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Star Wars: The Old Republic: Bioware - 'We're Listening'

SBFordSBFord Associate Editor - News ManagerThe Land of AZPosts: 16,588MMORPG.COM Staff Uncommon

BioWare has posted a new developer blog penned by Executive Producer Jeff Hickman where he acknowledges that the team is listening to players' concerns over various aspects of the free to play option in Star Wars: The Old Republic. Hickman assures players that the dialog is ongoing and is a two way street of communication.

Recently, we’ve seen your feedback on some of the other aspects of our Free-to-Play option and once again, we are working to improve the experience for all of our players.

Starting today, Preferred Status Players will see an increase to their default Quickbars from two (2) to four (4). If you’ve already purchased additional Quickbars, don’t worry: we will be refunding your Cartel Coins for any Quickbar-related purchase.

Additionally, in an upcoming patch (no exact date yet, but players won’t have to wait long), Preferred Status Players will be given four (4) additional character slots, which means that they will have a total of six character slots. As always, Free-to-Play Players can reach Preferred Status simply by purchasing anything from our online store or purchasing a physical copy of the game. 

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

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Associate Editor: MMORPG.com
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Comments

  • TheLizardbonesTheLizardbones Arkham, VAPosts: 10,910Member

    I really don't understand why they aren't charging for character slots. People would buy them. Of course, I don't understand why they thought the quick bars thing was a good idea in the first place either.

    I can not remember winning or losing a single debate on the internet.

  • TraugarTraugar Robbinsville, NCPosts: 183Member Uncommon
    Really the quick bars should be automatic for everyone.  The character slots though are something that you do charge for in an item shop.  These guys really have no idea what they are doing.  
  • JerYnkFanJerYnkFan Kenilworth, NJPosts: 339Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by lizardbones

    I really don't understand why they aren't charging for character slots. People would buy them. Of course, I don't understand why they thought the quick bars thing was a good idea in the first place either.

    I agree with you totally.  People buy characters slots (including myself) all the time.  The quick bar thing left a bad taste in a lot of people's mouth and seemed like one of the more idiotic moves ever made by a MMO company.  The classes are too few to have it where only certain classes unlock otherwise that would have been another good area for them to sell in the store.

  • DerrosDerros Posts: 1,076Member Uncommon

    Well, the thing is bioware needs to ask itself, what do they hope to accomplish with the F2P model. 

     

    Seems obvious right? increased revenue!

    But how?

     

    People having to buy things from the store to have an acceptable playing experience? 

     

    People buy things that make the game either more convienient or fun (races, companion skins, unique mounts, saber colors, ect)

     

    Larger player base, that gives subscribers more people to do things with?  Which would go along with one of the above.  If this were the case I would reccomend dropping, at least the flashpoint limits if not warzone and raids as well, since they artifically limit the player pool that subscibers can draw from to do flashpoints.  Changing limits on the AH selling and buying, as well as credit limits might also help reinvigorate the economy.

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

  • MikeBMikeB MMORPG.com Community Manager Queens, NYPosts: 5,717Administrator Uncommon
    Originally posted by lizardbones

    I really don't understand why they aren't charging for character slots. People would buy them. Of course, I don't understand why they thought the quick bars thing was a good idea in the first place either.

    They will be. These are just the base slots available.

    Michael "MikeB" Bitton
    Community Manager
    Twitter: @eMikeB

  • curacura WarsawPosts: 950Member Uncommon
    Yeah, sure lol. They corrected stupid mistake which would cost them a lot of customers and call it "listening to players". Nice try 
  • YaevinduskYaevindusk Ul''dah, CAPosts: 1,537Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Skeeter50
    Originally posted by mac_monkey
    [mod edit]
    [mod edit]
    [mod edit]

    Also, these changes were much needed.  It came a little too late, in my opinion.  That is, for me it did.  I'm sure there are plenty of people who enjoy it and partake in it.  Indeed, the increase of character slots might even be specifically for people who play, so that they'll make more characters, stay longer and spend more money.

    When faced with strife or discontent, the true nature of a man is brought forth. It is then when we see the character of the individual. It is then we are able to tell if he is mature enough to grin and bare it, or subject his fellow man to his complaints and woes.

  • WolfClawsWolfClaws Arlington, VAPosts: 553Member Uncommon

    If they listened, they would fix my problem of not updating my subscription or my purchases of cartel points...

     

    Still not seeing any progress... only canned responses and automatically closing my tickets. 

  • YaevinduskYaevindusk Ul''dah, CAPosts: 1,537Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Pyuk
    Originally posted by mac_monkey
    [mod edit]

    [mod edit]

    There is so much wrong with this post that I don't even know where to begin.  Firstly, it's in a SWTOR thread, and makes no mention of SWTOR.  Even a follow up sentence with the words SWTOR would've sufficed.  This is a thread about how SWTOR has improved or is improving.  The additional slots for both characters and quickbars were sorely needed, and I've noticed less complaints all around from people who still play it (that I know personally) after hearing this.

    Secondly, I'm noticing people saying how massively successful the Gem Store is, and how much GW2 has sold, followed by people who say the opposite.  The people I know in retail agree that it's still selling like hotcakes, and they repeatedly sell out with gem cards.  Though I'd chalk that up to potentially the location.  Also, many seem to not understand the basics of how companies operate and how their relations with companies that they are "big brother" to (especially if there's a "non-interference" clause).  In a recent inteview, whether it was marketing or not, they're saying that profits are beyond what they expected, and they're pushing out monthly content as evidence (which we take for what it is; though if the gem store was doing bad I'd think they'd gear back to the 6 month expansions instead of live updates and expansion secondary).  When I see a report that Anet has laid of staff (in large quantities) and not just an ailing publisher/owner, then I'll be inclined to believe some of the doom sayers.  

    Thrice:  NCsoft was one of the biggest MMORPG companies in the world for a time, and they probably have the staff to upkeep that. Now that some other F2P based companies have surpassed them, it's only natural to have layoffs and reorganized their big money makers.  They specifically said most of the layoffs were in the U.S., and none have been reported from Anet or from their other income generating (on at decent scale) games.  Blade N Soul is doing extremely well, Wildstar has a good following, and all evidence points to GW2 being in good shape (as much as people want to believe otherwise with reasons that are beyond me wanting a game to do poorly, people getting laid off, and others losing a game they enjoy).  I haven't read much on it, but I'd assume they'll centralize a lot of their staff, as that's what one would do when focusing on main titles (as well as extras that still generate).

    Bioware and EA have to get out there and do things, and this is just a start to get noticed.  Is it enough?  I don't know; it's probably a good start for those who still play, and those who will now consider playing if the original restrictions put them off.  Was it required?  Probably, as I believe it was too restrictive in a lot of ways; though might as well make a big announcement about it so that it is likely more people will see it, yes?

    When faced with strife or discontent, the true nature of a man is brought forth. It is then when we see the character of the individual. It is then we are able to tell if he is mature enough to grin and bare it, or subject his fellow man to his complaints and woes.

  • marz.at.playmarz.at.play Mississauga, ONPosts: 912Member
    I am interested again...if someone can tell me as I only played the BETA...are the other restrictions in place really dampering playing this game as F2P or is it good to go in it's current state. What I'm asking I guess is will I hit a point while playing that I will be FORCED to buy credits or upgrade to subscription. I don't mind paying for credits, but want to be aware beforehand.

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  • korvasskorvass den haagPosts: 623Member

    People keep saying that GW2 is doing bad, but I have yet to see anything that would indicate to me that A-Net has had anything but success with the game, ie:

    -Merged servers within a few months

    -Core layoffs

    -Developer blogs admitting 'things aren't turning out how we hope'

    -Founding members of the company quitting 'to pursue other projects'.

     

    Etc etc..

    SWTOR has, as much as we might like to claim otherwise, not done as well as EA and Bioware wanted. Massive server merges after a few months of release, F2P one year after release..

    I really wanted to love TOR, and I might play free, but out of principle, I won't buy a sub just to get something that apparently offered 'for free'.

  • erictlewiserictlewis Cottondale, ALPosts: 3,026Member Uncommon

    They are not listing to me, as a free to play player I can not communicate on their forums.  So were listening is bs. 

     

  • YaevinduskYaevindusk Ul''dah, CAPosts: 1,537Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by marz.at.play
    I am interested again...if someone can tell me as I only played the BETA...are the other restrictions in place really dampering playing this game as F2P or is it good to go in it's current state. What I'm asking I guess is will I hit a point while playing that I will be FORCED to buy credits or upgrade to subscription. I don't mind paying for credits, but want to be aware beforehand.

     

    I believe most of the complaints were about the quickbars and the character slots.  Though ultimately, it is free so you could just see if it's your cup of tea; if you have limited bandwidth, then perhaps someone else can more efficiently answer your question on if it's worth the download.

    The biggest thing you might run into is the inability to equip "epic" items without a "license" to do so.  Though you can still equip blue quality, and honestly raids are only for subscribers anyway.  You are able to purchase a license for your whole account fairly cheaply if I remember (and I believe it's permanent).

    Though again, most of the content is for 1-50 anyway so you probably won't need purple items, as you might just start a new character all over again by the time you see the whole story of one.

     

    When faced with strife or discontent, the true nature of a man is brought forth. It is then when we see the character of the individual. It is then we are able to tell if he is mature enough to grin and bare it, or subject his fellow man to his complaints and woes.

  • RealPvPisFPSRealPvPisFPS St.Louis, MOPosts: 42Member

    I just recently tried the SWTOR F2P and had alot of fun. The game has been immensely polished since I was in the beta.

     

    However after giving the F2P model a try up to level 11 I quickly realized that this game is better played as a subscription instead of F2P title.  I do have a few questions.

    1. Anyone know just how much life this game has yet? like will it shut down after so many months? I know they are merging servers which is always a bad sign.

     

    2. What exactly is the new space update gonna fix, do or improve that they are working on and when are they shooting for a release on that?

     

    Thanks to all who respond.

     
  • MechanismMechanism Toronto, ONPosts: 115Member Uncommon
    Has anyone they are lisening to actually mentioned that this ftp transition is the most restrictive and unappealibg they have ever seen? [mod edit]
  • Darklotus79Darklotus79 HEBER SPRINGS, ARPosts: 61Member

    Doesnt matter what they do..This game could not keep my interest whatsoever. I really tried to like it!

    The game looks pretty polished and ran smooth even on my laptop , but it just felt dull in my opinion.

    I do hope they make f2p a bit better though. I do have friends that seem to like it.

  • RemyVorenderRemyVorender Riverside, RIPosts: 3,265Member Uncommon
    I'm still just wondering why they didn't add two of the biggest bread and butter items to the CM: character renames and recustomizations.

    Played: AA, AC1, AC2, Aion, AO, AoC, CO, CoX, DAoC, DCUO, DN, EVE, EQ1, EQ2,
    ESO, FE, FFXI, FFXIV, FF, GW1, GW2, Istaria, L2, LoTRO, MO, MxO, NW, Rift, RoE,
    Ryzom, SB, SWG, SWTOR, TERA, TSW, WAR, WoW, WURM...

  • RemyVorenderRemyVorender Riverside, RIPosts: 3,265Member Uncommon
    Great game though. Well worth the sub to me.

    Played: AA, AC1, AC2, Aion, AO, AoC, CO, CoX, DAoC, DCUO, DN, EVE, EQ1, EQ2,
    ESO, FE, FFXI, FFXIV, FF, GW1, GW2, Istaria, L2, LoTRO, MO, MxO, NW, Rift, RoE,
    Ryzom, SB, SWG, SWTOR, TERA, TSW, WAR, WoW, WURM...

  • Po_ggPo_gg Twigwarren, WestfarthingPosts: 2,715Member Uncommon

    Since I called numerous times the bar restriction as the stupidest restriction in f2p's history I guess it's only fair to say a 'Well done' to them now. It's good that preferred's get back their full UI. But honestly, if they'd listen more closely, they could've made it way before the f2p launch (based on the test feedbacks) and hence avoid lots of negative comments :)

     

    I already ditched my f2p acc, that experiment clearly pointed out the model's AoC-ish nature (namely it's unplayable in the long run), but I guess I'll check my old acc now. Don't say I'll resubscribe (no way :) ), just goofing around a bit with 4 bars again.

  • BenbradaBenbrada Plainfield, ILPosts: 328Member Uncommon
    All thinks considered I think 6 character slots for a preferred player is generous when they could have left the 2 or made it 3 or 4 for preferred and charged for the additionals.
  • ElikalElikal ValhallaPosts: 8,063Member

    Yes I am sure they are listening. Just not to us.

    Ask any beta tester who TOLD THEM SO years ago.

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

  • itchmonitchmon west islip, NYPosts: 1,714Member Uncommon

    i originally did not like the game.   felt like it was too soulless and that outside the storyline experience (and some missions like the esseles) i was in a game, not in star wars.

     

    that being said, i've watched some friends play recently and i think it's got a chance to make it.  the core of the game is an OK themepark with some character customization and a pretty neat companion system.  if they get that star wars feel in there everywhere, as opposed to just in some places, people will be playing for years to come.

    RIP Ribbitribbitt you are missed, kid.

    Currently Playing EVE, DFUW

    Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and not clothed.

    Dwight D Eisenhower

    My optimism wears heavy boots and is loud.

    Henry Rollins

  • FrodoFraginsFrodoFragins Manchester, NHPosts: 2,926Member Uncommon

    Well.  We already knew about the quickslot change.  My only complaint there is that F2P players should get at least 3 slots.  Anyone that bought quicklot bar unlocks for CC and sold them for credits is loving this as they get their CCs refunded and keep the credits.

     

    Four additional character slots for preferred players is very generous.  I think one or two additional slots would have been fair with the ability to buy additional ones for up to $5 a piece.

     

    The one thing thing I feel they still HAVE to fix for F2P/Preferred is letting them choose their quest rewards.  Charging for that is ridiculous.

     

     

     

     

  • SoulStainSoulStain Tampa, FLPosts: 202Member
    Man. People bitch about character slots and ui bars being in the store..especially for Preferred. So they give preferred 4 more characters and 4 total quick bars and still people bitch. How sad that someone only need spend some money in the cash shop...any purchase...and they also get preferred status....but heaven forbid they actually support a game they are playing ..and probably will continue to play for free ..bitching about it all the way. Even if SWTOR were free in every sense of the word...I fear it would still not be "free " enough for many. They'll find something to bitch about.
  • RaysheRayshe London, ONPosts: 1,284Member

    I never bitched about character slots or Quickbars. I bitched about non sensical things like only allowing you to use chat once a minuite. Limiting what you can look from quests, and only allowing 3 Boss rolls in Flashpoints per week.

     

    While i can live with the flashpoint one. the chat one is a sheer "we will stop pokeing you in the face if you pay us" Buisness plan.

    Because i can.
    I'm Hopeful For Every Game, Until the Fan Boys Attack My Games. Then the Knives Come Out.
    Logic every gamers worst enemy.

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