Once we got into the WildStar beta I had to think about which class I wanted to play. We talked about the Stalker and the Warrior at launch. However, this game is so unique that every class brings something different to the world. So for my first Beta class I picked a Mordesh Spellslinger. Who doesn’t like a space cowboy right? Well now, I am totally addicted to this hyper active ranged shooter. Using the two pistols was the first appeal to the class, but as I played through the early levels I started to get sucked in by the ranged spells and targeting. If you like to jump, move, and target your foes, then the Spellslinger definitely delivers. Oh one more thing, besides shooting and ranged attacks, you are a healer as well.
The best way I can describe the Spellslinger is a ranged rogue style class. You do not where heavy armor, you do not charge into battle. You more or less stand on the outsides and blast away with some devastating attacks. Almost all of the combat in WildStar is area of effect based. The Spellslinger takes full advantage of these area attacks. They also have much more narrow lines of targeting to blast spells like Ignite against opponents. Using these targeting arcs is critical to winning fights. The basic attack with the two pistols has a much wider arch to catch your foe in, but it is the longer ranged blasts that you need to make sure are angled correctly. If things are not set up right, that’s okay, even at the early levels you get a Stealth ability which allows you to teleport behind your opponent and put a brief stun on them. Or if you angle it correctly you can land in front of them with the stun. This short stealth teleport can be used to set up and attack or run away from a big foe you know you cannot handle.
The primary ability of Spell Surge is also very important. It can really ramp up your burst damage and be used as a situational boost. Turning it on and off is key and it adds a lot of strategy to just running and blasting things. Spellslingers also get some long ranged abilities like True Shot, but they have a bit of a casting time. It is a great skill to use when pulling monsters to you. As they come charging forward, you can use your speed and dodges to get away and hit them with different ranged attacks.
What I did not get to do in the first few levels was work with any of the healing abilities. These seemed to unlock around Level 6. For the opening levels it was much more run and gun to get used to the combat mechanics of the class. What I am excited for is combining these two lines of specialization for the character. To become a mobile damage dealing healer bring a lot of utility to the table. I will be writing up a part two of this feature to go through levels 6-10 and some of the healing skills in depth.
For my character's journey, I started out on the Arkship of the Exiles. I chose Exlies because I will likely play Dominion at launch. The opening tutorial is very linear. You get your quests and move through the zone learning how to use your pistols and basic skills. The tutorial does give a good storyline as to why you have come to Nexus and what exploration awaits you down on the planet. I chose the Explorer Path for my character, but found that I quickly focused a lot more on the regular quests. I will go back and pick up some of the Explorer missions in my next play session. Since this was really my first real extended time with the game, I wanted to get used to everything first.
After completing the quests on the Arkship you are sent down to Nexus to explore the land and work on harvesting some resources. The zones really spring to life with the aesthetic Carbine chose for the game. Some people may feel like it is too cartoony, but I'm of the mind that it adds to the charm of the game. Combine that with a real sense of mystery and discovery as you are looking around the planet and it is a recipe for fun. I liked unlocking all kinds of quests and areas around the starting zone to instantly be rewarded with a deeper storyline.
The Spellslinger definitely rates as a fun class. The developer team has even said it is one of the top classes in closed beta right now. Once you spend a few minutes trying it out, you will definitely get sucked in. WildStar’s closed beta continues and in a few days I will return with levels 6-10 on the Spellslinger. Feel free to ask questions below and I will try to answer them.
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