A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away...
"Hope"Star Wars: The Old Republic is an epic MMO with an amazing story. BioWare: Austin, a studio satellite created specifically for this project alone in 2005, is developing the game for a Spring 2011 release. Oh by the way, this game has the largest budget of any EA production in history. (Source)
THE OLD REPUBLIC
When I said that this game is epic, I'm not kidding. BioWare has gone on record saying that this game has more content than "Mass Effect one and two, Dragon Age and Knights of the Old Republic put together, and throw in Baldur's Gate, too." That adds up to about 40 novels worth of dialogue. Oh, and everything will be voice acted. (Source) Of course, this is an MMORPG. Which means there are heavy MMO concepts at play here. There will be grouping, raiding, PvP, instances, player crafting and economy, and all the rest of that MMO good stuff. Details on that stuff is sketchy, and BioWare isn't willing to talk much about any of it.So what have they revealed?STORY
- 100% Voice acted. Over 4,000 hours of recording time. 40 novels worth of content. (Source) *Note, there is reason to believe that the "4000" hours of recording time was an inaccurately reported or exaggerated feature, see page 1.
- More content than every Bioware RPG put together. (Source)
- The game is set around 3500 years before the events of the original trilogy, when the Sith Empire and the Republic are in a cold war.
- Each of the eight classes have their own unique, compelling story, complete with companion characters, romance, and long-term consequences.
- You could play through the game as a Sith Inquisitor and then go back and play a Jedi Knight and not repeat a single quest. (Source)
- "World Arcs" are galactic, epic quests for you and your party. They advance the essential Empire vs. Republic storyline and shape the course of the conflict. (Source)
- 13 planets have been released so far. 4 are smaller "starter" planets. The rest are vast worlds, which according to BioWare are gigantic.
Republic Classes include...
- Each class will have a unique story
- Eight classes, two per faction.
- Upon reaching level 10, you will be able to pick from two "advanced classes" with two distinct playstyles associated with a basic archetype. For example, a Sith Warrior will have the choice between a Marauder and Juggernaut at level 10. The Marauder dual-wields and focuses on doing lots of damage. The Juggernaut, or Darth Vader archetype, wields a single lightsaber and focuses on absorbing damage like a typical MMO "tank." (Source, Source)
Sith Empire Classes include...
- The Trooper. Think of a clone trooper, but way more badass. Ranged tank and DPS. Advanced classes include "walking turret" and "more maneuverable super soldier" (Source)
- Jedi Consular. Think of Yoda. Advanced classes include healer and ranged stuns in the form of telekinetics. No names for these advanced class choices yet. (Source: November 09 issue of Total PC Gaming)
- Jedi Knight. Think of Luke Skywalker. Melee. No advanced class info so far to my knowledge.
- Smuggler. Think of Han Solo. Advanced classes include dual-wielding, upfront "Gunslinger" and stealthy "Scoundrel" (Source: November 09 issue of Total PC Gaming, also confirmed at E3)
- The Bounty Hunter. Think of Boba Fett. Ranged damage and CC. Described as not very subtle. Likes to blow things up. No advanced class info yet. (Source)
- Sith Inquisitor. Think of Emperor Palpatine and Darth Maul. Advanced classes include controlling, lightning-wielding Force sorcerer and lightly armored staff-lightsaber wielding melee damager. (Source)
- Sith Warrior. Think of Darth Vader. Advanced classes include armored, single saber-wielding Juggernaut as a tank, and dual wielding Marauder as DPS. (Source)
- Imperial Agent. Think of a infiltrator/sniper type character. Specially hailed has having a particularly unique playstyle for an MMO. No advanced class information yet.
Cinematic Trailers include...
Gameplay Trailers include...
- "Hope" released at E3 in 2010 (see top of this post)
- "Deceived" released at E3 in 2009.
There are a number of TOR gameplay videos out there. I'll just pick a couple of my favorites:
Featured at E3 in 2009
- A Sith Warrior and a Bounty Hunter battle aboard an Imperial Starship in this Flashpoint:
A substantial amount of info has been released about this game, and I only listed what I thought were the most pertinent highlights. If you want to learn more about the game, check out Bioware's official page.
It has more information on:
- Awesome backstory videos that are a ton of fun to watch (look for the "Timeline" section)
- Tons of information on each of the planets that have been revealed so far, and there are about a dozen with more expected to come.
- New information is released from the website every Thursday or Friday!
Now, if you're more hardcore and think you know everything like me, then check out Darth Hater
. It's basically the MMO-Champion equivalent from WoW. Everything that gets released about the game goes up there, and they get in to the tiniest of TOR nerd minutiae. It's awesome.
=====================LATEST TOR NEWS
6/17/10 -- E3 included the following big reveals:
- Each player gets their own ship! This functions as your home and companion characters can be found there. Your ship represents a major step in your progression and unlocks the galaxy.
- PvP Battlegrounds! Alderaan is yet another TOR planet, and you'll be able to fight there. These battles will be instanced, like WoW's battlegrounds. Unfortunately, no other data about this or any other PvP was revealed (Group size, objectives, etc, have not been determined).
- Amazing new cinematic trailer, linked at the top.
- Gear progression video that shows you going from newbie level 1 in rags to a Boba Fett tricked out in the latest amazing gear. See Darth Hater's YouTube channel.
- Early gameplay demos featuring the Sith Inquisitor and the Republic Trooper going about early quests. See Darth Hater's YouTube channel.
- A really interesting gameplay video
featuring 4 republic players representing their specific class. NOTE ABOUT THE CONSULAR: He's providing a "camera" for people to see the gameplay happen. Click here for a full explanation.
- Darth Hater did a hour long play through at level 2 and came up with a ton of information
. They also interviewed Daniel Erickson, BioWare Austin's lead writer (here
) and James Ohlen, Creative Director and Lead Designer (here
- Chiss are a new species and they are Empire only! (Source
- WORLD ARCS
- World arcs are giant party sized quests which are multi-tiered, long, awesome adventures with choices to make and everything to do as a party
- Players get to develop the story of the Republic vs the Empire
- Players get to influence where the war grows and where the war changes
- These player influenced events will determine who dominates a planet, pulls in new allies, etc.
Lots of fan sites are giving their personal take on their personal TOR playthrough from a player's perspective.Here's Darth Hater's Ventrilo Q&A from MondayHere's TOR-AID's playthrough reflection #1, painting in rather broad strokesHere's TOR-AID's playthrough reflection #2, focusing on the more nerdy, interesting details
A few interesting notes from these comments:
- WORLD SIZE: "We began to split up a little bit and explore the world. It was much larger than I thought it would be, and the rumour on the street is that this is one of the smallest of the planets. It took a little under an hour to roam from one end of Hutta to the next, but that was on pretty much a straight line with only a couple little side ventures.
To cover every inch of the map, would take a pretty good chunk of time, and that's if you stayed outside and didn't go into any of the massive interior sections." Okay, let's take this with a grain of salt. I know Bioware are magicians, but either he was questing from one edge to the other, or he has no sense of time. Why do I say that? Because if he really was just running from one end to the other without stopping, Hutta would be as large as Azeroth. (It takes ~20 minutes to run East to West across Kalimdor, and about 4 times that to run North to South.)
- OPEN WORLD more or less confirmed, with small quest 'instances' covering the world area. One example: We "approached a small hut that had someone who I was supposed to talk to in it for my main quest. Initially it had a big red barrier in front of it for Samm, but a green one for myself. After I walked into it however it then became blue for Samm, allowing him to come in behind me." These quest instances seem to advance the story of the game, and they seem to be the EXCEPTION to the open world "rule." MOST of the world is wide open, WoW style, with smaller huts, hangars, buildings, etc, that are instanced and story-driven. RED portals to these instances mean you can't go in yet (you're not at the proper stage, or perhaps not the proper class). GREEN portals mean you can go in to advance an active quest. BLUE portals mean it's not your
quest that's being advanced, but your party member's whom you can help. Also, ZERO loading times on these "instances" help retain that open world experience.
- NO LOADING TIMES ON INSTANCES - at least the open world instances.
- SPEEDER TAXI. Yep, just like the Gryphons. 100% confirmed. You aren't able to control the Speeder at all, and it works exactly like WoW's Gryphons.
- POSSIBLE LEVEL CAP OF 50
? The elite higher level friendly NPCs in the newbie area of the game were level 50.
For a complete recap of everything learned at E3, check out this E3 Round-Up
- Rumors of a closed Beta are spreading like wildfire throughout the TOR community.
- From the developers in response to certain deleted posts:
The Game Testing Agreement that was agreed upon (when signing up for game testing) states:
1. The fact that there is a Game Program.
2. The fact that you are a member of the Game Program.
Outside of that, it is a violation of the agreement to do anything more such as posting images or screen captures of anything related to Game Testing that is private and confidential and not already publicly revealed by The Old Republic team.
July 16, 2010
- 5 and a half hours of original music
created just for the game. But you really need to watch and listen carefully to this video.http://www.swtor.com/media/trailers/music-old-republic
July 23, 2010
SPACE COMBAT REVEALED
We know almost nothing right now. But PC Gamer will break the full story in it's October issue.
If you’ve been following the news coming out of the Star Wars™: The Old Republic™ panel at Comic-Con International, you’ve heard the announcement that we will indeed have Space Combat as part of the TOR experience! But what does that mean? Space combat is an alternative gameplay experience to the primary game of storytelling, questing, and ground-based combat. In space combat, you fly your personal ship to various “hot spots” on your galaxy map. From there, you will blast your way through asteroid fields, enemy fighters, frigates, destroyers, and a variety of other obstacles that will evoke memories of some of the great Star Wars™ space battles.
To learn more, pick up the October 2010 edition of PC Gamer which hits newsstands starting August 17th for screenshots and an exclusive interview or check back with us in the weeks to come.
8/16/10 -- Update on space combat. It won't be multiplayer and will be a rail shooter.http://i.massively.com/2010/08/09/the-old-republics-space-combat-detailed-in-pc-gamer/