What Are You Expecting From SW:TOR?

Sith Warrior

No ever goes for the bright pink lightsabers

I always knew I was going to get SW:TOR, right from the moment it was announced, but it wasn’t until the subject was being discussed in the the comments of my last post that I started to ask myself exactly what I was expecting from it. To have fun, for sure, but what else? To be honest, I’d never given it much thought.

My decision to pre-order SW:TOR was a no-brainer really. It’s a MMO, it’s Star Wars, it’s BioWare. Duh. The founders of the company themselves could’ve gone on camera and viciously insulted my mother and I still would’ve pre-ordered the game (although I might have grumbled a little about it). Lack of slander aside though, it was also never a secret that the game was anything other than a ‘WoW clone’ (kinda unfair to call it that really but you know what I mean) so at least from that perspective I expected a pretty generic themepark MMO, similar in gameplay and design to most of the mainstream MMOs released in the last few years. Plus, I expected polish ’cause it had BioWare and buckets of money behind it.

Other than those couple of  things, I’m not sure what else I expect SW:TOR to deliver. By all accounts the story element in it is really nice so that will be fun to explore, likewise it seems to have a solid feature set of PvP battlegrounds and dungeon instances etc, so I think I’m going to enjoy myself. I expect it will wow me and thrill me quite considerably for the first few weeks and then curtail after a month or two. I can’t say that I expect to be playing it in a year from now.

Of course, what I expect and what I’d like are two different things. I would honestly love SW:TOR to have the depth of play to really enrapture me for months on end; I’d love to find an amazing guild that I really connect and bond with (something that I’ve never been able to find in WoW, no matter how much I’ve tried); and I’d really, really, really like to see a game that brings innovation and inspiration to the MMO industry and moves us all one step closer to being absorbed into a deep and compelling online universe.

I’m not sure I’ll find any of those things.

But that’s OK, because like I said at the start, I just expect to have fun with SW:TOR and if BioWare deliver on that front then I’ll be a happy bunny. I mean, what else can we really ask for anyway? Games are just games and maybe we do over analyse these things sometimes. Still, maybe it’s the inner romantic in me that just can’t help hanging onto the notion of seeing the most perfect online virtual world created one day.

Anyway, those are my expectations for SW:TOR. What are yours?

-Gordon

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33 Comments

  1. amcl says:

    V.tempted myself now that I’ve finished Arkham Asylum and Arkham City.

  2. Xintia says:

    I’d say your post sums up my expectations almost exactly. I’ve known from the get-go what SWTOR is and what it isn’t. I have no problem with the fact that it doesn’t stray too far from the established themepark model. I also agree that the “WoW clone” tag is somewhat unfair. This game never promised to break the mold. It always seemed to be aiming to just “do it better” than anybody else, WoW included. And just like you, I’d love to find an amazing guild and get sucked into this game for years. But if not… there is The Secret World coming in April, and I pray every night for a WildStar beta invite. ;)

  3. bhagpuss says:

    Well, two of the three factors that meant you knew you would get SW:ToR are the same ones that made me pretty sure I wouldn’t.

    Despite having seen all six films in the cinema on release I have no particular interest in or affection for the franchise. I wouldn’t say that having “Star Wars” attached to something would actually put me off, but it certainly doesn’t add any value for me.

    As for BioWare, the only thing they have ever produced that I could honestly say I loved was Baldur’s Gate. After Dragon Age, which I went from liking to loathing in less than seven days I would happily pass on any future BioWare product.

    That leaves the MMO factor. I’ll try any MMO. I probably will try SW:ToR one day but I am not in any hurry. I waited five years to try WoW and I got three very enjoyable months out of it when I did before I lost interest. If I get that much from SW:ToR in 2016 then I’ll be both surprised and happy.

  4. Grimfire says:

    What I would love is an incredibly rich sandbox MMO…

    But I was in TOR beta for months and thoroughly enjoyed myself. I’ve planned on joining the same server as a number of old SWG Bloodfin guilds and plan on enjoying myself. That’s it. There is no other MMO that has really grabbed me so I’ll simply play TOR as an enjoyable distraction.

  5. Gazimoff says:

    Like Grimfire I was in the beta for about 6 months. I’ve played a lot of it already and seen the game go through various levels of polish.

    I enjoy the films and I enjoy the franchise, and yet I find myself closer to the Bhagpuss end of things. I’m expecting to have eight intertwining story threads that I’ll be keen to experience. Beyond that, little else. I would honestly not be surprised to be hanging up my lightsaber after three months and moving on to the next thing.

  6. Carson says:

    My expectations are that it will dominate the MMORPG news cycle for the first half of next year, while I’m busy playing other games.

  7. Leah says:

    I expect a lot of comparisons to WoW in public chat channels. I expect people grumbling about cut scenes and min maxing light side, dark side points, I expect WoW tourists sneering left and right, throwing around expectations of perfect play no matter what. I expect blamegames, until people figure out that hey, its all server only, and now, no one wants to group with them. I expect subscriptions to gradually taper off until only the people who this game was originally meant for left. and those people are not your average WoW player, even though “WoW clone” gets thrown around a lot. there are gameplay and UI similarities.. to, lets face it – every rpg on a market, MMO or single player. apparently its enough to call a game – a WoW clone. /shrug.

    I expect to play this game for a while. I expect to level each class twice, experimenting with dialogue and alignment. I expect to have plenty of epic moments, like I always do with bioware games. I expect to role play my characters with my friends. I expect ending up with a virtual spouse for most of my characters, flings for others. I expect getting to max level taking a great deal of time. it took me most of the weekend of on and off playing just to get to level 10 on one character.

    and yes, I expect to have a great deal of fun.

  8. Gremrod says:

    I expect about the same I got out of WoW, AoC, WAR, AION, Rift. I will play it for a couple months of fun and then I will return to my sandbox games. Perpetuum and EVE.

  9. Paul says:

    I’m moving from Rift to SWTOR for now. Rift was fun, but it’s clear the game is a one-trick pony. The designers rang the changes of their dynamic content mechanism and it’s about squeezed dry. The story, such as it was, was in service to the game mechanics, not vice versa, and that was a big negative in the long term.

    SWTOR itself I’m mostly trying to see what it’s like, but I’ll probably drift back to WoW when 5.0 hits. I have no desire to send Blizzard any money for Cataclysm.

    I think SWTOR will see a very large initial surge, but the MoP release will be a strong counterpunch.

  10. Bootae says:

    Due to zero interest in ever being a raid monkey again, I expect nothing more than a few months entertainment whilst waiting for Mechwarrior Online and Planetside 2. Anything beyond those few months will be a bonus and is totally reliant on the open world PvP developing somehow (unlikely).

  11. pkudude99 says:

    I expect to play through it for the stories, but I’m not an end-game grinder and tend to abandon characters once they reach the level cap. So for me, I expect that I will play it through enough to get all the stories from each class from each faction, but once tha’s done. . . we’ll see. I’ll probably stop playing when I’ve seen all the stories. From the beta weekends I’ve not seen anything in the gameplay or the social experience that will keep me playing after I’ve seen the stories.

  12. Targeter says:

    I expect that when my Play button finally goes yellow that a chorus of angels will appear on my desktop, Buddy Christ will come down on a cloud of X-Wings to personally hand me my own lightsaber, and the game itself will personally welcome me to its wondrous digital domain.

    ‘Course, my expectations are a tad high …

  13. Graham says:

    When I first heard about TOR I was thrilled. I played the Knights of the Old Republic games for the XBOX and absolutely loved them. I have played years of EQ, WoW and also tried most of the other MMO’s out there to include EQ2, Warhammer, AOC, Rift and a few others.

    I fully intended on quitting WoW for this game but after playing the beta I’m not sure anymore. Granted I only played a few hours of the beta, I wasn’t as impressed as I thought I would be. When Warcraft first came out, I had only played for a few hours and I was already addicted. I didn’t get the same feeling with TOR. I do really enjoy the voice animated quests and I think that’s a great feature. The downside to that is it’s very expensive to make and time consuming. I fear they will take a long time to put out a quality expansion due to this. I’m still going to purchase TOR and hope it’s great but all this WoW killer talk may have been premature.

    • Gordon says:

      I don’t think SW:TOR will kill WoW. After having played it for a bit now, it’s a lot of fun but they seem to have made a lot of gameplay concessions to work in their voice acted story elements which is a real shame.

  14. Professer says:

    A linear, online single-player RPG experience featuring a virtual chat room.

  15. Tesh says:

    I expect an unholy fusion of KOTOR and WoW, with just enough grinding to make a subscription profitable. Safe, same old design.

    I wanted KOTOR 3-8 offline.

    I’d have paid well for the latter, but I’ll wait for the F2P conversion of the former.

    • Gordon says:

      I’d be very surprised if SW:TOR goes F2P any time soon. Of course, I’ll also be surprised if it games 1 million subscribers. I expect the game to linger in limbo for a couple of years and then maybe go F2P in 2014.

  16. Rinvan says:

    I honestly didn’t expect to get sucked in by the story over the course of two beta weekends. I am hoping to get a few months out of the game at least.

  17. Chris says:

    I would like to get a good year out of playing. I played a couple beta weekends and the story is pretty kick ass. I didnt try pvp, but if its good I’ll stick with it for awhile.

  18. Luke says:

    Just got the game – bought the box – installing right now.
    excited :)

  19. hordemaster says:

    I am finally going to update my vid card, but honestly SWTOR will have to wait, still playing some older titles that I enjoy

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