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The Official: e3 2009 Info on TOR (Gameplay Revealed Articles!!!)

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  • TillerTiller Member LegendaryPosts: 10,389
    Originally posted by BullseyeArc1

    Originally posted by tillamook


    I've been wanting to do this to someone in an MMO for ages
    "Should an enemy get too close, the smuggler can stun them with a quick kick to the crotch and then finish them off by shooting them in the head."
     
    FFS, that would be PvP done right, lol



     

      Hmmmm, this is sounds like turn based animations like we used to have in SWG, interesting.   

    Yes, one of those articles mentions it being traditional MMO turn based system, but fast paced and tactical like the kick in the ballz or hiding tactics.

    SWG Bloodfin vet
    Elder Jedi/Elder Bounty Hunter
     
  • BullseyeArc1BullseyeArc1 Member UncommonPosts: 410
    Originally posted by tillamook

    Originally posted by BullseyeArc1

    Originally posted by tillamook


    I've been wanting to do this to someone in an MMO for ages
    "Should an enemy get too close, the smuggler can stun them with a quick kick to the crotch and then finish them off by shooting them in the head."
     
    FFS, that would be PvP done right, lol



     

      Hmmmm, this is sounds like turn based animations like we used to have in SWG, interesting.   

    Yes, one of those articles mentions it being traditional MMO turn based system, but fast paced and tactical like the kick in the ballz or hiding tactics.



     

      Ninja smuggler FTW.      This might be a interesting game then, its just to bad they couldnt make a real mmo.   Im all for a RP game but I so much want a new SW mmo, not mmo light with instances.      But from what Ive seen Ill prob give this game a try when it comes out next year or early 2011.   

  • AbrahmmAbrahmm Member Posts: 2,448

    From what I gather from the readings, imo

    The good:

    Sounds like some good story elements, which I have ventured a guess will be the absolute strongest point of this game.

    Great scripted action events, if the rest of the game follows the "Republic attack" type setting. Game play sounds interesting.

     

    The bad:

    They mention a lot of "incapacitating", which gives me the idea that there will be a lot of crowd control ala WoW, which I absolutely cannot stand in PvP, drives me nuts. I hope this isn't the case, but it is the feeling I get. 

    The description of the combat sounded a little dull, but perhaps it is because they made a lot of references to KotOR while describing the combat, and I found KotOR's combat to be really dull. I'll have to wait to see the game play video before I make further judgement.

    The notion that the game will tell you where the best place to hide is as a smuggler seems... stupid. Shouldn't that be something the player must figure out themselves, and help determine how good they are?

     

     

    Just some of my thoughts after reading that.

    Tried: LotR, CoH, AoC, WAR, Jumpgate Classic
    Played: SWG, Guild Wars, WoW
    Playing: Eve Online, Counter-strike
    Loved: Star Wars Galaxies
    Waiting for: Earthrise, Guild Wars 2, anything sandbox.

  • TillerTiller Member LegendaryPosts: 10,389

    e3.g4tv.com/thefeed/blog/post/696137/Star-Wars-The-Old-Republic-Preview.html



    We found out when they let us touch the keyboard during our visit to LucasArt’s E3 booth. Playing as a Sith bounty hunter called Darthawesome (a name I sadly can’t take credit for), I went on a mission to kill the captain of a spaceship for disobeying a direct order to attack another ship. Using a similar circular-type conversation system as Mass Effect, I confronted the errant commander and, having decided to play as a real jerk, I showed him the error of his ways…with my lightsaber. And no, I’m not being euphemistic.

     

    But before I had a chance to attack the ship he had been ordered to attack, it struck first, with soldiers from it boarding the ship I had just made leader-less.



    In other words, now is the time on The Old Republic when we fight.



    Control-wise, Republic works much like other MMOs, with you using the “W," "A,” “S,” and “D” or arrow buttons to move, and the number keys to initiate attacks that correspond to the numbered icons along the bottom of the screen. Except that when you play as a Sith, as I did, doing simple melee attacks with your lightsaber builds up your Action Points, which you can use to do special attacks. So, for example, after attacking some guys a couple times with some quick jabs of the “1” key, I was able to stun everyone around me with a “5.” Or maybe a “4.” It happened kind of fast. All I know is everyone stopped hitting me long enough for me to slice ’em up.



    You can also, like our Lord And Vader, use the Force to choke someone. Though this being a special attack, you can’t just run around choking people whenever you want, like when the guy at Coffee Bean gets your order wrong. Again.



    Then there's this leaping attack where, if you’re far enough from an enemy, and designate him as your intended target, you can hit “3” and leap across the room, hitting him with a devastating downstrike attack. It’s almost as cool as the leap move in Wolverine, so much so that I kept backing up just so I could leap attack people.



    But being an MMO, which is supposed to be about more than just hacking and slashing guys, I couldn’t help but struggle with the combat. Maybe it’s the console gamer in me, or my virgin status when it comes to MMO, but I kept expecting my character to lock onto the nearest enemy and await my command to attack, and instead I often had to hit the “TAB” button to make him pick a target. I also had some trouble moving and fighting at the same time, even when using the arrow keys. But these, as I said, are issues more about my gaming experience, or lack thereof, than with this particular game, so anyone who’s played WoW or any other MMO for more than a week won’t have these problems.



    Sadly, I soon ran out of enemies to pounce on. Thus endeth the demo. And, of course, this preview.

    SWG Bloodfin vet
    Elder Jedi/Elder Bounty Hunter
     
  • TillerTiller Member LegendaryPosts: 10,389

    Rumor

    rumorfeed.blogspot.com/2009/06/smuggler-class-is-all-but-done-and-even.html

     

    The "Smuggler class is all but done", and even at this stage Knights of the Old Republic has more voice over’s than any MMO out there.

    I am still drooling over the awesome trailer that was shown at E3. Head on over to

    http://pc.ign.com/dor/objects/816935/bioware-mmo-project/videos/sw_oldrepublic_trl_e3.html

    so that you too can have a nerdgasm. I still don’t know why the prequels didn’t have anything like this, it’s not like Lucas didn’t have the budget for it… Maybe the old man is getting, well, old. But enough Lucas bashing. Let’s move on to the good stuff!


    The Smuggler class is almost done. Right now they are debating between the “Scoundrel”, the “Smuggler”, or the “Nerf Herder” as the final name for the class. I am also told that currently “Nerf Herder” is winning by a long shot, lol. At least the Bioware team has a good sense of humor. I promised not to leak any Smuggler details until the class is officially announced, and instead got some voice over information.


    Ok, you get one piece of info. Due to the “huge outcry from the testers all classes in the game will be able to dual wield, although at a penalty. All classes will also have a way to offset this penalty, at least a bit.” There, that’s not entirely Smuggler related.


    Now on to the voice info.

    At this stage about 40% of all NPC’s have voice over’s (all the important ones), and the team decided to take it to the next step, and have ALL NPC’s have full voice over’s, even if it’s a minor NPC that is not even quest related. If someone speaks in another language subtitles will appear, but the NPC will still be voiced.

    They have a “large crew” of “professional voice actors, as well as members of the Bioware team” doing the recordings to minimize NPC's sounding the same. The game has the largest voice actor cast in “the history of video gaming”. Pretty bold claim there, but since the game is absolutely huge, and it is Bioware, I tend to believe it.

     

    SWG Bloodfin vet
    Elder Jedi/Elder Bounty Hunter
     
  • BaronJuJuBaronJuJu Member UncommonPosts: 1,832

    Reading back on an article from the first page of this, something popped up I missed earlier concerning group play:

    From the article:

    "Our party confronted the captain and engaged in "multiplayer dialogue," another of Star Wars: TOR's unique features. During the conversation, our bounty hunter and our sith team members were each given a dialogue option during the conversation, which ended with the group decision of either killing the captain as punishment, or sparing his life. Decisions like this will apparently give you and your party members a few moments to cast your votes before the game locks in the party's decision. In this case, we chose to kill the captain, an evil act that earned our characters dark side points and, according to BioWare, changed the course of the game (the following sequence of events we're about to describe apparently wouldn't have happened had we spared him).

    This could potentially really mess with Pick Up Groups (PUG) in game. Personally, I wouldn't trust a PUG if I know one of these quests is a "decision point" quests. Imagine you get in a PUG quest intending to get Light side points out of it, only to get out voted and get Dark side instead. Can you unalter your path back to where you wanted to go or are you screwed?

    Just a concern. I will hold off judgement till I get more info on it.





     

    "If we don't attack them, they will attack us first. So we'd better retaliate before they have a chance to strike"

  • TillerTiller Member LegendaryPosts: 10,389

    kotaku.com/5277689/star-wars-the-old-republic-preview-bam-here-it-is

    Star Wars has a spotty history with massively multiplayer online fans. Who better to salvage the zero for one record than role-playing game developers Bioware?

    What Is It? Bioware's take on a Star Wars massively multiplayer online game complete with full voice acting for all scenes, the ability to play as a number of classes on either Republic or Sith side. The game takes place 3,000 years before the rise of Darth Vader and 300 years after the events of the Knights of the Old Republic.

    What We Saw

    I played through a section instance called The Taking of the Black Talon. I controlled a level 10 Sith.

    How Far Along Is It?

    They won't say, they can't say. They will say the game will take less than a decade to make.

    What Needs Improvement?

    Not a thing. Seriously.

    What Should Stay The Same?

    Voice Acting: The game features 100 percent voice actins. All cut scenes, all conversations, all choices come with voice, well acted voice. The impact this has on the experience is substantial, the game feels less like the sort of massively multiplayer online game that drove me away from the genre and more like a role-playing game.

    Forking Paths: During interactions with non-player characters your choices not only drive the voice-acted cut scenes, they also drive the story and your experience. In the section I played I first decided to kill a disobedient spaceship captain and the second time decided to let him live. In the resulting first scenario, a new captain takes over and her inexperience leads her to ignore pods ejecting from a ship we're attacking. Those pods later attach to our ship and I was forced to go repel the invading soldiers. In the second scenario, the captain, happy to be alive, blasts the pods as they approach the ship, allowing me to concentrate on my main task: Taking out a Jedi.

    Ambient Animation: During firefights lots of things are going on. Ships hover in, firing blasters as they drop off troops. My men and the enemies fight one another. And my favorite: While taking on the Jedi, my Sith character nonchalantly deflects blasts from nearby troopers without me having to worry about it.

    Sense of Scale: This is a war of bounty hunters, Sith, Jedi, smugglers and others. You can feel, in every scene, the importance of your action. The game does a great job of walking that fine line between making you the most important person in the universe and making you just another player.

    RPG: It may be a massively multiplayer game, but it certainly didn't feel like one. While playing I was still moving around with the keyboard, attacking with the mouse, using hot keys to pull of choke holds, powerful light saber attacks, impaling enemies. But the inclusion of all of those choices, the voice acting, the look combines to make it feel more like a powerful single player experience.

    Look: The game forgoes a realistic look for something a bit closer to animation, though it's not really cel-shading. The developers invented a new word to describe it to me: Painterly. I'm not sure what that means, but it is sort of a painting quality. The characters are a bit over-sized, but not so much as to look like a cartoon. This may be the game's weakest link, but I liked it.

    Powers: This is why you're going to play this game. As a Sith I could force choke, deliver powerful light saber blows, impale, and stun with a lightning attack. There are plenty of more options, and attacks. You will also, I'm told, be able to dual wield light sabers and deliver special attacks.

    Final Thoughts

    This is the sort of massively multiplayer experience that I think could bring back a lot of people long lost to the genre. Of course I only saw a small snippet and we have no way of knowing just how far out this game is, so keep an eye out for further developments.

    SWG Bloodfin vet
    Elder Jedi/Elder Bounty Hunter
     
  • TillerTiller Member LegendaryPosts: 10,389

    Star Wars The Old Republic E3 Impressions: Ready to Play KOTOR 3 With a Few Thousand People?



    by Nick Breckon Jun 03, 2009 6:56pm CST

    Judging from a lengthy E3 demo, BioWare's Star Wars MMO plays like a Knights of the Old Republic sequel. From dialogue to combat, its production values are on par with the developer's singleplayer efforts--which is saying quite a lot, considering that it's also planned to be a massive, full-featured online game. Running on live servers back in Austin, The Old Republic already seems like a realized world. In the first segment, BioWare producer Dallas Dickinson ran us through the world of Hutta, beginning the game as the Bounty Hunter class.



    BioWare's target is to make this the first MMO to squarely focus on story, and immediately impressive were the dialogue scenes, the first initiated with an NPC quest-giver. The camera cuts back and forth as characters converse, with a minimal, Mass Effect-style radial menu providing the response options. Every scene in the game is fully voice-acted, and the end result is that the MMO plays more or less like a singleplayer experience. Even more impressive was the addition of a second party member. When talking to NPCs in The Old Republic, the other players in your party will also be participating in the conversation with their own options. So while you might choose one response, the other player will be picking another, and you'll see your guild-mate interact in the dialogue scene based on his response.

    Stepping outside in central Hutta revealed a wonderfully detailed environment, with a very satisfying draw distance. The sense of scale and detail in The Old Republic's zones and instances can't be stressed enough. If anything, the environments far outshine the characters themselves, with BioWare's stylized approach to player design contrasting a bit strangely with the rest of the world.

    Our demo drivers then picked a fight with a few locals, revealing a surprisingly engaging combat system. The Bounty Hunter fights from a distance, but can move freely as he fires off his blaster. As enemies shoot back, missing laser blasts whiz overhead, zipping straight into the camera. Every character has a unique close-combat option; as an example, the Bounty Hunter steps up close to douse his enemies with a wrist-mounted flamethrower.

    Please install Flash to view this Shackvideo

    Shackvideo users can use the HD Stream. Each class' abilities reflect its inherent personality traits. For instance, the Smuggler's character reflects Han Solo's--he snipes at targets with a pistol, and issues sucker punches and kicks between the legs when up close. In an ambitious twist for an MMO, the Smuggler also makes use of a cover system, which highlights potential hiding places with a circle and a green outline of a man. The Smuggler can take cover behind rocks, trees and other debris, offering him extra protection during long-distance firefights.

    As an unsurprising confirmation, the game's interface is standard MMO fair. There's the 1-10 action buttons, the minimap, and other smaller buttons, no doubt tied to menus.

    But beyond the basics of battles and interface, The Old Republic is carving out its most important--and already potent--niche in its detailed quests. BioWare quickly loaded up another quest scenario, which saw a Sith character heading to a starship, tasked with punishing a captain that disobeyed the orders of a Moff magistrate--an order any aspiring Darth Vader would appreciate.

    After fighting your way to the bridge, the game switches into a dramatic dialogue scene. Players have the choice of allowing the captain to live--and gaining light-side points--or killing him off. Our demo theater chose death for the man, and as a result the player gained dark-side points, pushing him closer to evil, and dark-side powers that can only be unlocked as you near the edge.

    After killing the man, a nearby ship launched an all-out attack. Through the bridge's window the player can watch enemy fighters strafing the hull, the general chaos of battle represented in-game. These sorts of high-detail backgrounds are breaking new ground in the MMO genre--but it was the lightsaber combat, nerdily enough, that really captured my attention.

    The Jedi combat in The Old Republic is perhaps the most engaging combat I've seen in an MMO yet. Showing off moves directly translated from the recently released cinematic, the Sith jumped forward and backward, deflecting laser blasts and blocking melee attacks. Finishing moves and saber flourishes were carried off at a perfect pacing.

    The demo culminated in a final battle between our demo operators--playing the Sith and a Bounty Hunter--and an NPC Jedi Knight. The dynamic potential of party combat was highlighted as the duo went to town on the good-guy. At one point the Sith force-choked the Jedi Knight, with the Bounty Hunter stepping up to use his flamethrower on the hovering victim. At the end, the Knight killed, the Sith looted him, took his lightsaber, and equipped it for a dual-saber build.

    The take away? A lot of money is being spent on this game, and it shows. And though it may not have the broad fantasy appeal of World of Warcraft, this is the first game that I can see challenging it. It's hitting a different genre, it's doing things that Warcraft is not, and it will still have all the MMO conventions--PVP, crafting, guilds and raiding are all planned.

    I may not be a fan of the "stylized realism" BioWare is using for character art style, but beyond that, I found very little to criticize in this demonstration, and a great deal to be excited about.

    SWG Bloodfin vet
    Elder Jedi/Elder Bounty Hunter
     
  • TillerTiller Member LegendaryPosts: 10,389

    E3 2009: Star Wars: The Old Republic Preview

    We get a first-hand walkthrough of BioWare's upcoming Star Wars MMO.

    Spiffy:

    An actual fun Star Wars online role-playing game; action that looks like it amounts to more than passive math.

    Iffy:

    It's got a hell of a competitor in World of Warcraft; can't get here fast enough.

     

    What is It?



    BioWare's epic third Knights of the Old Republic game -- this one a massively multiplayer online RPG -- takes players to a time roughly 4,000 years before George Lucas' dual film trilogy (and 300 years past the previous KotOR games). Republic forces tangle with the evil Sith Empire, and players choose sides in the mounting civil war. BioWare alleges unique story paths for each character class, with zero repeated content between Republic and Imperial character archetypes.



    What's New for E3?



    Besides one of the most beautiful cinematic trailers I've ever seen -- which depicts Sith forces infiltrating a Jedi temple and laying waste to the place before general hell breaks loose -- The Old Republic looks like the real deal. This is the first time anyone's seen it in action, and the push toward non-photorealistic art (senior producer Dallas Dickinson describes TOR's look as "stylized realism") means a scalability-minded developer who thought twice about relegating the game to Age of Conan hell.



    The mantra: Story drives choice, and choice drives action. After a brief demonstration of the previously revealed Bounty Hunter class (a ranged terror who packs everything from grenades to wrist-mounted flamethrowers) and the just-in-for E3 Smuggler (an opportunist who makes shrewd use of cover terrain, and resorts to dirty kick-in-the-balls tactics when fighting up-close), Dickinson treated the audience to a show of the series' trademark ethical dilemmas -- sans save button.




    Lightsabers = awesome.




    A player-driven Dark Jedi (one that the developers were hesitant to definitively identify as such) commandeered a mid-transit ship, on orders to kill its treasonous captain. The choice was ours: permanently relieve him from duty, or show him our soft side? The jaded collective of critics chose the former, which resulted in a display of lightsaber-powered violence that quickly coerced the crew to his side. Chaos ensued, driving said Sith (named -- amusingly enough -- Darth Awesome) and his Bounty Hunter pal into an impromptu defense against invading Jedi. The expected hotbar of MMO moves guided the combat, though slick speed bursts, blaster bolt blockage, and flat-out badass lightsaber duels (which haven't looked this good since the movies themselves) afforded TOR a flair not often glimpsed in this me-too genre. As the Jedi fell, the victorious Sith snatched his prey's lightsaber, and immediately lit it up for dual-saber action.



    If I were Star Wars Galaxies, I'd just go ahead and throw myself off the Cloud City catwalk.

    SWG Bloodfin vet
    Elder Jedi/Elder Bounty Hunter
     
  • TillerTiller Member LegendaryPosts: 10,389

    www.1up.com/do/previewPage

     

    What's the game about? Have you seen the new trailer? The one that pretty much everyone describes as "what the Star Wars prequels should have been?" Yea, imagine that, but in game form. Okay, okay, the BioWare crew describes this game as "full of heroic Star Wars moments," or "Knights of the Old Republic three, four, five, and six all in one game." Or perhaps, it's what Star Wars Galaxies should have been.





    Click the image above to check out all Star Wars: The Old Republic screens.

    What's new for E3? A lot, since this is both the first time that BioWare has shown gameplay, and the first time we've played it. For this gameplay demo, BioWare showed off some combat, some dialogue, and gameplay with the Bounty Hunter, Sith, and Smuggler (that last one is a new class reveal) classes.

    In general, the game resembles a mash-up of Knights of the Old Republic/Mass Effect and World of WarCraft. The storytelling and dialogue sequences use the same radial menu as in Mass Effect (though, don't expect that all responses in the upper-left to be noble/good ones and all lower-right responses to be asshole ones; the team will vary up the dialogue choice placement), while the combat generally utilizes the menu/hotkey system of an MMO title.




    Click the image above to check out all Star Wars: The Old Republic screens.

    Class-wise, the Bounty Hunter looks like a general ranged damage dealer, while the Sith is akin to a WoW Rogue (lesser attacks build up points that you use to pull off more powerful attacks). The new class, the Smuggler, is the "dirty fighter" class (and also obviously modeled after Han Solo). He's the kind of guy who shoots first, or kicks aliens in their genitalia before putting them down with a headshot. Another interesting mechanic that the Smuggler introduces is cover; he can actually duck behind cover points and perform specific "in cover" moves (I'm not entirely sure whether cover is Smuggler-only, or can be utilized by other character classes as well).

    Finally, the developers showed off a story moment. Taking place during a "flash point" (BioWare's term for an instance that changes based on your choices), the big decision concerns the fate of a Imperial ship captain. For a bit of context: the captain has disobeyed a direct order from a Grand Moff, and you (and your buddy, depending on whether you're soloing this or not) fight through the ship and confront said captain. For the purposes of the demo, the BioWare fellows killed the captain for insurrection. As a result, the crew is forced to follow the orders that the captain disobeyed; as a result, a rival Republic ship (with its Jedi captain) attacked the players, and his Republic forces breached the engine room.




    Click the image above to check out all Star Wars: The Old Republic screens.

    For my hands-on, I found myself in the bizarre situation of being a nice, sensible Sith. See, I had already seen what happens when the dude dies, so I want to see how the mission changes when he lives. But, well, I was a Sith -- one that said things that "you're forgiven" and "we need to be all in this together." Letting him live alters the context and geometry of the flashpoint: instead of fighting a sudden breach in the engine room, you literally go in the opposite direction and fight fewer opponents as they arrive via the hangar. While it sounds like just a wall-texture swap, there were some subtle differences; such as how the lack of breaches means that the enemies didn't just smash their way through the walls, they conveniently had to go through doors and were hence really easy to spot without surprise.

    What's our take? I generally like what I saw and played. The Sith is a pretty fun class; I basically used enough basic attacks to build up enough points to perform a cooler move, like a Force Choke or some sort of force lightning stomp that stunned enemies in an area, or a simple "stab you in the stomach" type of move with the lightsaber. The combat feels a bit faster and more active than in WoW; the BioWare guys noted that there's no auto-attack option. So while combat doesn't quite match the fidelity of 1:1 input that you'd find in, say, a Ninja Gaiden or a Devil May Cry title, but it does translate into a more frenzied, button-pressing affair. If anything, my only gripe is that I am not a fan of how the character's faces are. The general art style, landscapes, architecture, and even overall character design works just fine. But the moment I see a face, I just don't like it; it seems a bit too close to the art style of the recent Clone Wars cartoon, which I don't like either. Basically, I'm going to be wearing a lot of hoods, masks, and helmets when I play.




    Click the image above to check out all Star Wars: The Old Republic screens.

    Even as such, a huge game like this can't be summarized in a fifteen minute playthrough. Class balance, quest content, PvP, etc. etc. are still up in the air, and we got a long way before its release. I did enjoy what I play, but that's just a fraction of what BioWare is expecting people to play. Though, I'm cautiously optimistic right now, despite the faces.

    SWG Bloodfin vet
    Elder Jedi/Elder Bounty Hunter
     
  • TillerTiller Member LegendaryPosts: 10,389

    The Old Republic Wordier Than Entire Run of The Sopranos

    Still-in-development massively multiplayer online title Star Wars The Old Republic comes packed with voice acting, lots of voice acting.

    Just how much? Not even the BioWare team are sure.

    Every scene, every dialog tree, every branch of conversation is voice acted, and that's a mammoth amount of work. Principal lead writer Daniel Erickson said that meant the team had to do a massive casting call to fill all of the roles of the game. They also tried to make sure not to land any big names for the main roles, because those people will likely be around, providing voice work for the game for quite awhile.

    The cast will include a few voices familiar to fans of science fiction. Some of the actors from Battlestar Galactica, for instance, did work for the game.

    When I asked Erickson how many hours of audio they had already recorded he said he didn't know. But, he added, when the audio team was about a third of the way through the voice work they told him that they had just passed all of the audio found in the full six seasons, 86 episodes of The Sorpranos.

    kotaku.com/5278008/the-old-republic-wordier-than-entire-run-of-the-sopranos

     

     

    SWG Bloodfin vet
    Elder Jedi/Elder Bounty Hunter
     
  • TillerTiller Member LegendaryPosts: 10,389

     

     

    E3 09: Star Wars: The Old Republic live demo impressions

    A few minutes ago I got the opportunity to see a live demo (hands off, unfortunately) of BioWare and LucasArts’ MMO, Star Wars: The Old Republic.



    The focus of the first part of the two-part demo was on the Bounty Hunter class. It opened with a bit of story (unique to the class) that then morphed into a routine “kill them all”-type mission where the player was tasked with blasting groups of gun-toting brigands. The presenter stressed that the game -- including the beginning -- would always allow you to feel like the hero. In other words, you won’t grind against single enemies; always groups and always hectic.



    Anyone familiar with a modern MMO will feel at home with SW: TOR’s combat system. Special power bubbles with numerals line the bottom of the screen and action is fairly relaxed, or at least, actions have a certain cool down time.



    The second part of the demo dealt with the dialogue system. In this vertical slice, I saw one of BioWare’s dialogue-driven moral choices being made and was told (of course) that it would affect the rest of the game. The consequence of the action seemed only immediate; I can’t imagine BioWare would allow you to stay unhappy with a choice forever. Still, it was interesting to see, especially after witnessing the multiplayer dialogue system. (Other players you’re partied with will be in on the conversations for missions; It’s a way to make the narrative work for all parties.)



    I also saw a bit of the recently announced Smuggler class. Like Han Solo, the smuggler class isn’t much of a defensive or aggressive type of character. Because of that, BioWare had to create something beautiful: a cover system specifically for the smuggler. (Little green indicators show you where you can duck; some special powers can only be activated from this position.)



    By the way, the smuggler can kick enemies in the nuts. Awesome.

     

     www.destructoid.com/e3-09-star-wars-the-old-republic-live-demo-impressions-134744.phtml

     

    SWG Bloodfin vet
    Elder Jedi/Elder Bounty Hunter
     
  • TillerTiller Member LegendaryPosts: 10,389

    Hands-on: Star Wars: The Old Republic

    by Griffin McElroy { Jun 4th 2009 at 11:30AM }

    There's an unnavigable divide between the world of MMORPGs and the art of good storytelling. Not

    writing

    , mind you -- the gang at Blizzard know their way around a word processor -- but rather, the actual sharing of a story. It's not a genre that supports the relaying of intricate plotlines. Most players are in it for the grind, for social status or notoriety. The option to enable "text skipping" doesn't exactly lend itself to plot development. Even if the mass interest was there, all of the game's players are receiving the same storyline. No choice, no branching, no consequences.

     

    Attempting to build a bridge with which to cross this divide would be an extremely ambitious undertaking. Fortunately, Bioware is a studio well versed in ambition -- and, if our brief time with the game is any indication,

    Star Wars: The Old Republic

    is going to irrevocably change the way MMOs tell stories.

     

    After both watching the game in action at a LucasArts demo and getting our hands on it shortly thereafter, we were left with a bizarre feeling that what we had just seen was not in fact an MMO, but rather, another offline installment in the

    KOTOR

    franchise. The familiar elements were there -- rich storytelling, clever writing and interesting characters. These elements were presented in frequent cutscenes which appear in lieu of scrolling text quest -- a welcome change for the hardcore MMO player with a number of levels notched into their belt.

     

    Here's where the aforementioned ambition comes into play -- each of the game's classes will have its own personal story arc that lasts throughout its entire lifespan. Beneath this umbrella is an epic class-specific story as well as a few serialized mini-arcs which include a ton of tied-together quests and instanced dungeons. Daniel Erickson,

    The Old Republic

    's lead writer, explained that the game's quests are so linked to a player's personal story that no one quest will be embarked upon by two different classes.

     

    Or, in other words, two characters from two different classes won't receive any of the same quests. The replay value here is going to be

    mind-boggling

    .

     

    The replay value here is going to be mind-boggling.

     

    Even more mind-boggling is the amount of voicework that's going into this thing. Erickson claimed that the title is on its way to setting a record for most voice work ever put into a single entertainment industry project. We believe it. Each cutscene contains extensive voice work, often from a number of NPCs conversing with the player. Each class has its own voice actor. Multiply that by two to accommodate for genders. You can probably multiply that by a bit more, should the game offer its players a choice of species to play as (we've only seen humans). Then accommodate for conversations that branch off based on decisions each player makes, and you have a

    hundred thousand billion hours

    of voice work.

     

    Speaking of branching off, the game's cutscenes feature moral decisions and branching dialogue. As you'd expect, these choices drastically alter the course of the mini-arc in which they occur -- but your larger decisions also effect the grand scope of your character's own personal story.

     

    To non MMOers, these sound like ludological storytelling conventions that have been around for about a decade. In the context of a persistent online RPG, it sounds like

    straight up witchcraft

    .

     

    For the hardcore grinders among you, fret not -- there's plenty of stuff here for you lot as well. The combat looks fast-paced paced and complex, and the classes we got a chance to see look varied enough to keep MMO players used to a particular RPG archetype in familiar territory.

     

    The three classes we saw were Bounty Hunters (long range attackers) who implement blasters, flamethrowers, rockets and jetpacks), Sith (damage and aggro sponges with a number of nefarious force powers at their disposal) and the just-revealed Smuggler (rogueish class that uses a really neat -- and unprecedented -- environmental cover system). We didn't get to see the Trooper or Jedi classes, nor could we squeeze from BioWare's tightly squeezed lips what the other classes would be.

     

    However, they did confirm the Hair Stylist class from Star Wars Galaxies wouldn't be making a re-appearance.

     

    It'll be a tough act to pull off, but BioWare has wowed us before.

     

    The demo we played placed us in the shoes of a level 10 Sith named DARTHAWESOME, who was sieging an Empire-contolled ship in an attempt to dispatch its disobediant captain. Once you reach said captain, you can choose to kill him, and lose his expert advice during the following battle, or spare him, and risk the unkind response from your red-sworded master. Of course, these consequences weren't known before the decision had to be made, as is often the nature of consequences.

     

    (We killed him, of course.)

     

    It looked really great, and the standard conventions of the MMORPG genre will apparently all be in there -- a player-controlled economy, PVP, raiding, guilds, etc. -- but BioWare didn't focus on these elements in their presentation. Why should they? We've seen all that stuff before.

     

    What we haven't seen is an MMORPG with an overarching, class-specific story -- one that the player can contort to fit their own moral code and personal priorities. It'll be a tough act to pull off, but BioWare has wowed us before. If anyone can pull it off, it's them.

    SWG Bloodfin vet
    Elder Jedi/Elder Bounty Hunter
     
  • LocklainLocklain Member Posts: 2,154

    Juicy!

    Sounds like it is going to be fun.   Heres to hoping for a beta slot!  

    It's a Jeep thing. . .
    _______
    |___image|
    \_______/
    = image||||||image =
    |X| \*........*/ |X|
    |X|_________|X|
    You wouldn't understand
  • Coldrain_13Coldrain_13 Member Posts: 107

    What!?! No one to dance the sexy panda dance? Say it ain't so!

    I love my entertaining shimmies!

     

    This game has me stoked off the wall man. Makes me want to re-sub to SWG and laugh at SOE and yell SOE U JUST GOT PWND BY BIOWARE!

    Installing kotor I&II, and the Jedi outcast franchise. Time to get mah nerd on.

  • TillerTiller Member LegendaryPosts: 10,389
    Originally posted by Coldrain_13


    What!?! No one to dance the sexy panda dance? Say it ain't so!
    I love my entertaining shimmies!
     
    This game has me stoked off the wall man. Makes me want to re-sub to SWG and laugh at SOE and yell SOE U JUST GOT PWND BY BIOWARE!
    Installing kotor I&II, and the Jedi outcast franchise. Time to get mah nerd on.

     

    you know what? I bet dancing will just be a mini-game, maybe fishing. Who knows. They are building a game with something for everyone to do. You may not be able to be an Image Designer as a stand alone profession, but it don't mean that you can't get yer hair did. xD

    SWG Bloodfin vet
    Elder Jedi/Elder Bounty Hunter
     
  • BaronJuJuBaronJuJu Member UncommonPosts: 1,832

    Damn, slow down Tillamook! I can't keep up with updating the sticky fast enough!

    "If we don't attack them, they will attack us first. So we'd better retaliate before they have a chance to strike"

  • TillerTiller Member LegendaryPosts: 10,389
    Originally posted by BaronJuJu


    Damn, slow down Tillamook! I can't keep up with updating the sticky fast enough!

     

    lol, I'm just posting what Sean has posted over on SWTOR. Once this slows down I'll let the thread sink.

    I've had to reread a few of the articles myself, and actually found stuff I missed reading it thru the first time. I hope all the doubters are actually reading all this new stuff.

    SWG Bloodfin vet
    Elder Jedi/Elder Bounty Hunter
     
  • MoiraeMoirae Member RarePosts: 3,318
    Originally posted by Wufa


    More professions, and I would love to her a release date! I am really excited about this game and just can't wait.

     

    It was announced like three months ago. Don't expect a release date for at least a year.

  • TillerTiller Member LegendaryPosts: 10,389
    Originally posted by Moirae

    Originally posted by Wufa


    More professions, and I would love to her a release date! I am really excited about this game and just can't wait.

     

    It was announced like three months ago. Don't expect a release date for at least a year.

     From 2006

    Gordon Walton, co-studio director, BioWare Austin: We announced the game around March, but we'd really started on it in the beginning of December 2005.

    so we are on what? Year 3 now?

    SWG Bloodfin vet
    Elder Jedi/Elder Bounty Hunter
     
  • DeeweDeewe Member UncommonPosts: 1,980

     Wanted to say thanks a lot for gathering all this data, nice job!

  • TillerTiller Member LegendaryPosts: 10,389
    Originally posted by Deewe


     Wanted to say thanks a lot for gathering all this data, nice job!

     

    No prob

    SWG Bloodfin vet
    Elder Jedi/Elder Bounty Hunter
     
  • DeeweDeewe Member UncommonPosts: 1,980

    One more article if you want to add it, very interesting.

    UI customization confirmed and hints at space content.

  • BaronJuJuBaronJuJu Member UncommonPosts: 1,832

    I will add it to the sticky up top Dewee. Thanks for linking it!

    "If we don't attack them, they will attack us first. So we'd better retaliate before they have a chance to strike"

  • TillerTiller Member LegendaryPosts: 10,389
    Originally posted by Deewe


    One more article if you want to add it, very interesting.
    UI customization confirmed and hints at space content.

    Good read. This just keeps getting better and better.

    SWG Bloodfin vet
    Elder Jedi/Elder Bounty Hunter
     
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