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Ask Slashdot: What To Do In SW:TOR For Just 3 Days? 211

Posted by timothy
from the spread-wild-oats dept.
rodrigoandrade writes "I've been invited to participate in the beta testing program for SW:TOR. However, EA's giving out 3-day passes to most testers. A few people are receiving passes for longer periods. Mine will be from Friday 5am through Monday 12am (CST) (i.e. Sunday evening). Since it's a frakking 10GB download (almost 2GB for video alone) I'll use for only 3 days, I'd like to make the most out of it. If you're an experienced beta tester, please post some tips travel-guide style on what I should do, quests I should take, places to visit, etc. TYIA. May the Force be with you!"
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Ask Slashdot: What To Do In SW:TOR For Just 3 Days?

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  • by Anonymous Coward

    What is SW:TOR?
    (Yes, I can google it, but shouldn't it be explained in the summary?)

  • No (Score:5, Informative)

    by hansamurai (907719) <hansamurai@gmail.com> on Wednesday October 05, 2011 @09:16AM (#37611234) Homepage Journal

    I'm in the full beta test, not just weekend, and unless your TOS is different, there will be no discussion here. All beta testers can admit is:
    1. The fact that the game exists
    2. The fact that you are in the beta test

    So yeah, umm... just try it out?

    • *waves hand* You don't need to see beta information. This isn't the beta you're looking for. Go about your business. Move along.
    • Re:No (Score:4, Funny)

      by Hatta (162192) on Wednesday October 05, 2011 @10:06AM (#37611830) Journal

      They should release a Star Wars version of Tor, to enable people to talk about SW:TOR.

      • by bar-agent (698856)

        How to do it right:

        "Yo dawg, I herd you like SW:TOR, so I put a Tor in your TOR so you can talk about TOR while you tour TOR!"

        (I should probably use more "u" and "ur", but...I can't. I just can't.)

    • by Darinbob (1142669)

      I've been in betas where you can't even say you're in beta!

      This whole closed beta thing is out of control I think. Too many players treat it as an honor and are furious when they don't get into a beta for an expansion and think that they're being insulted. And others treat beta as a treat instead of a job, so they're there to learn the tricks before other on their servers, or they're just having a good time adventuring for free. Others want notoriety, breaking NDA by posting screenshots, or after beta is

  • NDA (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday October 05, 2011 @09:17AM (#37611252)

    Isn't this still under an incredibly strict NDA?

    • Re:NDA (Score:5, Funny)

      by aicrules (819392) on Wednesday October 05, 2011 @09:22AM (#37611328)
      I cannot confirm or deny that.
      • Mod the above "insightful".

        It's all about having fun; the article author treats those 3 days as a quest seemingly similar to "destroy as much environment as possible within 60 seconds". That's bullshit. You need to have fun in your own way and disregard the tic-tac, else it will mess up your fun factor. What else are you willing to do to get the most out of it? (sleep deprivation?)

  • give your key to me for the 3 days, I'll figure it out for you!

  • Um... (Score:5, Funny)

    by AngryDeuce (2205124) on Wednesday October 05, 2011 @09:20AM (#37611280)
    I would sit in the cantina and tell everyone how you were into Star Wars before it was cool and how Star Trek is better anwyays...
  • by Avatar8 (748465) on Wednesday October 05, 2011 @09:21AM (#37611298)
    Sit in WoW trade chat spamming how SW:TOR is going to kill WoW while you wait for the EA beta servers to respond.
  • Weep (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Bieeanda (961632) on Wednesday October 05, 2011 @09:24AM (#37611350)
    Weep, because someone reported this article to EA and you've both lost tester privileges and received a dire nastygram (+5 vs armchair lawyers) from EA's legal department.
  • rodrigoandrade (Score:5, Insightful)

    by aicrules (819392) on Wednesday October 05, 2011 @09:24AM (#37611362)
    Thank you for using a name that is nearly identical to the one you used to enter the beta. You will no longer need to spend any time downloading the game as your beta pass has been revoked for reasons that should be entirely obvious to you at this point.
    • by elrous0 (869638) *

      See, it's this kind of attitude that gives me just tons of faith that BioWare isn't scared to death of people actually seeing this supposed great WoW-killer for any length of time (and seeing its flaws).

      • by firex726 (1188453)

        Yea, its not like Blizzard is going to totally rework WoW before the release of SW and beat them to it.
        They are just worried people will find out it's shit and not buy it, just like how its become more common for negative reviews to be held till after release, while positive ones get to be published before.

        • by Darinbob (1142669)

          Reviews should come from reviewers, not testers. Testers are there to find bugs not whine about the presence of bugs.

      • by rtb61 (674572)

        OF course there is LOTRO and Turbine's effort with basically a free MMO and grinding or paying for turbine points. In this case are they worried that Turbine might make a play for the science fiction universe as a break from fanatsy and to target another market group. Yes, I have been playing LOTRO and found it a fairly interesting and entertaining game, for me lot's of game learning opportunities.

    • The NDA explicitly permits you to disclose a) that there is a beta test, and b) that you are a part of it. So he hasn't broken the NDA.
      • by aicrules (819392)
        But what does the NDA say about disclosing the details of the NDA? HMM? jk In reality, I have nothing to do with Bioware, the beta or this game at all. Though I will be happy to hear what it is like once those details are made public.
      • Re:rodrigoandrade (Score:4, Informative)

        by SharpFang (651121) on Wednesday October 05, 2011 @10:50AM (#37612418) Homepage Journal

        He gave:
        - download size (albeit wrong)
        - beta participation lengths, dates and habits concerning giving them out
        - beta access method (timed password)
        - method of participation (invited)
        - in-game task system (classic: quests)

        • All of which, except for the timed password AFAIK, are publicly available info on the SWTOR forums themselves.

  • by iCEBaLM (34905) <icebalm&icebalm,com> on Wednesday October 05, 2011 @09:27AM (#37611392)

    There is a testing program, and I am participating in the testing program.

    That said, some of the details in the posers question are false.

  • From the get-go TOR has reeked of a development clusterfuck. After failing to follow through with the massively successful KOTOR series on consoles, they come out with this PC-only MMO, followed by years of development hell (to the point where some were speculating it would be cancelled altogether). Now this supposed WoW-killer is coming out, and BioWare is suddenly pulling back on how many people will even be able to buy it, or beta it (not exactly a ringing endorsement of their confidence in their server

    • by iCEBaLM (34905)

      It doesn't help that part of the pre-order hype was that pre-ordering it would get you a chance to get into the beta (guess they forgot to mention the "for just three days" part at the press conference).

      Never saw that, as part of the preorder you do get "early game access", which is a way for them to do a controlled ramp up of the playerbase so not everyone is hitting the newbie zones all at once.

      There is a testing program, and I am participating in the testing program, all I can say to you is, it's fucking

      • by elrous0 (869638) *

        t's fucking Bioware dude, the game will be awesome,

        BioWare has never made an MMO.

        • by iCEBaLM (34905)

          Bioware has never made a bad game.

          • Dragon Age 2
            • by Tridus (79566)

              Well, Bioware has still never made a "bad" game. Dragon Age 2 is more in the "steaming turd" category.

              • by Dyinobal (1427207)
                steaming turds in your mind are not bad?
                • by idontgno (624372)

                  They're not games.

                  Follow the logic. "Bioware has never made a bad game. If Bioware made it and it's bad, it's not a game; it's a steaming turd. Therefore, Bioware has never made a bad game. Q.E.D."

            • Which as a game was fine. The reused areas were fucking irritating, and it should not have been a Dragon Age game, but it was a perfectly good game ignoring those two facets.

          • by xMrFishx (1956084)
            Yes but remember, EA is involved. There's a first time for everything.
      • by Xugumad (39311)

        Do you remember when Square Enix released nothing but brilliant games?

        Seen FFXIV?

        That's their second MMO. This is Bioware's first. I'm not saying it will be terrible, but I am saying I'm not holding out a lot of hope here.

        My Bioware history is a bit wobbly, but have they even released multiplayer games before?

        • by iCEBaLM (34905)

          Perhaps you missed the part where I said:

          There is a testing program, and I am participating in the testing program.

          Really, just relax, take a deep breath, and think good, happy thoughts, I know I am.

    • by Bieeanda (961632)
      WoW-Killer is the single stupidest term I've seen thrown around in MMO circles since that game launched. The only thing that is going to 'kill' that game is itself-- it is a gigantic statistical anomaly in a realm where a few hundred thousand subscribers is still considered acceptable, and two or three million is healthy to excellent. There is no way that SWTOR could have pulled ten million subscribers or drawn off five or six from WoW (many MMO players will subscribe to multiple games, so it's not a zero-s
      • by blackicye (760472)

        Additionally, if "killing" a 10 year old MMORPG is the highest goal of a new launch title, they seriously need to improve their product and strategy.

    • by muffen (321442)
      Preordering was not going to give you a better chance of getting into beta, it was going to give you early access to the game, and it will still give just that.

      Not opening up for everyone on the same day at the same time might not be the dumbest of ideas, one can assume that servers will get hit pretty hard at start, don't see why this is a problem. It's fairly clear that the first weeks to month of an MMO decides its popularity, very few games have survived or come back from an initial disaster.

      Pulli
      • Except it won't be the same game as original SWG. I think GP meant that it will be subject to some of the same disastrous decisions that killed SWG and not the game play. It's already a class lock-in, level based game. That already puts it closer to the NGE version of SWG than it does to the original version. I don't have high hopes for this game. After what George Lucas did to the franchise, along with how SWG was killed, Star Wars is mostly dead to me now.
    • There is an ongoing beta, and there are testing weekends. So, in answer to your "why only 3 days?" question, the answer is that it's not only 3 days.
    • Aaand you're wrong. Beta participation is decidedly not based upon preorder.

    • by WhiteDragon (4556)

      ... KOTOR series on consoles, they come out with this PC-only MMO....

      Up until reading your comment, I literally had no idea it was on consoles. I only ever knew about it on PC. I haven't played it though. I had a roommate who was hugely into PC gaming and Star Wars, so KOTOR was his idea of the perfect game.

  • Play it
    And have Fun!!!
  • Where to ask (Score:4, Informative)

    by Divide By Zero (70303) on Wednesday October 05, 2011 @09:35AM (#37611478)
    While you're downloading the mammoth client, ask this question in the Beta Tester forums on Bioware's SWTOR site. There, people who have been in the test for a long time can give you tips without fear of violating NDA.
    • by webheaded (997188)
      Yeah, I really don't understand why this even got posted on Slashdot. The best place I can possibly think to go is the beta testing forums. No wonder people have trouble finding things on the internet...they go about things in completely illogical ways...like typing a domain name into Google to get there. x_x
  • - In beta (Score:3, Insightful)

    by h4x0t (1245872) on Wednesday October 05, 2011 @09:36AM (#37611506) Homepage
    Um. Play 1 class as far as they will let you.

    Report bugs in a coherent manner.

    Have fun and tell your friends if you like it.
    • by Darinbob (1142669)

      Do the unpopular stuff too. 99.9% of the beta testers are there to be cool and do the cool stuff and have put all of that through it's paces. Probably some power leveled to see the cool end game and bypassed the low and middle level stuff as fast as possible. Don't worry about class balance or combat mechanics, the theory crafters have run all this through their spreadsheets already and declared that it is unworkable, instead see if the class is actually fun and playable. Find the class that everyone ha

  • by Quiet_Desperation (858215) on Wednesday October 05, 2011 @09:39AM (#37611526)

    Go do the things at the place.

  • skip it? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by vlm (69642) on Wednesday October 05, 2011 @09:47AM (#37611624)

    If you're an experienced beta tester, please post some tips travel-guide style on what I should do, quests I should take, places to visit, etc. TYIA.

    Places to visit: Take the kids to the park and have a picnic, leaves are beginning to change and most of the mosquitos are dead where I live. Take (your) spouse to romantic dinner. Find a museum and look at artifacts for awhile. "Interpretive centers" mostly suck. Stay away from tourist traps in general.

    Good quests, easily accomplished in 3 days: learning everything you need to pass the entry level ham radio license in your country. Another good quest is setting up IPv6 and completing the entire hurricane electric "sage" testing program. Set up a simple, crude mythtv system for the pure fun of it. Set up an asterisk voice pbx and fool around with all the features.

    Travel guide style? Rick Steves to the rescue.

    Oh you meant a SW:TOR beta tester, not just a guy who tests software in general. Oh you meant inside SW:TOR not just a long weekend. I still say skip it, the MMORPG bubble is over and poppin' and after SW:TOR is just a memory (probably pretty soon) you'll look back and wish you did something useful that weekend. What could you go with 10 gigs of downloads that would be more fun? Well, probably almost anything else. Even 10 gigs of spam emails would be fun to data-mine or graph or analyze.

    • +1 Insightful.
    • Just because you don't like MMORPGs doesn't mean nobody else does. Rather presumptuous of you.
      • by vlm (69642)

        I like grinding with the best of them, I don't want to "invest" in a new entrant in a dying field. Therefore the "do something else".
        Same issue with downloading. Hmm, 10 gigs of a probably non-survivable game that I can only use for 3 days and probably won't even be around anymore "soon", or 10 gigs of movies, music, ebooks, warez, and pr0n that are great "forever".

        Betting on horse racing might be smart or dumb, your opinion is irrelevant (said in best 7 of 9 voice). But betting on one of the last horses

        • No evidence suggests that the MMORPG genre is "dying". In fact, it's going strong. TOR will carve out its own little niche and do well.

          Besides which, even if TOR were fated to die 6 months after release, it's irrelevant. If I got 6 months of fun out of a game, I call that a success. I don't need a long term investment to enjoy a game, I play games to enjoy them now. If I also enjoy them years from now, that's simply gravy.

  • by Registered Coward v2 (447531) on Wednesday October 05, 2011 @09:52AM (#37611686)
    What might you do that's not within the "norms?" can you run through walls - find a way to get an unfair advantage through quirks in the programming? I'd look for things that can ruin the experience if not fixed. That's what adds value to a beta test - finding the bugs that no one thought about.
    • by jandrese (485)
      Unfortunately, it's almost impossible to discover stuff like that in 3 days. It's hard to break mechanics when you barely understand how they work. That's why I hate ultra-short betas like this, it's almost impossible to give good feedback, especially since you're stuck doing the level 1 content that has been beta tested to death by the legions of other 3 days testers.

      Face it, a 3 day beta is basically just a demo in disguise.
    • What might you do that's not within the "norms?" can you run through walls - find a way to get an unfair advantage through quirks in the programming? I'd look for things that can ruin the experience if not fixed. That's what adds value to a beta test - finding the bugs that no one thought about.

      A lot of people seem to think "Beta" just means "early access." It also doesn't help when an MMO says "beta access" to members, when it fact it really is just early-access to the game like 2 weeks before release. Also, Google doesn't help matters either with how it labels its products Beta even though the regular public has been using its feature/app for years.

      My understanding, early-level play testing is like you described. I recall stories where testers would be given a list of known and obscure bugs t

  • Hunt down and destroy the ancestors of Ja-Ja Binks.
  • The purpose of beta testing SHOULD be to find bugs. However, since EA apparently think THEY'RE the ones doing YOU a favor by ALLOWING you to FIND BUGS for them, give them the finger.

    The fun part about an MMO (for those inclined to play MMO's) is developing your character, which is a complete waste of time when your virtual character has only 3 days to live.
  • by CFBMoo1 (157453) on Wednesday October 05, 2011 @09:57AM (#37611736) Homepage
    Get as many of them as you can if they exist and run around to people setting them off. Be sure to type "Ssssssssssssssss...." in chat before it goes off and make sure you are wearing as much green as possible.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    All the showstoppers have been found already. Since we're in beta (I'm in too), directed tests are out, unless you really want to feel like one of the minimum-wage guys they force to do the same thing over and over again. If you're feeling playful, you could try to break collision detection and get out-of-bounds, try to cheat, what-have-you.

    Developers love nothing more than for you to test edge cases. If you find something rare or unusual the typical response (even internal) is "designed that way" or "worki

  • Swing by Tosche Station and pick up some power converters.
  • You should run around and shoot first. A LOT.
  • First select a Stormtrooper to play. Now run around aimlessly shooting inaccurately at things. Also despite wearing fearsome looking armor, simply die if anything even touches you, and yes that includes small rocks.

    Next select a Bothen, and go spy on something. Be sure to die in a very sad way, but somehow get the information to the rebels.

    Finally select a Wookie, find someone who wants to play freaky monster chess. Lose. Justifiably pull opponents arms off.

    If for some reason you can't select all sorts of c

  • You could just download WoW and skip the 3-day limit. SW:TOR is just WoW with a different skin anyways. It's not like they're doing anything original.

    • by gknoy (899301)

      From what I've read, they've been working on a lot of things "original". Not in terms of base mechanics, but in terms of how comparatively deep your character's personal storyline is. They had (last I heard, which was a while ago) plans for campaigns which were effectively custom tailored to your character (class, etc).

      Some things are similar across MMOs. Kill boars, collect nerf herder scruffs, etc. Do dungeons/missions/raids/battlegrounds/whatever for $REWARD (xp, gold, credits, honor points). The dif

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