State of the Game: PvE, PvP, and Dev Communication

Apologies for the twelve-day absence; I had some R/L things going on which required my attention.

It's been a question many people have asked; "What is the state of SWTOR?" Each time, the answer varies. I myself have tended to avoid any attempts to address my own feelings of the state of the game, being more content to simply enjoy the experience as a Star Wars nerd rather than a game enthusiast.

Until now.

As the question is a very broad one, I will be narrowing it down to three areas; PvE, PvP, and Developer Communication.

To elaborate slightly, I've already touched on what I think needs to be done for and the state of the story, so I will not reinforce what I've already detailed. Additionally, whilst 3.2.1 did also bring in class changes, I must admit that my understanding of other classes and exactly what each change means is minimal, so I will not be addressing any form of "Class State", because I will misrepresent pretty much everything.


Galactic Employ: 5 of the best Planet Quest-Chains

The various planets have offered many varying missions. The majority are just one-time and never really lead anywhere beyond completion, but there are those which initiate a series of quests, both short and long, which feature the same style of story as we have come to expect from BioWare.

With 12-times XP currently in-progress, I have decided to dedicate the second part of the second phase of "SWTOR Analysis" to the 5 best planet quest-chains, seeing which are "must-dos" alongside the story, where possible, or just which are the definitive "best".

For this, I am only counting supplementary planet quest-chains, and not planets like Makeb, Oricon, Rishi, Yavin, or Ziost where the planet quest-chain is the only such chain on the planet with no class-specific chain beside it.


Galactic Sightseeing: the 5 most beautiful planets in-game.

Planets are a big thing in any Star Wars game; the universe of the franchise makes for a great setting for any game because there are so many different worlds to reconstruct, regardless of how the players are transported to them. The Old Republic utilises its planets as levelling areas and hubs; each has their own "recommended" level parameters, and each manages to maintain its own unique aspect, be it functionality or simplicity, or area of torturous death or serene beauty.

As part of the second phase of looking back and analysing the game we've seen for the past three years - initiated back in March with the Class Story Critiques - I have decided to dedicate a post looking at which planets I view to be the most beautiful in-game, from launch to where we are right now.

I did set myself some rules before seeking the upcoming screenshots:

  • These planets have to be accessible by both factions in order to count.

  • Any areas shown pictured must be open or at least visible to both factions, and not part of any class or faction-specific phase.

  • People have to be able to access these planets by themselves without need for a group.

  • You have to be able to use your ship to access these planets.

So, let's get started.


Analysing potential future paths for small-scale story developments within SWTOR

The story of SWTOR has always been a major anchor point for many. Even those who criticised the gameplay or certain lackluster "baseline MMO features" found something positive in the varied and enthralling stories. Since 2.0, however, the story has noticeably taken a hit. We've gone from each of the eight characters having unique stories to both factions having a unique story and are now currently in the phase of both factions sharing the exact same stories, which has garnered a lot of criticism.

I can of course understand where the criticism of the current story path is coming from. Having to repeat scenes and missions is tedious enough, but having to do the exact same things on every character you own can be next-to infuriating.

With this in mind, I have decided to write a post analysing where the stories can progress to and see how the game's world has itself aided or abetted potential future paths.


Temples and Vrakes: Thoughts from the Deep Core

I haven't ever touched on the Cartel Market properly on this blog yet, and that's mainly because there hasn't yet been all that much which I have found particularly interesting to actually talk about. That is, until these last two weeks. The first thing which of course has impacted the Market and drastically increased its worth/value has been the Outfit Designer, but I'll refrain from talking about that yet again.

The second thing which happened is the release of the first of a hopefully very promising series of packs; the Deep Core Explorer's. I won't be reviewing the armour, weapons, or the majority of the mounts as I must admit that I don't think all that much of them, but there is a lot of future promise from what remains.


The Tragedy of Ziost

So Ziost finally fully-launched today, bringing to a close the story which 3.2 brought to us. Today brings Dailies and two new World Bosses - one Open and the other Instanced - and really not a lot else.

First, as promised, I shall touch on the all-too-brief story which we get given.