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Bioware and LucasArts team up to release a new Star Wars MMO

LucasArts and BioWare officially announced the development of a new massively multiplayer online pc game called Star Wars: The Old Republic. The game will be story-driven and set during the timeframe of past hit Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic. Star Wars: The Old Republic, is being developed and published by BioWare and LucasArts.

Star Wars: The Old Republic, is set thousands of years before Darth Vader and Luke Skywalker, when war between the Old Republic and the Sith Empire raged. Players can choose to play as Jedi, Sith, or a variety of other classic Star Wars roles. Similar to other MMOs, players will be able to define their personal story and decide whether to follow the light or dark side of the Force. Players will be able to choose to team up with friends to battle enemies and overcome huge challenges as a group.

LucasArts president Darrell Rodriguez’s discussed how their goal was to return to the Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic franchise stating, “Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic is the most critically acclaimed Star Wars game in LucasArts history and a preeminent example of our company’s interactive storytelling heritage, For a long time, we’ve long wanted to return to the franchise in a grand way, and we felt that the best setting for it was an online world that would allow millions of people to participate in the experience together. We knew that the developer capable of working with us to deliver an engrossing story with a fully-realized online world was BioWare."

The game will explore a time frame 300 years after the events of Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic.  This area of Star Wars chronology has been relatively unexplored when compared to the Darth Vader, Luke Skywalker era.

According to Dr. Ray Muzyka, Co-Founder and General Manager/CEO of BioWare, storytelling will help to differentiate this MMO from the rest.  He states, "In Star Wars: The Old Republic, we’re fusing BioWare’s heritage of critically-acclaimed storytelling with the amazing pedigree of Lucasfilm and LucasArts”

Similar to Muzyka, Dr. Greg Zeschuk, Co-Founder and Vice President Development Operations of BioWare discussed how this MMO will emphasize innovative story and character development, saying, “BioWare has been able to add to the Star Wars history in developing the game’s story and has created an overarching narrative that players can enjoy, regardless of their play style. Our goal is to offer players an emotionally rewarding experience that combines the traditional elements of MMO gameplay with innovations in story and character development."

Additional details for Star Wars: The Old Republic such as features, gameplay and release date will be announced at a later time.

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RE: I have a bad feeling about this..
By FITCamaro on 10/22/2008 12:12:53 PM , Rating: 3
True there being a lot of Jedi in this time period actually fits(unlike with Galaxies).

RE: I have a bad feeling about this..
By othercents on 10/22/2008 12:46:31 PM , Rating: 2
This is exactly what a Star Wars MMO should be. Jedi vs Sith. Galaxies was good, but they spent a bunch of time building so many classes that they had a hard time keeping everything balanced. After getting a few Jedi then you have a separate balance issue especially if the Jedi are all evil and kill people for the fun of it.

An all Jedi/Sith game gets everyone what they want with plenty of content to work with and loads of fun with Jedi and Sith clashes.


RE: I have a bad feeling about this..
By walk2k on 10/22/2008 1:14:52 PM , Rating: 3
News flash, everyone wants to be a Jedi or Sith.

KOTOR is a story about Jedi and Sith.

This game will have everyone being Jedi or Sith, and guess what, there's nothing wrong with that.

Why would you want it to be "hard" to become a Jedi, I never understood that. Do you ENJOY the frustration of painfully long treadmill grinds? Or do you just want to be one of the only Jedis on your server? Because hey, that's what everyone else wants too. Pretty hard to satisfy everyone....

RE: I have a bad feeling about this..
By FITCamaro on 10/22/2008 1:18:01 PM , Rating: 2
Do you ENJOY the frustration of painfully long treadmill grinds?

Yes a game should have some grind to it. Not make it so freakin easy that everyone can hit max level in a month.

By fibreoptik on 10/27/2008 11:22:39 AM , Rating: 2
Hey! Don't look at WoW that way! You might hurt its feelings :o|

RE: I have a bad feeling about this..
By Reclaimer77 on 10/22/08, Rating: 0
RE: I have a bad feeling about this..
By walk2k on 10/22/2008 2:11:15 PM , Rating: 2
Well I never played SWG so I'll take your word for it that it was a horrible terrible awful game. Does that have to mean all Star Wars MMO games will be just like it?

All I'm saying is it's a game called KNIGHTS of the Old Republic. It's a game about Jedi Knights. There WILL be Jedi. I'm sure there will be non-Jedi characters too, just like there was in KOTOR. Did you even play KOTOR??

By FITCamaro on 10/22/2008 2:14:31 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah honestly as much fun as being a Jedi is in single player games, I just don't think they work well in an online dynamic. You have issues of other players to deal with. How do you be super fast when everyone else can be? How does the game handle it for onlookers?

I mean you'll have everyone just spamming force push or pull and attacking you as you're getting up.

I think an awesome SW game without player Jedi is much better. I'd rather have NPC Jedi that you're assisting with a great story line. It makes balancing the game far easier. And it reduces issues with players being dicks as a Jedi running around trying to kill everyone. They're supposed to be faster and more powerful than everyone else. Not unkillable but still. One person isn't supposed to be able to take down a Jedi on their own. To be able to changes the dynamic of the SW universe.

By WTFiSJuiCE on 10/22/2008 4:02:12 PM , Rating: 3
SWG honestly had the right idea and laid down the core of their game right: open-world, not bound by forced questing, plethora of professions and templates to choose and build, no level based system, only skill based, player based economy, groups of up to 20 people, etc....its just after they did that, they basically did nothing with it in terms of content aside from their "one dungeon a month" policy that quickly turned into 3-4 months or longer.

Jedi and Sith started out with a mysterious demigod-like notion about them and since we had merely 3-5 of them in the first trilogy, we didn't know any better. It was like that in the game too, the rumors were out there and the presence of holocrons just reinforced them. The second trilogy opened our eyes and desensitized the relationship and the mysteriousness went out the window. The second trilogy made them vulnerable not in the omg if ur emo, u can be turned sense, but omg i'm a commando in a group of 20, concentrated pew-pew lasers can possibly = dead jedi. The first notion of permadeath gave non-jedi hope in the game. It was kind of like a vision of god coming to you and handing you a Holy Hand Grenade.

I mean you most likely will need assistance from a few meatbags to kill one and rightfully so it should be that way. It's not like they could never be killed though...unless it was the CU and they had master defender >.> those battles could last over an hr...

RE: I have a bad feeling about this..
By WTFiSJuiCE on 10/22/2008 4:03:13 PM , Rating: 5
SWG mistake #1: Setting the timeframe: god that was stupid...they limited themselves into a tiny window of time between ep. 4 n 5 which gave them really nothing to work with in terms of content and oh man did it show. They literally depended on the player to make sh!t up him/herself for things to do and have fun since we had no dungeons or any real GCW events happening. Although it was hilarious to, on occasion, watch a group of imps waltz into a rebel town sportin 3 AT-STs b4 they were turned from godless killing machines into a three shot kill.

SWG's mistake #2: was when one of the dev's friends finally unlocked Jedi and confirmed it was possible to become one. They literally F@cked their own "player-based" economic setup as nearly everyone dropped their professions to holocron prof grind. To minimize dmg after realizing what a GIANT mistake they had made, they should've labeled it as a special event (since we do know that on the side Vader and papa palpatine were always hunting the Jedi remnant) and limited the unlocks to a barren few. Sure some would've cried but hey, it's a special event.

Mistake #3: JTL: Honestly, Space was actually great. The problem was that after they released space, that was it. They literally did nothing with it for the longest time. My friends n I cruisin around in our Firesprays in the first month that it was out w/ nuthin to do aside from PvP'n in Kessel before that got nerfed to hell.

Mistake #4: The CU: Honestly, in hindsight the CU wasn't anywhere nearly as terrible as the infamous NGE...but at the time, people, including me were outraged. The combat system needed a total revamp like WoW needed one. Gentle tweaking would've sufficed to try and break up god templates that were used, i.e. defense and dodge stackers for example. But noooo they just wiped out the system that we knew and gave us a taste of good ol' level systems.

In respects to Jedi it wasn't bad at all, the CU made it pretty interesting with all of the different template choices. It gave the Jedi some real kind of purpose, all they really required then was the illusive FRS that didn't come. It also gave the people some purpose: Murder the Jedi scum. Worst thing they did concerning the Jedi was take out permadeath, oh man was that ever satisfying.

Mistake #5: Lack of post-launch Content. There was scant amount of content ever being cycled into the game...and it showed. In what...3 years? there were a total of...4 dungeons implemented? We had the exact same armor sets that we had at launch except for R.I.S., BH, and Mandalorian sets that were implemented. Wookies for the longest time were discriminated against (big shock there) with a lack of armor protection. There was supposed to be this giant GCW going on and all the devs did was completely eliminate the Imperial advantage and make the playing field equal which was retarded given the timeline they forgot they had set the game into. We were finally given access to Outer Space and then that experiment in terms of content releases was all but over. Yet still, somehow people found a way to enjoy themselves and I really commend the playerbase as they really stuck loyally to a game that sported a team that didn't care about them for a long time.

Mistake #6: Lack of coherent content: Now I didn't see it at first because b4 my friend at work got me into SWG, I wasn't heavily into the whole Star Wars thing. I watched the movies and that was good enuff. But after looking into the lore, I was just left somewhat disgusted at how terribly this team screwed with the continuity of this timeframe. I mean look at the planets they brought out for us to play on: Tatooine, Dantooine, Endor, Yavin 4, Dathomir, Corellia, Naboo, Rori, Talus, and Lok.

Ok...Dantooine had its base already destroyed so its an irrelevant planet, Endor has nothing but ewoks on it (and the occasional Gorax), no 2nd death star being built just yet so its irrelevant, Yavin was somewhat relevant although I believe they had mostly evacuated after Operation Skyhook (yes I did wiki that) and no there was no rebel base in the Exar Kun temple, although there were apparent excavations being done a year or so after the battle (again, wiki'd); still...not much relevance there. Dathomir was just stupid as it had been wiped off of every map thanks to Yoda after getting his ass handed to him by Nightsisters; this is proven when Han Solo wins the deed to the planet through a bet and doesn't even know where the damn place is located. Yet there are two spaceports down there and a force-sensitive village later placed there? Wow...great job dev team. Nobody cares about Rori or Talus, best thing that happened to Rori was Restuss got exploded in the NGE. Talus is so irrelevant i'm not going to even talk about it. Lok had Nym and although Nym is a kewl character and his faction could've been utilized, it wasn't and that in itself makes the entire planet worthless. Corellia was nice to explore and start on (started out in Tyrena at launch) and its relevant since its a Core World. Naboo is in the Mid Rim, has ties to Palpatine and the RSF and was another decent starting world so I don't have a big quarrel with it either.

Finally...Tatooine. Yes most people do like Tatooine and...don't get me wrong, I like Tatooine too (hell I lived just outside of Bestine on Bria for close to 4 years) but its a backwater outer rim planet, it DID have Jabba's palace, yet they did nothing with his faction aside from setting some neutral space missions and the DWB missions from there, and there was Anchorhead. But really, there was no true GCW happening out this far. Sure, there were a few battalions of stormtroopers here and there in some of the cities but the planet was mostly Jabba's. Where was the true relevance if they weren't going to do anything with having Jabba as a neutral faction. It merely seems as though they just picked some planet names out of a hat and threw them into the game.

I'm not gonna bother mentioning the NGE since even people who never played know that whole story.

Wow, total SWG rant...shocking. Of the entire SW chronology, I have to say that the Old Republic timeline struck me as the most fascinating one (particularly the Exar Kun timeline for me personally) so I for one am to excited to see them exploring it. I hope to god they do it right and do it well but from past experiences I won't hold my breath. One complete difference is easily the timeline itself and the complete freedom they have since there is a near-complete gap between the end of KOTOR II and Darth Bane's time which I believe is around 25-2950 years (KOTOR 3951 BBY - DB 1000 BBY).

Yes the art-style so far looks god-awful and I sincerely hope they change it but even if they didn't I still might be inclined to try it in hopes that the gameplay wins me over.

One can make the argument that Star wars has always been about Jedi and Sith, but one can also make the argument that with all of the Jedi and Sith out there exploding the universe, its the characters that aren't Jedi or Sith that are infused into the plots that truly make Star wars so great (cause I know, especially for me, that it sure as hell wasn't Luke that made the orig. trilogy special for me) so...lets not worry about Jedi and Sith getting implemented into the game because its happening; lets instead worry about Bioware getting the other classes down right and making them fun and giving them opportunity to get on somewhat equal footing against the Jedi, even if it requires a group. Also let's hope that they create a good interactive combat system that works...and then stick with it. As long as there's balance and content, there is hope.

Sry, was too long so had to make it 2 posts

RE: I have a bad feeling about this..
By Heero on 10/22/2008 4:52:45 PM , Rating: 1
You sir deserve to be rated up to 4 or 5 for you respectable post.

RE: I have a bad feeling about this..
By FITCamaro on 10/22/2008 5:06:19 PM , Rating: 2
If you've read the books, Dathomir did have a space port.

As far as Endor, my guess was that they eventually had originally planned to get to the 6th movie time frame where it would have been relevant.

You use a lot of acronyms. I've read nearly all the books but wtf is NGE and FRS?

As far as the game ruining things about the universe, the new trilogy did far more to do that. The Death Star was not invented by the seperatists but Danni Quee(sp?) in the Maw facility. The identity of Luke and Leia's mother had already been set. C3PO was not built by Anakin. And R2D2 did not date back to the pre-Clone wars era. I'm surprised they didn't throw Han and Lando into Episodes 1-3 somewhere for the hell of it since they felt it necessary to have everyone else. Even the Chewbacca knowing Yoda part ticked me off although at least that was plausible since Wookies live a long time.

Only in the more recent books have they begun adopting things from the new movies because they had to.

RE: I have a bad feeling about this..
By WTFiSJuiCE on 10/22/2008 6:44:06 PM , Rating: 2
You are right Fit, it actually did have a spaceport. That was my blunder.

Was it a regular spaceport or was it strictly an imperial spaceport used specifically for the penal colony?

By FITCamaro on 10/22/2008 6:49:55 PM , Rating: 2
The latter

By WTFiSJuiCE on 10/22/2008 6:53:58 PM , Rating: 2
Because I re-read my post, there it sounded almost dick-ish in nature and surprisingly that was not my intention when I posted it.

So let me iterate that the question directed at Fit is sincere and not sarcastic or spiteful.

By JediJeb on 10/22/2008 5:22:01 PM , Rating: 2
I have been in SWG now for 3 1/2 years and still like it. I don't really like how they changed it and dumbed it down so much to cater to the kids instead of the more mature players but it is still fun to me. The biggest complaints I read on the forums is from the hard core combat PvP players who want everything centered around combat. When the game was first introduced and in beta it was marketed as the most expansive MMORPG ever made, the emphasis there being on RPG. As a platform for people wanting to Roleplay in the Star Wars Universe it is great. The openess of the worlds and player development is the best I know of. You could actually play the game for years without ever doing any real hard core combat if you wanted.

Those wanting to compare it to something like the online versions of the First Person Shooters are really comparing apples to oranges and will be disappointed if they want it to be that. It is really annoying when you see groups in a cantina having great in-character roleplaying conversations and some kid runs in exclaiming how lame and gay the game is because people are just talking to each other and not shooting each other and starts running in circles and hopping and spamming nonsense just to disrupt everyone having a good time. The majority of people starting characters there now try to make it something it isn't. The combat system is important but it is no more important than the social aspects. SWG has been killed by the same thing that will kill any MMO, listening to the vocal minority of the player base. If the Devs will get in game and just observe the bulk of the players and interact with them from time to time then they will really know what will keep a game alive.

By FITCamaro on 10/22/2008 1:16:55 PM , Rating: 2
Is the game supposed to be 100% Jedi? If so how do they figure in things like crafting and resource gathering? Jedi weren't involved in such tasks beyond creating their own lightsabers. And I don't think BioWare would make an MMO without such systems.

Sorry while I would never attend a convention or anything, I'm a Star Wars nut.

"And boy have we patented it!" -- Steve Jobs, Macworld 2007

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