20/12/2012

Happy Birthday, SWTOR!

Today it's been exactly a year since Star Wars: The Old Republic was officially released, though people who pre-ordered the game had already been playing for a couple of days at this point due to getting early access. As someone who only pre-ordered a copy mere days before release, I think I got something like two days of early access. I don't actually remember.


Shintar the trooper on the day of her creation.

What a year it has been since then! I wish I could say that it's been nothing but great, but we all know that that's not true. While the game had a great launch, subscriber numbers fell quite considerably in the months that followed. When too many servers turned into ghost towns, server merges were implemented in what was possibly the most awkward way possible. And then there was that whole conversion to free to play of course...

In general terms, Bioware seems to have lost a lot of "street cred" in gaming circles, due to a mixture of hype backlash, poor customer service and bad public relations. Go to any gaming site and look what they have to say about SWTOR these days. Even if the articles themselves don't bash the game, people in the comments pretty much always will.

So... that kind of sucks.

However, if you look at the game itself instead of the "image issues" surrounding it, things haven't been too bad. Over the course of the past year, Bioware released six major patches, which doesn't make them the most productive company on the block, but not exactly slow either. They implemented two new flashpoints, two new operations, two new warzones, two new world bosses, two new daily quest areas, two world events - hey, I never realised that so many things came in twos - a new companion for all classes, as well as a multitude of system changes (legacy, the group finder, the augment system, gear colour matching, fifty bajillion PvP tweaks and so on).

If you're someone who simply plays without following the gaming news, there is plenty of great content to solo, plenty of things to do as a group, and last but not least a community to interact with that is probably more pleasant and laid back than most.


Shíntar the trooper today.

So I say: here's to all the good stuff! May there be more of it in the years to come, and hopefully we can leave the bad things behind with time. This jaded WoW veteran at least is grateful to have been shown that MMOs can indeed still be fun, and to have been given an opportunity to meet a lot of absolutely wonderful people in a galaxy far, far away.

5 comments:

  1. I was wondering about when the one-year mark was going to arrive. The game has definitely come a decent ways, though they had some ground ahead of them to cover when they started. We can only wonder where they would have been with fewer missteps and if they had been able to hold to the schedule they appear to have planned rather than a hasty relaunch project.

    In any case, I agree that it is a good game, and I hope that its second year goes better.

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  2. I've enjoyed my time in the game, but I've also come in with not the same overly hyped expectations that others did. There are far fewer asshats in-game than you find on other MMOs, and that for me is a big win.

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  3. happy b-day SW:TOR :-)

    Nice sum-up Shin!

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  4. It's actually been better than I expected, since I had no idea the class stories were going to be so good. (Yes, I know they aren't all equally good, but they've all got their moments.)

    So here's to another year of my favorite MMO!

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  5. Love the game, you will have to pry my cold dead fingers off of it before I ever leave. Thanks for the year of blogs and links and here's to many more.

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