Ten Weeks In

It’s been ten weeks since Legacy of the Sith released, and yet I haven’t really touched on it. This is not because I’m so put out by the state of things that I’m not playing and resorting to trying to protest the existence of the expansion as some people are doing; I’ve just been doing so much over the past ten weeks, namely the second Galactic Season and getting my new Trooper through the story, that it’s been hard to really devote much thought to writing about stuff.

And sure, I have my fair complaints about the expansion. I’m not fond of the Imperial story on Manaan, and I loathe that we’re now one-and-a-bit expansions into Malgus’ return and we still know nothing about his grand plans other than it has something to do with the future of the Jedi and Sith. The tuning of group content is also a bit ridiculous, with rumours suggesting that content is seemingly scaled to 334-gear levels rather than max of 330-gear.

But on the whole… I have very few complaints about the state of things. I like the new UI, although I will concede that it is annoying that the changes are only half-done. The new inventory and character sheet are very nice, and I am looking forward to seeing the rest of the changes when they come in. I also don’t mind the new class icons, and I can understand both reasons why they were changed; resolution is one thing, but consider this:

A few of the previous icons had some aspect of clear class-identity, with the Inquisitor one having lightning, and the Smuggler one showing a pistol. Well… now we can get Inquisitors that don’t have lightning (outside of cutscenes, that is!) or a smuggler that doesn’t wield a pistol (again, outside of cutscenes…), so those icons don’t really suit the new class philosophy. Helmets, or some other generic icon such as the Havoc Squad insignia or the credit symbol, does feel like the safer way to go in this regard, although I do wish that the ones on the main screen had more colour to them rather than just being plain white.

As for resolution… yeah, it’s always been clear that a lot of the elements don’t suit upscaling of any kind. For a clear and very literal example of upscaling, look at the Imperial and Republic unlocks tabs of the Legacy pane. For ten years, the companion portraits were substantially smaller than their frames, which I believe was because whoever put them together tried scaling the portraits up and found the result displeasing to the eye.

Now, the portraits have been scaled up, and… well… the result is about as bad as I thought it would have been. Lots of artifacting, the images are blurred… it doesn’t look good at all. On the one hand, I am pleased that this has finally been sorted, as it has always bugged me that the frames were much bigger than the portraits, but on the other I do kinda feel they should have waited until new portraits of the companions were produced.

I really like the new gearing system, and – RNG frustrations notwithstanding – I feel it’s the right sort of pace. I’m not fond of how many currencies there are or about the quite punitive limits that exist on the Medals of Commendation in particular. Fortunately, this is one limit which is being raised come 7.0.2, so that’s something! I also do kinda want there to be something I could spend my 2,500 Decurion Isotope Stabilisers on…

This all said, I am very much looking forward to seeing the new operation and daily zone in 7.1. I don’t feel this will be “enough” new content for most people griping about lack of content to be happy with, because what would have been with 7.1 – which datamining indicates would have been the second daily zone of 7.0 – has surely now been pushed back to 7.2 or something like that. Boiling it down, all that 7.1 will be for non-group-content people will likely be a series of repeatable missions and a new Reputation track to grind.

Sure, that will still be at least six weeks of activity for people to get their teeth into, but once we get past that… the complaints will surely just resume once again.

Not that I’m trying to say they’re unjustified; I’m just trying to point out that unless something changes drastically, 7.1 will likely not provide much more meat than what’s in already for level 80 players who aren’t interested in operations or PvP.

But then maybe this little morsel will provide more sustenance for those people than I feel it will.

There’s no denying that 7.0 has been the roughest expansion launch we’ve seen yet. It will recover, and this is hardly the worst state that this game has been in, but even I must acknowledge that this hasn’t been a smooth course. Bugs galore, content delayed for one reason or another… I’m happy with where things are, but I look forward to seeing what else is yet to come.

Especially if it starts to provide some much-needed answers about what a certain renegade Sith Lord is up to.

And for Darth Malgus as well, I suppose.