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Congrats on reaching level 50! (Please note that the following is based off my own limited time and research into the new WS: Reloaded patch and may not be 100% perfect, please assist if you know more stuff)
In this guide I will attempt to cover generally how to get geared up.
Step 1: Hit 50. (This is going to be a guide for 50s, I’ll make a leveling guide maybe)
Step 2: Goals! I find that it is important to know what you’re striving for, so in this guide we’re going to aim to have the gear, runes, and skills in order to start doing Veteran Dungeons!
Step 3: Head over to the PvP vendors in your faction's city and talk to the S2 PvP vendor. At the very top of this shop is the Season 2 PvP gear that is purchasable with gold! Select the Assault / Support tab then get everything! (I believe the total cost is around 1 Plat, which you should have from leveling, don’t worry you’ll make more money) Note: The reason we get PvP gear is because this gear:
is better than your leveling gear
is better than a lot of other gear you can get at this point
has the ability to take a lot of runes if you can afford the prestige cost set
Step 4: Get some contracts! Head on over to the contract board and pick up some contracts. If something catches your eye then do it. I’d generally recommend picking up the tier 1 (repeatable) contract and 2 tier 2 contracts because the tier 3 contract requires a group of people, however you can normally find people in Zone chat looking for other people to help them do this.
Step 5: Start doing PvE content. Wildstar is different from other MMO’s in terms of ‘dungeon’ systems. At this point you should NOT start queuing for Veteran Dungeons, you don’t have the gear, the runes, or probably the knowledge to do well. Best case scenario you’ll be extremely frustrated and maybe get some loot, worst case scenario you’ll be extremely frustrated and probably quit. So let’s get some practice mastering our skill rotations while moving around!
Mini difficulty guide: In terms of things that you can queue for here is the difficulty ranking: Vet Expeditions < Veteran Adventures < Veteran Dungeons. So if you’re a fresh off the leveling grind 50, it is probably a good idea to start off in the Expeditions.
Expeditions: These things are awesome! While the gear you get from them may not be super-duper awesome you do get some experience and items. I think the best part about Expeditions (for dps) is that they are 100% soloable. To queue one solo hit ‘N’ then go to PvE > Expeditions and above the role selector there is a button that lets the game know not to find other players.
Things you get from Expeditions:
A better understanding how your class works at 50, try messing around with your build to make the runs smoother. This probably means that you can’t follow that ‘raid build’ guide you found on google. Also you’ll get used to using these skills on the move, because eventually you won’t be able to stare at your skill bar, you’ll need to watch for deadly telegraphs.
AMP / Ability upgrades – Although you hit max level, you haven’t yet unlocked your full skill kit. As you probably experienced while leveling up, unlocking Tiers 4 and 8 of a skill has a big impact on gameplay, well you can get even more skill points and AMP points! Luckily these things drop in Expeditions and you can even buy an AMP point if you get gold medals in every Expedition
Some items to scrap for runes – yes we haven’t talked about runes for these yet but we will soon™
Decor, costumes, and pets oh my!
Adventures: A step up from Expeditions, while they require a group, it’s generally a group of 5 and these can be rather fun. Getting gold from all of these will unlock rewards!
World Bosses: Hey this wasn’t on the difficulty track! Yea yea I know, world bosses are cool because you can get some ilvl 90 gear from them(even better than dungeons), experience getting slaughtered by mechanics, and a lot of cool decor / costumes. In general they will prepare you well for Veteran Dungeons, try joining up for these whenever you can.
Step 6: By now you probably have a better understanding of your class. If you have any glory(currency) you can buy some ilvl 78 gear from the Veteran Dungeon Vendor. Try throwing some runes into your gear (will do a running guide later) that benefit your stats and you should be generally physically prepared to start Veteran dungeons. Don’t queue for a random dungeon though, start off with one you know well (from running the non-veteran version) and be prepared to learn and probably die.
So you’re a fresh 50. Problem is that the level 50 content is using you as a treadmill. Wildstar is an MMORPG like the others, and getting better gear makes a world of difference. This guide is based on the following reddit post, with my own additions.
First off, you need to know that items are clearly marked in power level, called item level (or ilvl for short). For the most part, an increase in ilvl is an increase in power. There are slight variations mind you, in that you want assault power for DPS and support power for Heals/Tank. Mixing them is a bad call.
In terms of item power level, it generally goes like this (items with an * require a group to complete):
Quest Gear –> Challenge Gear –> Expedition Gear –> PvP Gear –> Contract Gear –> Adventure Gear –> *Dungeon Gear –> *Raid Gear
Finally, items have rune slots. You can buy a bunch from the AH for pretty cheap. I personally wouldn’t spend more than 10g per rune until you reach Expedition level gear. These have a dramatic impact on item power. A fully runed item can double in power, and it doesn’t have to be expensive runes either! See my rune guide for more info. The general rule of thumb is “rune for groups”.
First Things First
I suggest you visit the Auction House and scan for gear upgrades. You want to buy anything under 10g that’s also an upgrade. This is likely to replace most of your quest gear. Filter by item level, and sort Buy Now: Low to High. *as of this posting, the default AH only filters up to ilvl 60. Download the following fix to address this. You want to filter for items above ilvl 61.
Challenge Gear (ilvl 50)
When you complete challenges in a level 50 zone, you get points that fill a progress bar (press “L” and look at the challenges tab). The reward for completing the bar is a random item. This should be done fairly naturally during your play. I wouldn’t chase this gear, simply keep it in mind when playing.
Expeditions (ilvl 60)
Press N, look at the expeditions tab. You can solo all of these at 50, though some are a bit harder than others. There are item drops within, but what you’re looking for is 2 things. Completing an expedition rewards Renown, used to buy PvE gear. Getting a gold rating on each (completing all optional objectives) unlocks the ability to purchase an AMP upgrade. Expeditions are the best way to generate money in PvE – M-13 and Infestation are my favorites.
PvP Gear (ilvl65)
Find the PvP season 2 vendor and buy whatever is an upgrade. The PvP stat isn’t great mind you, but it’s likely better than the other gear you have so far, excepting AH gear. Yes, this means you can skip all the gear before this.
Contracts (ilvl 57 to 80)
In the capital city you can find the contract board. The level 2 contracts are easy enough to solo, regardless of your gear level. The level 3 contracts are a pain, unless you find someone advertising in general (exception is the Star Comm Basin event, which is every 2 hours). Getting to rank 5 of the contract rewards gives an ilvl80 item. The rest are randomly selected and of lower quality. It’ll take a couple weeks to complete a single pass through to rank 5 rewards.
Adventures (ilvl 68)
Press N, look at the adventures tab. It takes 5 folk to complete, takes 20-45 minutes per and the loot rewards are decent enough. Use the Glory you get as a reward to buy even more pieces from the vendor in the capital city. Gold on everyone gets an Ability Point unlock.
Dungeons (ilvl 78)
Press N, look at the dungeons tab. All dungeons are not created equal. You want to be around ilvl 60 to do the basic ones. Do not enter a dungeon unless you have put in runes inside your existing gear. You should leave here with ilvl 80 gear on average, allowing you to enter raids. The general consensus on difficulty is Stormtalon’s Lair (STL) –> Kel Vorath (KV) –> Skullcano –> Shield of the Sword Maiden (SSM). Though in truth, if KV isn’t a rather easy pass, the last 2 are going to eat you up.
AMPs and Ability Point Unlocks
When you hit 50, you’re given 41 Ability Points and 47 AMPs to spread around. Through various items, you can unlock an additional 7 Ability Points (48 total) and 10 AMPs (57 total). There are quite a few ways to do this:
I’d suggest you focus on Ability points first, since the tier unlocks are generally more powerful than an AMP upgrade. Having 3 skills at T8 is a pretty big deal.
If you thought WildStar raids would be a carefree cakewalk through Creampuff Mountain on roller skates with doughnut training-wheels, you probably have a serious head injury! On the upside, we’ve just spent eight years coming up with the perfect cure: the most intense raid content ever hyped!
These raids aren’t just hardcore, they’re diamond-core 20-player PvE dungeons on crack that will pit your characters against the loudest bosses ever promoted!