Wildstar has an odd history, starting as the first project for Carbine after the studio was founded by a splinter group of ex-Blizzard folks. It was developed from 2007 to 2014 as the next big subscription MMO, before launching to big fanfare but few steady subs. It went free to play thereafter and is now plodding along with the rest, getting regular big updates and trying to ride that fine line between profitability and fun. In a recent blogpost, new game director Chad Moore outlines where they've been and where they're going.
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It's a dense post, but here's the highlights:
- In the past year they've ran three major content updates, multiple holiday events and transitioned into a fully free to play game. Busy.
- Moore is now game director, overseeing everything and "ensuring that we continue to make the awesome game we have been, as well as leading the charge to make it even better as we look toward the future." He previously worked at Troika until 2004, then a couple of years at Treyarch before transitioning to Lead Narrative Designer at Carbine in 2007 and later Creative Director on Wildstar.
- Destination Arcterra is the game's next big update and it includes a new zone and a new chapter in the ongoing storyline, which will be completable either solo or in a group. It should hit the PTR soon.
- Later this year players will be able to leave the planet and explore the solar system it's located in, starting with the Halon Ring asteroid belt.
- The game's Chinese edition has just entered closed beta.
Big shoes to fill for Moore, as publishers NCSOFT are creating plenty of competition for themselves in the F2P MMO market with Blade & Soul and Guild Wars 2. Different models to each, of course, but if there's a maximum on that market they're going to find it with the help of all their friends. Some more details in his full post.