Thursday, December 22, 2011

Star Wars The Old Republic: My Life is Over

I won't neglect my children or anything, but Star Wars: The Old Republic is going to take up a lot of my free time.  As a friend of mine described it, "it's twice as awesome as World of Warcraft was at its height."  I'm inclined to agree.

I played WoW for a little bit, and although it was fun to play with friends, it wasn't fun playing alone.  With The Old Republic, there's a robust single-player aspect to it which I like.  What makes that so rewarding is the fact that the game actually focuses on story-telling, and letting your character actively take part in what's going on.

Dialogue helps to achieve that.  Bioware seemlessly integrated its conversation system--made popular by titles such as Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, Mass Effect, and Dragon Age--into a multiplayer experience.  Your friends can actually take part in dialogue with the quest givers, and together you can decide the outcome of a quest.  This actually makes the multiplayer aspect of the game more fulfilling than WoW, because instead of just completing the same quests along side your friends, you actually complete the quest together.  Amazing.

Customization is also a major component that sets SW:TOR apart from WoW.  Until recently, everyone in WoW looked the same, because everyone had to get to the same tier of endgame gear.  Not the case in The Old Republic.  The endgame gear is completely modified, and there are many gear pieces up to that point that are modified.  Basically, you can extract the modifications from the endgame gear, and put those mods into the gear piece you like.  It will cause the piece to upgrade in its level, and it becomes as strong as the original piece.

So basically, if you come across a piece of armor that you think looks cool, you can essentially use it for the entire game.  It allows for a much more diverse range of choices in terms of your character's aesthetic, which is something that I think is absolutely essential to achieve in a game that is focused on the Star Wars universe.

Questing doesn't seem like such a horrifying grind.  Flashpoints (instances) are fast paced and fun, and PvP is a blast.  The replay value of TOR is ridiculous.  There are 8 different classes in the game, and each one of them has their very own unique storyline.  For MMO veterans, leveling 8 toons might sound like a horrifying grind, but it's not that bad.  You could very feasably level up through PvP and only complete your class quests and the flashpoints. 

Star Wars: The Old Republic is what an MMO should be.  It's all about making your character a unique player in a genre that tries to streamline people, and it's all about telling a story that is worthy of being counted in the annals of the Star Wars universe.

Hats off to Bioware and what will likely be a massive success fitting of such a massive project.

3 comments:

Jersey McJones said...

What's the prices? I'm looking for a good new MMO.

JMJ

Jack Camwell said...

$60.00 for the game, which includes first 30 days free. $15 a month for the subscription.

If you decide to play, my friends and I are on the Anchorhead server =)

Anonymous said...

Jackie,

I highly doubt it is better than early 2005 World of Warcraft. The original game as you know was built by Pardo, Kaplan, and Chilton and it was the purest form of their vision before the corporate suits at Vivendi turned it into a profit at all costs.

Remember my words here... you think the game is wonderful now and I truly wish for you to enjoy it while you can. A year from now when the world is scheduled to end (lol), the game will be distorted, twisted and will eventually turn into something corrupt... just look at who is footing the bill for this venture. Electronic Atrocities is a company that is NOT to be trusted. They will ruin it before your eyes. You were warned.