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News & Features Discussion  » General: Great Expectations - SW:TOR

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239 posts found
  axe_hero

Novice Member

Joined: 3/15/07
Posts: 69

3/24/10 3:01:22 PM#81

I really like this guy's style of writing. He really understands how to captivate the author's attention on the internet in his blogs. Not too many people sit down looking to read a novel or even a one page article, but Scott Jennings understands this and pulls the reader in with startling statements in claims. Could they have a little bit of false shock value? Sure, but boldness is the thing that blogs are made of, they are complete opinions written down in raw format which makes them so fun to read.

In short, cheers Mr. Jennings and keep up the good work.

"Time is not money, it is much more;
For I would give my very last dollar just to have one more moment on this Earth;
But I can't, for time does not accept payoffs, only lives"

  ZoeMcCloskey

Apprentice Member

Joined: 7/14/05
Posts: 1121

INTJ, fun is fun except when it's not

3/24/10 3:03:14 PM#82

Just like with movies, you can throw all the money around you want and toss special effects all over hte place.  But if you don't make sure there is something of substance there, it will fail.

  BadSpock

Hard Core Member

Joined: 8/21/04
Posts: 7679

Logic be damned!

3/24/10 3:03:40 PM#83

I just worry they are banking too much on players WANTING to go back and play through every classes story after they finish the story of their first character.

Because no matter how much content they create and how good it is, players can and will burn through it faster then expected.

So even if you play through all 8 classes and play religiously, like 40 hours a week, and at MOST a single class will have 80 hours of gameplay (though I doubt it'd be that high) you are looking at 640 hours to complete all 8 classes, which if you are able to keep up the break-neck pace of 40 hours a week will take you 16 weeks or about 4 months.

What happens then?

How will they keep you around for another 8 months in order to re-coup their investment? what will you do?

Even if you play 20 hours a week it's only 8 months, what do you do for the last four?

Hopefully they'll be actively creating content but how much can they really produce per-month?

Let's guess at 3 years total development time, and again go with our 640 hours total content. That's 213 hours of content per yer, or 17.75 hours per month.

If they can maintain that content creation rate (doubtful) it's still a month of work for less then a week of play time. What do you do the other 3 weeks?

They REALLY need to start revealing the "MMO" parts of this game, because no matter HOW much story they deliver they'll never deliver enough and be able to maintain a content creation rate to satisfy the "hardcore" gamer and likely not even the more "casual" 20 hours/week gamer.

And those with no interest in playing all 8 classes stories?

hey need to start given us REAL answers about the game rather then keep shoving the talking-points down our throats. Yes, we know you have full voice acting and an alignment system.

What else ya got?

Now Playing: D3:RoS, Watch Dogs
Looking Towards: Destiny

  Khalathwyr

Tipster

Joined: 6/02/04
Posts: 3151

Google is your friend.

3/24/10 3:11:36 PM#84
Originally posted by heerobya

I just worry they are banking too much on players WANTING to go back and play through every classes story after they finish the story of their first character.

Because no matter how much content they create and how good it is, players can and will burn through it faster then expected.

So even if you play through all 8 classes and play religiously, like 40 hours a week, and at MOST a single class will have 80 hours of gameplay (though I doubt it'd be that high) you are looking at 640 hours to complete all 8 classes, which if you are able to keep up the break-neck pace of 40 hours a week will take you 16 weeks or about 4 months.

What happens then?

How will they keep you around for another 8 months in order to re-coup their investment? what will you do?

Even if you play 20 hours a week it's only 8 months, what do you do for the last four?

Hopefully they'll be actively creating content but how much can they really produce per-month?

Let's guess at 3 years total development time, and again go with our 640 hours total content. That's 213 hours of content per yer, or 17.75 hours per month.

If they can maintain that content creation rate (doubtful) it's still a month of work for less then a week of play time. What do you do the other 3 weeks?

They REALLY need to start revealing the "MMO" parts of this game, because no matter HOW much story they deliver they'll never deliver enough and be able to maintain a content creation rate to satisfy the "hardcore" gamer and likely not even the more "casual" 20 hours/week gamer.

And those with no interest in playing all 8 classes stories?

hey need to start given us REAL answers about the game rather then keep shoving the talking-points down our throats. Yes, we know you have full voice acting and an alignment system.

What else ya got?

I don't know how many of us there are out there, but I am of the camp that once I have chosen my favorite race/class combination I really don't have an interest in playing another character. I see it as time spent playing on another character takes away from advancement of my primary. So, after hearing Vogel's thoughts on crafting and then hearing that a significant part of their plan was to have people play through content again as another class...well, I purchased my ticket for a seat in the stands on this one. I have no motivation to get down on the playing field.

"Many nights, my friend... Many nights I've put a blade to your throat while you were sleeping. Glad I never killed you, Steve. You're alright..."

Kickstarter 1 / Naysayers 0

  MMO.Maverick

Inquisitor

Joined: 3/05/10
Posts: 7792

The middle road is the place to be!

3/24/10 3:25:03 PM#85
Originally posted by elderotter
  I also think that this whole issue is just a consequence of the whole Make a WoW killer mentality that seems to be hard-wired now in developer's brains.  Forget Wow-killing.  Make a decent game and the subs will come - spending the gross national profit of a small country is not the answer - good ideas coupled with good implementation and a smooth launch is more helpful than hundreds of millions of dollars.  My opinion.

(this mmorpg.com post editor really sucks! Havent seen it as bad as this on ANY forum!!)

 

I think it isn't as much the game developers, but more the publishing companies, investment companies and the game directors and other top managers of game companies that are getting a hard-on about trying to score the big hit, the next WoW  and big megabucks. And the press being a cheering crowd going into a rabid frenzy when it comes to upping the hype, like about subs numbers and boxes sold.

I think that most of the game developers and designers just want to get a decent to good pay in the field they like, and sure, working on a product they can be proud of. There'll not be many that think 'let's make a WoW killer together that sells millions of subs!'. But I can be wrong.

 

I'm starting to think that the high profile, potential blockbuster-MMO's are not the ones to look forward to, since to achieve that they have to find a way to please everyone, or at least as much of the mainstream player audience as they can attract. That doesn't bode well for different, innovative gameplay or original ideas.

Maybe the interesting ones to look forward to are the ones that will be aimed at a few 100k subs, with less than 1mil boxes sold. It's an amazingly weird, Twilight Zone thing that suddenly in this post-WoW era those numbers don't suffice anymore as a measure of MMO success to publishing companies, investors, media - and maybe many players as well - where before WoW MMO's and their owning companies managed to do fine by them.

The ACTUAL size of MMORPG worlds: a comparison list between MMO's

The ease with which predictions are made on these forums:
Fratman: "I'm saying Spring 2012 at the earliest [for TOR release]. Anyone still clinging to 2011 is deluding themself at this point."

  laserit

Hard Core Member

Joined: 3/24/10
Posts: 1376

Confusius say: Man who go to bed with itchy bum wake up with stinky finger

3/24/10 3:50:40 PM#86

Interesting read and entertaining responces

IMHO what will make or break this title after it releases, is whether or not it is fun and entertaining.  I also believe there is alot of miss information being spouted out in this thread. No one will be able to judge SW-TOR until release. I couldnt tell you whether this title will make a profit or not. But I believe with Bioware developing the title is , that it will be a very fun , entertaining and a well made game.

 

My first computer was a Tandy TRS80 and my first computer game was "Pyramid"

those were the days lol

Zenimax kicked my dog

  matobi

Novice Member

Joined: 12/04/08
Posts: 8

3/24/10 3:52:33 PM#87

Ill be pre-ordering the game and a know about 20 people in my college that will be. (do i get commission for spreading the word?) The game without any big marketing pushes is already grabbing people , people are always looking for new mmo''s and then there are the Star Wars fans, then there are the BioWare fans (im all three to be honest), they have a big market before even advertising properly, the forums are jam packed, i mean the site crashed when they started accepting testing invitations


Id be surprised if they don't get to 700k+ withing the first week

  Emhster

Apprentice Member

Joined: 11/28/09
Posts: 913

Played: Shadowbane, WoW, WAR, AOC, Aion, SWTOR, Rift, Tera

3/24/10 4:20:12 PM#88

This shift needs to happen in the playerbase too. If we're always expecting any new releases to be as complete as WoW upon release, we'll be waiting a lot.. Or we can expect only one successful release every 5 or 7 years.

Developers also need to control the scope of their product. Releasing a game with limited (but functionning) features is better than releasing a plate of bugs and wishful thinking.

  happyfarts

Novice Member

Joined: 11/25/09
Posts: 82

3/24/10 4:22:45 PM#89

well if anyone can match up with Blizzard, I think Bioware's on the top of my list

  Nebless

Novice Member

Joined: 12/22/08
Posts: 912

3/24/10 4:23:35 PM#90
Originally posted by KyngBills
Originally posted by Azerin

Yes, it's always a risk and a toss of the dice, a high one too if your rough estimates are close. However, if you weigh the odds and consider what they're doing and with whom, it's definitely a well calculated risk.

You have:

- One of the most popular, well recognized, and highest grossing IP's/Franchises in history: Star Wars

- One of the biggest rising stars in game development, well respected and renowned for quality games: Bioware. I think it's
   safe to say that Bioware's reputation and following are on par with Blizzards, and I see Bioware taking more and more of
   the spotlight.

- One of the most well recieved "eras" of the SW universe: The Old Republic. The games and the lore behind this era have
  been well recieved, some even like it better than the Luke/Darth Vader era.

- The backing of EA and Lucasarts ( for whatever that's worth to some )

- Some new, never-before seen features in an MMORPG, like fully voiced NPC's/dialouge for the WHOLE game, choice & consequence system for quests, etc.


Yes, I have high hopes for SWTOR, as I am a fan of both the IP and the developer. But, all games have a chance of failure, I just think SWTOR has a fairly good shot at coming out succesfully.

 Exactly...

Truth is as crazy as it sounds with the SW IP and Lucas' full backing the risk is not nearly what it is on other, much less expensive MMO Projects...

This Game will completely blow up wit HUGE Sub numbers at Launch...After that it's anyones guess...They'll have a few Month to show Folks if it's really the best thing since sliced bread or not...But mark my words the initial numbers will be massive...

 Not bad, only 5 1/2 'must be good cuz it's SW and BioWare' posts out of 84 so far.  Of which these 2 have to be the most rah rah of the bunch.

OK let's put a few items to rest before we go all 'must be good cuz ....'

First - BioWare.  Big Deal.  I looked at their game titles and you know what?  I've never played a single one and that fact has nothing to do with the Company, just that none of their titles interested me.

Second - It's Star Wars.  Well technically yes.  What if we said 'It's a Chevy! .... OK, but it's not the kind I like.

Which flows into the Third Point - It's a Popular era of SW.  There were at least 3 of us on another thread that flat out said we could care less about the OR era.  If you're trying to equal popular with KOTOR games sold, that's not a given. 

And if you're trying to equal KOTOR units sold with TOR must be a winner in sales.  Well KOTOR was for different systems right?  And paying $50.00 in a single shot for a game is a lot different than that $50.00 plus $15.00 a month for a year.  How many of those KOTOR boxes do you think they would have sold if they had a $230.00 price sticker on them up on the shelf?

EA and yes BioWare are banking on a lot of shakey ground.  First that a one shot game that brought in big bucks can translate to a long term money maker and that alot of players will want to replay all those classes / sides and hang around.  Unfortunitly I'm like the guy above,  Out of all those classes I may want to play 1 or 2 but not all and I could care less about playing the Republic.  Just as I never played a Rebel in SWG, I wouldn't play the good guys in TOR either and of the 9 classes (now) in SWG there's only Smuggler and Commando that I'd play and since some changes a while back even Smuggler dropped off my list.

And don't even try to toss in the SWG players or vet's.  If they don't play / like SWG cuz Jedi is a starter profession than why would you even think they'd want to come to TOR where the games canon equals Jedi all over the place.

  User Deleted
3/24/10 4:57:59 PM#91

A coworker and I were having an argument yesterday about MMOs. He is a BIG console guy (360 all the way), while I own a PS3 and Wii, I am a heavy PC gamer and have been since the C-64. But something that hit me in our discussion was something about WOW and SW:TOR.
He was saying he is going to have to upgrade his system to play SW:TOR. While I do not need to upgrade, because I play 99.9% of my games on the PC. He said that the reason and the only reason he played WOW was because his 5-6 year old system, could play it very well, no reason to upgrade.

If SW:TOR is going to succeed, it is not going to be because of the budget from EA. First it has to be accessible, then fun. If everyone has to upgrade who has bought their computer in the last two years. I don’t think the game will be a huge success. Unless the game is so fun that everyone and their mother is on it. And that makes people upgrade, which will be good for hardware companies. I also have high hopes for this game and I will be on board. But it will be a wait and see if it will deliver.
 

  zazma

Apprentice Member

Joined: 7/20/08
Posts: 2

3/24/10 5:01:06 PM#92

Mr. Wood I find your argument at total fault,

The fact is that the Movie and Recording industry have operated in Blockbuster manner for years and have sustained this for a very long time. But still new Independants have succedeed and even thrived in that heavy inductry controled enviroment and so your argument is false.  The fact is that the Interview given by Ray Mazucha and the EA president done on G4 channel stated that Mass Effect and Dragon Age were basically test and money making platforms to OFFSET the price of development of  SW:TOR. Perhaps you missed that interview. However I am sure that no matter what ,independant MMO's will still succeed.. take for instance EVE: Online. That survived for years before a MAJOR company took intrest in it and eventually folded it into its wings and made it even more successful.

This is the same argument made that BIG companies are never good for the market as SMALL business get ran out of town because of the big businesses, which does not also hold water as that small business is more than 2/3rds our economy and many of them are independant and fill a speacial and needed niche and continue to thrive.

  Padre-Adamo

Novice Member

Joined: 8/23/03
Posts: 60

3/24/10 6:04:38 PM#93

I will keep this short and sweet. The article is well-written and is a VERY well done guess. I think this guess is actually closer to truth. Asheron's Call 1 is the true idea that games don't need to cost a ton of money to make and there are countless other examples. However, I think if Star Wars TOR applies the same formula of gear + raid + class = fun, then guess what? It will fail. The industry wants something new. If this game attempts to even copy this formula, it is finished. There is no amount of voice acting in the world that will save it from that path. Sad, but true.

  Fdzzaigl

Hard Core Member

Joined: 8/22/09
Posts: 2002

3/24/10 6:15:51 PM#94
Originally posted by heerobya
So even if you play through all 8 classes and play religiously, like 40 hours a week, and at MOST a single class will have 80 hours of gameplay (though I doubt it'd be that high) you are looking at 640 hours to complete all 8 classes, which if you are able to keep up the break-neck pace of 40 hours a week will take you 16 weeks or about 4 months.

200+ hours of gameplay per class (from video interviews).


So a really hardcore player would still take a month / class

  Banquetto

Apprentice Member

Joined: 10/06/09
Posts: 1026

3/24/10 6:25:13 PM#95
Originally posted by Lobotomist

And as for WOW numbers.

You must take into account that most of those were non gamers. People that them selves said will never go back to MMOs again. They are not really interested in the genre.

For them it was just popular thing to do. Like Facebook is today. Or Farmville for that mater.

SWTOR has to rely on core gamers.

 

1) I know the "WoW players don't play games, they just play WoW" meme is a popular article of faith, but is there any actual evidence of it? I know I've never met a WoW player who didn't also play other games, but I can't guarantee the circles I move in are representative.

 

2) Why does SWTOR have to rely on core gamers? Even if we assume it is correct that "most" WoW players are non-gamers, what magical force enabled WoW to attract all of these non-gamers, and why can't SWTOR do the same thing? Certainly there are a lot of Star Wars fans to be drawn in: obviously neither the Blizzard nor Warcraft brands had any draw at all amongst non-gamers, but the Star Wars brand surely does?

  Dave3216

Novice Member

Joined: 9/04/09
Posts: 136

Excuses are the refuge of the weak.

3/24/10 6:32:44 PM#96

Wow the irony in here is so thick you can smell it. Ive spent the last few months reading through post after post after post (due mainly to cryptics flop) about how developers need more MONEY and time to do projects. I have just read 10 pages of people saying throwing money at a game wont work. Well people how the hell is a company going to make a game you like when you cant even make your mind up if they should spend money on a project or not. So whats it going to be people whinge and bitch no matter what developers do, or put your money where your mouth and your podgy typing fingers are, and support a company that is spending the money you have all been crying about on here.

  Hopscotch73

Tipster

Joined: 8/12/09
Posts: 972

Urgle blurgle geflurgle.
Need more coffee.

3/24/10 6:48:10 PM#97

From everything I've read, EA are pretty much leaving Bioware alone to do their thing. If you look at the fact that EA seemed to have anticipated/planned for SW:TOR launching in the financial year just ended (from the quote), the fact that the game's release window was announced as being much later than that would seem to imply that Bioware are calling the shots in terms of "when it's ready".


I'd be wary of guessing whether or not the game will recoup costs in a year, but I think one worry that hasn't been touched on too much, is that if Bioware are calling the shots on when the game is release-ready, and it doesn't fulfil EA's rather inflated expectations straight out the gate, then Bioware will never again be given a say on when their product is release-ready. Nor will any other sub-studio of EA. The farther away the release, the higher the spend. Unless SW:TOR is hugely successful, development time will be curtailed on future projects. Every gamer know this would not bode well, rushed-out, unfinished, barely tested, bug-ridden messes will proliferate (more than currently, if that's possible) and the MMO market will stagnate as a result. This is something that "the suits"/the moneymen don't recognise as a problem. Too many publishing houses are depending on box sales to recoup and not on subscription numbers/retention rates.

 

I'd hazard a guess that EA are singing one song to their investors (we will get the money invested back lickety-split on release), and another to Bioware (more money? more time? no problem!). Of course their investors like the idea that the past x years and x $ spending on SW:TOR will magically be recouped in a year from launch, with some extra profit on the top. Throwing in figures like 2m subs is a way to make it seem like that would be possible. Who knows if they really believe their own math? Or whether they'll hold Bioware to it.

 

 

  Comnitus

Novice Member

Joined: 6/03/09
Posts: 2509

Revenge is a dish best served with mayonnaise and those little cheesy things on sticks.

3/24/10 6:52:45 PM#98
Originally posted by Dave3216

Wow the irony in here is so thick you can smell it. Ive spent the last few months reading through post after post after post (due mainly to cryptics flop) about how developers need more MONEY and time to do projects. I have just read 10 pages of people saying throwing money at a game wont work. Well people how the hell is a company going to make a game you like when you cant even make your mind up if they should spend money on a project or not. So whats it going to be people whinge and bitch no matter what developers do, or put your money where your mouth and your podgy typing fingers are, and support a company that is spending the money you have all been crying about on here.

That's the point I was trying to get at with my earlier comment. Well, not that hypocrisy is rampant on this site, we all know that already. If you're going to compete, you need a solid, polished game, and to do that you need money and time. That's what BioWare has, but, apparently, because it's "just another themepark," it doesn't really matter how much money and time is put into it. Go figure, right?

  firesnake77

Novice Member

Joined: 4/18/09
Posts: 37

"Man is condemned to be free." -Sartre

3/24/10 7:03:54 PM#99

I trust BioWare.  In my opinion, they're far and away the best game developers in the business, and have been for years.  They'll make an amazing game.  That's enough for me.

 

 

$

Originally posted by Wighty

It's like the latest batch of MMO's are like a f'n Kevin Costner movie... <think Waterworld, the Postman, etc> they cost a FORTUNE, they sound like they may be good but then you just realized you sat around for 3 hours of WTF...

  Nilenya

Hard Core Member

Joined: 5/01/08
Posts: 335

3/24/10 7:09:24 PM#100

Blizzard also hired gamers to develop quests and storylines. They poached players from Everquest and then had those poach entire guilds off that game. They probably saved millions on that strategy alone. Blizzard was totally grassroot when it developed wow, and was very smart about getting the word out there about their game. Back then they had much less competition due to the lack of mainstream mmo's back in 2004-2005. EQ, L2 and I supposed swg followed shortly after, but compared with today, not the same competition at all. And Blizzard still went to the players, hired players, spread the words through the communities and got people involved.

I see none of that in Swtor, and havent for that matter in any other mmo since wow. It seems like a huge resource that is laying dormant and being overlooked by all these companies, simply because they havent researched or werent around to witness gaming forums in 2004-2005 where all the zomg wow betainvited my guild and poached all my raider dramas occured.

Sure you want beta testers who are hardcore and experienced, but rather than earning a little commercial space on fileplanet, ftlog, visit all the major serverforums for all major mmos, contact all the guildleaders and extend beta invites to as many people as your beta servers can carry. Thats how you do it, a little time an effort and you probably poached a good chunk of the "bored-of-the-same-old" wow players. Get with the times and stop treating Beta invites like an elitist good. Treat it like a way to poach players off the competition.

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