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Star Wars: The Old Republic

Star Wars: The Old Republic 

General Discussion  » Having followed this game for eight years, here's my summary of what went wrong

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119 posts found
  SlothnChunk

Advanced Member

Joined: 4/17/11
Posts: 440

6/19/12 4:46:34 PM#41
Originally posted by Derros
Originally posted by Cinatrot

 What was needed - Bioware developed, Starwars lore driven sandbox with a decent engine.

What we got - WoW with Starwars branding and EQ2's engine.

 

How was Bioware of all people going to make a sandbox?  Forget MMOs they dont have any experience at all with that type of game.  The instant Bioware was taged to make the game, it was deemed that it was not going to be a sandbox.

Bioware never made an MMO prior to TOR either. And plenty of us were expecting TOR to be far more open and have some sandbox elements. It fails at both.

  Jounar

Novice Member

Joined: 1/11/10
Posts: 143

6/19/12 5:38:15 PM#42
Originally posted by wizyy

What went wrong is:

- "story-driven" single player MMO (awful idea)

- hideous character models and sloppily done character animations

- uninspired quests

- hero engine with its limits

- no meaningful PvP

- no dungeon finder tool

- "space on rails" (really, Bioware? that's so pitiful for Star Wars)

- the game just looks and feels cheap - no better than many F2P titles, for example STO

Bang on the money here.

 

Tho the space combat for me is a minor issue that could of been ignored if the rest of the issues were not sure deal breakers.

  Dinasty

Novice Member

Joined: 5/23/08
Posts: 119

6/19/12 5:40:21 PM#43
Originally posted by kanezfan

SWTOR is the biggest gaming disappointment of all time. Just a big steaming pile of dog vomit draped over a lump of dog shit.

D3 would like to have a word with you.

  MMOGamer71

Hard Core Member

Joined: 11/12/07
Posts: 1519

6/19/12 5:48:29 PM#44

1)  Developer arrogance is what went wrong.

Example:

Was in three (did only 2 Beta's though due to work) Beta's, during Beta there was on the official forums a suggestion from the Beta testers about a recognition or Founders Title, we were told in short to go pound sand.

EA/Bioware later releases a subscription plan which includes such a title.

 

2)  Game released without basic 2012 MMO items.

Example:

Unmovable UI

No Guild Banks

No Group Finder

 

3)  Lying to consumers

Example:

High Res graphics mode that we (I) played in beta.

  User Deleted
6/19/12 5:56:20 PM#45



Having followed this game for eight years, here's my summary of what went wrong

I can tell you the first thing that went wrong just off the thread title.....

  noncley

Advanced Member

Joined: 1/16/12
Posts: 631

 
OP  6/19/12 6:23:07 PM#46
Originally posted by Elikal

A good sum up, OP. It sounds accurate. But let me add one thing: hubris. The sheer arrogance not to see ANY advise and listen to ANY sort of critique, and totally denying to learn from any previous MMO.

I am not sure hubris was the problem, certainly not at the beginning. It's my belief that everyone involved - Bioware, LA and EA - all wanted to make a *great* game and, to do that, each one of these three players made a conscious decision to do things differently from the way they had done things in the past.

  • Bioware decided that it would commit to doing a largescale MMORPG though it did not have the technical track-record or the project management experience to handle such an undertaking;
  • LA decided it would not impose a cast-iron timetable on its licence partner [and, a new point, I suspect LA chose not to audit the game's content for 'EU lore' continuity which it usually does with all its licence partners - which is why SWTOR tier armors, the design of which Bioware eventually had to farm out to 3rd party graphics agencies, some in India,  look so strange, fantasy-type and non-SW]
  • EA decided not to micromanage Bioware - the mistake it made with another in-house studio brand, Mythic - but this effectively meanty that there were no financial or management checks in place to ensure good development discipline.

The arrogance, that you saw - and that we all saw - came in the game's marketing. I believe it was the result of desperation.I speculate that by the beginning of 2011, it was obvious to EA that the game was not going to be a huge long-term success - I mean, after all, along with all the accountants and marketing men and other bullshit artists in the company, there are also plenty of people who play and love.  There was no chance that the years and hundreds of millions invested was going to come from mass subscription in the long-term. The only hope of clawing back the investment was from initial sales during a very brief launch window..

That's why the launch date (20th December) was chosen. It was in the middle of the Christmas sales rush - but not so distant from the holiday that word of mouth about the game would get around until the holiday was over. And that's why prices for the game was amped up to price-gouging levels.

That's also why we were subject to such a ridiculous and hysterical marketing campaign in 2011 - arrogant, dismissive and, in the case of buying off game reviewers with both direct and indirect payments, downright dishonest. Everythingt was geared to making gigantic box sales on 20th December and a few weeks after. EA's markeitng team didn't care if it offended subscribers by lying to them and dismissing their views; after all, as DA 2 and ME 3 showed, games players can never truly be 'burned', they will always come back and buy the next game.

 

  dead2soon

Novice Member

Joined: 2/02/11
Posts: 151

6/19/12 6:58:23 PM#47

Thanks for an interesting read.

  Sleepyfish

Advanced Member

Joined: 8/25/09
Posts: 345

6/19/12 10:59:44 PM#48
Originally posted by Sovrath

The problem with SWToR is very simple.

Some of the things people are saying "went wrong" are actually plusses in the eyes of others so one person's trash is another person's treasure.

Just because someone doesn't like something doesn't mean it went wrong. Some fo the things thrown around here are "story, instances, wow clone, etc".

These things are actually liked and wanted by some. And since the game is exactly what they said it would be and there are people who like these things, let's really look at the actual issues.

1, not enough to do at level cap. And since it is a theme park based on story it's not clear on what one should be doing. Suddenly it goes from story driven mmo to an mmo that requires instance grinding.

2, no promotion of community on the planets. Because there is only one place to "be" which is the fleet, each planet is a quest hub and nothing more. people want to get in and out of those places, no reason to linger and no reason to be there and help people who just arrived. And they are huge quest hubs so it's easy for them to remain ghost towns.

3, it being more story based without enough player created/driven activity means that people will buy it, play through a character or two and then be done.

4, not everyone going to SWToR was a pvp'er or wanted to pvp so I will say that the pvp community who wanted star wars pvp thought too much of the Illum planet and Bioware wasn't able to deliver a satisfying experience.

That's pretty much it.


I think the term SOME players wanted those features is accurate. The problem is TOR agreed with Some people and ignored the other 90% who did not want NGE 2.0 which is all TOR is. As to point 4 pvp is so bad anyway me and most other pvpers wouldnt touch TOR with a ten foot pole anyway.  To point 1, they built the game around end game raiding  and running through content to do it, however even that, the selling point to end game raiders was botched. Story was meaningless because content was badly done, horribly done.

 

In the years of forum discussions on the game people were exited until they started talking about "star wars is about loot" and hyping up interviews with large raiding guilds like Ensidia.  If you want to build a game for purely raid progression thats fine, but its oldschool now and even a pretty good WOWesque style game like RIFT. Which to date is still the best modern version of EQ and WOW, only has a population of 200k or so, about the same as EQ2.

  ktanner3

Master

Joined: 3/19/06
Posts: 4146

Trolls will be ignored

6/19/12 11:13:59 PM#49
Originally posted by Sleepyfish

 


I think the term SOME players wanted those features is accurate. The problem is TOR agreed with Some people and ignored the other 90% who did not want NGE 2.0 which is all TOR is.

 

Sorry, but it's impossible to take the rest of what you say seriously with such a ridiculous statement.

 

 

Currently Playing: Star Wars The Old Republic

  Sleepyfish

Advanced Member

Joined: 8/25/09
Posts: 345

6/19/12 11:49:12 PM#50
Originally posted by ktanner3

Sorry, but it's impossible to take the rest of what you say seriously with such a ridiculous statement.

And you lack the ability to explain why.

It was obviously the second failed attempt to attract the same audience with a fan base that rejected it.

  chryses

Novice Member

Joined: 5/29/07
Posts: 1438

6/20/12 12:01:49 AM#51

I swear Bioware should write a book about the life of SWTOR, they would make 100 million just off that.

Talking about expertise regarding games development.  SWTOR felt like KOTOR but with other players running around doing the same missions.  I was thinking at the time, 'these people don't know MMO's.'

 

For me the game fell between MMO and Single Player and ended up being a poor cousin for both genres, therefore people who want immersive single player, pick up Skyrim, those that want immersive MMO go back to whatever they were playing.

The nail in the coffin for me is the complete lack of landscape and exploration.  Within 2 days I felt like a rabbit caught in a trap and I wanted to bite my own foot off. 

I just thought about the original Star Wars and the wide sweeping shots of desert and sprawling cities.  I wanted to get in a hover craft and speed off looking for resources.  Instead I felt like a pork chop being pushed through a grinder.

SWTOR my biggest gaming dissapointment ever?  Need to think, but its definitely in the top 3.

  User Deleted
6/20/12 12:23:22 AM#52


Originally posted by chryses
I swear Bioware should write a book about the life of SWTOR, they would make 100 million just off that.

Talking about expertise regarding games development.  SWTOR felt like KOTOR but with other players running around doing the same missions.  I was thinking at the time, 'these people don't know MMO's.'

 

For me the game fell between MMO and Single Player and ended up being a poor cousin for both genres, therefore people who want immersive single player, pick up Skyrim, those that want immersive MMO go back to whatever they were playing.

The nail in the coffin for me is the complete lack of landscape and exploration.  Within 2 days I felt like a rabbit caught in a trap and I wanted to bite my own foot off. 

I just thought about the original Star Wars and the wide sweeping shots of desert and sprawling cities.  I wanted to get in a hover craft and speed off looking for resources.  Instead I felt like a pork chop being pushed through a grinder.

SWTOR my biggest gaming dissapointment ever?  Need to think, but its definitely in the top 3.



Just to add to one of your points. Exploration in SWTOR for me was one of the least rewarding aspects of the game. There was very little to find. Most of the datacrons were trials in platforming more than exploration. Moreover, there were no rewards for locating out of the way places. The chests offered lackluster rewards and the planets discouraged exploration. Planets like Hoth teased us with plenty of space to explore but the caves and places were either closed off to your faction or class or some type of quest hub. Even the heroic areas became bland quickly. The rewards were hardly worth the effort of finding a group or attempting the challenge.

  Silvermink

Novice Member

Joined: 6/07/07
Posts: 289

6/20/12 12:42:09 AM#53

I liked the story idea, but it was meaningless. No matter what you chose on each planet had no effect on the next one or the end. Also the story ended at the last planet, end of game. This is my biggest fear about guild wars 2.

 

The UI elements or bugs didn't really bother me, they were mostly minor. Crafting had such potential, but had lackluster results...even after the big crafting patch.

 

The biggest problem for me was rampant gear inflation. Once you reached level cap, you had a grind for gear that was intensely over powered. Once you had tier 3 gear your stats were 10x that of a fresh 50. This seems to be normal for games today unfortunately. :(

  Drachonis

Novice Member

Joined: 7/17/05
Posts: 183

6/20/12 12:48:37 AM#54

Op had an interesting read, and if this represents the true history of this game, then I would agree with his/her reasoning.  I quit this game b4 I had to suscribe, and have not really looked back.  I leveled a sith war to 50 and farmed the battlezones and did some instances only to see, after the story was done, that this was just more of the same, but laking a lot of content other games have.  I will never play this game again, as it is really just a single player game till 50, then its a bare bones wow/eq clone.  I don't feel cheated at all, I got some good play time out of my 60 bucks.  But you won't see me ever subscribing and give EA more of my money lol.

  Corehaven

Novice Member

Joined: 7/27/11
Posts: 1574

I swear by my pretty floral bonnet, I will end you.

6/20/12 1:03:14 AM#55
Originally posted by Vesavius
Originally posted by FrodoFragins

Way too wordy.  Didn't read.  Everyone knows what went wrong wtih TOR and can make a short list that gets all of the major reasons.

 

C'mon Frodo... you're smarter then this.

If you really can't focus enough to read a page of text (god forbid) then maybe it's not good to participate in the following discussion? Just saying.

The OP was actually a pretty good read.

Has anyone from Bioware or EA actually been given the boot post launch of SWtOR anyone know?

Yea I agree.  The OP was incredibly insightful.  Thats one of the more interesting posts Ive read in a good while.  It made total sense in the scope of things.  Well done. 

  DarkPony

Steed of Tardcore

Joined: 8/29/08
Posts: 5637

Confident, cocky, lazy, dead.

6/20/12 1:27:02 AM#56

To me it's more a combination of particular design choices made and I can be very specific on those:

- World pvp content as well as open world pve content at max level not being priorities. (This might have to do a lot with the increased pressure near launch though; they simply didn't have or take the time to properly develop those).

- Artificial world design and separating content between factions:

- Too much reliance on instanced content grinds (warzones and fp's) at max level and no incentives to revisit the worlds apart from leveling new characters.

- The "last minute" decision to have fleet stations instead of capitals for each faction or race. This turned it almost into a lobby game and impacted immersion.

- Technical shortcomings preventing travel between worlds / fleet stations to be more fluid and less intrusive.

p.s. I still think Swtor was great fun to play through at least once. It only really fell flat after getting to max level for me.

  ktanner3

Master

Joined: 3/19/06
Posts: 4146

Trolls will be ignored

6/20/12 8:17:18 AM#57
Originally posted by Sleepyfish
Originally posted by ktanner3

Sorry, but it's impossible to take the rest of what you say seriously with such a ridiculous statement.

And you lack the ability to explain why.

Anyone that's actually played both games knows this.The only thing similiar about the two is the IP and even that part isn't even in the same time period. Gameplay is different, leveling is different, crafting is different, worlds are different, space is different.

It was obviously the second failed attempt to attract the same audience with a fan base that rejected it.

Interesting because I hated the NGE and loved TOR. There are others who have the opposite feelings. You're also going to have to show me where the NGE was trying to cater to Bioware fans and people who like voice overs with cutscenes in their games.

 

Currently Playing: Star Wars The Old Republic

  chryses

Novice Member

Joined: 5/29/07
Posts: 1438

6/20/12 8:35:32 AM#58
Originally posted by chefdiablo

 


Originally posted by chryses
I swear Bioware should write a book about the life of SWTOR, they would make 100 million just off that.

 

Talking about expertise regarding games development.  SWTOR felt like KOTOR but with other players running around doing the same missions.  I was thinking at the time, 'these people don't know MMO's.'

 

For me the game fell between MMO and Single Player and ended up being a poor cousin for both genres, therefore people who want immersive single player, pick up Skyrim, those that want immersive MMO go back to whatever they were playing.

The nail in the coffin for me is the complete lack of landscape and exploration.  Within 2 days I felt like a rabbit caught in a trap and I wanted to bite my own foot off. 

I just thought about the original Star Wars and the wide sweeping shots of desert and sprawling cities.  I wanted to get in a hover craft and speed off looking for resources.  Instead I felt like a pork chop being pushed through a grinder.

SWTOR my biggest gaming dissapointment ever?  Need to think, but its definitely in the top 3.

 


 


Just to add to one of your points. Exploration in SWTOR for me was one of the least rewarding aspects of the game. There was very little to find. Most of the datacrons were trials in platforming more than exploration. Moreover, there were no rewards for locating out of the way places. The chests offered lackluster rewards and the planets discouraged exploration. Planets like Hoth teased us with plenty of space to explore but the caves and places were either closed off to your faction or class or some type of quest hub. Even the heroic areas became bland quickly. The rewards were hardly worth the effort of finding a group or attempting the challenge.

That was my problem also. I tried to go off track and I started to find caves or other areas that didn't seem to be populated but they were all mission specific or just illusion of space.  In a couple of days I felt pretty cheated by this and remember thinking, 'why wouldn't they put something here or up on that ledge to reward players exploring'.... but I guess it wasn't on their agenda and personally that is a massive turnoff for me.

  superniceguy

Elite Member

Joined: 2/17/07
Posts: 2277

NGE, LOTRO, STO, KOTOR, Lego Star Wars > NGE 2 (SWTOR). SWG>ALL. Above hopefully subject to change.

6/20/12 8:45:46 AM#59
Originally posted by ktanner3
Originally posted by Sleepyfish
Originally posted by ktanner3

Sorry, but it's impossible to take the rest of what you say seriously with such a ridiculous statement.

And you lack the ability to explain why.

Anyone that's actually played both games knows this.The only thing similiar about the two is the IP and even that part isn't even in the same time period. Gameplay is different, leveling is different, crafting is different, worlds are different, space is different.

It was obviously the second failed attempt to attract the same audience with a fan base that rejected it.

Interesting because I hated the NGE and loved TOR. There are others who have the opposite feelings. You're also going to have to show me where the NGE was trying to cater to Bioware fans and people who like voice overs with cutscenes in their games.

 

I have played both and SWTOR is NGE 2.0

Playing SWTOR just reminds me of doing the NGE legacy quests, but they are more enhanced, and less headache inducing. The only thing that motivated me putting through loads of characters through the Legacy series of quests hundreds of time was the end game, with crafting, space, BM, chronicles, player housing/cities etc

The Tutorail (spelling mistake but kept as appropriate for games or part of games on rails!) on Tansarri has Voice overs on it, and they wanted to put that throughout the rest of the game, but it was not viable to do - too overall expensive. If the NGE did as they expected (attract millions of players), they have made it possibe, but it meant changing the game so might not have been. Also throughout the NGE tutorail and entering Mustafar and a few quests on Mustafar you get cutscenes. As NGE failed, and lost people instead ... enter SWTOR, taking out all the stuff that makes you feel special/unique, and still retaining the simple iconic professions but this time incorporating crafting into them all instead of separate.

SWTOR would have done better if it was sold as a single player game with multiplayer options like Mass Effect 3. SWTOR is not a MMO other than it carries a monthly fee.

SWTOR is LAs vision of what they were trying to do to SWG with the NGE, but failed as the SWG engine was not designed for it.

  Rommie10-284

Hard Core Member

Joined: 12/07/05
Posts: 208

Really Uncle Bugs?

Spirit of Fair Play is slain by Online Community!

6/20/12 9:16:18 AM#60

Nice post, OP.  I think it is as accurate a summary as we can have without insiders stepping in with their knowledge.

For me, the key event is EA acquiring Bioware.  The old Bioware died that day, and we'll never know if they could have pulled off TOR.  It's painfully obvious that the new EABioware could not.  Personally, I'd bet that the old Bioware was in over thier heads as well, but it was a guarantee after getting absorbed.

And it's funny to me how EALouse has become TOR's Jose Canseco - people don't think much of the source, but the statements are becoming all too true.

Avatars are people too

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