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Thread: Star Wars The Old Republic MMO
Tuesday, 17th January, 2012, 12:50 PM #21
Defender (Lvl 8)
And yes, you do a lot of hoofing around just for hoofing-around's sake.
Having said all that, I'm going to check out Kingdoms of Amalur next month, which has an MMO-style design.
Last edited by Felon; Tuesday, 17th January, 2012 at 01:34 PM.
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Tuesday, 17th January, 2012, 01:09 PM #22
Guide (Lvl 11)
Have played quite a bit before and after christmas, and have reached level 46 with my Jedi Sage (Seer) so far (not quite as crazy as some other folks who had a level 50 after a week or so ).
Great game and quite a lot of fun! MMOs work a little different than solo RPGs, and it really is a lot more fun when you have a group of friends to play with (or other nice folks you found in the game), but this has a lot of the good stuff from the solo games, too. A nice blend between the two. A bit too much WoW-like, but I guess it is necessary to "play it safe" when you make such a huge investment (developing a game like this costs a lot of money, something like 60-100 million were spent during the development, and it continues to cost a lot for maintenance and continued development (a game like this is never "finished", it will evolve quickly, and must do so, to keep the crowd happy )).
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Monday, 13th February, 2012, 08:43 PM #23
Spellbinder (Lvl 16)
I have a level 29 Sith Juggernaut, a level 39 Jedi Guardian (both tanks) and a smattering of other classes either on their home world or the second world of their faction's storyline. My wife and I play together, playing a tank and healer combo, one world at a time, and then flipping to the other faction.
The Old Republic is probably the first MMORPG to emphasize the "RPG" at the expense of the "MMO." Which is to say, if you loved Dragon Age or Mass Effect or KOTOR, you'll love this game, at least the first time through on a faction. (I'm not sure how many times I can play through Coruscant, for instance, no matter how much I want to see all four Republic class stories.)
But as an MMO? Well, there are problems, chief amongst them is that there hasn't been an MMORPG to date with such a striking difference between the leveling experience and the endgame. In EverQuest, City of Heroes, Dark Age of Camelot, World of Warcraft -- indeed, most MMOs -- the leveling experience and endgame have a lot in common.
In WoW, the most popular MMO, you level up with a variety of quests, run through dungeons, engage in PvP and do tradeskills. Starting at level 60 -- long before the current level cap -- you can participate in raids, which are groups between twice through eight times the size of a regular five-man dungeon group, to take on extra-tough challenges. But for many players, they continue playing at level 85 much as they did at level 20 or 70 or whatever. They log on, they do a quest or three, they fight the enemy in PvP, they do some tradeskills, they log off.
SWTOR, though, is dominated by the class storyline, with "group quests" available to pad things out. And these ... stop. If you're not already playing SWTOR, that may not sound like a big deal, but it really is. I've got a lot of friends who are hardcore, even fanatical MMO players (I'm actually in two separate guilds on the Republic and Empire sides, letting me see even more of the responses of MMO vets), and they're bailing out, because not only is there little content once the class story line ends, the prospect of rerolling and doing Coruscant or Tattooine a third or fourth or fifth time (and bear in mind that most worlds are used by both factions) sent them screaming for the door.
I think this problem will eventually be fixed, but it remains to be seen if it'll be in a free patch, DLC (I would buy new companions for $5 in a heartbeat) or an expansion, and how many of each it'll take.
The game is fantastic the first time through on each faction. I can't wait for my Sith thug to become first a Sith Lord and then a Darth -- the Sith sometimes border on unintentional Dr. Evil parody, but they're a lot of fun, despite that. And while my Jedi Guardian doesn't have nearly the same amount of personality -- if you want your Jedi to be a good guy, about the only dimension he can have is whether or not to make out with his padawan -- the story is incredibly epic.
My prediction is that this will be the #2 MMO for a very long time, but that it'll never really challenge WoW which, even in its current moribund state, still has 10 times (!) the subscribers.
Bioware makes great RPGs, but their MMO design shows a lot of laziness:
* Under the hood, SWTOR is almost exactly WotLK-era WoW, down to using almost all of the same hotkeys and not using many of the improvements Blizzard made in the next expansion or has announced for their new one coming this summer. (I never knew how glad I was to not have to buy incremental upgrades to abilities any more until SWTOR forced me to do it again.)
* The interface is atrocious. (The auction house is borderline unusable, for instance, with some portions of the interface not working, seemingly at random.)
* Sometimes you can see another character's story cut scenes, sometimes you can't, even when there's no logical reason to lock them out. And attempting to travel around the galaxy on a friend's ship (which the devs explicitly say is possible) boots your character out, leaving you in the starport.
* The camera leaps around during responses in quest dialogues, with sometimes half a dozen jump cuts in 60 seconds (and not intentionally -- sometimes the camera is just moving up or down slightly), showing that no one on the team either took the feedback during the beta seriously or that they're massively backlogged catching up even now.
* And customer service? I've had a ticket open and unanswered since the first week of the game. (And the ticket is uneditable, despite the interface claiming it's possible to go in and tweak existing tickets.)
My wife played through Dragon Age: Origins eight times and the Mass Effect games more times than that, and even she's already leery about playing through SWTOR eight times to see all eight story lines. I know I'd happily pay $20 for a world pack to give alternatives to the non-exclusive worlds, just so that I won't find myself running around the same places again and again. (I understand why it's designed this way, and would happily subsidize an art team building new assets for alternatives.)
My expectation is that we'll get at least one character per faction to the cap and deactivate until the first expansion or until there's a new chapter available (at least) for each class.
The game offers a great, authentic, fun experience, especially for Star Wars fans (SWTOR made me realize how this really isn't my favorite sci-fi franchise, but I don't think we'll ever see a Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy MMO), but the team needs to improve the MMO part of the experience to make it match up to the amazing quality of the RPG portion of the game.
Tuesday, 14th February, 2012, 01:05 AM #24
Defender (Lvl 8)
It's fun - if you liked KOTOR you will probably enjoy SWTOR - but the MMO part of the game is clearly an afterthought. What gets me every time is that you can't /friend someone unless they are online. I'm playing with gaming buddies that are scattered around the country, and I can't add them to my characters' friend lists unless they're already online! It's ridiculous.
The interface makes it as hard as possible to locate or communicate with people as it can without being completely non-functional.
It's a fun single-player experience if you don't mind the MMO grind of killing lots of faceless mobs over and over (alternatively, you can take a stealth class and skip some of them). But the social aspects are poorly designed or implemented.
Tuesday, 14th February, 2012, 08:36 PM #25
Cutpurse (Lvl 5)
My friend likes it lot. I don't. I find it boring. Maybe because I don't like Star Wars so much, original movies yes, but that's is it. So I think you have to like star wars games from same company this game has many similar stuff.
Missing looking for group tool, you have to use chat to find groups. That's really bad. I mean most of content draws single player games liking types. And waiting for hours and triying to find some random group to do operations with you just don't do if you are working, or different working times than your friends.
Character story continues after lv 50, I've heard so you have quests to do.
Space combat missions are kinda fun but lacking. Since you can't actually direct ship it flies like some wow bomb mission. No control over ship movement just shooting and using shields etc. Half-way done, if you ask me. Option to self control would have been nice, always auto-pilot is kinda meh. Especially since it flyes worse than you would. Autopilot would be nice choice but not only option.
And since game is basicly single content and you are focusing in story (supposingly you find it thrilling) and then operation comes up and you want to do it, and right out of story feel to wait and write and check chat like in oldie days of wow. Really immersion breaking.
I think it would have made better single content game or series. MMO properties are really old-fashioned and kinda take off edge from story related stuff.
Also, combat system is bit boring, especially with some characters and storylines can be really easy and then surprise boss comes and kills you 5 times. Well since your gear wasn't max of your level and you wasn't expecting it/didn't intrupt every "casting bar".
Some things in game also cost way too much game-credits. You end up grinding them. Probably with those daily flight missions.
It's MMO content style is not very beginning friendly. For MMO veterans end game is lacking content.
Maybe they fix those things, but I think it's bit too little too late. Star Wars fans keep playing. I think it is somewhat succesful game. Whatever it will last is another thing.
Roleplaying sense light side answers tend to be goody-goodies and dark sides eeeeevil.
Naturally sith:s and jedis suffer most of those conversation options.
And for gear-reasons you have to go as much light or dark as you can.
I've heard troopers and boynty hunters are better in story sense.
No doubt class abilities will go through numerous changes to balance them. Which go on forever if I am using other MMO:s as example.
For some reason, most people I have talked to find grindy missions more boring than wow. I think it relates how game combines so much talky npcs and grindy missions. Excess happens easily especially if you don't have that much time for daily gaming.
I would probably play it while, if it was something else than star wars (or star trek for the matter). If you like KOTOR and star wars books/comics you like it, at least for a while. Still it's bit too grindy for single player, bit too lacking well implimented MMO social tools. It's also rather complex. And walking/elevators take too much time.
I base this on stories heard from friends seriously playing the game and some times spent trying on their accout (while they were trying to get me into it as well).
Wednesday, 15th February, 2012, 12:15 AM #26
Gallant (Lvl 3)
Wednesday, 15th February, 2012, 04:27 AM #27
Spellbinder (Lvl 16)
Wednesday, 15th February, 2012, 06:54 PM #28
Lama (Lvl 13)
Try the Imperial Agent storyline, Whizbang. I played it as pure Light Side for the greater good of the Empire, and I thought it was really good.