Escapist Podcast: 008: Star Wars: The Old Republic & SCOTUS

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rsvp42:
Well, nice job editorializing the game's features with your own opinions. You're also fabricating information for the sake of defaming aspects of the game ("renting" a character? two races? One armor progression? Where is your information coming from?)

Nothing I've said is fabricated.

By "renting" a character, I'm referring to the idea that you're not really creating your own. You'll get whatever voice they paid for, and you'll choose from their limited selection of classes, you'll either be a human or the particular alien race assigned to that class, and you'll follow the "armor progression" they've outlined in numerous videos for each class.

For instance, if you want to be a smuggler, you can be a human or a Twi'lek. If you were hoping to be a Zabrak smuggler, too bad. Sure, they have Zabraks in the game. Sure, there's nothing in the lore about how Twi'leks make the best smugglers or how Zabraks can't do it. But since we're fully voice-acted and there's a rigid "epic storyline," you can choose human or Twi'lek.

Anyhow, my problem is what you call "world building." The players aren't "building the world" anymore. They're not even really inhabiting it. Once you log out, you cease to exist (with the possible exception of auctions you may have posted). You can no longer make the fat, ugly, old Rodian smuggler of your dreams--you have to settle for one of the pre-fabricated characters specifically designed to fit in this world.

Story is important, in many games. Mass Effect is a good example. But also notice that in Mass Effect, you are playing an existing character. Sure, you introduce some very minor variation to him/her, but it's not your character. And it can't really be, because there's already an existing story you have to fit into. And that's fine for a single-player game without a subscription fee.

The Old Republic isn't positioning itself to be offering much more than the KOTOR games, yet it's poised to charge far, far more. For the over-abundance of "iconic" crap, which shrinks the galaxy by having everything look the same (despite it being thousands of years before the movies), I blame LucasArts. But for the single-player aspects that govern and highly restrict this, rendering it far from an MMO? I have to blame BioWare.

When it comes to sex and how it's perceived in different cultures, in addition to what kind of sex and sexuality kids can be subjected to, there's also the matter of what is considered sexual. For example, in US if there's nudity, it is considered sexual. Compared to some other places where there can be non-sexual nudity.
Or countries where a woman showing more than her eyes is porn.

Personally, when I was growing up, my mom let me read whatever I got my hands on, and I went through our bookshelf with a lot of classics, and many classics have their share of sex and violence.
(Sinuhe the Egyptian was my favourite book when I was 8, and that has sex war and depressing stuff such as losing all of your ideals and seeing good intentions turn to shit. Also human-sacrifice and slavery)

When it came to games and movies, she didn't like games like Doom, but she didn't think it was bad for me. She was, and still is concerned on how much I play, though, and would regulate how much time I could spend inside with the computer or tv.

And I figure that if I ever have kids of my own, I do that. Except when they are very young, like under 6, but when they start to look for that kind of stuff themselves, unless it's disturbing or something they don't fully understand(like why something is racist or morally wrong), in which case I would talk to them about why the behaviour depicted there isn't okay.

Dastardly:

- Iconic roles for players to fill. (Read: a laughably limited class system.)
- Companions that enrich and personalize your experience. (Read: every smuggler gets a wookiee.)
- Exciting space combat. (Read: if you're really into rail-flyers like Starfox.
- Your own ship! (Read: which will be the same as everyone else in your class. Because.)
- Epic storyline! (Read: featuring a pre-made and pre-voiced character you rent from us, limited to one of two races, and one voice. Oh, and you "progress" through armor of our choosing.)

This is so false it's laughable. The class system is a soft trinity including eight uniquely styled advanced classes per faction. The each character gets five unique companions based on their original base class selection. Also each class has four to five races that can be applied to it. Each class has it's own unique voice actor based on gender. Armor progression will allow people to wear several different sets. If I remember correctly their are supposed to be fifty unique models per advanced class. That is a pretty big leap considering how most games reskin the same gear over and over again across every expansion.

Admittedly the space combat is a mini-game. Honestly I couldn't care less combat involving a z-axis is a niche market and if I wanted it I would play a flight sim or EVE. Yes it is a theme park game, and there is a reason why WoW is so successful, it's because it's a theme park game that took the best of another game(EQ) and then plastered their own iconic lore all over it. Sound familiar?

Most people don't want a huge change that is why whenever a new game comes out you see people flock to it and then leave. Hell the most recent successful MMO that didn't have to switch to a F2P model recently was Rift which was basically just a "WoW-clone" itself. I'm tired of all these MMOHipsters calling for innovation and/or a return to sandbox gaming. There are already sandbox games out there, they will never be as successful as a theme park game though.

Also in regards to the F2P model I wouldn't really consider it as successful as other games. Content updates tend to be lacking, and it just results in the end game being almost 100% PvP or leveling alts. At least with TOR you will have a Bioware story to go along with your leveling.

That said in regards to TOR being a success or a flop I would say it's fifty/fifty. WoW is bleeding subscribers and most of those people want a new game that isn't a twitch masher(GW2) or FPS based(Titan TERA).

If Americans are hyper-violent sexual prudes and Europeans are oversexualized pussies then Australians are sexually prudish pussies.

Or Catholic.

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