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GameGeex - WildStar Beta Impressions: The Scientist Path They blinded me, with science, and some lens flare.

It’s Wildstar Week here at GameGeex, I’m sure you’ve heard. We’ve been grouping together and tackling beta content. I’ve stuck to one class, one race, no shirt, no blouse… Wait, sorry I’ve got a song stuck in my head. I’ve been playing the Granok Engineer Scientist, no that isn’t some fancy hipster name. See the Granok is a race of mercenaries with a penchant for beer and ass-kickery. Their homeworld was taken over by the Dominion, so you can imagine they don’t smile unless they are kicking some teeth in. Logically I felt they were perfect for being an Engineer and Scientist, don’t judge me.

Engineers are known for building things and in Wildstar they’ve built mechanized combat armor and very big guns, that sounds like a beautiful combo to me. What could make that combo better, science. Each of the paths in Wildstar offers different types of play styles to match what you like to get out of your experience. It’s a fantastic concept that could really give this game some legs. The Scientist, that’s me, likes to dig into and examine the world around them, they want to know the meaty mysteries of Nexus.

From the onset of your journey you are given a Scanbot to aid in your quest for knowledge. It was nice being able to name him since I couldn’t name my Engineer bots, they are super jelly for it too. This floaty fantastic friend is equipped with one function, scanning. Sure that sounds extremely boring, but scanning is the gateway drug people. Scanning sounds passive, but it’s rarely gives a passive response from the scanee. Each time you see the little science icon attached to a person, place, or thing, you scan it. Sometimes you just collect data but more commonly something happens.

While scanning a meteoroid on the Exile starting ship I was alerted by telegraph of an impending attack from said object. All I wanted to know was why the wire was sparky, but no it had to lob explosives at me. Then I found an exhaust port, oh how interesting, and burny. The damn thing tried to roast me and Scanbot. In a makeshift library I found some interesting archaeological items to investigate and catalog, luckily none of them tried to eat my face. The really exciting stuff didn’t kick in till I was planetside.

Before we head planetside there is a few things you need to understand about science, because science. First it’s not just about protons and colliding particles with fancy names, it’s about information as a whole to make protons that collide with fancy names in particles. That’s also nonsense. Science is split into a several mission types, and these missions are only available to you who make with the science, the Scientist.

You’ve got Archeology, this gives you missions to scan various technology left behind by the Eldan. Good and bad can come of it, but it’s always going to be awesome. There is also Biology, Botany, and Field Study, all of which relate to all that lives on Nexus. This generally leads combat or exploding plants. The exciting Cataloging missions are always waiting, oh the joy of creating the first Nexus card catalog. They say knowledge is power, no seriously they say that, but man it’s a drag to have to document it all. Let’s not forget Analysis, who doesn’t want to analysis things, scan it up baby. I didn’t do any Chemistry at the time of writing this article so I can’t say with authority, I am sure you will get blown up. Lastly we have diagnostics, this allows you to fix things. From inanimate objects to people parts, if they let you near them.

So let’s head down to Nexus, where I found some flora. You know it as leafy plant things, I know it as, “OH MY FACE, WHY DOES IT BURN!” Scanbot doesn’t understand the little leafy bastards have an attitude problem, he’s just trying to data it up. No, they ain’t having it folks, fire bursting, pollen spewing, and sometimes lunging attacks. Don’t you worry you devious vegetation, your leaves will look beautiful between the pages of this book. Well, if I had a book.

Since the local flora wasn’t having it I decided to science up some local fauna, whoa boy, if there is one thing the animal kingdom of Nexus doesn’t like it’s a floating robotic eye with lasers beams. I still have the scars. It’s simple folks, if the creature can aggro they will aggro. If the plant looks pretty, it will try to kill you. The only safe thing I’ve found so far to scan is old tech, it tends to unlock some nifty secret passages and various other beneficial items.

Eventually as I explored Nexus I found I was able to augment my little science buddy, what’s the one thing that says science better than anything else, tesla coils. Aww yeah, being able to customize how your bot looks is a great feature and helps you to stand out in the science crowd, it’s a highly competitive field. You’re also able to interact with other paths in Wildstar like the Settler, they can erect some odd construct and then you can science it up. This leads to both of you getting some path XP and perhaps a beneficial buff for all those near by. It’s a fairly fantastic concept, and I applaud Carbine for the implementation of it.

While I’ve hit some bumps in my time as a Granok Engineer Scientist, it was never due to the path. My path has been enjoyable, and there is nothing more I now like to exclaim while grouped then, “I want to make the science with it!”

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