BioWare is looking to roll out new updates for Star Wars: The Old Republic at a bit of a faster pace than the massive Update 1.2: Legacy, which generally means smaller scale but more frequent updates, and it looks like this new schedule may begin with Update 1.3. So what do we know about Update 1.3 so far? Well, that’s what we’ll be discussing in this week’s column.
First, let’s start with the possible (but unconfirmed) title for Update 1.3. A recently released financial report for EA detailed two new content packs that would be available by the end of EA’s Q1 (ending in June), and they are ‘Legacy’ and ‘Allies’ respectively. Obviously, we’ve seen Update 1.2: Legacy, so it’s safe to assume that Update 1.3 would be the ‘Allies’ content pack. Interesting name, but what’s its significance? We learned a bit more about that in SWTOR’s first podcast episode, which debuted yesterday.
As I mentioned earlier, Update 1.3 will be a smaller update, and this much was confirmed during the podcast. The update is mainly focused on the debut of the group finder, which makes sense when considering the possibility of the update being called ‘Allies’.
The group finder was described as having a simple interface with a robust array of options and preferences for players to select from. Players will be able to select the roles they are willing to play (depending on the roles available to their class) and can queue up for random or specific content within a number of categories, including Operations (story mode only at the moment), Flashpoints (both normal and hard modes), and even planetary questing. In the latter example, players will be able to select from whichever planet they want to quest on and the game will match them up with other players looking to quest on that planet. While players can choose to sign up for specific Flashpoints, the group finder is also designed to encourage players to complete at least one random Flashpoint per day, though the reward for doing this wasn’t elaborated on. Cross-server functionality was not mentioned, so no word on that just yet.
I’m pretty excited for the group finder. I have a number of friends I still play SWTOR with, but sometimes if I’m playing alone (or if we have a slot open) it can be hard to find others to fill in for lower level content and Flashpoints, which is where I think the group finder will provide the most value to players. It’s generally easy to find people on the fleet to do hardmodes and such, but this will be a nice feature to have for those nonetheless.
Of course, the Legacy system will be expanding in Update 1.3 as well. Players have known about the Legacy additions coming in 1.3 as early as Legacy’s deployment to the public test server, so most of this won’t come as much of a surprise to anyone. Right now, players can simply take a look at the Legacy interface on the live game and click the Coming Soon tab to reveal the goodies coming to the system in 1.3. And they are plentiful. Perks like increases to Crew Skill critical chance, Warzone experience, space combat experience, and of course, the level 10 Speeder license, are likely to be extremely popular come 1.3. Hopefully, these unlocks will be priced fairly, as the current set of unlocks feel a bit on the steep side, but that’s just my take.
There are a couple of significant developments with regards to itemization in Update 1.3 as well. First, players will be able to use the currently pointless item modification tables found on the fleet and scattered throughout the game world to add augment slots to existing armor. This should create parity between crit-crafted oranges and gear obtainable from other sources, including Operations. Additionally, the long-awaited adaptive gear feature will be coming in 1.3 for those who are interested in tanking in their slave outfits. That’s right, social gear will now adapt to your character’s armor type! Awesome! I love the idea of social gear but I haven’t found too many sets that I’d be interested in using myself, but those who just love their slave and Tusken Raider outfits definitely have some cause to celebrate.
Which of Update 1.3’s feature are you looking forward to most and why? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below!