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Companions: What you would've done differently?

TigasnakeTigasnake Philadelphia, PAPosts: 33Member

Hey all,

 

Looking back at the early beta of SW:TOR, I have to wonder how so many promising companion features were removed.  Previously you were able to designate their role (healer, tank etc) with combat packs, and you were able to kill/banish the ones you didn't like.  Sometimes I wish these things still existed.

If you were the companions developer prior to the release of SW:TOR, what would you've done differently?

If it was up to me, I would have never had companions immediately related to my class story.  There's a restraint in and of itself.  Not only would each of their storylines be ambiguous enough to fill any trinity role, but you'd also be able to choose who to take with you.  The goal is for the player's choice to be top priority... which was exactly how SWTOR was marketed.

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Comments

  • ktanner3ktanner3 lakeland, FLPosts: 4,074Member Common
    Originally posted by Tigasnake

    Hey all,

     

    Looking back at the early beta of SW:TOR, I have to wonder how so many promising companion features were removed.  Previously you were able to designate their role (healer, tank etc) with combat packs, and you were able to kill/banish the ones you didn't like.  Sometimes I wish these things still existed.

    If you were the companions developer prior to the release of SW:TOR, what would you've done differently?

     

    I would have left it EXACTLY the way it was and told the people complaining about lost companions that choices matter. It's too bad that this awesome feature was watered down the way it was all because some carebears couldn't handle it.

    My Sith Warrior has been wanting to kill Quinn ever since he was betrayed to Darth Barus and he can't do it. 

    Currently Playing: Star Wars The Old Republic

  • GormokGormok memphis, TNPosts: 379Member
    One of my biggest complaints was how they shoehorned companions into one set role. Which meant that you couldnt use your favorite companions. I wish they would have left the combat packs in and went about companion ccustomization in another way. At lest that's what I would have done, and some of the classes companions wouldn't have been such sauage fests. On top of that the male companions were the most useful, because they filled roles such as tanks and healers. Where as the female companions were all dps. I feel BW dropped the ball in regards to companions, and the lazy approach they used. Of course that is only my opinion.
  • ignore_meignore_me Apple Valley, CAPosts: 1,987Member

    I wish that the companion gathering missions had been something more than they were. Before I had actually used them I pictured them to be seperate mini adventures that my crew had on their own, and though they might have some interesting consequences (Kira comes back with an artifact that the Sith want to get back, Bowdarr comes back with an advanced tech hyperdrive unit that boosts speed of ship, Mako makes an alliance with the Hutt Cartel, etc.).

     

     

    Survivor of the great MMORPG Famine of 2011

  • IstavaanIstavaan CorkPosts: 1,350Member
    I wouldn't have had companions at all, it's a stupid feature to put in an mmo.
  • tiefighter25tiefighter25 Winchester, MAPosts: 937Member

    I'm not a big fan of the companion system in general.

    SInce they sort of had to have them due to the game's focus on story, I wish they coded it that companions couldn't aggro mobs.

    It's my thought that part of the reason mobs are spaced out, are rather static, and have small aggro zones is to take into account your companion bopping all around you.

     

    When you couple that design with the usual flat, long eyeline topography, you get the impression that mobs 4,5,6 are disintrestedly watching you kill mobs 1,2,3; which in my opinion really hurts immersion.

  • Vunak23Vunak23 In your house eatin'' your cookies, FLPosts: 635Member

    Made them not class locked, so people could choose the class they wanted and not regret it becaue of the companions they recieved. And made a ton more of them so you didn't see multiple Mako's running around. Acquire them through planet quests/stories etc. Or personal companion stories that needed to be discovered. 

    Although I didn't really enjoy the companion system, it could of been done a hell of a lot better. 

    "In the immediate future, we have this one, and then we’ve got another one that is actually going to be – so we’re going to have, what we want to do, is in January, what we’re targeting to do, this may or may not happen, so you can’t hold me to it. But what we’re targeting to do, is have a fun anniversary to the Ilum shenanigans that happened. An alien race might invade, and they might crash into Ilum and there might be some new activities that happen on the planet." ~Gabe Amatangelo

  • DavisFlightDavisFlight Talahasee, FLPosts: 2,556Member
    I would have left them where they belong, in singleplayer games.
  • rojoArcueidrojoArcueid hell, NJPosts: 6,778Member Uncommon

    I would add more companions. Add companion romance. Add dual seat mounts so the companion actually travels too instead of magically disappearing, or just give them a mount too.

    The companions you are not using should behave like npcs in the world, doing their job, slicers would be slicing and earning some cash for you, etc... and you could actually see them out there as npc and talk to them without necessarily calling them to your party.

    Also i would separate the companion frame from the party frame so they dont count as a party member, so if there are 4 people in a group each one could have their companion out too.

    Back to romance, two of my companions that are single could engage each other depending on their preference (like mass effect) :D

    Integrate your companions to the legacy for upgrade purposes.

     

    SO many features could be added to the companions system that if i keep going ill never end.

     

    EDIT: i would even add a PVE / PVP Arena. Adding varied difficulties to the PVE side where people fight their companions or other people companions. On the PVP side of course it would be pvp without companions. The pvp rewards would vary from pve of course.

    image
  • KarteliKarteli Providence, PAPosts: 2,646Member
    Originally posted by ktanner3
    Originally posted by Tigasnake

    Hey all,

     

    Looking back at the early beta of SW:TOR, I have to wonder how so many promising companion features were removed.  Previously you were able to designate their role (healer, tank etc) with combat packs, and you were able to kill/banish the ones you didn't like.  Sometimes I wish these things still existed.

    If you were the companions developer prior to the release of SW:TOR, what would you've done differently?

     

    I would have left it EXACTLY the way it was and told the people complaining about lost companions that choices matter. It's too bad that this awesome feature was watered down the way it was all because some carebears couldn't handle it.

    My Sith Warrior has been wanting to kill Quinn ever since he was betrayed to Darth Barus and he can't do it. 

    It wasn't a good system that way, since companions are untimately tied in to the success of a character.  More companions equates to more virtual goods via missions, and more opportunities to get crafting done in a timely manner.

     

    Not having very many companions because a players avatar killed them would only gimp them to the point where on their next character they would play "correctly" and ignore the option to kill, in order to get the correct character build.

     

    Now if you could kill them, then resurrect them at a medcenter, only to kill them again later, that might be interesting.  But permanently killing them just for a 30 second one-time cinematic?  That had bad written all over it - I'm glad permadeath was removed.

     

    edit: besides resurrecting after being owner-killed, a useful change might be to include a shrink ray-gun or better pathing distance from it's owner.  Nothing more annoying than a huge companion that keeps standing on top of you, or standing on top of stuff you're trying to click on / gather / loot.

    Want a nice understanding of life? Try Spirit Science: "The Human History"
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U8NNHmV3QPw&feature=plcp
    Recognize the voice? Yep sounds like Penny Arcade's Extra Credits.

  • Bama1267Bama1267 Waterloo, NYPosts: 1,847Member
    Originally posted by Istavaan
    I wouldn't have had companions at all, it's a stupid feature to put in an mmo.

    Stupid or just not a feature you like? If the former, was it because of how it was implimented or the system it was implimented in to?

  • Sevenstar61Sevenstar61 Centreville, VAPosts: 1,690Member Uncommon

    If I would be Bioware, I would add new mission series for acquiring a new interesting companion with every expansion.. or new event... I would also allow companion to actually leave you if they are not happy with you... or to kill them if that's how you feel about them. But it would have to be compensated by ability to gain a new companion... also... it would be cool if you could on the end of the companion mission decide what kind of companion you wish  (healer, DPS, tank... ). Also more companion missions and ability to divorce them /grin.

     

    Edit.: I would love to have heroic mission for companions which would grant them new cool unique skills. Training missions?

    And BTW: I love companion feature... I wish we had army of them available LOL and that we could play more then one at a time if we choose to.

    image
    Sith Warrior - Story of Hate and Love http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sxKrlwXt7Ao
    Imperial Agent - Rise of Cipher Nine http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OBBj3eJWBvU&feature=youtu.be
    Imperial Agent - Hunt for the Eagle Part 1http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UQqjYYU128E

  • FoxyShoxzyFoxyShoxzy Dallas, TXPosts: 119Member

    My wife and I really enjoyed the companion system. We were able to duo almost all of the flashpoints in the game with just us and 2 companions. We even duo'd hard mode Black Talon multiple times.

     

    At some point, though, Companions were nerfed in terms of their damage and defense against elite mobs. There were several threads about tank companions suddenly getting creamed by elites, and we noticed a significant damage decrease in the aforementioned hard mode BT runs.

     

    Personally I was disappointed by the lack of conversation and interaction at end-game. I had a Sith Juggernaut who had romanced Vette. Upon completion of my personal story I got a couple of in-game letters from her, talking about us, which I thought was really cool. Then it just kind of stopped. From the romance arc aspect, it's pretty dumb to have my wife standing in a room on my ship and not being able to interact with her at all. At least in DA:O you could make booty calls!

     

    So yeah, I guess the post-launch nerf and the limited end-game interactions were my big complaints.

  • Originally posted by Gormok
    One of my biggest complaints was how they shoehorned companions into one set role. Which meant that you couldnt use your favorite companions. I wish they would have left the combat packs in and went about companion ccustomization in another way. At lest that's what I would have done, and some of the classes companions wouldn't have been such sauage fests. On top of that the male companions were the most useful, because they filled roles such as tanks and healers. Where as the female companions were all dps. I feel BW dropped the ball in regards to companions, and the lazy approach they used. Of course that is only my opinion.

    yea i would have liked if they left the combat kits in too so that we could make the companions any role we wanted.  i play a combat medic on my trooper and would like to use elara dorne more but since she is also a healer, it takes forever to kill things. :(

     

    atleast i like aric since that is who i mostly use, although part of that is i really like the voice actor and was "psyched" when i first realized who it was image

  • superniceguysuperniceguy AnchorheadPosts: 2,278Member Uncommon
    1. Give up to 4 companions each instead of 1, like Dragon Age
    2. Let the AI be better, like in STO if you fall your companions revive you. One time I fell in STO, and my friends companion revived me. I thought that was pretty cool.  If you fall in SWTOR so does your companion.
    3. Let us choose the names of them. Having many other people running around with the same named companion is immersion breaking.
  • deniterdeniter LappeenrantaPosts: 805Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by DavisFlight
    I would have left them where they belong, in singleplayer games.

     

  • mgilbrtsnmgilbrtsn belleville, ILPosts: 1,708Member Uncommon
    With all of it's faults, I think that the companions worked pretty good.

    Concentrate on enjoying yourself, and not on why I shouldn't enjoy myself.

  • DraronDraron A town in, KYPosts: 993Member

    I like the companions and feel like they're a less useful version of Guild War's henchmen but the fact they have personalities more than makes up for it.

    Like someone else in the thread said, I'd prefer if we could have named them instead of having the same generic NPC running around with a good portion of players. And build on the interaction, give us quest lines for each companion we've worked relations up with at endgame.

  • ShakyMoShakyMo BradfordPosts: 7,207Member
    Not had them.
  • artemisentr4artemisentr4 fresno, CAPosts: 1,431Member Uncommon
    Embrace the SPG and allow 3 companions for story mode FPs. Instead of handing out free gear at 50. They could have let you solo the FP story modes with your companions. This would also let you grind affection in a better way.

    “How many people long for that "past, simpler, and better world," I wonder, without ever recognizing the truth that perhaps it was they who were simpler and better, and not the world about them?”
    R.A.Salvatore

  • jpnzjpnz SydneyPosts: 3,529Member

    I would have expanded upon them, expanded their story for all companions not just your first one.

    Allow players to have more than 1 companion out etc.

    Gdemami -
    Informing people about your thoughts and impressions is not a review, it's a blog.

  • keithiankeithian Los Angeles, CAPosts: 3,042Member Uncommon
    Personally I wish there were no companions, but since we were forced to have them, I think they did a pretty good job implementing them..better than any other MMO in my opinion as they did feel a little bit more than pets. I know some will say you can play without them, but the game wasn't built around playing without them and it really slows things down.

    There Is Always Hope!

  • superniceguysuperniceguy AnchorheadPosts: 2,278Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by deniter
    Originally posted by DavisFlight
    I would have left them where they belong, in singleplayer games.

     

    It saves multiboxing, and makes game attractive to those who 1) Like to play solo and 2) Can play while friends / guildmates are logged out as if no one on and got no companions then will more likely log off reducing the populations.

    If there are loads of people on then you can dismiss them and play with others.

    Without companions less people would play as gives less ways to play.

  • ElikalElikal ValhallaPosts: 7,906Member Uncommon

    Companions are another TOTAL FAIL.

    First, in combat they make me feel weak, because I need them. I can accomplish nothing alone.

    Second, it's no real replacement for the classic fantasy party.

    Third, it's no replacement for REAL people. NEVER felt so alone in a MMO as in SWTOR.

    Fourth and imo most important: they are WAY too pale and hollow. A good companion as in KOTOR or Dragon Age has a lot of story, many dialogues, often intervenes when you chat with NPCs. Alas, the SWTOR companions are mostly just silent followers where sometimes a -1 or +15 pops up. I felt nothing for almost all of them. They were such a letdown.

     

    Why does EVERY stupid, uselsss NPC have to tell us his damn life story, and the companions are most of the time silent? I would rather have 10 times MORE to say from my companion and 10 times LESS to say from useless NPCs. THAT's how I would have done the chat ratio of companions vs npcs.

    People don't ask questions to get answers - they ask questions to show how smart they are. - Dogbert

  • immodiumimmodium ManchesterPosts: 1,578Member Uncommon
    Made them gay. This Makeb SGR implementation is stupid.

    image
  • ktanner3ktanner3 lakeland, FLPosts: 4,074Member Common
    Originally posted by jpnz

    I would have expanded upon them, expanded their story for all companions not just your first one.

    Allow players to have more than 1 companion out etc.

    I'm not too sure if that would work out well. The game already has enough single player elemants in it. Allowing more companions at one time would negate the need for grouping on Heroics, Flashpoints and Ops.

    Currently Playing: Star Wars The Old Republic

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