WildStar Support

Time Zones, a primer

Hey everybody!

I'm putting this here to hopefully clear up some confusion around time zones. Carbine Studios is located on the West coast of the United States of America, and is therefore in the Pacific Standard Time zone. However, we are trying to display all of our announcements in UTC, to keep things consistent.

What this means for you

If the time displayed is not in your local time zone, you're going to need to do a little bit of math. Sorry about that. However, most of the time it's just adding or subtracting a couple of hours to the original number.

Here's the big list of time zones that a lot of our players fall into:

  • PST - Pacific Standard Time (UTC-8) - (UTC-7 in the Summer, because of Daylight Savings Time, when it becomes PDT)
  • MST - Mountain Standard Time (UTC-7) - (UTC-6 in the Summer, MDT)
  • CST - Central Standard Time (UTC-6) - (UTC-5 in the Summer, CDT)
  • EST - Eastern Standard Time (UTC-5) - (UTC-4 in the Summer, EDT)
  • GMT - Greenwich Mean Time (UTC) - (UTC+1 in the Summer, WEST)
  • CET - Central European Time (UTC+1) - (UTC+2 in the Summer, CEST / HAEC)
  • EET - Eastern European Time (UTC+2) - (UTC+3 in the Summer, EEST)

If your time zone isn't listed here, a quick internet search should give you the "Time Zone Offset" for your particular that time.

Quiz Time!

Well, more like time for a Practical. So you've got an announcement saying something is going to happen at 14:00 UTC, and you live in the EST, and it's the Winter, so you're at UTC-5. So you subtract 5 from 14, and get 9. So that event is going to be happening at 9 AM Eastern Standard Time.

Military Time, or why 24 is a weird number

Another thing to keep in mind is AM (before noon) versus PM. Ideally, all of our times will be listed in "military time", so there won't even be an AM or PM listed. If it's 02:00, that's 2 AM, because 2 PM would be 14:00. If that seems weird, it's because military time doesn't go back down to 1 after noon, they just keep adding until they get to 24, and then they re-set at Midnight.

In theory, this should make things easier to math, but just remember to keep counting properly if your addition goes above 24, or subtraction goes less than 0.

Another quiz!

So we have an event happening at 22:00 UTC (10 PM) on a Friday, and you live in the Australian Eastern Standard Time zone (UTC+10). The basic math gives you 32, but that's all wrong because there aren't 32 hours in a day. At this point you just subtract 24, and know that you're now counting onto the next day. So the final answer is 08:00 AEST (8 AM) on Saturday.

Subtracting below zero does the same thing in reverse. An event at 02:00 UTC (2 AM) on Friday would be happening at 18:00 (6PM) on Thursday if you're in Pacific Standard Time. Do you follow? Pacific Standard Time is UTC-8, so if we subtract 8 from 2, we get -6. We can't have negative hours, so we add 24, and get 18, but it's happening the day before, as far as you're concerned.

Who thought I would have to use math while playing video games?

I know, right? Well hopefully this article was useful to you. If not, there are a number of free online resources that will let you plug in a number and find out pretty quickly what it means in your local time, if you're not a fan of math.

Happy Hunting!

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