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  1. #1

    Star Wars: The Old Republic – State of the Game #2

    Originally Posted by SWTOR
    01.02.2013
    Star Wars: The Old Republic – State of the Game #2



    Hello again everyone!

    It has been an amazing couple of months since my last State of the Game blog. It feels like a good time to jump in again and give you a brief rundown on how we are doing, what is coming up next, and to tackle some issues head on. Let’s start with some comments about now and the future:

    As you can probably imagine, the launch of the Free-to-Play option with our new Cartel Market has been an amazing event for our game. The game is incredibly healthy with an ever increasing number of players who are actively playing (the servers are rocking!). Having said that, we know we haven’t gotten everything perfect, and we are still working hard to make The Old Republic everything you guys desire. More than anything we wanted to get folks back in and playing the game, and bring back the excitement and camaraderie - we feel like we've made great strides over the last 6 months towards these goals. All signs point to a very bright future for our game!

    Speaking of the future – we have two excellent updates coming your way in the upcoming months. In our Game Update 1.7 you should look forward to some interesting changes to a special PvP area that you have all been asking about (sorry for being cryptic, but this is technically not announced yet), as well as a visit from some old friends, The Gree Enclave (though maybe not in a way you would expect). And later in the spring, our Digital Expansion: Rise of the Hutt Cartel! The team has been working for a long time on this, and is very excited to get it out to you. We have greatly expanded on the original concept with several new systems, 5 new levels, a big new planet, new storylines, new skills and abilities and more beyond that. Keep your eyes open for more information over the next several months.

    Now for everyone’s favorite section – Hot Topics. I will try to be as frank and open as possible.

    Topic #1: Elder Game Content – What is our intent for keeping level 50’s occupied? Answer: Introducing new content and activities for the elder game is a top priority in the coming year. We’ve got new Operations, new Flashpoints, new difficulty modes, new PvP areas, and of course, the entire Digital Expansion: Rise of the Hutt Cartel (which is targeted at our high level players). We have a plan mapped out for the upcoming year that will keep the elder game fresh and interesting for players of all types. Overall, we’re aiming to introduce a more diverse array of activities – more stuff to do with your Companion, more challenges to tackle with groups, and more reasons for guilds to recruit. We’ll also be improving our itemization, introducing new incentives to revisit existing areas, and a lot of other exciting things that will be revealed as we move through the upcoming year.

    Topic #2: World PvP – What happened to making Ilum better? What is going on with Open World PvP? Answer: We have not forgotten Ilum! I think you will see (fairly soon) the answer to this question in the game itself - something big is coming to the Western Ice Shelf, but it’s quite a departure from what was there before. As for pure Open World PvP…well, that’s a more difficult proposition. We are dedicated to providing excellent PvP experiences to our players, but we intend to focus our energy on PvP Seasons and new Warzones. We will be experimenting with a different approach to Open World PvP, something that encourages organic PvP in contested areas in a new and interesting way, but do not look for massive new Open World PvP this year (outside of what I mentioned above). It is still on our design wall, but is taking a back seat to other forms of PvP.

    Topic #3: Character Copy to Public Test Server (PTS) – What is taking so long? Answer: As of the writing of this letter, we are in focused, internal testing on character copies for PTS. You should expect to see this come within the first part of this year. It will provide free character copies to PTS at any time (with possible restrictions dependent upon our testing needs at any given time). This will also lay the foundation for our new live character transfer system that will be coming later this year.

    Topic #4: Same Gender Romance: Any news on this front would be great… Answer: First of all, I want to apologize that this is taking so long to get in the game. I realize that we promised SGR to you guys and that many of you believed that this would be with a companion character. Unfortunately, this will take a lot more work than we realized at the time and it (like some other pieces of content we talked about earlier in the year) has been delayed as we focused on the changes required to take the game Free-to-Play. As we have said in the past, allowing same gender romance is something we are very supportive of.

    Secondly, I want to reveal today that we are adding SGR with some NPCs on Makeb and do intend on pursuing more SGR options in the future. More details to come!

    Whew! I think we got through this State of the Game pretty well. The team and I will continue to scan the forums, read the boards, and listen to feedback. We’re dedicated to giving you the game that YOU want to play and are making changes and improvements at a rapid pace to keep up with your desires. Please keep posting and keep talking about The Old Republic. Together we will continue to care for and expand this fantastic game.

    Until next time,

    -Jeff Hickman

    -Executive Producer, Star Wars: The Old Republic

    (Source)

  2. #2
    A bunch more promises and vague hints at things, but I'm hoping they can deliver these in a reasonable timeframe.

    SGR's have me confused though. Wasn't one of the points of romances that you could travel around and fight with your partner? Having it on NPC's on Makeb seems...awkward. At least it's finally making it into the game though : )

    Remaining optimistic, but I'm much more curious as to what will be in Makeb at the moment, they're still pretty vague on what the "expansion" (DLC) includes.

  3. #3
    The game is out a full year and they're still just in a testing phase for character copies to PTS. It's just one of those things that is absolutely insane to me that it does not exist yet. It just takes me back to pre 1.2 when only a select group of people were invited to bring their 50's to the PTS and the rest had to level toons from scratch.

    ---------- Post added 2013-01-02 at 02:46 PM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by edgecrusherO0 View Post
    SGR's have me confused though. Wasn't one of the points of romances that you could travel around and fight with your partner? Having it on NPC's on Makeb seems...awkward. At least it's finally making it into the game though : )
    Actually, as you level throughout the game, you have opportunities to "romance" NPCs that you interact with for questing. And by "romance" I pretty much just mean "have sex with". Or whatever happens when the screen goes blank.

  4. #4
    The more they tell me their secret plans are interesting, exciting, and fun... The less I believe them.
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  5. #5
    Titan Kelimbror's Avatar
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    I think they have mastered the art of telling us that more details are coming soon, then never providing anything more. They've been telling people that new and exciting things are coming this year since the game launched. So far almost none of it has happened.

    And the SGR explanation is straight up bullshit. This basically means you will have flirt options and fan service smooshing with npcs for the quest...which does nothing to provide for the actual LBGT community who wants a meaningful change in their games.

  6. #6
    Bloodsail Admiral Jamos77's Avatar
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    I just don't like Hickman. Each time he posts he removes a little bit more of my TOR enjoyment. Right now I'm still having fun solo and playing with my guild. We're all looking forward to any changes on the horizon...but when Hickman speaks...my TOR mojo gets diluted.

    I've been happy with the amount of content released since the summer. Terror from Beyond, HK, Space missions, Hypergates, Section X and the cartel fluff. It's felt relatively frequent. With the hinted at Ilum event in January and Makeb in the spring there's quite a bit more content to look forward to.

    My main complaints remain a lack of regular communication (it's like pulling teeth trying to get straight answers) and...Hickman. I just don't believe a word of what he says. The only parts I believe are those also mentioned previously by other BW staff.
    SWG - Jamus Divinus - Bria 2005-2011

    Quote Originally Posted by edgecrusher View Post
    There is plenty to criticize with the game and BioWares handling of it without resorting to exaggeration, so let's not do it : /

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Kittyvicious View Post
    I think they have mastered the art of telling us that more details are coming soon, then never providing anything more. They've been telling people that new and exciting things are coming this year since the game launched. So far almost none of it has happened.
    This is the same thing Blizzard has been doing over the past 8 years. How many features have they promised and not delivered on? What makes EA/BioWare's empty promises any more spectacular?

  8. #8
    Pandaren Monk WarpedAcorn's Avatar
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    Those are a lot of words to basically say nothing. I would really love to have a candid Dev podcast where she/he talks about the game openly and honestly. One of the things I liked best about that Guild Summit way back was how a lot of Devs basically said, "We fucked up." That is excellent! I love when I hear someone say that. It means you are humble enough to recognize you made a mistake (boneheaded or not) which means you are probably looking at a way to fix it.

    I don't speak for every gamer out there, but when someone starts talking real I listen and when they start talking PR I tune it out. The Guild Summit had a lot of real talk, and I appreciate that. But its all been downhill PR speak since then. The above is a great example.

    SWTOR has mastered the art of hyping something up for almost half a year so that when it happens no one is excited anymore. Meanwhile some other game devs just walk on by and go, "hey we heard you were asking for A, B, and C. So here's A, B, C, D, E, and F. Cya." and just drop all sorts of crazy awesome stuff in your lap without warning.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by gamz247 View Post
    This is the same thing Blizzard has been doing over the past 8 years. How many features have they promised and not delivered on? What makes EA/BioWare's empty promises any more spectacular?
    Well for me personally it's because Blizzard has delivered on many of their promises while swtor hasn't. The only promise that sticks out to me that blizz hasn't kept is the dance studio. For swtor it's space project, Makeb was supposed to be 2012, cathar also supposed to be 2012, redesigned Illium, SGR, and many more. I'm not counting the things he says are coming because they are always coming. I used to have a thread about features that they were planning to implement and things on the way... I stopped updating it because it got depressing. Ever growing list of "coming soon" while the list of what they delivered on remained small.

  10. #10
    Titan Kelimbror's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gamz247 View Post
    This is the same thing Blizzard has been doing over the past 8 years. How many features have they promised and not delivered on? What makes EA/BioWare's empty promises any more spectacular?
    I deleted most of my response to avoid a game vs game post, but let's just say you are distorting information to make a point where there is none. When SWTOR actually provides, instead of just saying they will, then we can talk. Until then we'll rest on what little laurels we have. I expect we're going to be sitting for a while.

    Edit:
    Since Arlee commented on it in a smart way, I'll elaborate. Exactly what she said. Blizzard has delivered on almost all of their intentions/promises/what have you. She mentioned dance studio, I'll add Path of the Titans, and now Diablo PvP (which is still being devloped and remains to be seen). This is on top of putting in 95% of everything they talk about while keeping us informed about how it is changing in the meantime.

    Even having a convention 'every' year to show us all the shinies before we get them.

    ---------- Post added 2013-01-02 at 03:44 PM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by WarpedAcorn View Post
    SWTOR has mastered the art of hyping something up for almost half a year so that when it happens no one is excited anymore. Meanwhile some other game devs just walk on by and go, "hey we heard you were asking for A, B, and C. So here's A, B, C, D, E, and F. Cya." and just drop all sorts of crazy awesome stuff in your lap without warning.
    This is also an answer as to why this is a bigger deal than other companies. Blizzard, Trion, other companies do exactly what I underlined.

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Arlee View Post
    Well for me personally it's because Blizzard has delivered on many of their promises while swtor hasn't. The only promise that sticks out to me that blizz hasn't kept is the dance studio. For swtor it's space project, Makeb was supposed to be 2012, cathar also supposed to be 2012, redesigned Illium, SGR, and many more. I'm not counting the things he says are coming because they are always coming. I used to have a thread about features that they were planning to implement and things on the way... I stopped updating it because it got depressing. Ever growing list of "coming soon" while the list of what they delivered on remained small.
    Remember "Path of the Titans", which eventually just became Prime, Major and Minor glyphs? How about that Throne of the Tides raid?

    Perhaps I'm not always waiting for the next great feature to come along because I'm having enough fun with the game as it is. If all people can do is complain about how this, that and this other thing aren't in the game, then maybe SWToR isn't the right game for you, and you should find one that has the things you're looking for.

  12. #12
    I wonder when they will announce a same gender romance cartel item? Buy your lover today!

    or all of a sudden BOOM! "we said we'd bring in SGR on Makeb but we never said we would include it in the expansion price! Pay today!" Then a bunch of company supporters back them up confirming they never said it would be included in the expansion, just that it was on makeb. Why people can and will do that is a mystery but people protect thier addictions pretty badly.

    ---------- Post added 2013-01-02 at 09:44 PM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by gamz247 View Post
    Remember "Path of the Titans", which eventually just became Prime, Major and Minor glyphs? How about that Throne of the Tides raid?

    Perhaps I'm not always waiting for the next great feature to come along because I'm having enough fun with the game as it is. If all people can do is complain about how this, that and this other thing aren't in the game, then maybe SWToR isn't the right game for you, and you should find one that has the things you're looking for.
    Also at one point arena was supposed to get a spectating option, that never came.

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by gamz247 View Post
    Remember "Path of the Titans", which eventually just became Prime, Major and Minor glyphs? How about that Throne of the Tides raid?

    Perhaps I'm not always waiting for the next great feature to come along because I'm having enough fun with the game as it is. If all people can do is complain about how this, that and this other thing aren't in the game, then maybe SWToR isn't the right game for you, and you should find one that has the things you're looking for.
    Like I said for things that matter to me. Blizz has a shorter list of unkept promises. And don't get me wrong, I love swtor as a game. But I don't trust them when they say coming soon anymore.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Arlee View Post
    Like I said for things that matter to me. Blizz has a shorter list of unkept promises. And don't get me wrong, I love swtor as a game. But I don't trust them when they say coming soon anymore.
    They really really really need to work on this. I'd LOVE it if they did what YoshiP has been doing for FFXIV. He straight up posts their development schedule, stating that this is the goal and not necessarily how it plays out, but still he posts it. It's got everything they've worked on, what they're currently working on, and their roadmap for the future. That's the kind of transparency that would do wonders for this game (provided their roadmap was actually good...). Instead, we get vague promises of things to come, which we've been getting since launch.

    IMO that's been one thing that's hurt the game the most. People get super amped for features they hype up, then a year later they either haven't talked about the feature, or simply say that it's still coming "soon" : /

    Redit: http://dl.square-enix.co.jp/ffxi/US/2012roadmap.jpg

    Good example of the kind of roadmaps that FFXIV shares. Granted it's for FFXI, but XIV has similar roadmaps, and for a while their producer letters (which were monthly, in addition to forum posting ect.) detailed out big changes they had made, what they were currently working on, and the next two rounds of things they were planning on working on.
    Last edited by Edge-; 2013-01-02 at 10:31 PM.

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by edgecrusherO0 View Post

    IMO that's been one thing that's hurt the game the most. People get super amped for features they hype up, then a year later they either haven't talked about the feature, or simply say that it's still coming "soon" : /
    ...Or end up charging for things they once said would be free, or pushing back schedules because they are implementing an ever growing plethora of junk in the cartel market, or squeezing in phony holiday junk that you have to pay for to be a part of.

  16. #16
    I see a lot of words and promises. The proof is in the pudding so to speak.

    Also, same gender romances? A big meh to me but whatever.

  17. #17
    Does anyone think that the main problem with this game is not enough Operations, Flashpoints, difficulty modes, and PvP areas?

    To me, the main issue seems to be that they made an interesting story-based game and then turned it into standard MMO endgame. How fast will people blow through that expansion content and be bored again?

  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by Doozerjun View Post
    I see a lot of words and promises. The proof is in the pudding so to speak.

    Also, same gender romances? A big meh to me but whatever.
    The sad thing is I bet the majority of people pushing for SGR are just strange little boys/men who want to see thier virtal crossdressing character to make out with another virtual woman character. A lot are probably just depraved kids who want to see hot avatar on NPC action.

    There is obviously a real crowd who want SGR for legitimate reasons but a lot are just pissed they can't date a woman when they decided to make a woman character usually with some sort of lame excuse of "I don't wanna stare at a guy characters ass while I play" who's looking at their characters ass all day that it actually comes to mind(before you get weird and make a cross genederd character)?

    I'm all for SGR being in game, but it just sucks that it's usually an odd vocal crowd backing it (Not homosexuals but the depraved fantasy porn wanters)

  19. #19
    Basically I got out of that,

    #1 - Were adding more stuff, no really we are this time. You may be forced to buy it piece meal, and it may not all be included with the price of the expansion, but we will get your money, or ummm you will get the content eventually

    #2 - Yeah so Ilum sucked because our game engine couldn't handle it so we are scrapping it. Whats that? You want more spontaneous world PvP? Here have some more BG's, we can make those without the servers blowing up. We may also add more area's out in the world no one will ever use because no one has a reason to go there and they are out of the way.

    #3 - Hey we finally did it! Well maybe it will work, we hope anyways. Just trust us!

    #4 - Yeah, so that thing that all of you wanted that we said we are working on? Well we can't figure it out, but will give you the opportunity to flirt with an NPC once that will have zero bearing on anything you do afterwards! That works right? That should make you happy! ( Mind you I care very little about this but thats how it comes across)

    What it boils down for me is that I've been playing MMO's for a long time and when it comes to stuff like this I let it go in one ear and out the other. Even when it comes to Blizzard I don't believe it til I see it. It comes off as a PR stunt, cloaked around " Please buy the expansion ", slathered with just enough info so that anything asked about can be point to " coming soon". SOE used to be the kings of it, and hell even Blizzard has been guilty of it over the years. Show it to me and I'll believe it then.

    P.S. As far as Blizzard promises go there has been Dance Studios ( total bust), Path of Titans ( which they pulled because it was just another talent grind that they could never balance), and the Throne of Tides raid ( which I'm convinced was dropped because they just wanted to get Cata over with as fast as possible). Considering the number of things added vs the number of things they missed, they got a pretty good track record.
    Last edited by Armourboy; 2013-01-02 at 11:17 PM.

  20. #20
    Banned Baar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ptwonline View Post
    Does anyone think that the main problem with this game is not enough Operations, Flashpoints, difficulty modes, and PvP areas?

    To me, the main issue seems to be that they made an interesting story-based game and then turned it into standard MMO endgame. How fast will people blow through that expansion content and be bored again?


    Depends on how you play. After 3 months of subbing I just got my first 50 and still haven't finished a hard mode dungeon.

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