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Duke Togo

SW: The Old Republic MMO

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I quit WoW a year ago and haven't been interested in a new MMO until i found out about SWtOR. It seems close enough to WoW in gameplay, so it is familiar and new enough in setting and other features (companions, spaceships and interactive stories) to draw me in.

Ever since I played DA: O i wanted a MMO with choice based quests rather than the WoW style of go here, do this, come back for reward quests. More RPG in MMORPG, yes please.

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RD, I'd say SWTOR feels "familiar" (or perhaps comfortable) to play if you've played any mainstream MMO in the past decade, but the gameplay experience itself doesn't remind me of WoW at all.

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EA COO Peter Moore: "The Old Republic is in Beta right now and players are blown away by the immersive story, dynamic combat and authentic Star Wars feel. In the coming weeks we'll invite hundreds of thousands of players into our biggest Beta test to date."

The next build should be out by week's end. Anyone from the previous build is back in.

I just took the time to take a loot at some of the old Alpha footage; man, does the game look a lot different now. There was so much hand-ringing going on by some people over the graphics when this stuff was first shown. Makes me chuckle, now.

Eh...no complaints here.

RD, I'd say SWTOR feels "familiar" (or perhaps comfortable) to play if you've played any mainstream MMO in the past decade, but the gameplay experience itself doesn't remind me of WoW at all.

Agreed...what WoW did was simplify user interfaces, SWTOR continues that facility. Add Bioware's social aspect and gameplay...the game has win written all over it.

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What is this "beta weekend" I just got an email about?

Not to be an ass, but did you actually read the email?

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Yes, I read the email. Yes, I know what it really is for. Yes, it was an attempt at humour that (apparently) fell flatter than a prairie :wacko:

This is a good thing, since my factory is closing for the weekend and I get the time off to actually enjoy this :wub:

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Not to be an ass, but did you actually read the email?

:D I'm on Leviathan

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Yes, I read the email. Yes, I know what it really is for. Yes, it was an attempt at humour that (apparently) fell flatter than a prairie :wacko:

This is a good thing, since my factory is closing for the weekend and I get the time off to actually enjoy this :wub:

My bad, dawg.

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So after 10 hours of backbreaking work, I finally come home to read my beloved Beta invite. It's been dancing in my head like sugarplum faries, just beyong my reach and yet my mind wouldn't stop replaying the epic TOR trailers. I get home, avoid the unneccessary time to taking off my boots or jacket or anything, sit down at my computer, load the email, click the "RESPOND TO PLAY" button. A window spawns from the TOR website and I'm all giddy and bouncing in my seat.

"Sorry, site is currently undergoing maintanace. AKA: SCREW YOUUUUUUUUUUUUUU!"

And then there was much sobbing. :unsure:

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So after 10 hours of backbreaking work, I finally come home to read my beloved Beta invite. It's been dancing in my head like sugarplum faries, just beyong my reach and yet my mind wouldn't stop replaying the epic TOR trailers. I get home, avoid the unneccessary time to taking off my boots or jacket or anything, sit down at my computer, load the email, click the "RESPOND TO PLAY" button. A window spawns from the TOR website and I'm all giddy and bouncing in my seat.

"Sorry, site is currently undergoing maintanace. AKA: SCREW YOUUUUUUUUUUUUUU!"

And then there was much sobbing. :unsure:

Oh well, it doesn't start until friday. Just make sure you get the client downloaded, it's around 20gb.

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So after 10 hours of backbreaking work, I finally come home to read my beloved Beta invite. It's been dancing in my head like sugarplum faries, just beyong my reach and yet my mind wouldn't stop replaying the epic TOR trailers. I get home, avoid the unneccessary time to taking off my boots or jacket or anything, sit down at my computer, load the email, click the "RESPOND TO PLAY" button. A window spawns from the TOR website and I'm all giddy and bouncing in my seat.

"Sorry, site is currently undergoing maintanace. AKA: SCREW YOUUUUUUUUUUUUUU!"

And then there was much sobbing. :unsure:

Yeah, this build has been a bit hectic, to say the least. Still though, enjoy your weekend play. Remember the NDA if you guys want to go over the particulars we can start a private convo.

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The download is actually more like 30GB.

So I discovered after the download kept going and going and going... Plus, I kept reading all sorts of issues in the Beta Test forums on TOR.com and I'm happy to report that it all went smoothly... except for the fact that the "play" button is ghosted out :angry:

Yes, I know that in 23 hours, 34 minutes, and 17 seconds it'll be unghosted and ready for me to abus- err, "play", but it still stings. I hate waiting for anything.

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So I discovered after the download kept going and going and going... Plus, I kept reading all sorts of issues in the Beta Test forums on TOR.com and I'm happy to report that it all went smoothly... except for the fact that the "play" button is ghosted out :angry:

Yes, I know that in 23 hours, 34 minutes, and 17 seconds it'll be unghosted and ready for me to abus- err, "play", but it still stings. I hate waiting for anything.

Yeah my dl took an eternity as well...but its worth it!

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Skrym? *ptui!* TOR and ME3 are the only games I look forward to.

I have almost zero interest in RPG's and I don't plan on playing any of these games ever, but the dude in the skyrim trailer has a viking helmet and is easily ten times more badass than anything in the star wars universe could ever hope to be.

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Skyrim comes out in 6 hours or so...

I never really got into Oblivion, but I loved Fallout3. Is Skyrim coming out for PS3 today, too? If so, maybe after this weekend I'll buy it and play like mad until Dec 20. I'm going back to university full time in Jan, so I'll only have time for 1 game next year.

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How does this Beta thingie work, anyway? It's 5pm CST and the "play" button is still ghosted out. I didn't get any sort of access code in the emails TOR sent me, so what gives?

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The "weekend test" email is to let you know that you have been selected for "a" weekend test. Not "this" weekend. They will let you know ahead of time when you can start downloading the client.

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No, it was for this weekend. The solution was to go into the Properties tab and check "run this as an admin". Then it worked just fine...

Until the game loaded (barely) and I realized just how sucky my dinosaur of a desktop was :(. But now I know what I'm getting myself for an advance XMas present :D

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No, it was for this weekend. The solution was to go into the Properties tab and check "run this as an admin". Then it worked just fine...

Until the game loaded (barely) and I realized just how sucky my dinosaur of a desktop was :(. But now I know what I'm getting myself for an advance XMas present :D

There are certain quirks to the beta client that I think most people miss because they aren't checkin all the relevant info on the forums. (For instance, older ATI drivers can cause an extended black screen upon launch). Also, they were staggering logins as they ramped up the servers.

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Ah, I see. My email was a bit different then.

Your account has been selected to participate in an upcoming Star Wars™: The Old Republic™ Beta Weekend Test. If you have previously tested or are currently participating in an ongoing test, you will be invited again. Additional details for this upcoming test will be announced soon.

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No, it was for this weekend. The solution was to go into the Properties tab and check "run this as an admin". Then it worked just fine...

Until the game loaded (barely) and I realized just how sucky my dinosaur of a desktop was :(. But now I know what I'm getting myself for an advance XMas present :D

Always good to check the minimum system spec as per Bioware:

Processor:

  • AMD Athlon 64 X2 Dual-Core 4000+ or better
  • Intel Core 2 Duo 2.0GHz or better
    Operating System:
  • Windows XP or later

RAM:

  • Windows XP: 1.5GB RAM
  • Windows Vista and Windows 7: 2GB RAM

Note: PCs using a built-in graphical chipset are recommended to have 2GB of RAM.

Star Wars: The Old Republic requires a video card that has a minimum of 256MB of on-board RAM as well as support for Shader 3.0 or better. Examples include:

  • ATI X1800 or better
  • nVidia 7800 or better
  • Intel 4100 Integrated Graphics or better

DVD-ROM drive – 8x speed or better (required for installation from physical editions only) Internet connection required to play.

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Always good to check the minimum system spec as per Bioware:

Processor:

  • AMD Athlon 64 X2 Dual-Core 4000+ or better
  • Intel Core 2 Duo 2.0GHz or better
    Operating System:
  • Windows XP or later

RAM:

  • Windows XP: 1.5GB RAM
  • Windows Vista and Windows 7: 2GB RAM

Note: PCs using a built-in graphical chipset are recommended to have 2GB of RAM.

Star Wars: The Old Republic requires a video card that has a minimum of 256MB of on-board RAM as well as support for Shader 3.0 or better. Examples include:

  • ATI X1800 or better
  • nVidia 7800 or better
  • Intel 4100 Integrated Graphics or better

DVD-ROM drive – 8x speed or better (required for installation from physical editions only) Internet connection required to play.

Oh, I knew what the syspecs were before this invite. I've already planned which card/power supply/etc. I need to buy in order to play this. In all truth, it's this matching of specs that turned me off of PC gaming in the first place.

That being said, "knowing" what the min reqs. are and seeing "below minimum" for my own eyes was... enlightening. Also going to lighten my wallet, too ;)

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The NDA has been lifted.

Indeed, great game and the beta exceeded all my expectations. I'm a six year old WoW vet, along with various other meddlings into DDO, STO, Eve etc, so take that what you will.

Edit: I'm in the general beta test, so my experience isn't limited to the recent beta test weekend. If you have any questions about the game I'm sure me and other some beta testers here will try to help.

Edited by raptormesh

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So, come on new testers, what do you guys think?

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have you played WoW? Because it's like that. With lightsabers. And voice acting.

edit: that sounded snarky but I didn't mean it to be.

You talk to NPC's, the camera zooms in and you get a nice cinematic conversation complete with camera moves and shot changes. They tell you some story and then what to do. There's dialogue trees where you can define your character's moral standing. For instance, a mom will beg you to find her kid, you can accept, you can tell her to kiss you wookie or you can ask about payment. If you're a Jedi/Sith, there are moral quests as well that measure how you respond versus what's expected out of you by the order.

Questing is simple, you walk to new area and do combat. Just like in WoW or ST:O or GW, there are open areas and there are instances. If the quest involves an instance, you can be pretty sure that there will be a cinematic or other plot important moment of some sort.

The actual combat is similar to WoW but a little different. You have certain attacks that build up a "focus" meter that you then can use to unleash more powerful attacks. So a typical low level jedi encounter will be: force jump into middle of baddies, focus meter will build up, spam basic attack till focus meter is high enough to unleash a stun attack, spam basic attack, use higher level slash attack, spam basic attack, repeat.

Enemies themselves don't seem to level with you, instead there's new variants that you encounter as you continue questing. So that baddie that was a pain at lvl 3 will be easy pickings at lvl 8 but there will some new baddie variant for you later. Higher level baddies will use different abilities and have improved armor, etc... so it's not just the same model but blue with more HP.

I'm not sure how training and receiving new powers will work later on in the game but right now, you raise a level, and just like WoW, you have to go back to a major city and find a trainer (of which there are several but they all seem to teach the same stuff) and then you get a bunch of new powers or upgrades to existing powers. I imagine that eventually you start to choose and differentiate.

Art style... the characters are very similar to the look of the Clone Wars tv show. There's lots of animation... if you've played any of the recent bioware games like ME or DA, it's very similar. Facial expressions, lots of body language, and some decent voice acting.

Equipment, very similar to other MMO's in that some stuff is bind on equip and there's a LOT of vendor trash.

The game world seems small, and I'm not sure if they're going to balance that by having fewer players per server but the environments don't seem designed for vast hordes of players. Even in the beta test, it's not uncommon for me and other players to be waiting around for baddies to respawn... which they do really quickly. Too quickly, like kill a mini boss, go talk to an NPC, come out and the same mini boss is waiting for you...

Edited by eugimon

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Thanks for the awesome review Eugimon!

Can anyone tell tell us how it compares to the original KOTOR games? For me, this is the clincher.

Edited by Totoro242

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Thanks for the awesome review Eugimon!

Can anyone tell tell us how it compares to the original KOTOR games? For me, this is the clincher.

It's an MMO; KotOR is single player. There is no comparison.

Having spent 6 years in WoW (on and off), I can definitely refute Eugimon's take of "it's like WoW with lightsabers;" it's not at all like WoW. It feels familiar when compared to all MMO's that have come out in the last decade--what I find to be a comfortable familiarity. Though it's clearly not "different" in the sense that EVE Online is different, playing it just gives you a whole different feel; SWTOR has a different style of presentation than WoW does.

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how does it give you a different feel? Other than building up mana instead of using up from a pool, the combat is exactly the same, spam attack waiting for stronger attacks to cool down. You "stims" instead of potions, you don't level up your stats but get equipment and gear that gives you bonuses, even the environment is styled and colored in a similar manner.

So far, there's only 2 things that are really different, the focus meter and your companion. The focus meter works backwards from the traditional way mana works but the end result is the same, you need to have "focus" to use a special attack and you need to wait for a cool down period before you can use the special attack again.

edit:

If you're just talking about the art style... then yes. Obviously, it's SW. So it has SW aliens instead of orcs and elves. I'm talking about the way the game actually plays, the way you get quests, collect rewards, grind for levels and gear, even the way you have to "repair" worn out gear. If you think that because the quest giver has a little triangle over his head instead of an exclamation mark, that that's some sort of huge leap in game mechanics... okay, sure, go with that.

Edited by eugimon

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