Well it finally happened. It was bound to. I’ve ordered SWTOR. I haven’t been in any rush to get it, but I ordered it last night and it will be here in a few days.
I thought I might record my thoughts about it before I started so I can look back on them later on. So here goes.
Although I have watched most of the videos on the official website I haven’t really done much reading otherwise about the game. A bit here and there but nothing exhaustive.
From what i’ve read the questing will be awesome. Cut scene type voice overs for every quest is a big leap forward from old-school, wall-of-text, type quests. Having said that the complexity of the actual quests doesn’t seem to be a lot different from standard. I’m a bit of a Star Wars fan so getting a bit immersed in the world is something I am very much looking forward to.
Combat will be sadly WoW-like but with lasers and lightsabers, which is some compensation. Nothing innovative. There is so much that could have been done here but hasn’t. Multi-part or combination type attacks (the longer the comb the more powerful they get), body blocking, team combination attacks, a more active avoidance system (manual dodging/blocking) or even a more free-style attack generation system something like Magicka maybe. Guild Wars 2 has a couple of these at least, so I suppose i’ll have to look forward to that being released.
One thing that did impress me was the animation of the lightsabre wielders deflecting laser fire.
Space combat looks quite fun and a nice distraction without being a massive seperate grind. Flying on rails isn’t really a negative to me although I suppose a more free form space flight system where you could trade goods from planet to planet or be a space pirate would have been nice.
Class mechanics are somewhat varied to WoW, but the talent trees look very WoW-like :-( I have very low expectations about the customisations as far as talents go sadly. I was disappointed also to learn about the mirrored classes in both sides as it reduces the variety 50%, although I can understand it from a designers point-of-view. A couple of the resource systems do look a bit more interesting than boring old blue bar goes down (mana)/red bar goes up (rage) systems.
End-game – I have no real expectations as I haven’t read or seen much about it. It looks fairly standard, but as i’m not really planning on doing too much I haven’t bothered looking into it.
Companions look pretty awesome, although might get tiresome. Definitely a plus for the game though. The henchman system in the original Guild Wars was pretty awesome for its time and companions look even better.
Crafting – WoW-like with a little more complexity, but not much. I hope it is actually useful at high level as in my experience most games seem to make their crafting nearly pointless at top tiers. I love crafting so I hope there if a fair bit of complexity in there. No overly hopeful though. There seems to be some sort of requirement that crafting systems are all unchallenging grinds in MMO’s for some reason.
PvP looks decent. Although the same skills seem to be used in both PvE and PvP so i’m not that hopeful that PvP will be much more fun than WoW. I hope i’m wrong. I wish the’d split the problem skills into PvE and PvP versions and then balance them for each of the modes of play.
I had firm plans to play a trooper commando, right uptil the game launched. Then I read that everyone else (well not quite, but you get the idea) had the same idea. Now i’m thinking a bounty hunter powertech.
Probably on a role playing server. Probably on a PvP server. Preferably both. I’m keen to roleplay more in SWTOR than I did in WoW. I missed that in WoW, but only really realised after the event that no roleplaying was part of the lack of enjoyment with WoW. I’ll join a social guild not a serious raiding one. Probably a roleplaying guild. I’ve got no plan for end-game raiding currently although i’ve said that before.
You could have guessed some of this from my expectations section above. Great story and setting but an unoriginal combat and class system really lends its self more to roleplaying and less to raiding in my opinion.
I also think a jedi consular sage and a smuggler gunslinger will be in there somewhere. In between a commando and a powertech I was thinking a gunslinger, but I wasn’t that impressed with the video I saw of the smuggler. Looked a bit dull.
I guess i’ll know more in a few days… :-)