I apologize to the seven people (Seven! We’ve been growing our readership!) who regularly read this blog, but I haven’t written a review of SWTOR yet for three main reasons:
- No one cares that much.
- So many reviews have come out already about SWTOR’s launch.
- A lack of motivation.
But, I have felt that as an owner of a SWTOR fansite, I have a obligation to give a review of the game or at least my two credits worth. If I don’t people ThatINevermMetOnTheInternetMightThinkI’mLameAndRuinMySelfEsteemForTheRestOfMyLife. Plus, I wouldn’t have much credibility as a “blogger” if I didn’t have a review of the game on my blog about the game.
Instead of writing a review, I decided that I would write two articles. The first one will be a list of the top things that I think Bioware did an excellent job with. I’m hoping that by not turning out the standard canned review, people will notice that I’m “creative” and am willing to “go against the grain” and not concede to typical standards. Other men will want to be like me. Children will look up to me.
So without further ado, I proudly present this self serving article where I describe the five things that SWTOR got right about the game:
I won’t spend a whole lot of time on this point (see #2 above) since so much has been made about the quality of the SWTOR class stories. I must also stand up and applaud the writing team at Bioware for their ingenuity at crafting the various story lines. I’ve enjoyed the Jedi Consular story up to level 35 so far, and have dabbled a bit in the Jedi Knight story. Both have been awesome.
Many worried that companions would ruin SWTOR as a MMO and turn it into a PvE only game. When the game was launched, most everyone quickly realized this was not the case. The combat has been adjusted accordingly (ever try to fight a mob without your companion?) and more difficult challenges in the form of Herorics and Flashpoints exist for those who want to group with real players.
I love the witty banter and comments from my companions as well as how their presence affects my dialogue choices. I must confess that SWTOR is the first MMO where I’ve read every line of dialogue and every quest description our of fear of missing something important or doing something that will send my companion back to my ship, stomping their feet and locking themselves in their quarters until I apologize or at least lure them out with a Twinkee.
SWTOR has some of the best landscapes that I have ever seen in a game. The immediate foreground landscapes aren’t anything special, but the ones in the distance are marvelous. If you get a chance, climb to the top of a mountain, or look off into the distance and admire the sun (or suns) rising up above the horizon. Star Wars has always been known for its diverse and exotic planet locations and Bioware did a great job of capturing that, from the bright lights of a big city like Coruscant to the desolate sand dunes of Tatooine, this game feels like Star Wars and the art team deserves major Kudos for making this happen.
The Little Things
Bioware did away with a lot of the little things that have annoyed me in past MMOs:
- Inventory full? Send your companions off to sell your trash.
- Area Loot enables you to pick up all of your drops all at once.
- You can craft with resources in your bank.
- YOU CAN SEND COMPANIONS TO CRAFT FOR YOU. I don’t have to spend countless hours over a workbench trying to create an Epic Robe of Awesomeness. My companions can do that for me while I’m out blowing stuff up.
- You can complete crafting missions OFFLINE.
All of these little annoyances with other MMOs aren’t an issue here and it has been wonderful.
Having the security authenticator available at launch and smartphone apps available soon after have been awesome. With a secure account, I won’t have to worry about anyone stealing my password and emptying out my cargo hold. I don’t even have to think twice about playing SWOTR over an open WiFi connection. If someone steals my key code, who cares? I will have to use a different one the next time I want to log in.
I’ve also been pleasantly surprised to see almost no credit farming spam in the game. I believe that I’ve had a credit farmer whisper me once in game about buying credits from a site somewhere. In other MMOs I’ve played, you couldn’t escape the farmers.
Bioware has shown that they are serious about their customer’s security and play experience. They get the highest marks for security out of any MMO on the market. It’s kind of sad to think that my favorite video game is more secure than my bank though.
I won’t bother assigning a random score, number of stars, or even lightsabers to this game. I would encourage everyone to pick it up and try it for a month. If you’re having fun, keep on playing. When you stop having fun, stop. But definitely, spend some time in the SWTOR universe.