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Carbine | Play Now
MMORPG | Genre:Sci-Fi | Status:Final  (rel 06/03/14)  | Pub:NCSoft
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WildStar Column: Shooting Stars

By Gareth Harmer on November 28, 2013

Ever wanted to play a futuristic gunslinger or nanite-powered Wolverine? We’ve crossed the halfway point in WildStar’s Class ‘Ultra Drop’, with Carbine providing a new Spellslinger Dev Speak video, Reddit ‘Ask Me Anything’ and Livestream. But, thanks to Thanksgiving, we also got a peek at the Stalker Class, with another AMA running earlier this week.

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All this means that next week we’ll be venturing into the realm of the Redacted, as the two unknown Classes are revealed for the first time. Carbine has provided several hints over the last two months – we know one can heal and the other can tank – but the mechanics, defining abilities and play styles are complete unknowns.

The Livestream also brought an update on WildStar’s Winter Beta. For those of you eager to test out Carbine’s upcoming MMO, Senior Community Manager David Bass sent out a plea asking volunteers to complete a Winter Survey. He added that participants in the info-gathering exercise would be given priority, making it your best bet for an early ticket to Nexus.

The Magic Gun Show

Carbine describes the Spellslinger as an inter-dimensional gunslinger, as if someone stepped off the set of Cowboys Vs. Aliens. Whether you’re a peacekeeper or outlaw, your dual blasters will be making friends and wasting fools across Nexus. Throw in some magic bullets and the ability to rip holes in the fabric of reality, and you have an incredibly varied mix.

While the Esper has a mix of telegraphs that cover a wide arc, most of the Spellslinger’s abilities are in a narrow band. To make up for the loss of flexibility, they also get some of the best combat range of any class in WildStar, with AMPs helping to push that even further.   They also have a number of abilities that require them to stand still while shooting, but get delicious teleport moves like Gate, Void Slip and Phase Shift to jump around and even swap places with enemies. For every limitation, it seems like there’s an alternative opportunity to cause mayhem.

The Spellslinger’s Innate ability is Spell Surge. Punch the button and it starts draining spellpower, but increases damage, healing and crowd control duration while active. You don’t have to wait for your spellpower to drain dry either – hitting it again turns the innate off, providing a little bit of micro-management control. Spellpower regenerates over time.

Keeping range is going to be crucial for a Spellslinger’s survivability, with light armor being the only thing between you and your enemies. That said, the Spellslinger will be throwing out a mix of attacks, with fireballs and frostbolts sitting alongside more mundane attacks. As a result, they’ll bring direct damage, damage over time, precision nukes, healing and crowd control. That’s one mighty toolbox.

With long telegraph abilities that can be tiered up to become even longer, it’s important to know when that delicious damage will be landing on your enemies. The Spellslinger firies projectiles, and it’s the missile projectile landing that determines when the damage is done. Projectile travel time is one of the variables that Carbine will be tracking to make sure those hits land reliably.

My only complaint? You can’t Phase Shift with another player to drop them off a cliff.

Shnikerty-Shnik

In some of us, there’s a burning desire to grow nanite claws, sneak around and kill skeech. Sound familiar? If you’re nodding furiously then the Stalker class is definitely made for you. With an innate ability that enables you to stealth up – even in combat for a short time – it’s the class of choice for those crafty gankers.

The Stalker comes with medium armor, fist weapons and a grimace of silent aggression. It can also tank, flipping those nanites into protection mode. They don’t have the greatest combat range on Nexus, but make up for it with some surprising attacks, even being able to clone themselves for brief periods.

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