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Star Wars: The Old Republic: First State of the Game Letter Posted

SBFordSBFord Associate Editor - News ManagerThe Land of AZPosts: 16,583MMORPG.COM Staff Uncommon

Star Wars: The Old Republic has a new feature for player to enjoy in the form of a State of the Game letter from Executive Producer Jeff Hickman. In the inaugural edition, Hickman talks about how the team came to the decision to move SWTOR to a free-to-play revenue model, why developers are leaving BioWare, bugs and Oceania among other topics.

Answer: People leave for a lot of reasons. Some have worked on the project for 6+ years and are simply tired and want to go work on something else. Others may not agree with the direction that the game is heading – Free-to-Play is not for everyone and requires a big shift in thinking and culture within the studio. Still others do not have the right skills for the roles that we have as the studio evolves and changes. When any single person leaves, whether we make the decision or they do, it is difficult, but the studio and game live on and thrive as we change, actually thrive because we change. The core of what makes the game and studio great are still here; quality in our game and in our workplace, people that are passionate about both, a camaraderie with each other that helps us support one another, and key people like James Ohlen (who was at BioWare from the very start) who continue to help us carry the banner of BioWare and who are dedicated to help evolve and improve Star Wars: The Old Republic.

Read the full letter on the Star Wars: The Old Republic site.

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Associate Editor: MMORPG.com
Follow me on Twitter: @MMORPGMom

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Comments

  • JoreelJoreel Oceanside, CAPosts: 79Member Uncommon
    It's sad when someone has to or is forced to leave a job they love, but change happens and sometimes it's for the better when it happens. I hope that the changes that come about as a result of the game shifting to the F2P model are enough to bring this game back to life and make it worth playing as there just wasn't enough content the first time through t make it worth spending more than the original purchase for (and that was stretching it a bit even there).  
  • OzmodanOzmodan Hilliard, OHPosts: 7,181Member Uncommon

    Dear Jeff, I was very disappointed in your state of the game message.  You really do not understand the problems of your game at all.  I guess if you did you would doubtless throw your hands up realizing that it is probably not repairable the way it is designed.  So much money wasted.... Let me give you a hint, it was not content that was the problem.

    Read the thread on this site discussing Systems, it just might give you a clue the major issues your game faces. 

  • McGamerMcGamer Fairfield Bay, ARPosts: 1,012Member

    Even though I am a huge Star Wars geek, I refuse to play SWTOR even now that it is F2P. Myself and many others tried to offer suggestions during beta and even fell for buying the collector's edition only to be let down upon launch. I tried playing the game a few months after launch but the devs there will never reverse the damage they have done in trying to create a believable SW mmo. 

    The game is and always will be WoW in space, which is a waste of time and money even now. 

    Most devs these days don't get that the reason MMOs became popular in the first place was the vairety of options in creating a character they could connect to and affect the persistant world in which their characters lived. 

    These days, most devs are obsessed with trying to make a quick buck and push out unfinished cookie-cutter MMOs with little to know choice of options in character creation living in tiny cloned gameworlds using unimaginative Uis. Not to mention always releasing with few content and zero replayability.

    If anything, it is those devs who will ultimately cause the fading of the mmo genre because they are burning gamers out who end up going from game to game trying to find one to stick to that is like the MMOs of old.

    I say to the devs, bring back choice, variety, originality, and embrace the sandbox genre. 

  • AnthurAnthur StolbergPosts: 686Member Uncommon
    Hmm, not the subscription and not "more content of the same" was/is the issue SWTOR has. I can't believe they didn't get it till now.
  • ignore_meignore_me Apple Valley, CAPosts: 1,987Member
    Originally posted by Czanrei

    Even though I am a huge Star Wars geek, I refuse to play SWTOR even now that it is F2P. Myself and many others tried to offer suggestions during beta and even fell for buying the collector's edition only to be let down upon launch. I tried playing the game a few months after launch but the devs there will never reverse the damage they have done in trying to create a believable SW mmo. 

    The game is and always will be WoW in space, which is a waste of time and money even now. 

    Most devs these days don't get that the reason MMOs became popular in the first place was the vairety of options in creating a character they could connect to and affect the persistant world in which their characters lived. 

    These days, most devs are obsessed with trying to make a quick buck and push out unfinished cookie-cutter MMOs with little to know choice of options in character creation living in tiny cloned gameworlds using unimaginative Uis. Not to mention always releasing with few content and zero replayability.

    If anything, it is those devs who will ultimately cause the fading of the mmo genre because they are burning gamers out who end up going from game to game trying to find one to stick to that is like the MMOs of old.

    I say to the devs, bring back choice, variety, originality, and embrace the sandbox genre. 

    +1  Couldn't agree more

    Survivor of the great MMORPG Famine of 2011

  • vladwwvladww La provencePosts: 416Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Czanrei

    Even though I am a huge Star Wars geek, I refuse to play SWTOR even now that it is F2P. Myself and many others tried to offer suggestions during beta and even fell for buying the collector's edition only to be let down upon launch. I tried playing the game a few months after launch but the devs there will never reverse the damage they have done in trying to create a believable SW mmo. 

    The game is and always will be WoW in space, which is a waste of time and money even now. 

    Most devs these days don't get that the reason MMOs became popular in the first place was the vairety of options in creating a character they could connect to and affect the persistant world in which their characters lived. 

    These days, most devs are obsessed with trying to make a quick buck and push out unfinished cookie-cutter MMOs with little to know choice of options in character creation living in tiny cloned gameworlds using unimaginative Uis. Not to mention always releasing with few content and zero replayability.

    If anything, it is those devs who will ultimately cause the fading of the mmo genre because they are burning gamers out who end up going from game to game trying to find one to stick to that is like the MMOs of old.

    I say to the devs, bring back choice, variety, originality, and embrace the sandbox genre. 

    Good post

    ****************************
    Playing : Uncharted Waters Online
    ****************************

  • bbbb42bbbb42 none, FLPosts: 297Member Uncommon

    i got treated  like shit by you guys i tried to go on the forums to give feedback  instead i got a bann warning. nothing i had said was said negatively, you guys tried to control the flow of information. way to much underhanded crap came out of bio/ea. you guys failed on a big level  mmos are community based games the moment you tried to silence people you shot yourself in the foot, because there are many more forums other then the official  forums. while u can buy out some(like mmorpg.com) you cant buy out all of them.

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  • DienerDiener Liverpool, NYPosts: 17Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Czanrei

    Even though I am a huge Star Wars geek, I refuse to play SWTOR even now that it is F2P. Myself and many others tried to offer suggestions during beta and even fell for buying the collector's edition only to be let down upon launch. I tried playing the game a few months after launch but the devs there will never reverse the damage they have done in trying to create a believable SW mmo. 

    The game is and always will be WoW in space, which is a waste of time and money even now. 

    Most devs these days don't get that the reason MMOs became popular in the first place was the vairety of options in creating a character they could connect to and affect the persistant world in which their characters lived. 

    These days, most devs are obsessed with trying to make a quick buck and push out unfinished cookie-cutter MMOs with little to know choice of options in character creation living in tiny cloned gameworlds using unimaginative Uis. Not to mention always releasing with few content and zero replayability.

    If anything, it is those devs who will ultimately cause the fading of the mmo genre because they are burning gamers out who end up going from game to game trying to find one to stick to that is like the MMOs of old.

    I say to the devs, bring back choice, variety, originality, and embrace the sandbox genre. 

    100% agreed, devs have spent years and millions of dollars trying to recreat the success of WoW with no game even coming close. Yet the message just does not seem to be getting across and MMOs become the only genre of video games that were AFRAID of innovation and trying something new. Warcraft was a pop culture phenomenon, it's success could never have been replicated. The best way to compete with it would have been to try something completly different imho.

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  • superniceguysuperniceguy AnchorheadPosts: 2,278Member Uncommon

    It is nothing but excuses. They blame this and that for its decline, instead of just accepting what it is, and getting on adding content.

    Nothing in that "state of the game" is any future content mentioned, and there really is no need to go on about Devs leaving. As long as they had content mentioned coming, which they do not, then devs leaving should be no concern

    It is just a whole lot of nothing

    What do they have for planned for 1.6? Which will no doubt come mid January conveniently increasing the "6 weeks for content " promise

    Any Winter or Anniversary event planned?

    When exactly is F2P coming?

    Nothing in there really encourages anybody to return to the game.

     

  • halflife25halflife25 Toronto, ONPosts: 737Member

    Two topics, same people, same replies. This game is in a limbo for now. i think people need to move on and focus on better games out there ike GW2, TSW...hell even Rift and EQ2 are churning out content on weekly and monthly basis.

     I am so over SWTOR, seems like last year new to me now.

  • AsamofAsamof La Canada, CAPosts: 738Member Uncommon

    the level of dishonesty in that letter is astounding

    and they still find plenty of moments to kiss their own butts...STILL

    all this letter does is tell people that the team is still delusional about their game. you're not getting any humble developers over there

  • ByntBynt Atlanta, GAPosts: 35Member
    It is nice to see this game rollout the First state of the game letter.  I wish they had been doing this sooner.  I'm glad to see my concerns are being addressed by the developers.  I think the game is Awesome, I just want the bugs fixed and More content.  I'm glad to see they have there pulse on the community that is playing and enjoying the game.  I am really enjoying this game and look forward to a better experience in the future and I have great confidence that Jeff Hickman will continue to deliver like he always has!
  • FrohheimFrohheim Saarbruecken, WAPosts: 11Member

    It took Sony over 2 years to realize that they need to destroy SWG with the NGE in 2005. 

    Congratulations Bioware for not getting the issue at hand and doing something aweful no matter what. Lacking players is the least of the games issues... your F2P launch is your NGE - Ignoring the players desires and just doing what you want. Romneyware 2k12. Bye bye. ;)

  • MMOGamer71MMOGamer71 Pittsburgh, PAPosts: 1,930Member Common
    Sadly you should have listened to Beta Testers.
  • KtaraKtara Victoria, BCPosts: 37Member
    Originally posted by Czanrei

    Even though I am a huge Star Wars geek, I refuse to play SWTOR even now that it is F2P. Myself and many others tried to offer suggestions during beta and even fell for buying the collector's edition only to be let down upon launch. I tried playing the game a few months after launch but the devs there will never reverse the damage they have done in trying to create a believable SW mmo. 

    The game is and always will be WoW in space, which is a waste of time and money even now. 

    Most devs these days don't get that the reason MMOs became popular in the first place was the vairety of options in creating a character they could connect to and affect the persistant world in which their characters lived. 

    These days, most devs are obsessed with trying to make a quick buck and push out unfinished cookie-cutter MMOs with little to know choice of options in character creation living in tiny cloned gameworlds using unimaginative Uis. Not to mention always releasing with few content and zero replayability.

    If anything, it is those devs who will ultimately cause the fading of the mmo genre because they are burning gamers out who end up going from game to game trying to find one to stick to that is like the MMOs of old.

    I say to the devs, bring back choice, variety, originality, and embrace the sandbox genre. 

    Exactly this.  We bought two CE's even though we were in beta (and disappointed by it), because we were told "it'll be in at launch" (pick something, anything).  We were told the builds we were playing weren't launch builds, but guess what...It was very disappointing from a good company like Bioware, and I don't think I want to play anything that might come out of their studio anymore.  Especially now that EA owns them.  

    You'll want to look at The Repopulation.  Those guys are citing SWG as their inspiration, and they're in alpha right now.  It looks like the game we've been wanting for a long time :)

  • RefMinorRefMinor MyTownPosts: 3,452Member
    Awesome!!
  • zomard100zomard100 karlovacPosts: 228Member
    I enjoy this game so much, like never before any other game. Servers are full and i don't think we need F2P trolls to spam our  general chat :)
  • Agent_JosephAgent_Joseph SarajevoPosts: 1,069Member Uncommon

    i am resub ,after 5 months pausing & game population looking OK

    Can't understand why EA going  to F2P crap

    only EVE is real MMO...but I am impressive with TSW

  • PhryPhry HampshirePosts: 6,288Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by JosephJR

    i am resub ,after 5 months pausing & game population looking OK

    Can't understand why EA going  to F2P crap

    Why? because even after they consolidated the servers, their still declining in player numbers, going F2P is like the last chance saloon for this game, trouble is, this is one role of the die that is liable to end up snake eyes..image

  • defector1968defector1968 Nar ShaddaaPosts: 393Member Common
    Originally posted by Suzie_Ford

    Answer: People leave for a lot of reasons. Some have worked on the project for 6+ years and are simply tired and want to go work on something else. Others may not agree with the direction that the game is heading – Free-to-Play is not for everyone and requires a big shift in thinking and culture within the studio. Still others do not have the right skills for the roles that we have as the studio evolves and changes. When any single person leaves, whether we make the decision or they do, it is difficult, but the studio and game live on and thrive as we change, actually thrive because we change. The core of what makes the game and studio great are still here; quality in our game and in our workplace, people that are passionate about both, a camaraderie with each other that helps us support one another, and key people like James Ohlen (who was at BioWare from the very start) who continue to help us carry the banner of BioWare and who are dedicated to help evolve and improve Star Wars: The Old Republic.

    Read the full letter on the Star Wars: The Old Republic site.

    (yellow) Yes they are humans (if EA knows what that means)

  • moguy2moguy2 Saint Peters, MOPosts: 337Member
    Shouldnt we just start a post on when people think this game is going to shut its doors? Then have that guy get his tats removed by a midget who has a GW2 tattood on his ankle.
  • lucasdeislucasdeis capital federalPosts: 59Member
    this is game is star warrs and wow clon, that is true but TSW, TERA, EVE, RIFT they are not strongh in these moments, SWTOR is stronger than all the MMO (no wow and GW2 ) but this is star wars and this game will not finish
  • PJurPJur Wichita, KSPosts: 2Member
    According to the email I got today, free to play begins sometime this month.
  • nate1980nate1980 Evans, GAPosts: 1,829Member

    He asks for us to leave comments, but you need to subscribe to do so. That maybre has something to do with why he is so clueless as to why people left their game.

    I for one left SWTOR because there wasn't more than 1 way to level up a character for each faction. So once you went through it once, you'd experience the same content on all your other same faction characters. Exactly the same reason why I didn't last past the first month in RIFT. Some people like to create alts or try all the different kinds of characters to see if they like them, but eventually burn out on the games content and don't want to continue, since they're tired of repeating the same quests.

    Some people also don't like the fact that SWTOR is so instanced. I prefer to play in 1 open world per server, not several copies of the same world per server. It spreads the community way to thin.

    Bioware also lied big time about the amount of content they had for release and the specific kinds of content. They said that SWTOR was big enough to be several KOTOR games, and that each class would have their own unique leveling paths (not exact words). Yet the only thing each class had that was unique was thier class story and those class stories were few and far between compared to the sheer amount of planetary quests that every character had to complete, which got old fast.

    The lack of a dungeon finder also made the game hard to get into. I'm a purely group-based player, meaning I prefer to play with a group of players whenever possible. So any time there are group quests, I will seek out people and do them while within level range. Same with flashpoints. Problem is that people weren't grouping for those group quests, most just ignored them completely, and finding a flashpoint past lvl 20 something was very hard to impossible. 

    The clothing/armor models were ugly, at least some of them were. People want to look badass while they're leveling up and at end game. The end game armor wa aweful looking.

    Lastly, Bioware was lazy and made the classes mirrors of each other for each faction, and many classes even within the factoin shared similar abilities. Classes, developers choose this route over skill-based progression, should be unique like DAoC's was. The same thing happened with Warhammer.

     

  • JeroKaneJeroKane OsloPosts: 5,353Member Uncommon

    @Nate: Well said. But it wasn't only that.

    It was obvious right from the start, that almost their entire budget went up in paying Voice Over actors and the insane marketing campain!

    Everything else was an afterthought.

    The cities (like Corussant) and planets were lifeless! None of the NPC's in the game were interactable, except for the ones giving a mission. No chat bubbles.  All Space ports were just copy / pasted of a single model, which was just downright immersion breaking.

    Except for the story missions, this game just had no immersion whatsoever, because it felt so extremely static and lifeless!

    How come a game from 2004 (EverQuest 2) offered fully voice over interactable NPC's in Cities and Towns walking up to you and start a conversation (giving tons of immersion), while a game from end 2011 cannot?!

    Just face it!  This game has been extremely bad managed from the beginning!

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