Star Wars: The Old Republic Review

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Starke:

This was a deal breaker for me. The thing is, and this really is an issue, as far as I can tell, TOR doesn't encourage group play at all. It's a bunch of people out there all playing their own solo game, and that would be fine if this wasn't asking for a subscription fee on top of that. This does effectively mask a couple issues, but, I really don't think it will help the survival of the game in the long run.

Now I know you haven't played enough to know anything about this game. TOR, more so than any other MMO I've played before, encourages lots of group play. Not just through the inclusion of heroics and flashpoints, but in the regular questing as well. You level much faster and much easier in a group than you do solo.

Games like wow only have multiplayer content at the endgame, and that's the only time they encourage it. Try to level with someone else in TOR, I give you 10 minutes before you tear your eyes out in frustration. This is because none of the quests from 1-85 is designed to have more than one person do them. Doing a drop item quest can sometimes take up to 5 times longer to complete with a friend in wow, because of the awful nature of the RNG, while in TOR quest items drop in equal numbers for everyone in the party.

Yeah you can't access the same story areas if your the same class, but the game encourages players to group up with different classes. That's why 2 classes each share a starter planet. Want to roll a Jedi with a friend? Go consular and he can go Knight. Want to be Sith? Roll an Inquisitor and have your buddy roll a warrior. The classes really play well together and each bring something unique to the table. In an age where all of WoW's classes are being homogized it's refreshing to have your class feel unique, and different.

Starke:
Something I've noticed, but haven't gone back and confirmed. TOR has been getting really solid reviews from sites that don't usually do MMOs. But websites that are primarily MMO driven have been trashing it... Now, that could be warped perception on my part.

You're not imagining it, I've noticed exactly the same thing. It was kind of inevitable that Escapists would like SWTOR - this site doesn't really do MMOs, so present them with an MMO that plays like a single player game, and from Bioware at that, and it's going to get a good response.

On the other hand, the readership over at Massively, a site that focuses entirely on MMOs, are much more critical.

But then SWTOR feels like an MMO made by people who don't like MMOs for people who don't like MMOs.

Ted Christensen:
snip

So you made an account on this board specifically to complain about SWTOR, with a post that most will TL;DR over points that amount to pure opinion.

Ted Christensen:
Fifth - Time-freeze. This is more of a niggling thing - but still bothers me. TOR is 4000 years before ANH - and yet, they have guys in clone-trooper armor, blasters, lightsabres, etc. etc. 4000 years in a galaxy of billions upon billions of people, and hundreds of different societies - and yet everything is the same. Does time not move... oh, wait, dammit....

...sorry, back, the alarm bells were jingling on my chariot out in the pyramid's parking log, I thought the Persians were lurking around again and I'd have to run some through with my bronze knife...

They might as well have just set it in the time period of the prequels. If they had unreliable jump drives, a complete lack of blasters, swords instead of f'ing lightsabres - something, anything to show that it is truly 4,000 years in the past... yes... FOUR THOUSAND years... when we thought the sun was pulled across the sky in a chariot, the alphabet is getting its beginnings, I am not even sure the concept of zero existed, and nothing changes? Hell, EQ1 and EQ2 are about only 500 years apart, and the damn moon crashed into the planet! The entire world is split apart. But instead TOR just looked like a carbon copy of the new movies - and that is just seems lazy. And I just can't give lazy companies my money.

What's funny is that while the comics that KOTOR and the others were based off of does this, they also don't. That is to say, while there are blasters and lightsabers, the entire aesthetic is different, more ragged. Lightsabers don't project a clean focused beam, they project a slightly distorted flaming blade. Their hilts look more like sword grips and less like flashlights. The Jedi wear robes that look like they belong in a post apocalyptic production of Laurence of Arabia. The bionics and droids look downright steampunk. So while the actual technology doesn't seem to have changed that much, the efficiency and aesthetics of it are massively different. That said, even the first KOTOR immediately stripped all of that out and went with a "we can be The Phantom Menace too" aesthetic from the word "go."

Starke:

rsvp42:
You didn't really read my first post.

I did, otherwise it would have been impossible to do a blow by blow breakdown of everything wrong with it.

Please direct me to that "blow by blow." The first response I got from you was this one where you responded to one of my points before addressing someone else.

Starke:
And you've obviously never played the game. You can jump through the dialog, space bar or escape, I forget which, but you cannot skip the missions. You can't. I'm not saying that you can't ignore the dialog, it's got to be less painfully stupid if you do, but what you can't do is skip ahead. Again, you talk about the game encouraging you to roleplay, but it's not. It takes away any freedom to actually roleplay in order to force feed you through a single linear path.

Perhaps you need to explain; how do roleplayers interact with an MMO's story while they're playing? Do they follow every event to the letter and just pepper it with whatever personality they invented? Do they even care what the quests say and just make up their own context? This is what we haven't established yet in this conversation. Most of the RP I've seen has been independent of the story, which is where my opinion is coming from. If your opinion is coming from some different understanding of how RP is handled in game, I'd like to hear it.

Starke:
Again, this is "encouragement" at gunpoint. You can choose to skip the dialog, but you can't skip the story. You understand the distinction?

And again, I need to know what assumptions you're making before I can can continue.

Starke:
Honestly, as evidence goes, that doesn't work that well, unless you're suggesting I go back and look at it again when it goes free to play.

Again, if you had read my original post (I'm not Grey Day for Elcia) you'd have read my example of how it can facilitate an RP mindset. That's the anecdotal stuff I'm talking about and I'm not the only one.

Starke:
Oddly I'm fine with people liking it. I'm not fine with people saying it's well written, or saying that it's revolutionary to the MMO genre. And if you're wondering why, that's because it's flat out not true.

Yeah but compared to the storytelling for other MMO's it's pretty good. At the very least, the presentation sells it much better. Obviously not for you, but hey, can't win 'em all.

Starke:
This was a deal breaker for me. The thing is, and this really is an issue, as far as I can tell, TOR doesn't encourage group play at all. It's a bunch of people out there all playing their own solo game, and that would be fine if this wasn't asking for a subscription fee on top of that. This does effectively mask a couple issues, but, I really don't think it will help the survival of the game in the long run.

It does encourage group play. The heroic quests and regular Flashpoints give plenty of incentive to group and I have done so more heavily than in any MMO aside from perhaps earlier WoW (later WoW was painfully solo-focused in the leveling game). I hesitate to say that for certain though, since that was quite a while ago. For all I know, I'm actually grouping more in TOR than in Vanilla.

*edit: oh yeah, what he said ^

animehermit:
Now I know you haven't played enough to know anything about this game. TOR, more so than any other MMO I've played before, encourages lots of group play. Not just through the inclusion of heroics and flashpoints, but in the regular questing as well. You level much faster and much easier in a group than you do solo.

Games like wow only have multiplayer content at the endgame, and that's the only time they encourage it. Try to level with someone else in TOR, I give you 10 minutes before you tear your eyes out in frustration. This is because none of the quests from 1-85 is designed to have more than one person do them. Doing a drop item quest can sometimes take up to 5 times longer to complete with a friend in wow, because of the awful nature of the RNG, while in TOR quest items drop in equal numbers for everyone in the party.

Yeah you can't access the same story areas if your the same class, but the game encourages players to group up with different classes. That's why 2 classes each share a starter planet. Want to roll a Jedi with a friend? Go consular and he can go Knight. Want to be Sith? Roll an Inquisitor and have your buddy roll a warrior. The classes really play well together and each bring something unique to the table. In an age where all of WoW's classes are being homogized it's refreshing to have your class feel unique, and different.

All this said, I'm not going to tell you that TOR is some kind of grand revolution. It's not. It's probably the best themepark MMO I've yet played, but it's not shaking up any fundamental ideas of what it means to be an MMO. I think the hype over innovation can get a little overbearing. It's a shame because it's a good game, fun, but if you're trying to judge it based on how much it innovates, it would seem to fall short. I can't convince you to like it, I just figured I could help give you a peek into the mindset of the other side.

animehermit:

Starke:

This was a deal breaker for me. The thing is, and this really is an issue, as far as I can tell, TOR doesn't encourage group play at all. It's a bunch of people out there all playing their own solo game, and that would be fine if this wasn't asking for a subscription fee on top of that. This does effectively mask a couple issues, but, I really don't think it will help the survival of the game in the long run.

Now I know you haven't played enough to know anything about this game. TOR, more so than any other MMO I've played before, encourages lots of group play. Not just through the inclusion of heroics and flashpoints, but in the regular questing as well. You level much faster and much easier in a group than you do solo.

God, I'd forgotten about the heroics. If you're going to try to sell that game to someone, never mention those fucking things again. "Yes, lets' randomly give the mobs you've been fighting for the past hour and a half three times their normal hit points, and ramp up their damage so that they can focus fire and drop individual players faster than a team of the recommended size can drop one. That'll be wonderful."

As to flashpoints, there's what? Six in the game per class? They're a neat idea, but my experience was people pugged them and scattered afterwards.

animehermit:
Games like wow only have multiplayer content at the endgame, and that's the only time they encourage it. Try to level with someone else in TOR, I give you 10 minutes before you tear your eyes out in frustration. This is because none of the quests from 1-85 is designed to have more than one person do them. Doing a drop item quest can sometimes take up to 5 times longer to complete with a friend in wow, because of the awful nature of the RNG, while in TOR quest items drop in equal numbers for everyone in the party.

Which is, of course WoW, not TOR. Most MMOs, drop quest items for everyone in the party. Why WoW is still clinging to separate collection quests is anyone's guess. It certainly doesn't make TOR look any better for working on one of the glaring problems with WoW and then solving it in the least efficient means possible. You know how STO handles quest items? There are none. None, ever. If you're carrying around some doodad that's supposed to be part of a quest line it's not in your inventory. If there's ever a mission objective to destroy X ships, it's not hidden under, collect X macguffins, you're told what you'll actually need to do. Unlike, you know, TOR, which has the same, kill X Ys and take their Zs, where 1 in 3 actually has a Z, even though it's their goddamn spleen.

animehermit:
Yeah you can't access the same story areas if your the same class, but the game encourages players to group up with different classes. That's why 2 classes each share a starter planet. Want to roll a Jedi with a friend? Go consular and he can go Knight. Want to be Sith? Roll an Inquisitor and have your buddy roll a warrior. The classes really play well together and each bring something unique to the table. In an age where all of WoW's classes are being homogized it's refreshing to have your class feel unique, and different.

Which tells me one thing and makes me suspect another, first you don't play many MMOs, and I'm seriously starting to doubt you ever played WoW, or if you did you never figured out how to actually play the game.

As to the class quests? If the point is to generate diversity in your party, it fails pretty egregiously. What it does is actively discourage forming large persistent parties. It effectively caps the party size at 2 for the two starting planets, if you have three friends and you're going through one of the opening planets, someone's shit out of luck. If you're on a later planet and you have only one player who actually has a jedi at level, you're shit out of luck. If you do go with your buddy, you're subjected to a passive cutscene where you can't do anything and the best you can do is go to the kitchen to make a sandwich, and hope your buddy isn't doing the exact same thing.

TOR takes everything we've learned from the last decade of MMOs, and chucks all of it in favor of being another single player RPG from Bioware that you have to pay rent on.

rsvp42:

Starke:

rsvp42:
You didn't really read my first post.

I did, otherwise it would have been impossible to do a blow by blow breakdown of everything wrong with it.

Please direct me to that "blow by blow." The first response I got from you was this one where you responded to one of my points before addressing someone else.

When you clipped the entire response, as opposed to the irrelevant parts, I mixed you over with Animehermit, or Great Day Somethingerother.

Opinions and all that, but I am so disappointed by this review. What they said is so far out of whack with the real game that I feel like they barely touched the game, which is sad given the lateness of this review relative to release. I am not going to fault someone for liking the game, especially if they haven't played very far, but some of the things this review claims border on being outright objectively false.

Combat: Go look at the SWTOR boards. One of the biggest complaints and longest running threads about the game is that its animations take precedence over activation time. That means that several abilities won't fire immediately and ability chaining is a clunky mess. It also has a broader impact on your progression in the game as stats like alacrity (haste) are all but useless with how its implemented. Lightsabers that make contact every now and again are all well and good for visual snazz, but not when it comes at the cost of actual input responsiveness.

Story decisions matter: Sorry but no. After the starter world your class story makes up 10-15%, at best, of the overall content and that is the only story element that will follow a continuing narrative thread. And even then, maybe one decision you make every couple of planets is ever referenced after that story segment ends. The story itself builds upon itself, but very few of the decisions you make actually alter that in any noticeable way.

Changing roles on the fly: Not unless you are buying credits from farmers. Each time you switch your spec, the cost increases significantly to the point of being debilitating. For someone who likes to pvp and pve with a different spec, for example, you will hit a point where you simply cannot afford to respec again. There are no dual specs, and you must return to the capital planet every time you want to respec as well. And while most classes have "stances" for different duties, but like most MMOs, without the proper spec, switching that stance is not enough to perform viably, especially in group content.

Tumedus:
Changing roles on the fly: Not unless you are buying credits from farmers. Each time you switch your spec, the cost increases significantly to the point of being debilitating. For someone who likes to pvp and pve with a different spec, for example, you will hit a point where you simply cannot afford to respec again. There are no dual specs, and you must return to the capital planet every time you want to respec as well.

I'll call shenanigans on this one. My level 50 Sorcerer is very successful, dual-spec Lightning/Madness, and operates wonderfully as a healer in a pinch despite no talent points spent there. While far more effective doing damage, there's nothing stopping me from healing when needs be, and I have run main healer on several Flashpoints despite this.

You don't need to respend talent points to do multiple things.

krellen:

Tumedus:
Changing roles on the fly: Not unless you are buying credits from farmers. Each time you switch your spec, the cost increases significantly to the point of being debilitating. For someone who likes to pvp and pve with a different spec, for example, you will hit a point where you simply cannot afford to respec again. There are no dual specs, and you must return to the capital planet every time you want to respec as well.

I'll call shenanigans on this one. My level 50 Sorcerer is very successful, dual-spec Lightning/Madness, and operates wonderfully as a healer in a pinch despite no talent points spent there. While far more effective doing damage, there's nothing stopping me from healing when needs be, and I have run main healer on several Flashpoints despite this.

You don't need to respend talent points to do multiple things.

Sounds like you are talking hybrid spec. Dual spec, as I used it, refers to a system where the game stores multiple specs for you that you can switch on the fly and at no or a one time cost.

With that said, having a hybrid caster with the ability to throw out heals is all fine and dandy. It makes for a nice pvp spec, but isn't a very good pve spec. If you are doing harder group content, ops and hard difficulty dungeons, your healing throughput and longevity just isn't there. And if you aren't specced for it but are taking up a dps a spot you are going to have trouble hitting some of those timers. Most of the normal flashpoints can be 2 manned with a competent pair of players, saying you can manage with a suboptimal spec in that kind of content doesn't mean a whole lot.

It's also worth pointing out that the particular spec you are using (and the sage variant) is probably the most able hybrid variant in the game based on how many natural tools the sorc/sage get baseline. The rest of the classes lack the utility that the sorc/sage possess.

Sixcess:

Starke:
Something I've noticed, but haven't gone back and confirmed. TOR has been getting really solid reviews from sites that don't usually do MMOs. But websites that are primarily MMO driven have been trashing it... Now, that could be warped perception on my part.

You're not imagining it, I've noticed exactly the same thing. It was kind of inevitable that Escapists would like SWTOR - this site doesn't really do MMOs, so present them with an MMO that plays like a single player game, and from Bioware at that, and it's going to get a good response.

On the other hand, the readership over at Massively, a site that focuses entirely on MMOs, are much more critical.

But then SWTOR feels like an MMO made by people who don't like MMOs for people who don't like MMOs.

Actually Sixcess, that's how I felt when I played it.

In the beta, my buddy and I would play through the opening planets on two different classes (Jedi Knight/Consular, Sith Warrior/Inquisitor, we tried Bounty Hunter/Imperial Agent but I didn't like the cover mechanics) to experience the two different stories without having to play the opposing class ourselves. It got really irritating after a while. (Especially when we tried to play together on the same class.) Progress went okay but the overabundence of kill X for Y to get Z missions made longer with voiced dialogue in an attempt to make the player care about killing X for Y. This was nice but at the end of the day it was still a kill X for Y mission. The reasoning behind it didn't matter and I could be having more fun doing it somewhere else.

And let's not forget the opening planet starts with the Jedi murdering a sentient species for shinies. Way to go team.

Starke:

God, I'd forgotten about the heroics. If you're going to try to sell that game to someone, never mention those fucking things again. "Yes, lets' randomly give the mobs you've been fighting for the past hour and a half three times their normal hit points, and ramp up their damage so that they can focus fire and drop individual players faster than a team of the recommended size can drop one. That'll be wonderful.

So your main issue with heroics is that they're too hard for you? What, did you play wow too much and didn't expect any challenge? By the way, heroics are 100% optional.

I love heroics, I love how Bioware just flat out said, NO you can't solo this, you need other people, and if you try to solo it, you die. Reminds me of vanilla wow in that sense, before wow removed all of its group content from the leveling process.

As to flashpoints, there's what? Six in the game per class? They're a neat idea, but my experience was people pugged them and scattered afterwards.

There's one flashpoint just about every 5 levels or so, so no, more than 6. Hell they just added another one in 1.1.

Which is, of course WoW, not TOR. Most MMOs, drop quest items for everyone in the party. Why WoW is still clinging to separate collection quests is anyone's guess. It certainly doesn't make TOR look any better for working on one of the glaring problems with WoW and then solving it in the least efficient means possible. You know how STO handles quest items? There are none. None, ever. If you're carrying around some doodad that's supposed to be part of a quest line it's not in your inventory. If there's ever a mission objective to destroy X ships, it's not hidden under, collect X macguffins, you're told what you'll actually need to do. Unlike, you know, TOR, which has the same, kill X Ys and take their Zs, where 1 in 3 actually has a Z, even though it's their goddamn spleen.

I went with the wow comparison because it's what I know, and it's a glaring problem with the leveling process of WoW. That's all fine and dandy for STO, it's real shame that game is fucking awful and waste of it's IP.

Also: TORs drops are very close to 100% per mob, for the record. If it's something common on the enemy it'll be a common drop when you kill them.

Which tells me one thing and makes me suspect another, first you don't play many MMOs, and I'm seriously starting to doubt you ever played WoW, or if you did you never figured out how to actually play the game.

I played wow for the better part of 4 years. I quit after cata dropped because it wasn't what blizzard said it would be.

if you're doubting me:
http://www.wow-heroes.com/character/us/Anvilmar/Gallant/

that's my main from the end of BC through all of Wrath.

As to the class quests? If the point is to generate diversity in your party, it fails pretty egregiously. What it does is actively discourage forming large persistent parties. It effectively caps the party size at 2 for the two starting planets, if you have three friends and you're going through one of the opening planets, someone's shit out of luck. If you're on a later planet and you have only one player who actually has a jedi at level, you're shit out of luck. If you do go with your buddy, you're subjected to a passive cutscene where you can't do anything and the best you can do is go to the kitchen to make a sandwich, and hope your buddy isn't doing the exact same thing.

you could roll with more than two people, there's nothing stopping you from doing so, just do the story parts of turning in and picking up quests alone, then pop out and do them with the rest of the group, nothing stopping you. Or alternatively, have that 3rd person roll something in a different starting zone and at level 10 group up to do a flashpoint, it doesn't take that long. I leveled with a smuggler on my Jedi Knight through all of Coruscant and she got to see my story and I got to see hers, it was actually a lot of fun as I got to got to see a preview of the smuggler story and she got to see the knight's. Inspired me to roll a smuggler and her to roll a knight later on.

TOR takes everything we've learned from the last decade of MMOs, and chucks all of it in favor of being another single player RPG from Bioware that you have to pay rent on.

A single player RPG with more multiplayer content than the leading MMORPG, with a better community than the leading MMORPG(in game not on the troll forums). I'm starting to think you haven't played a lot of MMOs if you think TOR is step backwards. It most definitely isn't. The inclusion of personal story, character and overall plot is a serious leap forward for the genre. The fact that you can't seem to see past your own myopic hatred for the game is your own fault I guess.

I'm just going to leave this here...
http://www.swtor.com/community/showthread.php?t=197991
Recently patch 1.1 released, and ho boy did it cause some splashes.
People on the Imp side of things have had the chance to grind to the top valor level in roughly three hours.
People on the Repub side have been pushed back and forced into being farmed.
BW is reverting this as soon as possible, buuut... no rollbacks.
Everyone who made it to the top in a few hours (a grind that was to take WEEKS, perhaps MONTHS) get to keep their rewards, title and all of the gear that comes with it. The Repub get nothing to balance this new imbalance of power out.
I urge anyone thinking about buying this game to take a look around the official forums, and take what you will from those, before making the purchase.

Well, I don't care for Bioware or MMOs, so that's that for me.

On a more serious note, I hope that they include more role playing options in ME3 after the wreck that ME2 was (story-wise).

On another serious note, STOP SOPA AND PIPA!!!

It seems like they never really played the game. This review is so out of touch with reality that I'm left to go with one of two options. They were either paid off or decided to blindly give it a good grade.

noahpocalypse:
Well, I don't care for Bioware or MMOs, so that's that for me.

On a more serious note, I hope that they include more role playing options in ME3 after the wreck that ME2 was (story-wise).

On another serious note, STOP SOPA AND PIPA!!!

Why did you bother posting? Not relevant to the review at all.

Palmerama:

mysecondlife:

Shoggoth2588:

So...the book is a no-go then?

---

I'm passing on this one. My PC barely manages flash games at this point and I've never been a fan of the MMO. I think I can also say I'm passing this by to boycott EA and Origin but that would be a lie since I don't really care about either...well, Origin anyway.

Avoid that book at all cost. which also means you should rightfully pass on the MMO as well.

That's a terrible reason to pass on this game! Yeah he wrote one bad book so what!? He also created Revan as he was one of the lead writers for KOTOR, and he's a lead writer for TOR aswell. Don't forget he's also the lead writer for Mass Effect (and has written 3 brillaint spin off novels), not to mention his other writing credits inlcude the Baldur's Gate series, Jade Empire, and Neverwinter Nights.

I'm having a blast playing this game. And its not that surprising that there isn't much to do after the end game. They had to stop at some point otherwise the game would never have come out. It's only been a month. Anyway there are plenty of other classes you could try! You couldn't have got all of them to lvl 50 in a month!

No its a pretty good reason to pass on the game. and its not because he wrote a bad book. Its because he wrote A BOOK I don't think it should've been written. But he did (a terrible one at that).. for the sake of the MMO

I don't read spin-off books and I don't care much about Mass Effect (and I dislike Jade Empire). But yeah, he did create Revan so I had high hopes for it.

But the fate of Revan and the Exile at the end of the book almost made me throw it in anger. Two great characters that Drew created were simply given abrupt and disappointing ending just because they wanted to make MMO. (sounds like another George Lucas in making here?) and yes, I know what happens to Revan and HK47 in the MMO. More fuel to the fire.

So yes, I will be skipping it

I'm sure the Old Republic has a lot of quality as a game itself. and if you had a lot of fun with it, more power to you.

mysecondlife:
No its a pretty good reason to pass on the game. and its not because he wrote a bad book. Its because he wrote A BOOK I don't think it should've been written. But he did (a terrible one at that).. for the sake of the MMO

I don't read spin-off books and I don't care much about Mass Effect (and I dislike Jade Empire). But yeah, he did create Revan so I had high hopes for it.

But the fate of Revan and the Exile at the end of the book almost made me throw it in anger. One great character that Drew created was simply given abrupt and disappointing ending just because they wanted to make MMO. (sounds like another George Lucas in making here?) and yes, I know what happens to Revan and HK47 in the MMO. More fuel to the fire.

Fixed that for you. Drew Karpyshyn didn't create the Exile and he didn't write KoTOR 2. Obisidian did. This is where one of the inherent flaws with the book lies. Drew Karpyshyn (and Bioware probably) are still pissed about Obsidian making the second game. Why I don't know, but they've always had something of a grudge against the Obsidian team. And if you needed proof of that grudge, it's there in the text and how Karpyshyn writes the Exile.

(It could be something that goes as far back as Neverwinter Nights 2 or even to Black Isle, probably to Black Isle.)

Revan is essentially an attempt at character assissination. It's there for the Exile. It's there for Atris. (If you played KoTOR 2, you'd know that there's no way in hell she'd let Revan waggle his finger in her face. She hated him. She hated him more than the Exile. If the Exile doesn't get a pass from her over the Mandalorian Wars then why should he? Someone would leave that room in a bodybag. Probably Revan as she's ten levels higher.) It happens to Kreia. (Insanity? Dark Side scrolls?) Actually, if any character from KoTOR 2 appears in the book, it's there for them. Double if they're female.

The book is Karpyshyn's snit fit over: "This is why Revan is TEH AWESOME and the Exile SUCKS". In doing so he creates a gigantic, ginormous Marty Stu and expects everyone to roll over in praise of it. Karpyshyn is writing about his Revan, not my Revan, and I don't think I like his Revan very much.

Tumedus:
If you are doing harder group content, ops and hard difficulty dungeons, your healing throughput and longevity just isn't there.

While I debate this longevity claim - my build can "solo" (I still use my companion) Champions largely due to longevity - I honestly don't care about performance in "hard" difficulty or ops. I don't find them necessary aspects of MMOs (I've been playing MMOs since before they had graphics.)

animehermit:

Starke:

God, I'd forgotten about the heroics. If you're going to try to sell that game to someone, never mention those fucking things again. "Yes, lets' randomly give the mobs you've been fighting for the past hour and a half three times their normal hit points, and ramp up their damage so that they can focus fire and drop individual players faster than a team of the recommended size can drop one. That'll be wonderful.

So your main issue with heroics is that they're too hard for you? What, did you play wow too much and didn't expect any challenge? By the way, heroics are 100% optional.

I love heroics, I love how Bioware just flat out said, NO you can't solo this, you need other people, and if you try to solo it, you die. Reminds me of vanilla wow in that sense, before wow removed all of its group content from the leveling process.

Hard? No. Pointless? Yeah. Team up to do this one thing, then splinter off again? Brilliant!

As you've pointed out they're all optional, which, I guess, makes them less annoying than the group quests in LOTRO, but the thing is, there isn't a reason to do the Heroics. It's substantially more effort for a piece of gear that is about on par for the next level's missions.

animehermit:

As to flashpoints, there's what? Six in the game per class? They're a neat idea, but my experience was people pugged them and scattered afterwards.

There's one flashpoint just about every 5 levels or so, so no, more than 6. Hell they just added another one in 1.1.

Which pegs the number at 10 or 11 per faction in the ENTIRE game. I'm sorry, if you want to pretend that they're a major part of the content, then it might help if more than 2% of your content is geared towards that.

On the whole only about 5% (AT MOST) of the PvE content is geared towards team play, the rest is just a single player RPG with rent.

animehermit:

Which is, of course WoW, not TOR. Most MMOs, drop quest items for everyone in the party. Why WoW is still clinging to separate collection quests is anyone's guess. It certainly doesn't make TOR look any better for working on one of the glaring problems with WoW and then solving it in the least efficient means possible. You know how STO handles quest items? There are none. None, ever. If you're carrying around some doodad that's supposed to be part of a quest line it's not in your inventory. If there's ever a mission objective to destroy X ships, it's not hidden under, collect X macguffins, you're told what you'll actually need to do. Unlike, you know, TOR, which has the same, kill X Ys and take their Zs, where 1 in 3 actually has a Z, even though it's their goddamn spleen.

I went with the wow comparison because it's what I know, and it's a glaring problem with the leveling process of WoW. That's all fine and dandy for STO, it's real shame that game is fucking awful and waste of it's IP.

Nearly anything Star Trek is an awful waste of it's own IP. With a handful of exceptions there hasn't been something really. I'm not sure there's been a good Trek Video game since Raven was involved in developing them.

animehermit:
Also: TORs drops are very close to 100% per mob, for the record. If it's something common on the enemy it'll be a common drop when you kill them.

Which again, great, they learned one thing from WoW, that doesn't mean that there aren't games from sane developers who realized cloning WoW was a bad idea. That doesn't mean there aren't much better ways to do this.

I'm sorry, if I want to go around knocking off random mobs looking for parts to a tool kit, I'd rather be playing borderlands, at least there, there'd be some psychotic humor and some actually enjoyable combat.

animehermit:

Which tells me one thing and makes me suspect another, first you don't play many MMOs, and I'm seriously starting to doubt you ever played WoW, or if you did you never figured out how to actually play the game.

I played wow for the better part of 4 years. I quit after cata dropped because it wasn't what blizzard said it would be.

if you're doubting me:
http://www.wow-heroes.com/character/us/Anvilmar/Gallant/

that's my main from the end of BC through all of Wrath.

Which of course tells me you're persistent, not that you're skilled. Funny thing, even bits like /played don't really tell you how good a player is, anyone who's gotten into an endgame raid with a pug in ANY MMO can tell you that.

animehermit:

As to the class quests? If the point is to generate diversity in your party, it fails pretty egregiously. What it does is actively discourage forming large persistent parties. It effectively caps the party size at 2 for the two starting planets, if you have three friends and you're going through one of the opening planets, someone's shit out of luck. If you're on a later planet and you have only one player who actually has a jedi at level, you're shit out of luck. If you do go with your buddy, you're subjected to a passive cutscene where you can't do anything and the best you can do is go to the kitchen to make a sandwich, and hope your buddy isn't doing the exact same thing.

you could roll with more than two people, there's nothing stopping you from doing so, just do the story parts of turning in and picking up quests alone, then pop out and do them with the rest of the group, nothing stopping you. Or alternatively, have that 3rd person roll something in a different starting zone and at level 10 group up to do a flashpoint, it doesn't take that long. I leveled with a smuggler on my Jedi Knight through all of Coruscant and she got to see my story and I got to see hers, it was actually a lot of fun as I got to got to see a preview of the smuggler story and she got to see the knight's. Inspired me to roll a smuggler and her to roll a knight later on.

That's great for you. The problem is, and think about this, I know it hurts, but try think about this: If you're in a group with players you don't know. Going into an instance where they cannot follow you, is effectively leaving the group. This is particularly true of instances, like with the Jedi Council scene where the player flat out vanishes from the game for the duration of the cutscene. What's more, with PUGs, you're basically assured that the PUG cannot survive the class quests. Players splinter off to do their own thing. And they can come back together, but they're less likely to. This is where the game sabotages team play. When I was gaming with my GF, we were in the same room, so that's not a normal situation, and I could hear and see the stuff going on on her screen. But if a member of the team vanishes into one of these instances and no one else can see what's going on in there, it does fracture a group.

Again, the focus is not on team play. You want to find an MMO focused around team play, look at games where the classes cannot fill multiple roles at once. Where as with TOR, the party dynamics are... well, strange.

animehermit:

TOR takes everything we've learned from the last decade of MMOs, and chucks all of it in favor of being another single player RPG from Bioware that you have to pay rent on.

A single player RPG with more multiplayer content than the leading MMORPG, with a better community than the leading MMORPG(in game not on the troll forums). I'm starting to think you haven't played a lot of MMOs if you think TOR is step backwards. It most definitely isn't. The inclusion of personal story, character and overall plot is a serious leap forward for the genre. The fact that you can't seem to see past your own myopic hatred for the game is your own fault I guess.

Considering you're only holding up WoW as the entire MMO market? Yeah, that's helping your credibility. No, WoW is not the most innovative game, something you should know. If you played other MMOs you'd know, probably have noticed, though, apparently not, that other MMOs have taken things which WoW did wrong and tried to fix them. Tried alternate approaches. Tried to figure out some alternative to the old formula. You know what we've learned? Don't copy WoW. You won't be able to survive in the market.

I do play a lot of MMOs, ironically. I don't play a lot to endgame, and I don't maintain active subscriptions to most of them, but I have played a lot of them over the years. TOR isn't anything new. And as Sixcess noted, this isn't a game for MMO players. Any actual MMO player who comes to TOR will immediately see a mediocre game with a Bioware story bolted onto the side of it. It's the people who don't really understand what they're looking at, and don't really like MMOs that are flocking to this. I'm not sure if that's really just the Bioware fans.

Even this review you're responding to kept forgetting it wasn't a single player game. As a single player RPG, maybe it's okay, but as an MMO it's a colossal failure for many reasons.

What Bioware did was make a single player RPG, with multiplayer option.

The biggest problem with ToR, in my eyes, is that Bioware is trying to get me to pay 15 bucks a month for what essentially amounts to a single-player experience with optional multiplayer support.

That dog don't hunt, son.

The quests are still Collect, Destroy, Talk to/Go to but at least the story distracts you from this. The quests in New WoW might be better on a mechanic level, but SWTOR has a more enjoyable narration and context.

Only downside is Max Level solo content is lack lustre compared to leveling up content. In less you're in a raiding guild, the game breaks down to Generic RPG.

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