Phew! Fans looking forward to BioWare’s Star Wars: The Old Republic have often complained about the rate of information coming out for the game, but I imagine most fans are pretty satisfied (oh who am I kidding?) at least for the moment with the absolutely massive amount of information coming out of the latest series of Immersion Days events BioWare has put on.
If you’ve managed to miss some or all of the Immersion Days coverage here at MMORPG.com, fret not, as we’ve gone ahead and put together a rundown of all the goodies!
“In the end, there are certainly familiar feelings of running through a group instance together in Flashpoints, but like everything else in Star Wars: The Old Republic, BioWare’s signature storytelling comes through, and this really ends up setting the experience apart from your typical dungeon romp. There is dialogue, but it’s generally quicker than what you find out in the world. BioWare’s strengths come through here with the way the story is told visually. Enemies are bursting through walls and boarding your ship, sparks fly everywhere, and huge space battles are erupting outside as you’re making a mad dash through a hangar to board a transport.”
“Some of these tasks are fairly brutal as well. For one, I was sent to make an example of someone who’d crossed the Hutt. My task was to kill him and deliver his head to his wife in a sack. Showing up to undertake this gruesome endeavor isn’t a matter of a simple firefight and looting the head off the guy’s corpse, only to return to the some quest NPC and gain an experience reward. Instead, what transpires is actually a fairly brutal cutscene where the bounty hunter clocks the guy over the head with his pistol, presses his knee into the poor guys back while he lays helpless on the floor and pretty much saws his head clean off his neck. While absent of blood, it is still fairly graphic and I was both shocked and impressed to find such a scene in the game.”
“Unfortunately, we didn’t get very far into Dromund Kaas, but we did undertake one of the planet’s early Heroic quests, which involved wading through a camp of fairly tough elite mobs in order to take out the group’s commander. We decided to test out our slightly upgraded group tools, and while I was lacking an active taunt ability, I must’ve had something built in as I did a fairly decent job at holding aggro nonetheless. As a Powertech I had access to Hunter’s Defense, a group-wide buff that improved my groupmembers’ armor values, as well as additional Flamethrower attacks. Perhaps it was the increased burninating that aggravated my enemies?”
“Star Wars: The Old Republic’s space combat functions similarly to games like StarFox. Controls are simple, the ship is controlled with the mouse and can be moved around the screen, there is one button for firing lasers, another for missiles, and finally a button for doing a roll maneuver. While the game is “on rails” like StarFox, there are actual forks in the missions where you can opt to take different paths. For example, the mission presented us with the opportunity to take on a bonus objective by flying towards a capital ship and taking our turrets. If you’re not feeling so ballsy, you can simply go the other way and avoid the capital ship entirely.”
“Our PvP demo was set for our second day at the event, and following a successful day grouping with some of my colleagues in the press I decided to approach the rest of the group with a new plan: beat the developers at their own game. Let’s face it, they were tossing us into the deep end here with PvP and this is probably the only time the developers will be better than the players as they know their game and the Warzone better than we did. So, why not rob them of this small pleasure and add a little competitive twist to the demo?”
“Well when tanking with the Bounty Hunter specifically, you definitely have to be aware of where you’re pulling the fight. So a melee tank will very often go straight to where the fight is, a ranged tank is actually looking at where he wants the fight to be. Because backing up just a little bit, you can actually sort of move the whole system of a fight, because you’re already at the periphery, you’re at the furthest range of what you can be. The ranged tank also, for me personally, I really like the visibility it gives. If I’m playing tank, I’m kind of playing battle commander, everything is, I’m the most important person as far as managing the conflict. Ranged tank means you’re far enough back from the action, but you’re not covered in nine dudes, so you can actually see what all the different players are doing, so it lets you play a bit more of a general role.” - Lead Writer Daniel Erickson
“There are no cross-faction quest givers, so there are places that you end up, most of them are locked to a particular faction. Later on, there are some that can be run by both factions, but they’re sort of in different contexts and everything you do as far as actual dialogue and role-playing are all different. You’ll never have a time where you’re going to go in and talk to the same Imperial Moff that told the Empire to go do something, and your Jedi is going to go, ‘OK! I’ll do that too!’” - Lead Writer Daniel Erickson
“So the Dark Side choices, a lot of the Dark Side choices tend to be the expediency vs. loyalty, both to Empire and to people. So you’re going to make a lot of good friends when you’re being undercover obviously brings loyalties into sharp contrast. If you’re undercover, and you’re working with somebody who’s a fantastic person, has their heart in the right place, is doing good work, and then you’re ordered to kill them because they’re somebody who can trace you back after the fact, you’re going to have to really sit down and decide, “Where do my morals stand on this? Will I do anything the job says?” Often, in fact, it comes down to, “What do I think is the best for my people?” When the Sith coming calling you have to do what they say, but of course they’re not out in the field with you, and so are you willing to make yourself look worse? Are you willing to not complete the mission to the exact specifications? Because you think what the Sith are trying to do is something that’s actually good for the Empire.” - Lead Writer Daniel Erickson
“No, there is limits. Actually, in one of our builds there was no limit and it was pretty ugly. Players will be players and we had to go in there and police because they were griefing each other on Nar Shaddaa, which is one of the planets where you really get together, and the guard mechanic was not there, and by guard I mean actual guards that protect you at critical points, and it was pretty ugly, people we're killing each other at taxis, and it was fun, but it really impacted the playstyle for some people.
I know people are like, "It's a PvP server! You signed up for it!" but there's a core minimum that we want to maintain. But we do like that there is a concept of making the other side miserable when you are well organized and so on, it's a balance. There will be zones that are safe, there are zones that are naturally safe because you don't tend to go there, well, I won't say more about that, nevermind.”- Lead Designer Emmanuel Lusinchi