Now that the dust has settled and the bazillions of blogs and media sites out there have covered SWTOR’s big unveiling, I thought I would share a few of my thoughts on what I’m seeing from their official site.Â Â Â First of all, the game looks like it will be the classic Good vs. Evil, Jedi vs. Sith, faction based game.Â On one side it looks like the Jedi and the Galactic Republic vs. The Sith and their Empire.Â I think this creates a perfect opportunity for some player vs. player interaction and hopefully Bioware won’t disappoint by coming out and announcing that players won’t be able to interact or pvp on at least some grand scale.
Looking deeper at the factions, it appears that this won’t be just a Jedi game.Â “Choose to be a Jedi, a Sith, or from a variety of other classic Star Wars roles, and make decisions which define your personal story and determine your path down the light or dark side of the Force.”Â Okay, so you can be a Jedi or… something else.Â Maybe a droid type (IG-88) or a Mandelorion or something cool like that.Â Perhaps large blaster users, small pistol blaster users, some melee (vibro blade) users or something like that.Â There is potential, however let’s think about it for a minute.Â JEDI are in the game.Â Â There are going to be a TON of Jedi and that means, if Bioware is on top of their game, that they’ll have multiple types of Jedi.Â I’m predicting a Force caster, Force Healer, a Force Saber user, etc.Â I would be suprised if Bioware is able to pull it off and make the other classes/types interesting – possibly the biggest pitfall ahead of them.
Bioware is saying that this game will differ from other mmorpgs by introducing what they call a fourth pillar of Story telling (The other three being Exploration, Combat, and Progression).Â This can work very well for a game as seen in LOTRO.Â The downsides are obvious to me as being a lack of gameplay substituted by an attempt at over-immersing the player in the story.Â Avoidable if not done intentionally.Â Â There is also the companion character system that could have some good potential but I would hope it doesn’t replace the need to group given Bioware’s statement in the FAQ that some stuff takes groups but “the majority of the game can be accomplished by playing alone”.
My last reservation that I’ll touch upon briefly is the game world.Â I’m hoping for something wide open and sandbox feeling.Â I’m not liking how mmorpgs of late have become all about tiers, redundant instances, and streamlining.Â It’s killing the feeling of playing a character in a big immersive world and its destroying a large part of what makes these game enjoyable.Â If they can pull off massive cities and interesting landscapes with the only transportation being between planets then this could be one of the greatest mmorpg game worlds ever.Â However, by the look of the graphics, for some reason, I’m starting to think they’ll be going the route of “mass appeal”… hopefully not.
It’s very, very early in this game’s development and all of this can and more than likely will change.Â I’m hoping that some part of what I felt when playing SWG will return when I play SWTOR but that might be putting too much stock in ‘hope’.Â This will be one to watch.