AMPs were described as the "talent tree" feature of WildStar, though even from the short description that I was given, AMPs sounds very little like a traditional talent tree. Lynch described AMPS as, "A constellation system where players start at the center, and work their way out...AMPs are all about character customization. Players will have limited points, and they'll need to choose how they want to specialize their character." One of Carbine's primary design goals with WildStar is to allow and encourage unique builds, so players can expect to see some strange and exotic skill combinations coming into the fray as they increase in power.
The devs also spoke briefly about classes in WildStar, discussing sub-roles and class balance. In order to encourage unique builds and prevent homogenous classes, there will definitely be notable differences between each class' style. For example, Spellslinger healers are all about up-front and direct healing with direct line heals, and very few or no Heal over Time (HoT) abilities. Esper healers, on the other hand, will have lots of HoT abilities, large AoE heals, and several targeted abilities. Similarly, Warrior tanks in WildStar will be all about mitigating damage, whereas Stalker tanks will focus on avoidance. These distinctions will allow players to choose a style that is right for them, and gives each class something that they can excel at. Coupled with the build customization from Ability Trees and AMPs, it definitely sounds like WildStar will give players the breathing room to create their own character while preserving the distinction and uniqueness of each core class.
Though I had so many more questions to ask the developers, those guys are pretty busy with lives and families and whatever, so we were forced to wrap up before I could really drive the dagger home. Before we finished up, though, the devs dropped a few compelling hints at what is to come, saying that details about player transportation would be coming soon, and that we would be "pleasantly surprised", as well as hinting that the final two classes are "in the works", and that more information would be available in the coming weeks. WildStar's ability mechanics definitely break the mold of what players have grown to expect from MMO mechanics over the last several years, and mixed into the rest of the combat sandwich, things are really starting to look tasty. To take a look at the rest of the details, be sure to look back at our earlier coverage of Dev Speak videos on movement, aiming, crowd control, and paths. If you're looking to get caught up and familiar with WildStar, you should also check out the WarCry Guides to WildStar's history and races, and classes and paths.
To see the Dev Speak video for yourself, click play below!