23/10/2015

KotFE Early Access

I could hardly wait to log in and play Knights of the Fallen Empire on Tuesday evening. I had even left my authenticator at home, with a request for my pet tank to log me into the game and start the patching process as soon as possible (as he gets home about two hours before me). Unfortunately I didn't know that apparently there had been an option to pre-download the patch the day before, so it took about four hours to get everything set up (which was particularly annoying because for some reason my pet tank's game, which is on the same connection, did it all in half the time). The whole process became particularly cruel towards the end, when after you've made it through the big progress bars for "downloading" and "installing", it then starts downloading and installing more things just when you think that it's finally done... but after a little more complaining and jumping up and down on my chair (no, really), I was finally able to log in.


I really like the new KotFE loading screen and how crisp it looks. It reminds me a bit of the game's original loading screen, which is still my favourite.


Then I was at character selection. Remember that bug from last year where the view was more zoomed out than it was supposed to be for a while? It seems that they've decided to implement something similar for real this time. I also have to say that the new little display on the left which shows which class stories you've completed is pure genius - I'm sure that many achiever types will be very bothered by not having all the fields filled out.

Upon actually logging in I was horrified to find that my inventory was full, there were twenty-odd messages in my mailbox, and Aric had no trousers on. However, I decided that housekeeping really wasn't my first priority, so I just made some room in my inventory by doing things like mailing a couple of items to my alts - just enough to have space to pick up some random trash and a couple of quest rewards if needed - and set off to see the new story content.

...except first I had to talk to HK-51 and Treek, as I had forgotten that I had never finished their companion stories. I was surprised to find that all their conversations were unlocked even though I hadn't gained any more affection with them, but it seems that this was another previously unannounced change, that conversations are now gated by story progress instead of affection or whatever it's called now.


Then I dived into the new story content. They really make it feel like a whole new game, with two warning pop-ups that everything is going to change once you accept the new quest, a show of the KotFE cinematic trailer once you start, and then a round of Star Wars scrolling intro narration before you actually get to play. The first chapter felt a little clunky at the beginning as it's also supposed to serve as a tutorial for new players and takes away most of your abilites at the start, but once I'd got them back, I quickly got into the groove of things.

I then spent the next three evenings playing through the story obsessively, as I was constantly dying to find out what was going to happen next. It's pretty addictive really. I stayed up later than I should have on all three evenings and have no regrets.

Now that I've finally emerged from the haze of having been fully immersed in a Bioware RPG for three days however, I guess it's time to start clearing out that mailbox. I will of course talk about everything I've seen at some point, but there's so much to say I'm not sure where to start.

Oh, and as part of my housekeeping-laziness I was treated to this heroic shot of all my companions fighting with invisible weapons and no trousers on (also love the ship droid sweeping the floor in the background). As far as day one bugs go, that's really not too bad.

10 comments :

  1. Nice legs that Elara has got there.

    It almost --almost-- makes up for seeing Skadge in that thing that Njessi put him in.

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    1. Personally I think that seeing Vik in his skivvies right next to her cancels out any potential positive effects.

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    2. He does have a nice set of muscular thighs, however.

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    3. I can't believe you said that.

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    4. What? I have to give credit where credit is due.

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  2. Oh my god I second that. I laughed my ass off.

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  3. FYI: you can cancel out of the tutorial if you want to keep all of your abilities. I'll test out the tutorial when I create an insta-60, but for my existing characters I'll just skip the tutorial and work through the story.

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    1. Ah, I was a bit confused by that, because I saw a message that the tutorial was optional, but since I didn't actually see any tutorial messages, I figured that I was already out of tutorial mode and that the temporary ability prune was just something I had to put up with.

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  4. I'm in a dilemma now. I logged on for the first time last night and have two characters at 55. My consular had already done the first two instances (the two home planet raids) so was more advanced in the Revan prelude. So I started on him working through, Manaan is done and I'm on to the next place. How many hours is it likely, very roughly, to take to get to 60?

    Kind of annoyed I couldn't ding an existing character to 60 as I haven't done all the class stories yet so creating a new 60 may mean missing out completely on one. There's no way I'm replacing my consular or trooper with a new insta-60!

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    1. There's one more (solo) flashpoint after Manaan and then you're into actual Shadow of Revan content. I'm not sure about the amount of hours it takes to play through it, but I would say it has about as much story content as Makeb - it just goes a lot faster as there's less mob killing and running around required.

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