12 December 2017

WildStar - Grind for Violet Essences

After what happened yesterday and me requiring to write it down publicly, I can finally write about the violet essences in WildStar.

The Primal Matrix

Since WildStar implemented the primal matrix, you can go on a quest to farm essences, which you can spend on a skill tree called the primal matrix. This primal matrix consists of 16 hexagons that each contain 6 nodes, with pairs of 2 being colored differently (red, blue, green). These hexagons are connected by purple nodes. Depending on the color of the node you need to spend a different type of essence:
  • Red Node:     Crimson Essence
  • Blue Node:    Cobalt Essence
  • Green Node:  Viridian Essence
  • Purple Node: Violet Essence

How to Get Them?

Crimson, Cobalt and Viridian essences are given away by doing any endgame content.
Daily quests, dungeons, world bosses, expeditions, raids.
 There are even special bonuses that are limited by time and refresh each time they run out. These bonuses multiply the number of essences you get on an encounter. Like for example, there could be a 3x bonus on Skullcano or a 2x bonus on M-13 Outpost. One daily quest area always has a 10x bonus each day and a certain world boss has a 10x bonus each day too.

What About the Violet Essences?

The violet essences are time-gated. You get:
  • 100 for a normal random dungeon
  • 400 for a certain battleground
  • 500 for a world boss
  • 400 for a certain dungeon
  • 300 for a certain expedition
The time-gate is 4 days for each. However, they're a little off. Here's the base rotation starting from today (12th December 2017):

Day 12th 13th 14th 15th
Dungeon 0 0 400 0
World Boss 0 500 0 0
Expedition 0 0 0 300
Battleground 0 0 400 0
Normal Dungeon 100 100 100 100

and this repeats. So in total we get 100 + (500 + 100) + (400 + 400 + 100) + (300 + 100) = 2000 and on average that's 2000 / 4 = 500.

Drusera's Gift

Additionally, if you've missed any essences you apparently get a bonus percentage. The more essences you've missed the more bonus essences you get. This is called Drusera's Gift. However, it works on all essences except violets. So it's not helping us here.

Maintenance Essence Reset

The essence reset daily at 0:00 (UTC+0). Every Wednesday the WildStar servers are shut down for maintenance. When they are restarted and back online the essences reset, including the violet essences. The maintenance is usually around 4:00am (PST+0), 7:00am (EST+0) or 1:00pm (CET+0).

Wait? That means we can get more violet essences on Wednesdays? Well, if you're able to get them done between the usual reset and the maintenance that is.

However!

Not all violet essences reset. On the maintenance reset if the new bonus is the same as the old bonus it won't reset. So since normal queue doesn't rotate with maintenance it doesn't reset. Same with the others. If the same dungeon appears again you won't get any violets.

If the violets reset every now and then. How can we determine how many we get?

Stochastic.

So the violet essences reset if it's not the same after reset. So the chance of it not resetting is 1 out of all the possibles and the chance of it resetting is all the possibles minus 1 out of all the possibles, which means if we know how many there are we can determine this chance.

There are 3 battlegrounds
Walatiki Temple, Daggerstone Pass, Halls of the Bloodsworn: Reloaded

We have 7 prime dungeons
Ultimate Protogames, Coldblood Citadel, Sanctuary of the Swordmaiden, Skullcano, Stormtalon's Lair, Ruins of Kel Voreth, Protogames Academy

Got 8 expeditions:
Evil from the Ether, Outpost-M13, Infestation, Deep Space Exploration, Rage Logic, Gauntlet, Space Madness, Fragment Zero

And I've counted 12 world bosses:
Metal Maw, Dreamspore, King Honeygrave, Zoetic, Kraggar, Grendelus, King Plush, Metal Maw Prime, Mechathorn, Scorchwing, Gargantua, Tower-Engineer Renkahul

So the chances that we get additionally violets are:
  • 2/3 for the 400 from battlegrounds, that's 2/3 * 400 = ~266.67 on average
  • 6/7 for the 400 from dungeons, being 6/7 * 400 = ~342.86 on average
  • 7/8 for the 300 from expeditions, resulting in 7/8 * 300 = 262.5 on average
  • 11/12 for the 500 from world bosses, averaging at 11/12 * 500 = ~458.33

The New Rotation

Our new rotation is now 32 days long. Way too long to post as a table. So screenshot it is:


Alright. Let's sum total. That's 19338.09524. Over 32 days on average that's 19338.09524 / 32 = ~604.32 per day.

Maintenance adds 4 * 1334.52381 = ~5338.1 essences. So without maintenance we have (19338.1 - 5338.1) / 32 = 437.5 per day.

Signature Status

Of course, everyone needs money. That's why WildStar offers people a subscription that rewards people. The subscription can be bought with in-game gold as well as real money. It's your choice what to go with if you want this subscription called signature. Anyways the signature status rewards bonus essences. With signature, you get a 50% bonus on your essences. So you get 150% essences.

So without the maintenance reset we get 100 * 1.5 + (500 + 100) * 1.5 + (400 + 400 + 100) * 1.5 + (300 + 100) * 1.5 = 3000 and on average that's 3000 / 4 = 750.

The total essences of the rotation, on the other hand, look like this now:


Alright. Again summing up the total which is ~29007.14. Dividing ~29007.14 through the 32 days to get our average of ~906.47 essences.

Maintenance adds 4 * 2001.785714 = ~8007.14 essences here. So without maintenance we have (29007.14 - 8007.14) / 32 = 656.25 per day.

At Long Last: How Long?

So to finally determine how long it takes. Let's finish up with how many purples we need.

There are 12 nodes on the outside and each of these cost 10000 violet essences. The inner circle is connected to the outer by 3 nodes each, 3 times. So 9 nodes with a cost of 7500 each. The middle is connected by 3 more purple nodes with a cost of 5000 each. So calculating it all we get:

12 * 10000 + 9 * 7500 + 3 * 5000 = 202500

And to finish it off:

Without prior maintenance reset: 202500 / 437.5 = ~462.86
No prior to maintenance but signature: 202500 / 656.25 = ~308.57
Using maintenance without signature: 202500 / 604.32 = ~335.09 
Using maintenance with signature: 202500 / 906.47 = ~223.39

To finish it up. It takes 463 days to get all violet essences for the primal matrix if you're not using the essences before maintenance and 309 days if you have signature instead.

If you use the maintenance without signature active it takes 336 days and with signature 224 days.

On the right, you can see an older graph created with matplotlib and Python that compares signature with no signature but still using maintenance showing the amount you get per day and average. It uses 11 world bosses so the values are a bit lower.

Conclusion

So if we compare this with the grind of the Guild Wars 2 fractals this one doesn't take as long. However compared to the Guild Wars 2 grind the violet limit your ability to run high prime content, which means most people won't take you with them. This is really disappointing. I mean if there's the system of Drusera's gift where you get a bonus for essences you've missed. Wouldn't it make sense to affect violet essences too?

Well anyways. Huge post. I couldn't find a way to split it so here you go.
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I'm a junior game developer and software developer and I created this blog to share my ideas, thoughts and whatever I'm working on or doing.