Monday, February 25, 2013

Why Roleplay in Wildstar?

So I started earlier by outlying some of the reasonings, benefits and ideas behind why people roleplay. So now, why would people want to take these creative potentials into the universe of Wildstar?

Well to start with, let's begin with the reason that Wildstar is a gorgeous massive multiplayer online roleplaying game. So it's even right there in the genre. RPG. Role-playing game. Here's the definition of that from Wikipedia :

"A role-playing game (RPG and sometimes roleplaying game[1][2]) is a game in which players assume the roles of characters in a fictional setting. Players take responsibility for acting out these roles within a narrative, either through literal acting or through a process of structured decision-making or character development."

In Wildstar you are technically playing a member of the Dominion or-

"Clearly the only intelligent choice."

Yes thank you, Agent Hawkens.
As I was saying, you are playing either a member of the Dominion, or the Exiles and are representing a part in their epic struggle for a planet once ruled by what essentially amounts to the gods of the universe. And there you have it. Right there in the basic foundation of the game, you are role-playing. For many people, that is their reason. An exciting, immersive storytelling game that allows you to interact within the world's setting in a rich visual experience.

Now, to be fair, there are many mmorpgs on the market. Star Wars: The Old Republic has an amazing interactive story, compliments of Bioware, making it one of the most compelling games to play through. World of Warcraft is an impressive mmo behemoth, constantly incorporating new ideas and concepts to it's storytelling making your avatar feel, if not completely unique, then at least like an impressive hero of their faction. Secret World has a gritty comic-book style story adding in elements from Steven King and H.P. Lovecraft for a truly dark and unique secret society based roleplaying experience, while Guild Wars 2 adds a satisfactory heroic fantasy story to our table.

So why should the community be interested in Wildstar? I mean, these other games all sound great, right?

Well this ultimately boils down to personal opinion, so I am going to share mine here:

  • Wildstar offers a playful yet semi-serious science fiction world with some key interests to roleplayers right off the bat. I am a HUGE fan of science fiction and cyberpunk and any world that I can use my knowledge and writing talent in such genres I find very enjoyable. Starships, futuristic technology and alien worlds are exciting to work with and are also familiar territory to me.
  • On top of that there are other familiarities which attracted myself. I enjoyed playing a melee druid class in World of Warcraft and furthered that with the almost cyberpunk/James Bond feel of the Imperial Agent in Bioware's Star Wars: The Old Republic. In Secret World, I played a melee damage based class revolving around the claws and chaos weapons and in Guild Wars 2 I would have played a Thief if not for the fact that Mesmer was so fun! So when I saw that Wildstar would feature a technology-based stealth class with a set of alloy claw blades for their weapon I was very excited. Right at the start I could play the sort of secret agent, stealthy assassin character I loved. Couple that with the sort of elegant, aristocratic and serious demeanor of the Cassians and I can take my familiarity with my character's purpose and motivation a step further.
  • On top of all this, it has been made clear that the team working on Wildstar is definitely considering the role-playing community. From player housing to all sorts of customization options hinted at, it appears we are not forgotten.
  • And let's not forget their amazing arkship programs! They are actually flying out people to talk to them directly about what they want to see in this game. This team is actively seeking out the advice of the community! If nothing else, this reason alone is amazing!
This will only get better as the role-playing community stands up and makes ourselves heard. We are some of the first to arrive in many games and are often the last to leave, creating a special niche for ourselves and our friends in these fantastic creations.

 So in conclusion, why play Wildstar? In the name of the genre itself, Wildstar is a massive multiplayer online role-playing game that features a new and exciting science fiction setting with interesting factions, an interesting story concept and many aspects that may not only be found familiar to the role-playing community but are also part of a contribution from a team that acknowledges our existence and our desires within their game.

And before Agent Hawkens here scowls a hole through my head it also prominently features the glorious empire of the Dominion.

That is all.


  1. Exactly the reasons I love this game. It's amazing the lengths Carbine is going to to get it straight from the horse's mouth, so to speak.

    Then again, as Hawkens will happily tell you:

    "There is no 'Too Much' for the price of information."

    Also, everything is so friggin' serious these days. When did your in-game events being funny and putting a smile on your face become so damnably abhorrent?

    God forbid WildStar becomes a terrible game, but I will still play it to see the Lore and the humour.

    1. Now, like Hawken's here, I like to consider myself a fairly serious and logical individual. As such, an excess of silliness tends to irritate me. I'll even go so far as to admit that I was initially disappointed in WildStar's art style. To me it looked too cartoonish, too silly. I like a bit of gritty realism in my environment and narrative. In my opinion it makes them more relatable and lends them a deeper impact.

      That said I also agree that there seems to be this strange feeling that any attempt at humor in a game is a foolish and childlike notion. Sometimes we need to remember we are playing GAMES and as such, to find them fun really isn't a terrible idea.

      With that concept on my mind I suddenly found the art style to be appealing and even more powerful then some darker, more realistic look. The exaggerated movements and animation are actually adding to their caricatures of emotions, expressions and actions. And seeing the faction introductory videos alone showed just how much detail they could create. The lightheartedness and silliness no longer detracted from the more serious concepts within WildStar but instead made me smile and enjoy the world more.

      Don't tell Hawkens though.