PAX 2011: Sleep Your Way Out Of Trouble In The Old Republic


Not only is seducing characters an option, but it’s part of a class’s play style.

BioWare’s really started to ramp up the the hands-on previews of Star Wars: The Old Republic for this year’s Con Season. While a lot of folks are clearly excited to play as members of the Jedi or Sith orders, there are a lot of other stories to be a part of, both as Republic and Imperial characters. Needless to say, when the developer gave me some time with the upcoming MMO, I jumped at the chance to play as an Imperial Agent, and received more than a couple of (great) surprises for my troubles.

I spent about twenty minutes with the game, which features some suitably impressive technology. The interface is incredibly easy to get ahold of (featuring the same controls and mechanics that Steve Butts dealt with at E3), the graphics look amazing, and the voice acting (which was recorded with several hundred voice actors) is excellent. However, what really left me stunned was how the story unfolds and just what kind of choices I can make along the way.

I started out with a newly-minted Imperial Agent, one who was just embarking on her first mission. After arriving on a backwater planet, she received instructions from her commanding officer to infiltrate the local Hutt’s palace under a false identity and subvert his second-in-command to the Imperial cause. This starts out well enough: The local contact who has the cover identity has had it stolen, which means that the Agent has to go out, kill the gang members who took it, and bring it back. After that, she assumes the identity of a known (but never-met) space pirate in order to meet the Hutt.

Once in the Hutt’s palace, though, things got interesting. After my meeting with the Hutt, a contact of the pirate my character was impersonating showed up and confronted me with the fact that he knew I was a fraud. The game presented a couple of options: The contact could be paid off to shut up, I could just shoot him, or I could – wait for it – flirt with and then seduce him. I went for the last option and was treated to a scene of the Agent and her new friend walking off, and then her returning alone some time later.

Later on, I spoke to Daniel Erickson, Writing Director of The Old Republic about this. He explained how the Imperial Agent’s story is one that’s full of intrigue and manipulation, but there are options for a lot of fun. Essentially, players can guide their Agents through the galaxy as straight-up spies, or they can play more of a James Bond role, sometimes using seduction to get what they want.

Needless to say, Star Wars: The Old Republic looks like it’s going to include some pretty cool story devices and character moments. Be sure to keep an eye out for the full interview with Daniel Erickson later this week. In the meantime, check out these new screenshots of Imperial Agents in action.

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