Shut Up About SWTOR vs. WoW Already

Here, let’s end this before it begins: If you’ve never played Star Wars: The Knights of the Old Republic — if by some sad coincidence you’ve never even heard of it — then your opinion about Star Wars: The Old Republic is void and we don’t want to hear it.

I’m talking to you, World of Warcraft fans who have no idea what they’re talking about.

The qualifier on the last sentence is everything, because during the last couple weeks of extensive time spent in SWTOR, I’ve heard some absolutely idiotic things. Many of the complaints center around the things that SWTOR “took” from Warcraft — my favorite being when someone barked in the general chat of my server, “They took factions from WoW.” I hope that I we don’t have to explain the fact that there are fundamentally two sides in Star Wars and that they’ve been at war for, apparently, thousands of years.

Did you also know that Warcraft invented werewolves? Twilight has to pay Blizzard royalties.

Anyway, the idiocy doesn’t stop there. A fairly on-point discussion on the SWTOR forums points out a number things players are complaining about in SWTOR — mostly, features that WoW has and SWTOR doesn’t. As the writer points out, Blizzard has been adding to World of Warcraft for nearly a decade, and there’s one other important thing: The Old Republic is not the World of Warcraft.

Now, I can understand the natural penchant of players to size up the new kid in town against the reigning champion of MMOs. It’s impossible not to do it. Many players in SWTOR right now are there at the expense of WoW, sizing up the game, deciding if it’s worth their time, and perhaps, passing judgment on the fate of their WoW subscriptions. There’s a lot riding on these opening days with both games. Adding up pros and cons, similarities and differences is a natural part of that process.

I’m okay with that. What’s annoying me is picking out things that prove you’re missing the fundamental purpose of both games.

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22 Comments on Shut Up About SWTOR vs. WoW Already

Mozer

On December 29, 2011 at 8:47 pm

From what I’ve seen, it’s the SWTOR players that are constantly dissing WoW, not the other way around…

Aids

On December 30, 2011 at 2:43 am

From what I see both groups are full of mouth breathers who can jog on.

Jai

On December 30, 2011 at 2:54 am

what i see as a past SWG, WoW and KotOR player is that SW:ToR is WoW wrapped in Star Wars. there are tons of things they didnt add but if you look at WoW when they started making ToR this is pretty much exactly what WoW was. if i had to choose WoW or ToR star wars wins by light years. but really they are the same game different skins.

Grant

On December 30, 2011 at 4:14 pm

I agree with JAI its like WOW or for that matter any MMO thats based around a person and not a vehicle. All MMOs feel the same just different skins

Rada

On December 31, 2011 at 9:52 am

I answer only at the image

wow tooks many things from other games… many spells from dungeons&dragons for example…

a mmorpg can’t exixst without factions and shurely they didn’t “invented” by wow (for example ultima online, 1997, had the chaos, order and neutral factions at the beginnings, changed in 4 factions in war and 2 neutral in some expansion)

sorry for my bad english, it isn’t my language

Ulster

On December 31, 2011 at 3:17 pm

I’m not a WOW fan, hated it and will always hate it. Cheap rip off the Warhammer Fantasy setting.

SW:TOR PLAYS like WOW, it’s WOW with glow sticks. They don’t even hide it. It plays the same, looks the same, just a different skin.

Ulster

On December 31, 2011 at 3:20 pm

Also, this has nothing to do with factions. Stop presenting strawmans.

Justin

On January 1, 2012 at 9:39 pm

Who cares, games are for entertainment. Members who go on and on in game are just the classic trolls. What happened to the GL HF days ?

Kahndale

On January 4, 2012 at 10:49 am

Ok, if you want to get technical I will WOW spawned off of the Warcraft series (Orc’s vs Humans) wow was an after thought after Warcraft 3 did so well. This doesn’t stop there. The idea in my opinion came from the old command and conquer games. SW:TOR is a great game that can attract a fan base. War-hammer is a joke, I played the mmorpg and quickly uninstalled it. Games have to have a niche market Warcraft was one of the first to perfect it but games like Planetside and Ultima-online were some of the first. Lets see how good a game does with everything that wow has, but you use something like the teens from Obscure. A game must have a marketable key that you can build off of and continue to produce. A MMORPG is never finished if it is done right. I play both games and still enjoy them both, the reason is that both games are great and we can argue till the end of time but Bio-ware and Blizzard make some of the best RPG’s there are. Blizzard and Bio-ware will be around for a long long time let them duke it out by offering us new content and better UI’s and stuff stop being a fan boy when something sucks play it because it is good and it entertains you.

Vaentril

On January 4, 2012 at 11:47 am

The conversation of who stole who from what is the most retarded argument in MMO history. The only way any MMO will succeed is to pick up on the successes of their competition and implement them. All MMO’s have the same basic idea. They involve an avatar, with a pretty typical MMO movement system. You have abilities that you can key bind or click to do things. This has been true since the begining. Go play UO, EQ, DAOC or any of the other games that (ready for this kids) came before WoW. The MMO market was well in place before WoW came to the party. When Blizzard was still focusing on Warcraft and Starcraft (RTS) and Diablo 2 (RPG) there were huge players in this space. The unique thing with WoW was to take a setting that had a huge non MMO player base and make and MMO. This got a ton of people interested and it went from there. If you look back at the last 5 years of MMO’s that didn’t crush WoW as people always like to hype you will see a lot of discussion on what they don’t have that WoW does. If you are going to make a game that try’s to take a player base away you have to provide a similar experience to make the transition easier.

Now with Star Wars it has a whole new facet it can pull on, and that is the success of the KOTOR franchise, the great Bioware RPG fan base, and oh lets not forget the massive amount of Star Wars fans. However they also had to make it an MMO, which means things like and Auction House, PVP, standard UI look and feel, and all those other little things that are common to all MMO’s. Spells look like spells, and melee looks mostly like melee (however you can’t take a look at a lot of the ranged non spell combat stuff and tell me that is like WoW).

Are there things that I would love to see Bioware introduce….sure. I would love a better Trade Network interface, I would like to have mouse over heal actions, being able to move certain UI elements would be great (so far not having an addon system hasn’t bugged me much). There is also a ton of stuff that Bioware did that was from other games. Area based shards were common from Aion to help prevent over questing in an area. You have instanced phases which require no load screen. You have a damn rail shooter space combat.

Get off the argument of who is better than who. At their core MMO’s will always be similar to their predecessors, expecting them to not be is an idiotic idea. You focus on the things that set them apart. Classes, Races, PvP, and story line. These are what define an MMO. You want to see how cool your abilities are and what kind of PvP flavor will be out there. If you want to play WoW….play WoW. If you want to play SW:TOR, then play SW:TOR…..if you want to play both like I imagine the majority of the casual MMO players want to well let them enjoy it and shut up. Remember the MMO community is supported by the casual player. The person that games less than 10 hours a week. These people mostly have disposable income and will play a variety of games.

/end rant

desidareus

On January 8, 2012 at 9:53 pm

I agree with Vaentril. But while everyone is saying that TOR stole from WOW, you should look at the fact that blizzard stole form warhammer and warhammer 40k for 2 different games. mmo’s are the same but in diffrent skins but the smaller games like warcraft and starcraft should not steal from each other just because of a falling out.

CptObvious

On January 17, 2012 at 8:53 am

WoW took a lot from other MMOs.. and the appeal from (warcraft) Warhammer games (the figures). I guess the Warhammer gaming was inspired by Tolkin and similiar books.. and Tolkin got inspired from German, Celtic and Scandinavian myths and legends. Myths and legends are illustrations of our primal fears and dreams… that’s as far as I could go.. :)

Revanite

On January 23, 2012 at 2:58 am

I partly agree with the article however it still SWTOR UNNECESSARILY ‘copied’ thing from WoW (and other MMOs). Examples:

1) Two obligatory life long Factions. Moreover you cannot be neutral or change faction. Why? In Star Wars lore there are plenty of either ‘factionless’/neutral characters or Jedis who turn Sith. Why implementing this Bi-Factional + faction for life system just because WoW did so?.

2) Fixed Class system. Again why do they copied this Wizard/Rogue/Hunter(Ranged DPS)/Warrior fixed class system (with different names)? Again in SW lore Jedi/Sith are both ‘warriors’ and ‘wizards’ at the same time. Why did SWTOR had to throw this in order to confirm with WoW’s Mage/Priest/Warlock vs Warrior/Paladin/DK class systems?

3) Making each faction an exact mirror of the opposite one in terms of classes/abilities. I agree that there has to be some balance between the two opposite factions for PVP reasons but I believe it can be done without this stupid mirroring of classes/abilities.

Phil Hornshaw

On January 23, 2012 at 10:15 am

@Revanite

Not to speak on BioWare’s behalf, but I think that the things you see as “copied” from World of Warcraft (as well as being unnecessary) are just conceits BioWare allowed that made making the game easier/possible at all. Factions, for one, facilitate the galaxy wide conflict aspect of the story, which is central to Star Wars, as well as PvP and many (or most) of the quests written into the game. Having a clear and present enemy makes the story work both for questing and for the larger universe, and it also unifies players and keeps them working together toward the greater goal — defeating Other Faction X. So I don’t see that as copying so much as making the game work.

As for fixed classes, to my mind they work here and furthermore, their both rooted in MMO history (something it seems BioWare was going for) and they make designing the game a little easier. Given how much money, time and effort goes into making a game like this, being able to sort out a few things at the outset — like the classes — makes a lot of sense to me. Reworking those things makes for an unfamiliar set of circumstances for the player and just takes a huuuge amount of additional work from the developers, requiring thinking up all the differences and making the mechanics work.

Same goes for the mirror opposite classes. For one, you mentioned PvP. For another, having several different classes could potentially make one faction “better” than the other (inadvertently) and that would unbalance the factions…basically, it’s safer and smarter to make the factions equals.

Those are just my thoughts but in terms of making a game this big and this complex, I think BioWare made the right decisions in opting for an easier path in a few places than trying to reinvent the wheel (or repulsorlift, in this case).

trolololol

On January 25, 2012 at 4:29 pm

oh woooow, your telling the internet what to do. that’s sooooo going to happen,…ps SWTOR vs. WoW SWTOR vs. WoW SWTOR vs. WoW SWTOR vs. WoW

someone

On January 27, 2012 at 10:01 am

Ok, first of all i played wow since the very beggining until i stoped almost a half year ago. i now started swtor from the very first day and still continue to play. you know what the difference is, its that if both games came out at same time wow would be eaten in 1 week if not less. wow was full of bugs glitches and stuff like that had no really cool spell effects like swtor has. ofcourse swtor has lots of bugs glitches etc. but what the problem is wow is been out for like 7+ years, in begin there where no addons like i see tons of people complaing about for swtor, there were no good services like now, and many other things.

but if you compare the 2 games i will still choose for swtor. ppl cry about same game different skin, if thats so easy why dont u do it your self then? the game is out for a month+ and its doing great, after all 6 years of wow same crap “different raids same tactics” (for the haters). full of f****ng chinese farmers spamming /1 too sell gold, i dont like that. that will come in swtor sooner or later, but the spam will be minimum since every planet has a different /1 in chat. but what my point is that the game is new give it some time, and u will see it will get better. and the most importand thing is. BIOWARE LISTENS TO THE COMMUNITY TO MAKE IT A BETTER GAME i never saw that happening from blizz.

if my english was not good enough then sorry. and as for the haters troll more lol.

CommCrab

On February 16, 2012 at 11:14 pm

I reckon that it would have been cooler had Bioware implenented a sort if dual class systenm similar to that of Kingdoms of Amular, where depending on hiw ir where you assigned skill points, it changed on what class or dual class you could be.

WoW and Swtor

On February 20, 2012 at 11:08 am

Problem atm is not content its the ing performance off swtor its req a high end comp or upper middle end to work somewhat resonable at stedy frame.

The Bioware and EA lied to most ppl the minium req should let player play a game with minium spec on low at okay frame

Atm only a comp with 2.4 ghz dual core and 4 gb ram and middle end grapic card can play swtor decent.

Deezy

On March 10, 2012 at 2:41 pm

All of you saying that this game is WoW with a different skin. Yall are dumb@$$es. The entirety of MMO’s are the same. So really you could say wow is EQ with different skin. That is the worst rebut i have ever heard. The idea isn’t creating a different MMO, its the experience that is different. All MMOs are the same, you start a toon lvl it do quests/grind etc etc, so if you want to post on this topic please come up with something substantial.

MMO Fan

On March 11, 2012 at 11:40 am

The problems with SWTOR is not that it “copies” WOW, because if it did than it would be successful. The outstanding issues facing TOR are environments which are too linear, a lack of end-game content, buggy content and over simplistic UI.

Buggy content and an over simplistic UI are to be expected with a new game, so this I can forgive and can expect to be fixed over time.

However, what I cannot forgive is the linear environments and lack of end-game content… both of those are expectations of an MMO.

Rodane

On March 15, 2012 at 4:49 am

“However, what I cannot forgive is the linear environments and lack of end-game content… both of those are expectations of an MMO.”

I cannot help but laugh when some joker posts these types of comments, the very same whine people were making when WoW was first released.

I was playing WoW the first week it hit the shelf and the crying is all the same today as it was then. “Oh no, I’m max level what do I do…..” People have this entitlment complex, they believes games should be everything to everyone.

It took years for Blizzard to have the current content it does and SWTOR will also elvove over. These games cost millions of dollars as is and millions more creating new content. I play both games and both are great for differences.

The games may change, but the whiners remain the same.

Lucas

On March 20, 2012 at 6:19 am

SWTOR is KOTOR with online play
KOTOR came out before WoW…