Wildstar hasn't had a particularly smooth ride since its release in June. Phil liked it a lot, but content updates have been buggy, PvP servers have been quiet, Halloween and Christmas events were canceled, and in October, developer Carbine Studios laid off somewhere in the neighborhood of 60 employees. But in spite of that inauspicious beginning, Product Director Mike Donatelli says publisher NCsoft remains committed to the game.
"They specialize in MMOs, that's what they do. And they see a future for WildStar," Donatelli told Eurogamer. "We have legs. And as far as NCSoft is concerned, they're going to support us, and I take them at their word for that when they've made a commitment to us for the future, so I feel very comfortable making that statement."
The layoffs, he explained, were unfortunate but necessary, since Carbine had hired a large number of people prior to Wildstar's launch in order to ensure that it was ready for release. He also said that the cuts were "NCWest wide," affecting both the development and publishing parts of the business. "We still have hundreds of people working on Wildstar," he said. "As far as I was concerned it [laying people off] sucks, but it's part of game development."
Carbine Creative Director Chad Moore acknowledged that Wildstar hasn't focused on solo players as much as it should have, but promised that the next update will help address that shortcoming. "There hasn't been as much for players that hit level 50 who aren't raiders—there haven't been other things for them to experience and enjoy at that level range and throughout the game," he said. "The content stuff that we're working on for our next quarterly update focuses a lot of our efforts on making sure solo players and smaller-group players have lots to do."
The third Wildstar content drop, adding a new zone, solo story, and numerous bug fixes, went live yesterday.