, and goes to endgame, I fail to see what's so incredible. There are some 'features' - but nothing new, nothing that really draws me in as a MUST-GET game... and that makes me wonder. What am I missing?



-Fetch-Quest Grindmode/forgettable zones & content - which is the standard for today's MMOs (long gone are camping/kill parties with MEMORABLE areas).
For example, ESO has been out about a month now, I'm level 45. There's no reason for me to go back to a zone, Lorebooks? Yawn. Skyshards? Get those along the way. Questburn through and don't look back - recycled lore gets painful to listen to - just let me kill my 6 demons and be on my way. Wildstar has the same rinse repeat.

-Reticle/Area style combat - but that's becoming the standard since Tera and featured in GW2, ESO, etc

-Player Housing - nice feature that should be in all MMOs

-Path system seems innovative - however it makes me feel like I'm only getting access to part of the game. Didn't choose the explorer? Areas you just won't see. Why???

-Raids/PvP/Dungeons...   even watching the official 'Features' trailer and playing the beta... i dunno.

Could someone please explain what I'm missing here?



ecs33
ecs33

hmm..thinking about trying the open beta. Anyone try it yet?

klepp0906
klepp0906

Why are people still feeling the need to "defend" subscription models? That's the way a REAL mmo works. Period. Always has, always will. F2P are for scrubs who have ruined the genre because devs starting with blizzard let them due to greed.

These games aren't your pick up and put down xbox live game ffs. They are a hobby in themselves. I have played mmos for 15+ years and due to my investment in a particular game I missed the ENTIRE ps2 generation. Didn't play a single game.

Sorry but if you don't get your enjoyment out of things that require effort , time and challenge.. Just to back to your Xbox and play cod and talk trash all day.

If you truly understand the genre, 15 a month is a very very petty sum to pay. I beat an xbox game in a few days . Assuming I work a lot that week and decide to get out for some beers, let's just say I beat 1 a week.

That's 240 dollars a month for entertainment. Just in case it's still difficult to grasp, playing an mmo will cost you about 5% what playing and staying entertained on the xbox will.

In the end.. Kids destroyed mmorpgs and were allowed to by blizzard. Their own employees are on record saying they ruined the genre for all the kids who choose to defend it/them without having even Been alive yet when these games were at their zenith.

Watch and wait for Pantheon. It's gonna be awhile but Atleast one dev is putting the Health and purity of the genre before all the QQ kids.

rtensu
rtensu

People... Why is it that an MMO has to have nothing in common with WoW for it to be worth playing? Because in my mind that's like refusing to ride a bike because your car also has wheels....


If you sit there waiting for an MMO that has absolutely nothing in common with WoW... Let's just say you'll probably have a grey hair or three to worry about first.

amdreallyfast
amdreallyfast

I've started looking into this title, and I like what I am seeing.  I am trying to avoid playing it yet because I like my life and I haven't gotten my friends on board yet.

iMpLuX
iMpLuX

So one way to combat gold farmers is to sell a single $15/month sub unlocked for $20 to a casual who then sells it in-game for a massive amount of in-game gold to a hardcore gamer?


So does anyone fancy a guess how much in-game gold you can get for CREDD?

dixiewolf
dixiewolf

I would venture to say that at least 90% of the naysayers on here have not reached level 10 yet, let alone level 15-20 when the group pve content (dungeons and adventures) starts. Wildstar's level 20 dungeons are the most fun I've had in an Mmo since raiding in early WoW days. The level 20 dungeon is easily harder than any of the recent Heroic dungeons in WoW, with raid boss-like mechanics

This isn't to say the early game is good, I'm not defending Wildstar's bland first 10 levels. But trust me when I say it gets better, just power through to level 15, try the first adventure, or better yet level 20 to try the first dungeon. I think many of you will change your tune when you try that out. I personally did a complete 180 on the game and pre-ordered immediately after the final boss went down after 2 hours in the dungeon wiping over and over. Even recent normal mode raids in wow haven't given me the same feeling of accomplishment than the level 20 dungeons in wildstar.

SphinxDemon
SphinxDemon

Lol. I gave it a chance and it was definitely not my type. The graphics, for me anyways, are horrid. There's just no pop and grab, nothing spectacular that grabs my attention. It might find its niche, we'll see.

Lu_Shen
Lu_Shen

Ironic how every developer defends their game but when it releases it is always a complete flop. I am sure this one will be no different.

Damnation_6
Damnation_6

I'm really trying to like the game but I just find the game boring. I also feel the minimal voice acting in the game is dated.

Zidaneski
Zidaneski

I am an mmo noob but played ffxiv for a month. how is the combat? Feel Faster?

Merseyak
Merseyak

This game is amazing the mmo thats needed to happen for a while played the stress tests beta weekends and now open beta and its just fantastic and they listen to what we have to say im sure we the community will make this game so much more over time

cynicmonster
cynicmonster

Have played in a few of the previous betas and enjoyed the game, but I still haven't decided whether to purchase. I have no problems with a subs system - I'm happy to pay a monthly fee for a game I enjoy, If it's FTP I tend to spend a similar amount anyway.


I enjoyed my time playing it, but something just doesn't quite click. Not saying it's a bad game. I enjoy the cartoon artwork - makes a nice change. Good humour, although the sound-bites get a bit tiresome after a while. Enjoy the flexibility with character setups (skills, etc.). 


I will participate in this weekends beta and make a decision after that, but I just don't get that urge to pre-order any earlier than I have to.

SpLiTMaN
SpLiTMaN

when exactly did free to play become a good thing???? im sick of games that are free to play cuz there just unpolished beta's being released...like leagues my favorite it still only has 4 maps and is still just a beta of what they said it was gonna be back 5 years ago then theres mech online and hawkins witch have only half of there "supposed" features and so on can't we get a real game lately its all been oh we were rushed or oh we just want your money this int an actual game the only free to play thats an ACTUAL game is Path of exile and then theres firefall that shows promise but will probly end up being the same thing as all the others...so PLZ can i fucking pay for a game to support the companie and stop buying crap ass ingame money that isnt even good for anything except showing support for the companie.....these last 4 years youv seen gaming Devolve to this crap box 1 and ps wannabe a pc 4.....-_-...ok done venting now im good :P

Tiwill44
Tiwill44

Wildstar is decent, but I didn't find it fun enough to be worthy of a subscription fee. Then again, I never liked the idea of having to pay every month to play a game. It's just annoying because I feel like I'm wasting my money whenever I don't play the game, and when I do play, I can't chill out and enjoy the game at my own pace because I feel like I need to get shit done, to get my money's worth of content.

cjmilla527
cjmilla527

@boringdork Pretty colors dog!!. I must say I love wildstars art design more than any game I have played. looking at the game 2560x1600 is just gorgous but than again I love the art desing I love the rich colors and such.. Also I feel like the combat has a much diffrent feel to it than wow in a good way, the combat animations are better and being able to aim attacks dodge and roll out of the way is great. But as far as the grind up to max your correct its like every damb mmo boring quest after boring quest. And one thing I will say about the game is that its optimization is fuckin TERRRIBLE get ready for horrid FPS on good rigs cause the game just destroys machines. The performance I get on WS is about half that of ESO on Ultra settings and thats just playing WS on medium, hope they fix that

lutarian
lutarian

@ecs33  

I have. I had some fun but am still unsure. Then again, it is in beta, and even after it launches there will be issues like all MMO's have. ESO has me hooked for now but I am not writing off Wildstar because I did find it to be a bit unique.

Kickable
Kickable

@klepp0906 I guess they feel obligated because there are people playing other MMOs or any other online games and enjoying them for free, it doesn't matter what the genre used to be like years ago.  most gamers probably could afford $15 easily.  you can't be surprised people are reluctant to pay box fee + $15 for a game they can't demo beforehand, especially being an 15 year MMO fan who sees how very rare it is that any of them have any lasting appeal.  you sound like you're telling people they should trust today's developer to deliver an experience you grew up with that isn't around anymore.  that's terrible advice and NCSoft probably knows it's going to be an uphill battle getting $15 a month out of anyone.  How ESO turned out certainly isn't going to help them either.  have you played it enough to be certain it's even worth a leap of faith?  probably not by your average gamer's standards.

lutarian
lutarian

@klepp0906  

I am almost in tears at the thought of missing PS2 RPG titles.

Agree with you on the kid and mmorpgs. They drive me nuts when they say that WoW was the first MMO and every MMO since has copied WoW.  

Kickable
Kickable

@rtensu seriously.  not to mention that some of the mechanics they're sick of are what keeps an MMO functioning. 

bfeinberg
bfeinberg

@amdreallyfast I would try the free open beta period. You might not like what you find, and then you will have wasted no money.

Abanaa
Abanaa

@iMpLuX  The best way to combat gold farmers/sellers is F2P. And the guy who said that is a gold seller.(there's a video on youtube somewere)

As a side note, all subscription games and all mmo's where you see boots and gold sellers, are Pay2Win games. I know subscription defenders will go crazy over this, but it's the thruth. 

You see more bots in subscription games than on F2P games, so i seccond that F2P is the best way to combat good sellers.

boringdork
boringdork

@dixiewolf  What is your main draw to the dungeon content?

Is it the way the combat system works in a group setting?

Or are the dungeons actually more of an 'explorable area' - today's MMOS make me nauseous with kill a few packs, take a corner, more packs, corner, boss, repeat.

Vanilla WoW Blackrock Depths? AWESOME.
Vanguard had some great dungeons.

Current WoW 'Heroics' are just a lame way to label level-cap dungeons. They're not challenging like the Heroics of Burning Crusade. Although, most of those were boring in layout, they still had interesting fun to them.


Wildstar seems a bit boring for me, and I'm wondering where the fun really comes in. I love the idea for potentially awesome dungeons... but I'm sooooooooo sick of Quest-grind MMOs with forgettable content.

bfeinberg
bfeinberg

@dixiewolf Why should I have to play through 15 levels of boring crap to get to the good stuff?

Kickable
Kickable

@Lu_Shen i'm always as pessimistic as you sound probably moreso but not this time for some reason.  though no one should take a developer's word for it, or even reviews unless done months after the game's been out.  overwhelming is the likelihood an MMO is only good til you max your level, at best.  and it's what comes after max level that ends up the only reasonable indication you got your money's worth anyway

iMpLuX
iMpLuX

@Lu_Shen The only recent AAA MMO I would consider a 'flop' is The Secret World and that's only because it's not very casual friendly and the constant dying turned a lot of ppl off.


All other MMO's are financially sound, just that they don't have the WoW returns of yesteryear every dev and pub hopes for but due to market saturation, a WoW will never happen again.


And if that equals flop to you, then like that's just your opinion man.

Kickable
Kickable

@Damnation_6 don't force yourself to like a game, if it doesn't grab you it doesn't deserve your time.  btw when I log into any MMO i immediately mute it for Winamp or skype etc. anyway :D

dixiewolf
dixiewolf

Combat is amazing. So much movement, dodging, and aiming your abilities. Listen to someone who's actually played through some of the harder content, this game has THE best combat on the market.

SphinxDemon
SphinxDemon

I'd definitely stick to ffxiv over this

ecs33
ecs33

@Tiwill44  Subs make me feel like I have to play the game since I'm investing on a time basis. Makes me feel like I shouldn't play other games that come out.


MMO's definitely aren't for everyone. I'm going to try the open beta but I don't want to be tied down to one single game. 

justinka777
justinka777

@Tiwill44 I get what your saying, but I think the reason no one uses a pay by minute type of fee is because you induce an even greater sense of urgency for your self 

aretwodeetwo
aretwodeetwo

@Kickable @klepp0906  lol! You honestly think you spend LESS in an F2p?


You're kidding me right? $20 for a mount, at LEAST $20/mo on other items, 20$ to unlock classes, 10$ to unlock character slots, $15 for endgame content. That alone is 3 months of game time and the initial purchase of WildStar, for all of the content already available.


If you think you're going to get a full experience out of a F2P without dropping a dime.. you're delusional... how would these companies stay in business? Think about it..

Kickable
Kickable

@lutarian 99% of the time anyone says that it's just to get a rise out of us old MMO vets. they know we're snobby and overreact.  hell i've said it a few times in-game.

boringdork
boringdork

@Abanaa  I agree that sub based MMOs see more goldsellers than others, however F2P has to be implemented in a good way for a game to work. Such as:

Guild Wars 2 has an amazing non-sub model featured on cosmetic items


Planetside 2 has content that can be accessed by ALL players from playing the game. Weapons can be unlocked with purchase, but upgrading the weapons still require gameplay eliminating the pay-to-win.

Aside from those? I'll take a sub-based game over F2P anyday. Having to pay for bag slots, quest access, spell access... and all the little things make me feel like im going into a tourist trap with a bunch of crooks, knowing that a fee is just a click away before i can do something... SWToR... paying for ACTION BARS? COME ON!

All that makes me sick. I'll deal with bots/gold spam until the devs get it under control if it means I can play with unlimited access.

Kickable
Kickable

@boringdork @dixiewolfquest grinding never really bothers me because I played more than 1 game where the alternative was just finding a group of mobs and pulling them to kill over and over in a group. Technically it's still more of an effort than countless successful MMOs I guess lol

Kickable
Kickable

@iMpLuX what do you mean about constant dying?  i play at least a little almost every day since launch any death penalty hasn't bothered me.  hell I commit suicide just to get around faster.

spikepigeo
spikepigeo

@iMpLuX  Actually, TSW wasn't even a flop. They are still releasing issues (content updates), albeit, less frequently, and people are paying. Obviously not making as much as they did when it was subscription based, but not a flop. Just a little underwhelming.


If we really want to talk about actual flops, were talking Tabula Rasa type stuff.

ashleygr191
ashleygr191

@dixiewolf  Combat is woeful - imo Animations are not great on the character models and ability's lack any kind of weight and impact. The whole game feels floaty. Now im not saying the combat is not active as you have lots to do all the time it just feels really off. ESO does this better. GW2 got it spot on (although i did not like GW2). Tera got the impact and animations right but i felt nailed down and static. I dont understand why only 1 game has done it right since WoW.

SphinxDemon
SphinxDemon

I still believe Teras combat is one of the best if not the best

iMpLuX
iMpLuX

@SphinxDemon I disagree. I cancelled my FFXIV sub for this game.


Combat is definitely faster because it's not as massively hotbar based as XIV and TOR. You have to run around and line your telegraph up to hit the enemy or it won't hit like ESO's combat.


Some ppl don't like that as they would rather just stand there mute and mash numbers the entire time.

aretwodeetwo
aretwodeetwo

@Kickable @aretwodeetwo  I'm gonna go ahead and make a list of all F2P games that, if you'd like a fully-featured game, requires money:


EverQuest - F2P, requires $40 purchase of Expansion to reach highest level, requires $15/mo subscription to become gold member and unlock all benefits( Alternate Advancement points, Journeyman level mercenaries, using the bazaar)


Rift - F2P, but you cannot play and use all features without spending money on "upgrading" your account, such as expansions (when first released), character slot unlocks, and additional classes, chat restrictions, cannot sell on AH.


NeverWinter - http://www.reddit.com/r/Neverwinter/comments/1dry0g/neverwinters_f2p_model_what_you_need_to_know/ (I'll break it down - Additional character slots, Mounts, inventory space, RUNES (required to upgrade gear))


LoTRO - If you want to be a top contender in PvP, you will have to spend money on the cash shop. Many things are locked until you buy them from said shop.



And here's the kicker, just because YOU personally don't spend money because apparently you think game companies make money appear from thin air, doesn't mean others don't. If your only complaint is the subscript model, that makes zero sense. Games like Rift and Neverwinter and so on, MAKE THEIR MONEY FROM CASH SHOPS, that's why is F2P. People spend a lot more money on cash shops than they do for a monthly subscrip, believe it or not.


wowgrandpa
wowgrandpa

@justinka777 its not about being rewarded... its about the core game mechanics being fun or boring. ESO was boring at the start too... doesn't really matter IF a game gets more fun later. if the beginning is bland, then you are going to lose a lot of potential customers. period.

boringdork
boringdork

@ashleygr191  WOAH!!!!!!!!! You really know what you're talking about!!!!!!!!!!! Most impressive!