After seven days of Star Wars: The Old Republic it’s safe to say that it’s a quality title. Although I’d love to approach the game as objectively as possible, my opinions about Star Wars, BioWare, and the MMO as a whole are going to drive anything I write about the game. Not to mention, SW:TOR is still extremely new. Instead of reviewing the MMO, I’m just going to keep a weekly journal of sorts. Here is how my first week went.
As no fan of Star Wars, l skipped preordering the game and waited for its official release. After dealing with early access to other games, I knew that probably wouldn’t be a huge loss. Luckily for me, waiting wasn’t a bad idea. I completely avoided queues this way, and that made my launch experience much better. The only issue I experienced with launch was actually finding a physical copy to purchase. Normally, l would have opted to buy the game digitally, but PayPal wasn’t a payment option. This was an inconvenience but it was easily overcome.
My experiences with the SW:TOR beta made it easy to choose my first character. A Smuggler, soon to be Scoundrel, was created and I had officially started my journey. Within the first week, I managed to find my way to level 25. By questing alongside my Smuggler husband, my Social level was 3 and we managed to complete all flashpoints available to us as a duo.
Not only do we make up a full group with our companions out, we are able to complete these flashpoints at or just above the level required to start the flashpoints. That’s a huge selling point for us considering we generally keep to ourselves. When used correctly, the companions are quite effective. Controlling their abilities manually make them very viable even in tougher boss fights. However they are missing one key aspect that BioWare companions often have. SW:TOR companions can’t be directly repositioned.
My only other big issue with the game has to do with questing. Specifically, bonus objectives are extremely annoying. Bonus objectives tacked on to quests aren’t the issue, but the quests that are completely bonus based can be stressful. In particular, the final stage of these missions require the player to kill one specific NPC. This NPC usually has a lengthy respawn timer causing players to camp and compete with each other. It’s an awfully archaic design for a quest and it sticks out like a sore thumb when compared to how well the other quests are built.
The final thing that stuck out to me in my first week was the custom item and modding system. In lieu of an appearance tab system, SW:TOR utilizes a custom item system. Custom item names are orange but this doesn’t mean they’re super rare. It means that the item’s mod slots can be replaced. When higher level mods are inserted into this armor or weapon, the item not only gets the benefits from the new mods but it also improves the item’s armor or damage value. It’s a system I’ve found quite flexible and enjoyable. My smuggler never looks a way that I don’t really want her to look.
By the end of the first week, my Smuggler had a custom-built speeder, only a little money, a budding romance with a farm boy, and memories that other MMOs couldn’t possibly have created. So far I have had a good experience with SW:TOR and hopefully that will continue as the weeks progress.
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