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The Star Wars: The Old Republic blog has been updated with a pair of posts detailing some significant incoming changes. First up is the shadow optimization coming in patch v1.4. Secondly, the team is preparing to further consolidate and stabilize high-population servers by transferring characters. As a result players may find their characters on a different server.
The shadow optimization will smooth out in-game shadows when the next large patch goes into effect. It's a great read for those who like to know and understand the behind the scenes details.
The new system provides full dynamic shadows. Simply stated, all characters, trees, and moving objects cast shadows onto the game world in Game Update 1.4. The previous system only generated dynamic shadows for characters. Moving through heavily treed planets such as Tython, the player will now see the subtle moving shadows cast by the leaves and trees.
With regard to the server consolidation issue: Players whose characters have been moved to a new high-density server may also have to consider renaming their characters after the move:
As a result, you may find that some of your characters are now located on a different server. If your characters have been moved, you can find their new location on the server selection screen by clicking on the “Characters” column. Please be aware that no characters have been deleted as part of this process – all of your characters are still available to you and are ready to play!However, you may find a red exclamation point next to your character’s name on the character selection screen. This means that due to the consolidation, you will have to rename that character. Rest assured that we took a variety of factors into account when determining which characters needed to be renamed. For more information, please visit or Server Consolidation FAQ.