BioWare Finds Your Lack of Faith in SWTOR Disturbing

The decline of Star Wars: The Old Republic is greatly exaggerated by a trigger-happy Internet eager to claim that its destiny is to fail, BioWare says. So everybody chill out.

Speaking with Rock Paper Shotgun, SWTOR lead designer Daniel Erickson said that players are heading back to the Old Republic universe now that BioWare is pumping in new content with Patch 1.2, and that people forecasting the death of the MMO are likely as clumsy as they are stupid.

“Although the Internet loves to pronounce the doom of all things, what we’re seeing is a huge increase in activity with [update] 1.2 as people return to see all of the new content,” said Erickson. “The community has generally been excited about the direction the game is going as we finish up our last must-have quality of life features (group finder, etc) and can start concentrating full-time on creative things like the world events.”

The rest of the interview discusses something of the learning curve with which BioWare has been dealing in building SWTOR. It found players were burning through story content much faster than anticipated because players were spending more time playing than anticipated. Erickson also said it found success with things like the Rakghoul Plague outbreak, and that BioWare had to shift gears and dump more resources into working on PvP after the SWTOR beta because players were enjoying it so much.

All those things have effected the development of the game in its first few months of life, but as Erickson says, players are coming back when there’s new content — and more new content is coming. He told RPS that most of the niggling things like UI tweaks and group finder improvements have been made; now BioWare will be concentrating on doing more stuff, like the Rakghoul outbreak.

What do you think? Have you bailed on SWTOR? Are you back in because of Patch 1.2? Will you be jumping back in as new content becomes available or PvP ramps up? Let us know in the comments.

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3 Comments on BioWare Finds Your Lack of Faith in SWTOR Disturbing

MrFlibble

On May 2, 2012 at 6:24 pm

Didn’t they have a free weekend right after the patch came out? I’d imagine that probably had something to do with the huge increase in activity.

I personally didn’t bail because of any of the things introduced with patch 1.2. While I’m sure many people raced to endgame and ran out of things to do, the additions being perfectly suited for them, I just found the content on the way up to be relatively boring and poorly polished. I was never entertained enough or engrossed enough to keep me playing. I’m a complete star wars geek too, so it really made me sad.

Granted this doesn’t apply to anyone but myself, but it seems that there are certain things with the fundamental systems that will need to be changed for me to justify plopping down $15 a month to play again.

Capios

On May 2, 2012 at 6:39 pm

BW didn’t listen to the hordes of beta testers (myself among them) who tried for months to tell them fundamental changes they were making were ruining the game, and who hit the forums to let them know that having no multiple leveling paths was really hurting replayability. They ignored player input, and the devs seemed to not even be interested in tester opinions. Now they’re paying the price.

k3rc

On May 3, 2012 at 9:39 am

I’m still playing the game but the only thing that’s stopping me from unsubbing is that I don’t have anywhere to go. Plus I’m a dreamer, I really wanted a SW game to succeed.

WoW is boring, MoP is far away and until GW2 comes out there is no real alternative in the way of P2P games.

Whilst I enjoyed more or less the leveling process, I felt that the class stories weren’t as involved as I was lead to believe. Certainly not as good as I had hoped. And the side stories are even thinner to be frank. The game is not bad, it’s different but it’s not great. And their emphasis on story… well there is more story than most MMOs but it’s so linear as to be fairly bland. Sure there are some exciting moments but most of it is just bland. Definitely not KoTOR depth of story telling.

The game lacks the sense of exploration that other games have and many of the zones while vast feel empty this is not a server population thing. it’s just how planets feel. Everything feels static. Tirsfal Glades feels more alive and it’s the home of the undead.

It is fine for planets like tatooine but when you’re on coruscant, it’s really sad. Because each zone is a planet it feels like there is no cohesion. It might have served them better to have less planets. After all… How do you “out level” an entire planet?

Also, the design choice to make one small cluttered space station the home for so many people, feels like a bad one. If you walk into orgrimmar you get a sense like this is a big city, especially after cataclysm. But in TOR what should feel like a massive space station feels more like a warehouse half the size of org in wow.

PvP is fun but sadly unless you’re well geared you’re going to get steam rolled by better geared players. The classes still need some fine tuning.

Overall… the game does good things too but it’s got a lot of flaws that the team at bioware don’t seem to want to acknowledge. I doubt it’ll die but if they want to move forward, they might want to go back to the drawing board on a lot of their choices.