#Wildstar – Engineer vs Esper

I have a 50 Esper and a 42 Engineer.  I’ve played both rather extensively, both in the DPS and alternate stances (healer and tank respectively).  I’ve read about the classes and messed around with them.  Only things I haven’t done are raiding and PvP.  Though I do read that logs put the engineer at top level for DPS (all melee are in the top 3) and Esper just above the Medic in the bottom (the ranged are all drastically lower than the top 3).  While there will always be a gap, and I am more than comfortable, the mean average should not have such significant deviation.

Engineers are heavy armor, mid range attackers with quite a bit of variety.  While their Bot (combat pets) AI is junk they do however provide an extra target to soak a hit or two. More or less HP shields.  Their cooldowns are mostly defensive and their skills have tremendous synergy and a rather simple rotation.  They are somewhat simple to play, can take a beating, and dish out a lot of damage.  Tanking is also quite easy.

Espers are light armor, long range attackers with little variety.  The fact that their main builder “roots” you in place for the cast duration (the only ability I know of in the game that does that) it makes for a very immobile play style.  Their cooldowns are offensive but they have alternate healing skills to keep them alive.  That said, due to low armor, any focus attack or boss attack is usually a 1 shot (or dead in under 2 seconds).  There is a high skill level required to play one.  In terms of DPS role, they are essentially debuffers at this point.  Healing is quite powerful but there are bugs with the way focus (mana) works on some skills.  Very effective mind you and a lot of fun to play.  The most fun healing I’ve had in a long time as keeping everyone topped is HARD.

I do know Espers are being tweaked in Drop #2, where their main builder is(?) becoming mobile.  I also know that by Drop #3/4, the core stats should be tweaked which will change the way the power curve works.  And there’s always class balance.

I kind of see this as the difference between Hunters and Rogues/Warlocks from WoW.  Where a rather low skill level and pets to absorb damage we got many derogatory terms for Hunter players.  Warlocks were either amazeballs or the worst players ever.  You also never saw a Warlock due to the difficulty.

While in past MMOs, in particular WoW, ranged attackers have always been out of harms reach compared to melee, Wildstar is not like that.  With few exceptions, melee (not tank) and ranged suffer the same vulnerabilities due to the telegraph system.  Inversely, due to the telegraph system it’s harder for range to hit their target while moving.  I mean, I don’t think an engineer can actually ever miss an attack.

There’s a perception, based on some amount of fact, that Engineers are simpler, easier to master, mobile, higher damage and higher survivability than Espers.  Engineers are also seen as great tanks too.  Espers are top of the healing pile.  That isn’t the sort of view that goes away quickly as it becomes near cultural after a few months.

Oddly enough, I still prefer my Esper due to the skill level but have fingers crossed that with a few tweaks they can be made a bit more manageable.  Either by taking advantage of that skill set (similar to old “stance dancing” in other games), by increasing the telegraph damage based on distance (less on accuracy), or by simply increasing overall survivability.

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Wildstar One Month Review

Ok, so we’re more than a month in.  I was on vacation!

I am a firm believer that an MMO should be judged past the 1 month marker and your decision to be made after 2 months of play.  Outside of MMOs, I can’t think of another type of game I pay full price for anymore mind you.  The timing has less to do with the game and more about the nature of the game – multiplayer.  After 2 months, the zeitgeist passes and you get into the player plateau.  Still, onto my thoughts.

Starting Off

I have never been a big fan of character creators in MMOs, unless the game was mostly helmet-less.  I like having different character models for silhouettes but if everyone is the same (SWTOR and RIFT come to mind) then what’s the point?  Wildstar gives me enough variety in sizes and art to make me happy.  I have a tremendous dislike with race-restricted classes mind you and Wildstar applies that to Espers more than other classes for some reason.  So I created a grumpy ol’ human esper and a granok engineer.

The tutorial zone is decently done.  You can zip through it under 5 minutes if you want.  I feel bad that the zone is never visited again mind you – wasted assets.  The starter zone follows and you get 2 choices per faction and those choices link to the first “starter zone”.  There’s a gradual build up of skills for your character and there was clearly some thought behind it all.  By and large, the “power path” is similar between all classes.  They get a stun at the same time, a builder, a finisher, flavor, etc…

You get access to costumes early on, which is on-par with RIFT in terms of customization, very good.  Housing at 15, nearly fully featured, which is amazeballs.  Mounts too, which makes travel a whole lot easier (mounts are different enough too!)  I’d say from 1-20, the progress is really well thought out.

Mid game

This is the 20-49 game and by and large, we’re talking about PvE content.  PvP is there and certainly the most fun pre-50, but the game is built on something else.  So from 20 on, you get a zone per ~7 levels.  Whitevale – a frozen tundra which starts off cool and ends on a whiper.  Farside – probably the most fun I’ve had leveling in years, certainly with the moon sub-zone where gravity is weak.  It’s well designed.  Wilderrun – your typical jungle level, which we’ve seen a thousand times.  The story is kind of cool but anything after Farside feels meh.  Malgrave – a western themed zone which doesn’t make a whole lot of sense.  There are some neat parts but you’re happy to leave.  You finish with Grimvault – a plague filled area with few redeeming qualities.  Western Grimvault in particular is just horrible making the trek from 47-50 feel longer than 20-47.

Questing is decent enough, with traditional kill X, deliver X or press X quests.  There are varied questing interfaces mind you – a simon says  game, a mash the button game, a button timing game.  There are zone defense sub quests, public tagging (so you can share quest progress with non-group members), smart drops and quite a few quality of life PvE boons.  Group quests are present, with ~5 per zone and still at this point people are grouping up.  In fact, grouping with people rewards you with reknown, a currency for non-combat items.  There’s even guild credit too.  Everywhere you go, Wildstar rewards you for grouping.

Paths are less fun, as a “side” leveling exercise.  Each gives you 3 skills to use and bluntly, the only ones worth mentioning are scientist with a group summon and portal to the capital and settlers with mailboxes and vending machines to repair gear.  I expected more.  There was more in early beta.  A lot was cut back.  It’s more than any other game on the market mind you but once you unlock the skills, there’s no reason to keep going, other than being a completionist (which all scientists are I suppose).

Crafting makes sense and provides gear at or above your level, better than quest and drop rewards.  I think it’s the first time where crafting is a viable alternative rather than an end-game activity.  There are crafting daily quest (used to get credits for top level recipes), talents to customize your skill set and only 5 tiers to progress though, so you’re rarely stuck in some grey zone.  Customizing gear, including rune crafting, is rather well thought out in terms of mechanics.  What isn’t though out are actual stat numbers and I’ll get to that.

“Elder” game

Wildstar’s term for what to do at max level.  PvP, dungeons, veteran dungeons, crafting, daily quests, raiding, adventures and ship hand missions are all options.  Solo, you can do most of it.  Majority of groups will do everything but raiding.  Raiding requirements are simply too high for the average skill set and the logistics of getting 40 people together means every server is going to have 2-3 raiding squads, at most.  I expect this to change in a future patch.  Still, there’s a whole lot to do without raiding.  Housing has private/group instances (dungeons) which is something you could spend a week doing.

Combat

Limited action bars are the future, plain and simple.  WoW has always been a poster child for skill bloat and SWTOR exemplifies that further.  Wildstar gives you a limited slot to put in what you want.  You can customize those skills as well, for various buffs.  Sometimes you need more AE attacks, sometimes a super interrupt.  It’s smooth and forward, a step forward compared to TSW’s decks – at least to me.  AMPs (or talents) work ok as well, with a lot of simple passives and flexibility.  I think the fact that there are no existing cookie-cutter builds as a good thing, as each build is based on a set of circumstances.

What doesn’t work so well are stats.  DPS players value attack power above absolutely everything.  Healers need focus (mana) regeneration to a breakpoint, then support power above all else.  Tanks are slightly different with 2-3 rather even weights, after deflection.  Carbine has said this is a problem and they are going to make changes.  It’s not to say there are BAD stats, just less optimal ones.  We’re not talking about SWTOR’s haste issues (it actually made you worse) or those that scale wrong (armor penetration in WoW).  This further affects rune slots, as some are worthless and others worth gold.  It’s a fair amount of balance needed and that’s due in the fall as my guess.  Overall, the largest impact on stats is on raiders, most people won’t notice it that much.

Actual combat, what with the telegraphs and all, is very hectic.  It is very easy to die in this game.  As a healer, I’ve been conditioned to think it was my fault but in fact, 95% of the time, it’s the other player who stood in the bad stuff.  Solo play, it isn’t so apparent mind you, though some areas with tight enemy patterns are hard.  Group play though, wowza.  If it’s red, get out.  If there’s a cast bar, interrupt.  You need a mouse to move, not be a keyboard turner.  I think the group content is paced at such a rhythm that you don’t grow tired (sword maiden excepted).  It’s challenging and fair, therefore extremely rewarding to complete something.  I’ve been in random groups wiping on a boss for 30 minutes.  When you get through, it just feels great.  There’s still some need for skill balance mind you.  Like Medics are horribad at DPS, Engineers are way too strong on DPS and so on.  But again, these are tail end metrics as while you’re leveling, it is rarely apparent.

Style

This one is its own section because it’s very polarizing.  Wildstar is very B-movie in approach.  Everything is an exaggeration of the industry, with rather wild (pardon the pun) flair.  Character models are distinct.  Enemy types are varied.  People look different from each other and are recognizable.  Music is pretty kick arse.  Dungeons have good art style and the bosses are more than just giant humanoids.  Heck, the first end boss in a dungeon is a dragon that hatches from the ceiling.

What also works incredibly well is the lore.  There is a very interesting story to be had here and it is subtle.  You can read books, you can read text, NPCs jabber on while you’re about (“oh the hero!)” and Drusera’s reveal is well written.  You knew Blighthaven was coming and the story told there is well done.  For a game without an established IP to work off, I have to say that there are years of work put into it and very little of it conflicts.  Incredibly well done.

Economy

Wildstar uses a standard auction house and a commodity one.  You can only list 25 items per AH, which drastically reduces the number of bots/market barons.  I remember in WoW I would have 300 postings at once, RIFT wasn’t far behind.  The commodity one has buy and sell orders, which makes for a more interesting market.  Sure, you can game the thing if you wanted to but overall, the system works fairly well, especially with the floor being high vendor prices.  In fact, you can afford pretty much anything in the game at level 50, as part of your core.  Money is used for customization by and large, which is smart.  There are very few taps as well, so inflation isn’t crazy.  There are no Caturdays here.

Summary

Now is Wildstar the next best thing since sliced bread?  No, not so much.  It is a fantasy themepark with all the pits therein.  It is a fine evolution on WoW, SWTOR, FF14 and RIFT.  There are things on those games I’d like to see here (FF14 and RIFT’s open zone content for one) but by and large, there’s little to complain about.  The pacing is well done; you’re not flying through levels hitting a cap in a day.  There’s plenty of side activities to do.  There’s challenging content without the need for facerolls or the “go go go” attitude.  Grouping is pushed early on and social interaction.  There are a few bugs but none that are gamebreaking.  I think I found 3 that I needed to re-log for in my run from 1-50.  It’s very well polished.

I do expect there to continue to be progress on content as the days go by.  There are some needed tweaks here and there, in particular around the raiding aspect.  If given the choice between FF14 (which is also difficult) and Wildstar, you’re in for a rather even fight as I consider those 2 MMOs to be the only ones worth any subscription.  The biggest benefit to Wildstar is the sheer variety of content on offer and things to do.  I personally am enjoying my time and my subscription is continuing for the foreseeable future.

 

 

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Paralysis by Analysis

This post is going to read a little off for most people.  It is a concept that I have great difficulty communicating verbally and have little experience in trying to get it across in written form.  What I’ll do to start is refer to a particular book (series) – Foundation by Isaac Asimov – that’s core element deals with psycho-history.

Background

Psycho-history is a fictitious (at the time) form of mathematics, where you could predict the actions of a large group of people over time.  It’s akin to telling the future and today’s market of analytics tends is really pushing us towards this reality.  The one most seem to find is election patterns.  There are 2-3 people on the planet who are able to determine the results of an election, through mathematical models, a few months before they actually occur.  The old “opinion survey research” model is being deprecated with these new models. Moneyball also gets into this, where statistics – many of them – replaced older baseball scouting practices. Boston won a World Series with that model.  At the basic level it’s people + averages = outcome.

I’ve mentioned in the past that I love analytics and that as a people watcher, I can make rather quick determinations about strangers in seconds.  I guess it’s a bit like Sherlock and Mycroft.  High functioning sociopaths.  Sounds bad but hear me out.

The Start

What happens is as follows.  Every event I experience I digest and decompose.  Significant events tend to linger in my mind and replay over and over until I get all the parts separated.  So let’s say I meet a friend at the pub for a beer.  I’ll break down the weather, their demeanor, what we ordered, the waiter, the crowd, what was on TV, my state of mind and a hundred other variables.  This is all done subconsciously at the time and consciously later if I had trouble with it.  At 35 years of age, I’ve done hundreds of thousands of times and have built a repository of variables and results.  A weather pattern, a table, 2 people and a beer will give you this.  On a Monday you can talk about this topic.  If they cross their arms, you need to say this. And so on.  It’s like a giant Lego set, where each piece combined gives a different outcome.  The thing is, these outcomes are not guaranteed simply highly probable.  If it doesn’t give the result I wanted, then I spend more time trying to figure out why.  99% of the time it’s emotions, which are notoriously hard to compartmentalize.

The Hypothesis

Given that I have this rather large repertoire of information, I can “predict” the outcome of a given situation with a decent amount of accuracy.  That outcome then triggers another event.  At each trigger, there are multiple possibilities, each with their own odds of occurrence.  As I get further away from the original trigger, my certainty in the final outcome grows dimmer.  As I am looking for an optimal end state, I also look at how some outcomes can be modified to “get back on track”.  The following picture describes the high level process – realize that I mentally process each of these branches.

decision tree

As a final result you get something like the following Sherlock fight scene

Paralysis

There’s an saying that goes something like – people who live in the past are depressed, those who live in the future are anxious and those you live in the present are happy.  I live in the past and present at the same time.

I look back at what I did and what could have gone different, not in terms of regret mind you but in terms of analysis.  Like reviewing a game of chess.  This gives me more tools to work out variable outcomes and refines my existing ones.  I look forward to what’s possible and plan accordingly.  I know I’m going out for supper with the family – a small thing.  I know I’ll need a cup, diapers, a bib, cleaning items, a set of clothes, a booster, a medical kit and a bunch of other things for all the possible outcomes.  Or I know we’ll be hosting guests.  I’ll need coffee, tea, cups, plates, a clean dishwasher, items to be prepped, space for guests, favors, desert, places for people to be, kids to play and so on.  If there’s a possible variable, I’ve likely considered it.  The odds of of it happening determine my next steps.

Where it turns into paralysis is that I do this for everything and that I am never really living today but living tomorrow, or the week after, or 10 years down the road.  I have tremendous difficulty in appreciating the moment, outside of seeing a planned outcome being realized.  Spontaneity is appreciated only in the challenge is presents for future planning, not on the immediacy of the event.  So this makes Christmas and my birthday somewhat difficulty for people, as I’m not tremendously exited at gifts (of which I’ve guessed 95% of them ahead of time).

Side effects

This one you’re likely just not to believe and that’s OK.  Simply put, I have a fair amount of deja vu on a regular basis.  Not the “this feels familiar” feeling but the more surreal out of body aspect.  The easiest comparison is athletes and sports.  Elite athletes work on instinct and the best of them often report that the game simply slows down for them.  They can see everything at the same time, even themselves.  They can see what will happen in the next instant and be prepared for it.  I play hockey and that happens rather often.  What I get above and beyond that is a full fledged memory of an event as it happens.

I remember my first day of grade 8 as I had to swap schools.  I had a vivid dream the night before of the first day and sure enough it rolled out as I had dreamed.  The kicker was that I knew everyone’s name before having met them.  It’s been an odd trip since then.

The final side effect, and one I share with many introverts, is the need for solitude and general lack of energy for social events.  It is very draining to always be on and it makes it taxing on my family as well.  I tend to live in the future which makes it hard for people to understand my point of view – either they are impressed or intimidated.  Very little middle ground unless you’ve known me for a decent amount of time.

The good

I will finish off with the positive side of this story and there certainly is one.  This rather unique skill pays very well in the market.  I can take extremely complex issues, memorize the variables and lay out options.  I have a near encyclopedic memory.  I have enough social skills to interact with people.  I’ve become comfortable and accepting of the skill set, which makes me relatively happy.  I work diligently for positive outcomes, which is of benefit to those I wish to protect (wife, kids, family, friends).

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Back From Vacation

3 weeks away and I back, is I.

It was an interesting vacation this year for a few reasons. Prime is that I lost my phone the first week (though got it back) and didn’t have any reception for the 3rd week. I was interweb-less! I spend a lot of time reading on-line, way more than most people. Without that outlet, it was a little rough at times. I did get some fishing in but with a 2 and 4 year old, it’s not the easiest thing to plan out. Second interesting factoid was that it either rained or was cold (~15C/60F) for nearly every day but 3. I don’t personally mind the rain so much but after a while, you start to get cabin fever. Third, I got the stomach flu – actually everyone did. Not fun.

I do wish it was more of a vacation to recoup, as was my cruise in the spring. Ehh, still was fun spending time with the family.

Wildstar

I am still subscribed and see myself doing so for quite a while. There are good reasons, and the guild is one of them. But after a month, I think I can put out a decent summary of the game, as I did with ESO. The next post will focus on that. Suffice to say, I’m having fun.

Other

I’ve touched on this in the past, where I have a passion for social analysis and a near fatal attraction to analytics as a whole. Recent conversations have provided me with a more vocabulary to properly explain what that actually means. This goes to an old issue where someone asks another person to “prove” that they love someone – in other words provide evidence on a non-physical item. I think I’ve found adequate wording to assist with that, and as to how my brain works. That’s also a future post.

All told, glad to be back at the writing desk.

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Lessons Learned From Gaming

Working like crazy, Wildstar is the only sanity break I have. Need to write more. Here’s an idea that is top of mind of late, because of work.

While gaming still has yet to pierce the “accepted for adults” social bubble, there are many recorded benefits from gaming that translate to the real world.

One of the more common things heard of late is putting raiding on your resume, in particular if you’re achieving something unique. Now, the item on paper means nothing other than a conversation starter, sort of like past job experiences, unless you can provide a reference. That is really hard to do in the virtual world.

Still, the experience gained from raiding, and I select raiding purely for the logistical and skill difficulty factors, translates extremely well to real life activities. For example. I’ve had my share of complex problems to solve in my career, each with seemingly unique variables. In reality, those complex variables are based on a set of rules (mechanics) that can be seen if you look hard enough. The thing is, if you can raid at a high level, and high is whatever you want it to mean, then you likely have the skill set required to absorb an issue, compare it to other issues you’ve seen, apply basic rules to it, and formulate a response. You also have the ability to execute that response.

I know that seems pretty high level but I can assure you that being able to handle complex issues in a timely fashion is NOT a common skill. It’s also mainly why high level raiding is such a small drop in the bucket but the most prominent. Now, they aren’t directly linked for the main reason of time. If the RL is taking a lot out of you, you likely don’t want games to do the same. The inverse though, crappy job and you want a challenge does apply.

And that’s just raiding. I love playing markets in games, what with a love of spreadsheets. Analytics is a very important skill to have. Housing decoration. This allows creativity, communication skills, branding and a whole pile more. Achievements, the hard ones now, are almost OCD in their dedication to complete. Sticking to a goal and getting there, even through piles of muck, is something we all need to do at some point. 

I could go on about even more systems (RTS, FPS, puzzles, etc…) but it should be evident by now that what we play affects how we live in other aspects of our lives. Gaming today provides so much simulated complexity that it would be crazy to ignore the long term benefits.

Happy gaming all.

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#Wildstar – Zone Transition

In architecture frameworks, we find a few levels of detail.  Conceptual, Logical, Physical are the most common.  Concepts are arts styles and a few words to describe.  In games this is the sketch work you see on most sites and what kickstarter usually has with.  A picture of a house is a solid example too.  These are guided by principles.  This place is red, this place is in the sky, etc…

Logical models are a bit more in-depth.  They show how things interact with each other but don’t go down to the detail level.  So for a game, it would be where the main hubs are, the general sub-zone themes and what-have-you.  This side of the map has tunnels, this side rivers, that sort of thing.  An architecture blueprint for a house has this level of detail.  It has to make sense, so that you don’t build a river system above a volcano and that your windows aren’t all on one side of the house, basic rules for the system to work.

Physical models are where the objects are built and placed.  Mob placement and pathing.  Aggro chains.  Key NPCs.  Where harvesting materials spawn.  Zone elevation.  That sort of thing.  In a house design this usually goes down to the exact measurements of the door, or the electrical wiring in the house.  These models are highly restricted, either by law or by design. I mean, you can’t have an ocean in the sky (well maybe?) and you can’t put an outlet in the bathtub.  Breaking these rules means bugs/breakdowns/fire.

And that’s just what the zone LOOKS like, how is actually PLAYS is another layer on top of it.  Quality games design the story (the playing part) before the actual visual (the looking part).  Zones that are designed on looks before the story give you a fractured and disjointed feeling. Sort of like Wilhelm’s recent post.  I found that ESO suffered from this too, and J3w3l has some explanation of that too.  By and large, the zone quests in Wildstar are strongly linked and make a lot of sense.  The tasks are mostly one-offs.  They fit into the story but don’t bog it down with at ton of exposition.  You can read the lore as an option (and you should) but it doesn’t interfere with the game – it augments it.

One of the odd little wrinkles in Wildstar is Farside.  This is the belly button of the game, for levels 25-35, ish.  Rather than a single zone, it’s actually a bunch of smaller distinct zones.  A jungle, a desert mesa, a moon and a support base.  They have their own story that makes sense but given the concentrated design elements, it seems to resonate better with people.  I mean, I loved that moon level, with 1/3 of the gravity.  Robot suits, laser beams hitting big ships, aliens all over the place.  Awesome.  Farside, I will posit, is going to be the favorite zone for the majority of players.

And then you hit Wilderrun, a proto-typical jungle zone.  Very reminiscent of STV back in the old WoW days.  The story isn’t too bad, wild amazonians protecting the water of eternal youth.  It’s just that the zone is massive, uses a lot of vertical space and it the type of zone people are used to seeing.  It’s a bit like having a bite of the absolute best piece of homemade designer cake one day and the next, you get a grocery store frozen cake.  I mean, the other cake is OK, but compared to the one before it takes like dirt.

As I play and enjoy Wildstar, I do see my designer hat come on from time to time and look at the meta of it all. By and large, the core design decisions taken here are ones that I questioned originally but end up working extremely well in practice.  It’s a themepark, fine.  But rather than have a single ride from start to finish, it’s a bunch of rides, interconnected, thematically linked.  It’s like the difference between 6 Flags (just a bunch of stuff) and Disney World (same stuff but all under the same theme).  It’s pretty neat.

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Combat and Art Styles

Pegging off Tobold’s post on appropriate art style, I think it bears mention more than just a couple games.  And I won’t really go into what looks better because that’s a very subjective argument.  This is really about the practicalities.

We have WoW art style, with distinct character outlines since the start. However it’s moved away from tab target to smart target, and red/blue markers on the ground. WoD will finally have target outlines as well. It’s evolved.

Neverwinter, a LAS/action game, uses outlines and AE effects given the mouselook aiming features. It’s a more realistic art style, making it damn near impossible to find someone in the thick of things. BUT, since it’s soft lock and AE for nearly everything (including healing), it works.

SWTOR uses cartoon style graphics for a seemingly endless supply of humanoids. I found it a mess in regular PvE but the group instances aren’t too bad as the character types are often different. Plus tab targeting helps drastically.

FF14 uses tab targets and a full skill bar, though in reality few skills. The art style is VERY unique and it’s fairly easy to spot individual players, let alone NPCs in combat. In fact, you rarely have more than 2-3 enemies at once. Of course, with a requirement for focused combat and targeted attacks, this is vital for success

FF14 - Ifrit

ESO is LAS + mouselook. Many attacks are AE or smart target. Every frigging enemy is the same though. PvP turned into meat walls of AE spam because you can’t focus target effectively. It also means many skills lose all value if they aren’t multi-target. Plus everyone blends in together and the background. So it’s less about aiming and responsiveness as it is about mashing AE attacks and hoping the numbers are in your favor.

Big Boy

Big Boy

Wildstar is LAS but tab/free target combat. Everything has an AE target as well, making aiming very important. Plus the character diversity helps you quickly ID the players in the field. The more quickly you can make an assessment, the better your odds.

That's a big gun

That’s a big gun

I guess it boils down to offense vs defense. A more realistic game favors defensive style of play and 2 types of skills. Either you spam and get lucky or you cross that skill gap to “elite” and run amok. FPS shooters I think show that well.

A more cartoon, or rather distinct character set, provides more offensive options as you can’t really hide. Everyone knows who you are and you have more information to make the right decision. It removes the skill gap and includes progression.

I wouldn’t be able to say which has the higher skill ceiling as that is more game-specific. It’s certainly an interesting topic.

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