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Further Details On the Star Wars MMO 129

Posted by Soulskill
from the +1-lightsaber-of-smiting dept.
Now that the recent announcement about Star Wars: The Old Republic has had time to sink in, specific details about the game are beginning to come to light. Massively, in particular, has a variety of interviews and in-depth looks at the classes, the combat, and the setting of the game. "When you play like a Jedi from 1 to max, and then decide to start as a Sith, you won't see any content that will be the same." They also discuss the leveling, questing and companion characters. "We want you to think of them as actual companions on your journeys throughout the game. Your actions are going to change how your companion characters develop." Eurogamer is running a preview of the game, and a wiki has sprung up to catalog all of the new information. Other tidbits: support for Star Wars Galaxies will continue; the new game will be PC only; and LucasArts is hoping to snipe some of the World of Warcraft customer base.
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Further Details On the Star Wars MMO

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  • Uh-huh (Score:3, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday October 25, 2008 @12:10AM (#25506787)

    From TFA

    Plus, since you're adventuring with your buddies that are playing other classes, they'll be telling you some of the exciting stuff they're doing. You're going to get tidbits that might really get you interested in playing one of those other classes. It's probably going to make you excited to try things out.

    Wrong, we just want to choke underlings with the force.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Bieeanda (961632)
      Not to mention that spoiler sites like Thottbot will crop up as fast as content is uncovered. Story is very, very secondary in an MMO, when you get down to it-- it's the differences in the ways that classes play, that make them compelling.
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by ajs (35943)

        Story is very, very secondary in an MMO

        I think the scary lesson that most new MMOs learn too late is that everything is secondary in an MMO. Large chunks of your audience won't care about or will be annoyed by trade skills, but you really have to have them and do them well in order to keep certain segments of your user-base interested.

        Same goes for PvP, raiding, grouping, the economy, etc.

        In the end, there are dozens of aspects of the game that the average gamer simply expects to be there. If it's not, then they'll walk away from your game.

        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          by Bragador (1036480)

          Wow, I'm in the minority then.

          This sucks.

          Most people seem to want a multiplayer dungeon crawler, but I want a virtual universe populated with players...

          I'll never be happy in my virtual life :(

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by Skuld-Chan (302449)

          Thats actually not true - there's at least 4 types of mmo players out there:

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bartle_Test [wikipedia.org]

          I've seen all 4 types in my guild - I think the progression guilds for instance cater to "Achievers".

          Personally I like learning about the story through quests and npc's. If a game is just hack and slash it gets boring too quickly.

        • ...will be annoyed by trade skills, but you really have to have them and do them well in order to keep certain segments of your user-base interested.

          The most popular MMORPG at the moment, by pretty much any metric you care to use, has a crafting engine that consists of the following:

          1. user clicks the item he wants to make
          2. check that items are in inventory and remove0
          3. display progress bar for N miliseconds.
          4. add "crafted" item to inventory if rand() > threshold

          That's not "well done." That's not even a fun

  • "LucasArts is hoping to snipe some of the World of Warcraft customer base. "

    Ya, good luck with that.

    • by gad_zuki! (70830) on Saturday October 25, 2008 @01:24AM (#25507171)

      >Ya, good luck with that.

      Sniping WoW customers isnt that hard, heck I used to bullseye womp rats in my t-16 back home, and they werent much larger than most WoW players.

      • by bar-agent (698856)

        Hah, wish I had mod points!

      • by MrWa (144753)
        WoW! Those are some big womp rats if they aren't much bigger than most WoW players! Dedicated WoW Player [3fl.net.au]
    • by ajs (35943)

      Questions I ask of every new-kid-on-the-block MMO:

      • What language can I write my user-interface mods in? How much of the UI can I re-write using that language?
      • How extensive is the end-game content?
      • Once players reach max level, what is there to do besides raiding? Does grouping-friendly content go away at max level? Does questing?
      • If I have a friend who wants to start playing, but I'm already max-level, what are our options?
      • What's there to do in the game that's just fun and not a grind?
      • If I just like PvP
      • by vux984 (928602) on Saturday October 25, 2008 @04:08AM (#25507883)

        What language can I write my user-interface mods in? How much of the UI can I re-write using that language? ...

        That first one is really the show-stopper for most games.

        You and the 3 other people who care more about what language they write UI mods in than actually playing the game.

        • by hvm2hvm (1208954)
          I tried many MMOs but I didn't like most of them because of the interface which is sometimes too simple, sometimes too complex. In WoW which has in IMO the best interface, you can just scale it up as you get new content. Also, it's probably the most intuitive of all. But I don't use most of the initial interface anymore, instead I use addons which enable me to have a lot more buttons and organize them more easily. In what games can you have so much customization that none of the default interface objects wi
    • "LucasArts is hoping to snipe some of the World of Warcraft customer base. "

      Ya, good luck with that.

      That of course depends on their timing, but WoW is several years old now-- it will be older yet when The Old Republic comes out-- and has expanded the MMO market dramatically. Any game that wants to succeed [warhammeronline.com] wants to poach WoW players, and that's a very reasonable goal.

      Now if they'd said, "We want to be the next World of Warcraft"-- that might be a little overambitious, especially this early. But to say tha

    • by Thyamine (531612)
      I'll be fairly loyal to WoW until more companies start putting out native clients for OS X. I've looked at some of the new MMORPGs that are emerging, looking quite good in some cases, but if I have to run it through VMWare or boot into Boot Camp, then I probably won't be trying it out. And I know the Mac audience is fairly small, but it still is frustrating.
    • It doesn't seem like it would be so difficult to get a percentage of the WOW base, if the game is good enough. A crappy game wouldn't pull anyone let alone get some WOW players. There are probably a good amount of WOW players waiting to switch to something else.

  • Story, yes... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by MindlessAutomata (1282944) on Saturday October 25, 2008 @12:41AM (#25506959)

    ..but a story alone can't carry a game. Look at all the other MMOs and their quests. OK, so much of the story in MMOs is more background than anything else, but generally the quests, the actions you need to complete the quests, are rather dull and uninspiring (which is why I like that in WAR you can level up completely via PVP). Kill beavers until they drop a single beaver testicle until you have 10. Fight a spell caster that's AI amounts to casting the same spell on you over and over again. Go to some stupid place in the environment where you need to right click the object. And so on. Questing in MMOs by itself, IMO, is very, very boring. The real question is, will the gameplay be fresh and exciting enough to justify the expansiveness and the story line, and if so, how well will it interact in PVP?

    Additionally, endgame: someone might not care to play the other classes, even if the story and game experience is different. They have a top-level character, they don't want to just give him up. Will there be good endgame? No good endgame can kill an MMO, just look at Age of Conan.

    • Obviously, Funcom ran out of money, coupled with some poor design choices (heavy-instancing,lack of seamlessness, graphics requirements). Age of Conan had lots of good stuff and even more bad ones. The story though through the early levels was quite good and refreshing for an MMO and I think BioWare will innovate this element way futher.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by bm_luethke (253362)

      One of the main reasons I do not play most MMO's is that I find I am paying a company for *me* to produce content.

      I also tend to note that, yes the world is huge, but it is the same 50 tile sets spread out over huge area with the same 50 creatures randomly placed in it. It may take me two full days real time to get from one of the continent to the other and you may see 2000 different enemies to fight, but after the first thirty to sixty minutes you've pretty much seen everything you are going to - the only

      • by TheLink (130905)
        "after all once you complete the story all you have is grind"

        You could go around helping noobs :). They're annoying sometimes though, fortunately you can often leave them dead and still complete the mission.

        In Guild Wars players don't really create much extra content.

        There are more private/3rd party WoW servers, with player created content. Of course Blizzard keeps trying to shut those down...

        I'm wondering if Guild Wars PvP might take off bigger time if Guild Wars just only required the account authenticati
        • It's been years since I did Guild Wars gvg, but at the time, the skill balancing was required, and good. I was happy to have someone keeping an eye on the meta to ensure things didn't get too out of balance. For instance, as much as I liked the old Orders Ranger Spike (Dual Shot, Quick/Punishing Shot, Savage Shot/Distracting Shot + Order of Pain + Order of Vampire), it was badly overpowered. Getting that toned down was a good thing. Minions were crazy when you could have 40 of them at a time, but fun. It ma

  • by kitsunewarlock (971818) on Saturday October 25, 2008 @12:46AM (#25506977) Journal
    The moment I saw there were kill quests, levels and caps I decided this wasn't the game for me. People continually say "levels are the only way". You know what, the reason Gygax and Arneson are seen as development genius' isn't because they gave up and went "but this is how it always is". They developed levels. It was a unique and innovative system for creating characters that can advance beyond their initial stats (or beyond a single enormous transformation, like a pawn into a queen).
    But the days of the level are coming to an end (or so I pray). More and more RPG players grow tired of levels--most now see them as other gamers see installation time. "We can't start playing the REAL game until max level." But there are alternatives!
    Games like Tri-Stat use character points instead of levels. Upon completing portions of a story, and as bonus points based on how well you played a character or any other number of things, you receive Character Points with which to buy customizable skills and gear. Some say they are like "levels", but the fact you start with 350 of them and they go into your stats, gear and skill acquisition make them a clearly different beast.
    A lot of games have abandoned even that and just started pooling experience points directly into stats. Games like Pokemon (yes, its a child's game, but innovative never the less) used levels, but behind the scenes gave each stat a different experience bar that rose depending on your race and the opponent's you beat.
    Some games have abandoned levels and abilities altogether, instead focusing on gaming skill. A lot of people just call these "fighters" or "FPS" + MMORPG mixes, but really they can become quite fun.
    But the big problem I have with Star Wars having levels based on quests is simply that too many quests just don't make sense given the setting. Jedi weren't supposed to go forth and kill. They were supposed to negotiate first and try to avoid battle. Unfortunately, there's no good way of mass-diplomacy aside from needlessly complicated (and frankly lame) sets of dialogue choices that lead to a predictable (and, if you have something like Thottbot) reliable outcome.
    Now if they could make a living and breathing game with characters to interact with that are controlled by GMs and other players who can actually make a difference in the world...
    Unfortunately MMORPGs are scared of idiots willing to run around blowing up random planets just for fun. Leading me to another point. Actions should have consequences, the final knife in the corpse of this game (for me, of course). This is another WoW/EQ/MUD style game where nothing you do accounts for anything other than leveling and gear mongering. They claim you can change companion's, but lets face it. In the end your not changing the world around you. Your not really talking with other characters. Your a hamster in a wheel clicking away to get to the "next stage of power" to access more content that millions of others have or will access themselves.

    Some people enjoy that. I personally don't. I wish I could diplomatically barter with another player for control over a star system's spice flow that we've worked hard to get control of. And I don't want that player to just be able to kill me (or have some other random player run up and kill one or both of us) without consequence. In some zones in WoW you can kill someone who attacked you without the local guards attacking you due to high reputation with that faction. But lets face it, if you just ran around killing people, eventually even a faction your considered a hero in would start viewing you differently.
    But I'm a spoiled Tabletop nerd who has been given the ultimate game system--a living breathing human being who can flesh out a world custom tailored to the needs of me and my friends. That's a real GM. Current GMs in MMORPGs are no more than tech support and referees.
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Start playing Progress Guest and leave all that annoying leveling behind. http://www.progressquest.com/

    • I wish I had mod points as I'd mod that.

      Post of the year, certainly on games.slashdot.org.

      Your sig is awesome too:)

    • by Aeonite (263338) on Saturday October 25, 2008 @01:20AM (#25507145) Homepage

      You might want to check out Hellas. Sci-fi RPG with a Classical Greek twist. No levels, epic storyline, custom worlds. Uses the Omni System (from Talislanta).

      http://www.hellasrpg.com/ [hellasrpg.com]

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by bigstrat2003 (1058574) *

      More and more RPG players grow tired of levels--most now see them as other gamers see installation time.

      A bold claim, and I daresay quite false. I sincerely doubt that the RPG players who don't like levels are anything but a minority.

      Levels, despite you apparently not liking them, work well, and more importantly, are fun. It's rewarding to gain a new level and become more powerful. You say that designers should be pushing the boundaries, I disagree. I say that designers shouldn't waste their time trying to improve an aspect of RPGs that works amazingly well.

      • There are more ways of measuring power than single numerics. As long as we are exploiting computers to do our math and databasing for us, why not stir things up a bit and try to make things more dynamic? Pokemon, to use an often under-rated example, allowed for dynamic stat levelling. Although this isn't exactly what I mean by "level-less", it is a start to a new idea. Essentially each character in the game has their stats dependent not on their level or class/race alone, but also on who they fought and
      • by KDR_11k (778916)

        It's rewarding to gain a new level and become more powerful.

        Really? In most videogame RPGs I don't even notice I got a level up besides a big display stating so, it takes several of them before I notice any change (well, outside of milestone levels where something is hard-limited to certain levels or stat values and you can start doing it now).

    • But the days of the level are coming to an end (or so I pray). More and more RPG players grow tired of levels--most now see them as other gamers see installation time. "We can't start playing the REAL game until max level." But there are alternatives!

      I flat out think you're wrong with the growing tide against leveling but putting that aside for a moment, it's blatantly obvious when you get to the "endgame" that your time leveling was the most entertaining aspect of the game. At that time, the content and the full extent of the landmass was used appropriately. Once the endgame is reached, most of the land is irrelevant and the experience is diluted.

      There isn't any way to say to players to "slow down" and enjoy the experience rather than powering th

      • by kitsunewarlock (971818) on Saturday October 25, 2008 @01:57AM (#25507349) Journal
        When I first started playing WoW, I took everything in. I read every quest and even (although I'm a bit embarrassed to say it) pretended I was making a difference as I hunted down that mountain lion blood or helped fend off the town from random marauders. However I, like everyone I know who plays the game, joined to play with a friend. He even stopped playing his max-level character to play a low level character like me. Unfortunately, the experience was lost on him as he already did that himself ages before. So he went ahead and leveled without me--a problem I experience (from both sides) in almost every level based multiplayer videogame I play. I found myself losing every friend who joined my party in WoW as they were either alts and just trying to get to the end-game, or didn't take everything in as I did. Mind you I was a slow player (I literally spent an average of a week on every level after 30; if not longer if that level had a particular mini-game like fishing or gurubashi arena). Towards the end though, my friends all pressured me into getting to end game. Whenever we played together I would be ignored as the rest of them would raid together in their guild. Everyone would look at the moniter of the higher level character, and as a result leave me without anyone to talk to.

        By the time I got to max level, he changed servers due to a mixture of guild drama, having grown tired of his class and wanting to try a new faction.

        But I tried to experience the "world of warcraft", as well as several other MMORPGs. The problem is I play games to play with people. I'd rather play a game I hate with friends I love than a game I love alone. My friends aren't horrible people--I can't expect them to share the same schedule as me or play at the same pace as me. Its just the set up and major flaw behind leveling to gamers such as myself. It may work fine for some people, but it doesn't work for me.

        When you combine that with the fact your limited to a single class (amoung 8-16 options), its even worse for me. I like to stand out in a game and be more than a grunt (although I'll admit that is kinda the point of warcraft given the setting; your a soldier after all). And I don't mean "I want to be a hero and kill great evils." I mean "I want to be a character, not a role." Build points encourage characters. Levels encourage roles.
      • by zippthorne (748122) on Saturday October 25, 2008 @03:09AM (#25507687) Journal

        I think he's trying to say that leveling is kind of a cop-out. You get some of the benefits of an improvement system, but the resource overhead (in programmer time, designer time, etc.) is pretty small. It's basically "get points for clicking something" -> points reach threshold, advance level by 1. It's like playing a several months long game of freakin' space invaders, and you're playing as the invaders...

        If you're weak enough that you have to be clever to kill something in WoW, at least, you end up having to have a lot of recovery time between kills, which makes your XP/S rate go down. You're actually rewarded for NOT being clever...

        Now, if you do away with levels and instead had some kind of zero-sum XP game where.. say.. if you spend all your time sitting around town "crafting" you get better at it, but your character gets fat and can't run very fast, or you learn magic, but your muscles get weak from using magic fr everything, etc...

        If every gain had a trade-off, there might be some interesting effects. Do you dry your darndest to stay average at everything? Do you spend all your time in the library reading spellbooks until you're an epic caster but you have to pay someone to carry you around?

        WoW is a good game, especially all the little jokes. (it's a lot like Futurama in that respect: layers of jokes that you might not even realize were there the first time around) But the great thing about WoW was that they didn't set out to steal users from Everquest. Their plan was to grow the market. And grow it they did.

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          Well, WoW won because they were simple. They have some pretty interesting concepts in their game, but if it wasn't a successful game you wouldn't see anything they did in any record books after 20 or 30 years. It was an amalgam of base western fantasy with a splash of pop-culture and a clean, customizable UI that came out into the market at the perfect time, riding the back of a successful franchise. It has set no precedents in game design, but is a great example of a successful game. Much like Counter-
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by snuf23 (182335)

      Lots of games do use skill trees (for example the talents in WoW) - I think levels exist for a couple reasons:

      1. They allow people to raise base stats as they level without thinking "I'll need more health" and allocating points to it. This makes it easier for developers to scale content.

      2. A generalized skill systems makes it much harder to balance the game. Inevitably people figure out the "ultimate" builds for given game play styles (PVP, ranged damage, tank etc.). This tends to result in some players bec

      • "Builds" will always exist--however a game that rewards ingenuity in builds that exists outside of sheer power and combat-based (or even non-combat based) sustainability and roles can also come into play.

        For example, lets say Joe the Warrior becomes the strongest at using his long sword upon discovering that out of the thousands of abilities out there, long swords do the most damage per second. Right away I'd be concerned with the game--why does a long sword do the same to a dragon than an ooze? Yes, a
        • with all those variables, IMO, rand() should be used more for determining foe behavior than for "calculating hit odds" Combat moves ought to be strictly deterministic, if possible, the chance comes in where your foe happens to do the right counter-move.

          Street Fighter, Mortal Kombat, etc. don't use the rng to calculate damage, why should games that take in billions in revenue require it?

    • by SEE (7681)

      Thing is, there already was a level-less Star Wars MMO, with a player-oriented economy, player-built cities with actual politics, etc. And it didn't do very well.

      Now, you can argue that pre-NGE Star Wars Galaxies wasn't a good enough implementation . . . but it's a bit much to expect Lucas would try it again.

      • Indeed; SWG was a game I was very proud to see developed. Unfortunately, most of the games I love so much due to advances in design tend to fall a little short when it comes to advertising and building hype. SWG had a ton of hype a while before its release...unfortunately its hard to for any online game not made by Blizzard or Sierra to break through the market and become enough of a success to get a big following in the US. Mind you in foreign countries little games are released every week that all play
    • by vadim_t (324782)

      You need a Second Life, I think.

      No levels, but then no skill points either. You can actually acquire a skill like scripting or building and get respect and even money for it. Want to try your diplomacy skills? Well, that's what all the other users are for. You can play games but can never be really killed. Find enough similar people and you could probably organize an in-world roleplay session, with GM and all.

      • I tried second life and was thrown off due to the adds and, to be honest, the fact my username attracted a type of person who assumed a fetish I don't have.

        Its fun to roleplay without having to worry about whose sword glows more...until it starts raining penises to the tune of a verizon commercial.
        • by vadim_t (324782)

          You need to find a better place in SL, then.

          There are places full of ads, but then there are plenty of those that don't have any. Also recently they're starting to make rules against placement of obnoxious ads.

    • I wish I could diplomatically barter with another player for control over a star system's spice flow that we've worked hard to get control of. And I don't want that player to just be able to kill me (or have some other random player run up and kill one or both of us) without consequence.

      Sounds a lot like EVE Online.

  • No one cares, if it's not Grim Fandango 2.
  • Ugh (Score:3, Funny)

    by Carbon016 (1129067) on Saturday October 25, 2008 @01:09AM (#25507091)

    Rich: You have to understand too, that all the players are heroic. When you play as a non-Jedi class, you're playing a heroic version of that class.

    So instead of making the Jedi and other players on an equal ground by, say, making the Jedi untrained-in-combat Padawans or something, everyone gets to be their own special snowflake with tens of thousands of legendary bounty hunters running around at once. Brilliant.

    • by Moraelin (679338) on Saturday October 25, 2008 @01:51AM (#25507315) Journal

      It worked well for City Of Heroes. Every player in COH is, at least in the design guideline, equal to three minions _and_ a lieutenant. That's what's needed for a fight against a hero to be a 50-50 chance, you know, better have a potion (ok, "inspiration") ready.

      But that's ok, because the NPCs are also generated in packs of 3 for a solo mission, or pretty much in platoons for an 8 player group.

      And yes, nobody seems to have a problem with being in a city with a thousand super-heroes roaming the streets at any given time.

      Generally, when it comes to MMOs, probably the only sane option is to just accept what works and is proven to work, and not think much about what would be "realistic". Starting from the original idea waay back that it would be unrealistic to have quests, because it would be unrealistic if 1000 people saved the same princess or killed the same arch-villain. It turns out that people actually get used quite easily to situations along the lines of,

      "Ok, did everyone get Van Cleef's head?"
      "Yep, I did."
      "Wait, I've got to junk something and then I'll take it too."
      "I killed him yesterday, thanks"
      "Crap, my buddy disconnected. Guess we'll have to come tomorrow so he can get VC's head too."

      Same here. Even when logically it would make little sense to have 10,000 legendary bounty hunters, the players invariably can wrap their mind around that concept just fine anyway.

      And, in the end, is it that illogical? How good do you have to be, to be a heroic version of whatever you're doing. One in a million? Being one in a million sounds pretty special to me. Well, a planet like Earth has some 6000 people who are one-in-a-million, and a planet like Coruscant could have 100,000 by itself, or more than enough for any server's population by itself. And there's a whole galaxy out there in Star Wars. There are probably trillions of trillions of sentient humanoids across the galaxy, and taking the best-of-the best, the one-in-a-million people would still mean more players than WoW has total or even than the Earth's total population.

      • The above "works", where ALL collect the head. Raids where only ONE collects the head get annoying. But how trivial would it be to re-write the quest so that you don't collect the head but get the proof of your deed some other way.

        Or even, introduce a GROUP inventory and the quest item goes in there and the GROUP turns it in?

        Other solutions:

        • A group quest doesn't end until it is turned in, so no splitting the moment the boss dies, the group has to return it together. MMO's LOVE time sinks.
        • Leader obtains
        • by ShakaUVM (157947)

          Warhammer just prints a message across the screen that you killed the dragon, or whatever, with no quest item looting pretty much ever.

        • Well, I'm certainly not saying it's the only way. It's just an example of something which logically makes no sense, but the players wrap their head around anyway.

    • by KDR_11k (778916)

      Aren't PCs always heroic in RPGs? The problem is that usually NPCs outnumber them and not just by counting the mooks.

  • by Culture20 (968837) on Saturday October 25, 2008 @01:09AM (#25507095)
    Lucasarts: What were your most popular games? X-Wing? Tie Fighter? Hmm... Make what everyone's wanted for a Looooong time, a MMO Star Wars starfighter game.

    Load 128 players into a 100(Tie) versus 28(xwing) battle with a little briefing ahead of time as to the goals, maybe even include capital ship piloting and hyperspace buoys for tactics. Racing the Kessel Run, Speeder races, Blasting a womp-rat in your T-16; these things are fun, even more fun against other human-level intelligences. A Star Wars RPG? I've got old West End books [wikipedia.org] for that, and it's sooo much better than what a computer could ever provide.
    • Make what everyone's wanted for a Looooong time, a MMO Star Wars starfighter game.

      I'm pretty sure if this ever got made, I'd quit my job, school, and just play this game for the rest of my life.

      Also, it isn't Star Wars, but look into Jumpgate Evolution. It seems like it might have some promise on scratching the "MMO space fighter game" itch.

    • Exactly! I just wanted to post this very message.

      We could test different strategies attacking the first and second Death star - of course in both cases in the movies the rebels were just extremely lucky and in a real simulation the coordinators of the imperial forces will not be as "over-confident". Still it would be interesting to have the rebels figure out what kind of weaknesses could be exploited. There are definitely strategic design flaws at least in the first Death star and the imperial battle pl
      • There was Star Wars: Battlefront which allows you to play battles from both classic, and new eras of SW.
        It was pretty nice, they also did have air/space battles.

    • X-Wing vs Tie fighter [wikipedia.org] has been out for years and allows online multiplayer.
      • That was what, 8 players max? - We need this on a massive scale! 8-16 players per squadron, 5-10 squadrons per wave, dozens of Calamari cruisers, Star Destroyers, each of them with players sitting in there having special functions like ship defense, reconnaissance, mission briefing, fighter deployment etc.

        Hell, X-Wing vs. TIE Fighter didn't even let two or three players sit together in bigger ships like the Millennium Falcon (one pilot, two gunners as seen in the movies) - a total let down of a multiplay
      • We want 64 players or more! MMOG style! Rankings. XvT is old.

    • by Ilgaz (86384)

      I remember their older work, Eidolon on Atari 800XL for example. Lucas arts was a very risk taking and adventurous company which invents things just like its founder has been once upon a time.

      Check it to see what I mean
      http://www.answers.com/topic/the-eidolon [answers.com]

      Also look at how many platforms they supported before they became a MS DirectX puppet. Supporting that number of platforms in pure ASM (mostly) wasn't a trivial task.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by whisper_jeff (680366)
      A Star Wars RPG? I've got old West End books for that, and it's sooo much better than what a computer could ever provide.

      World of Warcraft? I've got old D&D books for a fantasy rpg and it's soooo much better than what a computer could ever provide.

      Oh. Wait. A computer can provide better graphics. More people to play with. People to play with any time of day (or night). A computer can provide ready-built stories or just mindless killing, depending on the mood I'm in. To name just a few things. So, m
    • by Rennt (582550)

      Dude!

      I just want to say ME TOO, just in case anyone from Lucas Arts is reading this thread (hey, it might happen!), and because I don't have any mod points.

      If an MMO could recreate something like the battle of Yavin or Endor - with hundreds (thousands) of starfighters, all with human pilots, I would sell my soul to play.

      Unfortunately I don't know if we are there yet technologically. Lets face it, hardly any other MOVIES have been able to approach those levels, let alone a networked simulation with pathing f

  • by erik umenhofer (782) on Saturday October 25, 2008 @01:27AM (#25507187) Homepage
    "If you think about it, though, Jedi get popped by people who aren't Jedi all the time. Not everybody's fantasy is to be a Jedi, believe it or not."

    I'm rolling Bantha as soon as this comes out. Look out sand dunes! i'm so gonna be role playing all over your ass! Single file bitches!
    • by xant (99438)

      I'm rolling Womp Rat. At 3 meters, they'll be one of the better damage races, and Luke Skywalker is the only person who can kill one.

    • by feepness (543479)
      And just wait till you can drop some serious high-level poodo...
  • From TFA:

    Gordon: We will definitely have crafting.

    Great! I'm looking forward to a new starwars game with an amazing crafting system! What kind of system will it be? Can I expect a crafter based economy, something the original SWG had but every single other MMO out there has failed at doing?

    From TFA:

    James Olen, Studio Creative Director: Yeah, our game is about loot.

    You lying son of a bitch... it only took you to paragraphs to turn around and plant that light saber right between by shoulder blades.

    • Not living up to your expectations is neither lying, nor stabbing you in the back. Also, take anything that they say with a huge grain of salt at this point: it sounds like they haven't even figured out how they want some parts of the game to work yet, so it's a bit early to be getting out the tar and feathers.
      • by rezalas (1227518)
        read the article. He says there will be crafting, then goes on to day later that the game is based on loot drops and they don't think crafting matters and is below what a hero should do. Knife + spine.
    • I don't see how that's lying. He said they'll _have_ crafting, not that crafting will be the only thing or the alpha and omega. There are a lot of games which have both crafting and loot. WoW is probably the most visible example, though you could take EQ2, LOTRO or WAR as equally good examples. It's the norm.

      There are even games where you use the loot _for_ crafting. E.g., the seeds in WAR or the "invention" system in COH/COV.

      Anyway, it sounds to me like you wanted the whole game to revolve around crafted s

      • by rezalas (1227518)
        You seem to be a bit confused, there aren't any games out right now where crafting is required including your big example world of warcraft. Infact, WoW is so raid centric that people in crafted gear replace it by the first 10 man raid they participate in. You say there aren't any games where you don't have to craft but you are completely wrong, there are NO games where you must craft to get places left worth a damn. Its all a bunch of hack and slashers.
        Now, I'm not bashing hack and slash, I'm simply sayi
        • by Moraelin (679338)

          You seem to be a bit confused, there aren't any games out right now where crafting is required including your big example world of warcraft. Infact, WoW is so raid centric that people in crafted gear replace it by the first 10 man raid they participate in. You say there aren't any games where you don't have to craft but you are completely wrong, there are NO games where you must craft to get places left worth a damn.

          No, you seem to be the confused one. He didn't say anywhere that it would be crafting-centri

          • by Firethorn (177587)

            And I'm saying that it's been tried, and it screwed up the game for everyone else. Suddenly those "power gamer" newbies (*) can't even buy a toothpick, much less a weapon, without paying millions for it.

            Then you're making crafting too difficult, ironically enough. Or making selling too difficult. Whatever, you get huge prices because so few can construct the items compared to demand.

            The solution to prices being too high would be to make construction easier - you'd get more players making stuff, eventually overwhelming the gold-buyers and second character 'anonymous gifters', clanners and so on.

            Of course, in WoW you have level restrictions for items - It's not like a 1st level can even wear 9/10ths the eq

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Clanked (1156473)

      That was the thing that made SWG(original) the best MMO made IMHO.
      The crafting system was just amazing. Everything you used, was made by someone else. The way they did loot was a great idea as well, EPIC's were actually rare. Maybe one or two per big guild. Legendarys were just that, Legendary. These items were WAY better than anything that could be made, but they were extremely rare. I remember PVPing and when the opposing guy pulled out his Legendary T-21, and it was game over. Your normal loot (tapes), w

  • Loot. Crafted. Healer. Tank. Nuker.

    Let's actively try to move away from the stereotypes. When people play MMOs they want escapism...these days, they want to escape from the real world shackles as well as the typical MMO trappings. Sure, let us shoot people and create wonderful items. But let us TRIP someone for god's sake and make a run for it instead of standing toe-to-toe, 6-on-1, swinging our sabers into empty air while some giant creature makes "Ow!" sounds.

    All this technology...I can't even tackle some

  • I understand that a whole ton of SWG fans are upset over this, but I kinda like the direction this is taking. Balancing jedi is a good thing - it makes the class less attractive and allows the ability to play other classes without penalty. A lot of the SWG fans need to cool it and remember that this is not SWG 2 - this is a KOTOR title.

    I was a huge fan of the original KOTOR (not the sequel). If this has instanced dungeons or something similar (for me, one of the only reasons the pick WoW over other MMO
  • the new game will be PC only, and LucasArts is hoping to snipe some of the World of Warcraft customer base.

    I already knew that corporations had almost unbridled powers, but murdering customers of a competing product? That seems rather mean-spirited, even for LucasArts.

  • by SmallFurryCreature (593017) on Saturday October 25, 2008 @05:01AM (#25508073) Journal

    If you ever played WoW, you would know that its customer base is rather... well... yucky.

    WoW is the 12yr olds paradise who need desperatly an E-penis. Of course there are exceptions but WoW attracts its customers because it is an extremely simple game to grind rather then master or enjoy.

    Don't get me wrong. You CAN master and/or enjoy WoW, but that is not what the majority of its 10 million subscribers do. They grind. They are not intrested in story, character development, immersion. They want to grind XP, get fat loot and show of their "rares".

    Age of Conan had a LOT of problems but one "new" thing it did was introduce dialog trees in its quests. Not that advanced but leading to the following complaint from a player who went back to WoW:

    "Why can't the dialog trees default the best options to 1 or provide a popup to confirm if you are making an important choice because I just press 1 to skip through all of them as I want to get on with the quest without reading".

    If I was a little bit lazy I would find the original post. AoC at some points gave you the choice of your quest reward be in the dialog. If I remember correctly, it was the epic quest chain.

    So the developers introduced a story, a background and the WoW player base just wanted to get it over with to grind loot.

    AoC also had other problems, it had no loot, no armour. The game was supposed to be skill based, not based on what loot you had on you. The forums were filled with endless complaints that the armour from lvl 10 wasn't that different from lvl 40. IT WASN'T SUPPOSED TO BE! This way, a hardcore player and a casual player would have similar stats, very important in a PvP game that doesn't want to cater only to the most hardcore grinders.

    Further problem, items weren't bind on equip, meaning you could pass them on easily once you no longer had a use for them. This meant there were no rare items to begin with, nothing special about them if there were rare and in plenty supply for low low prices. Again, no end of complaints despite the fact that this was how the game was designed. on purpose.

    The complaints of course all were from the people who wanted AoC to be WoW. AoC had lots of problems but not being WoW was not one of them.

    Going deliberatly after the WoW market means you HAVE TO be WoW. And not the WoW some ppl play, but the WoW 10 million people play. That is a very risky market to enter. First, Blizzard has shown they are the best at making WoW and nobody else has even come close. In fact everyone else has had to make a living by NOT being WoW and attracting customers who do NOT WANT WOW! If you introduce the perfect WoW clone, then why would people come to you? They already invested lots of money and time in WoW, so why would they switch?

    if you change the smallest bit, the WoW fans will complain till you change things, but they will go back to WoW anyway and you will loose all those who hated WoW and wanted something different. If only there was an example of an MMORPG that attracted people who didn't like WoW style but the game went ahead and changed to attract WoW players, failed to attract them but repulsed its old players. Anyone? Maybe some Sci-Fi movie based MMORPG. *cough*SWG NGE*cough*

    AoC showed on thing, the MMORPG market is huge. You can attract a MILLION customers at launch. You do NOT have to be a WoW clone but you have to very clear about WHAT you game is going to be like from the start (DEMO) and have it WORK.

    • by brkello (642429)
      Uhh, WoW has an appeal far beyond the 12 year olds. I know so many adults (25+) that play or have played this game. You might not get that impression if you read the forums, but that is true of every mmo. What AoC showed is that it tried and failed to be more appealing to the masses than WoW. After playing WAR (and enjoying it) I still think nothing is better than WoW. The graphics might be lame, but now that I am used to it, I actually like all the colors and animation. It is very smooth and clean.
  • new game will be PC only (must be directx) and also "LucasArts is hoping to snipe some of the World of Warcraft customer base.". Somehow, they also need to re-assure the support of older title will continue.

    I am just saying Blizzard still ships updates (even converting them to Intel) to 5-6 year old games and they use technologies like OpenGL as far as possible. They can easily ship a PS3 version for example. As they also have a CPU independent version, even iPhone version is possible.

    Lucas arts should wake

    • by grahamd0 (1129971)

      new game will be PC only (must be directx)

      Not necessarily. While you're probably correct that it will be Windows only, and probably does use DirectX, at this point everything is so vague that they could simply mean that they aren't making console versions.

      After all, if what they meant was, "We're using Direct3D", they could fairly easily make an Xbox 360 port.

  • Here's the summary for anyone who doesn't have time to read the articles: "Cool stuff coming but we can't discuss it yet."
  • by SystematicPsycho (456042) on Saturday October 25, 2008 @09:15AM (#25509015)

    Star Wars used to be cool, but after the episode I,II and III flop (except the last 20 mins of III) most of us have given up.

  • And just a couple days ago, some other gaming vidiot was telling us Lucas doesn't release games worth a shit on the PC platform.

    Just goes to show you, one man's shit is another man's treasure... Or that people in power don't know what they are talking about.

    Either way, good to see a new game coming out, and the AI (or programming, if you will) sounds kinda cool on this one. I always hated the fact (and it turned me off of gaming, actually, back in the late 80s / early 90s) that if you finished a game, cho

  • by elrous0 (869638) * on Saturday October 25, 2008 @11:03AM (#25509527)
    KOTOR sold 2-3x more copies on the Xbox than the PC. Now they're abandoning the console in favor of the WAY oversaturated PC-only MMO market?!? wtf? Very dumb move. They've abandoned a guaranteed cash-cow for another Star Wars Galaxies flop.
  • ...the hype, I mean, not the game. (BioWare pretty much automatically gets my money.)

    After reading TFA's, it sounds like the same promises we hear every time a new MMO is in the works.

    • Getting rid of the grind ... check!
    • Appealing simultaneously to loners and massive group players ... check!
    • Based on popular franchise ... check!
    • Going to steal WoW's fanbase ... check!
    • Awesome, totally unobtrusive crafting system ... check!

    Why don't they solve the energy crisis and give everyone a puppy while they're at it?

    I'

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