07/06/2016

O Oricon!

Do you ever fall down a rabbit hole while playing? Log on with a specific goal in mind, but then something goes wrong or you get distracted, and suddenly you end up doing something completely different and eventually can barely even remember how you got there? That is how I ended up doing Oricon on my Vanguard yesterday. And it reminded me of how much I love that moon.


This is actually a post that I already thought about writing the last time I took an alt through the quest chain there (which was already quite some time ago) so it's really about time that I actually do it. It simply continues to fascinate me just how well this particular daily area has stood the test of time. I did like it well enough back when it was released, mind you, but at the time I was actually a little worried that it might be a tad too depressing to have long-term appeal - heh! After thinking about it for a little while, here are my reasons why I think Oricon continues to be more fun to re-play than most daily areas or even many pieces of one-time content:

Awesome Atmosphere

This is another thing I already mentioned when it was first released, but Oricon is amazingly atmospheric. I could see why not everyone might like everything having an orange tint or the way the Dread Masters strongly lean towards the fantastical instead of the sci-fi part of Star Wars, but they are great villains and it rubs off on their environment. You might think that "evil and insane" is an overdone cliché when it comes to villains, but these guys were already evil before they went insane - the madness just added a whole new flavour of terror to their repertoire. In turn, you can definitely feel good about offing their crazed and corrupted minions - you're clearly doing the galaxy a favour here.

Strong Storyline

Oricon is actually the only daily area that I can think of that has a fully voiced and cut-scened storyline associated with all the dailies that you do, and it's slightly different for both factions as well. Sure, other daily areas have stories too, but they are mostly of the generic "there are bad guys here, kill them"-type. The one that comes closest to Oricon in terms of story integration is probably Yavin IV, but then that story was only loosely connected to the actual dailies - after all you can complete it without ever touching most of them if you go down the operation route for the final bit.

I've actually been somewhat critical of attempts to connect dailies and storylines in the past, as they can lead to some really dumb dailies if done badly. (WoW's Firelands dailies and their pretense of progress that reset every day come to mind.) However, Oricon manages to pull it off reasonably well - without going beyond the standard pointlessness of having to redo the same tasks every day anyway.

I also thought it was really clever that the weekly unlocks the moment you also unlock the final heroic quest and lets it count towards completion, even though that particular quest is a one-time event. Some might consider it too old-school that the story cumulates in a heroic mission followed by a prompt to do an operation, but I think it simply fits - plus the heroic mission offers at least some closure, so you don't have to feel like a complete dolt if you never end up doing the operation.

Tight Questing

All the missions are tightly packed together and can be completed very quickly if you know what to do, making Oricon one of the more efficient places in which to run dailies and preventing it from ever feeling like a drag. Other daily areas have done a pretty good job of this as well, but they are usually lacking in other aspects, such as the ones mentioned above. Personally I also like that Oricon includes a heroic area, one of the few places in the game where at least some challenge is still preserved for the solo player.

Small Touches

I'm not usually a big hunter of lore objects, but on every alt I take to Oricon I also make a point of hunting down the little holocrons that give lore about the Dread Masters. It just feels right to have lore work that way, instead of having a random glowy rock in the back - the way it is so often with lore objects. Before I got all the achievements, I also loved hunting down all the different named champion mobs in the heroic area. The bonus missions attached to some of the dailies that unlock if you have macrobinoculars or a seeker droid are a neat little touch as well.


When was the last time you did Oricon? Or do you have another favourite daily area?

9 comments :

  1. Oricon is really good, indeed. I enjoy doing it every now and then - good cash, good fun, reasonably quick. Plus you raise some good points: seeker/macrobinocular bonus quests, named commanders, not-so-easy-to-find lore objects.

    However, my favourite daily areas are CZ-198 and the Black Hole. The former because I liked that patch and what it brought (and I like Czerka from KotOR) and the latter because I farmed it so many times back in 1.+

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    1. CZ is very convenient as well, but I do think it falls somewhat short in the atmosphere department. Czerka are great bad guys when it comes to pulling the strings in the background (like in the planetary story arc on Tatooine) but less so when it comes to outright fighting.

      The Black Hole will always be special for being the first "real" daily area that was added to the game. But it feels very old now, and I was never a huge fan of Corellia's environments.

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  2. Last time I did Oricon in any great capacity (not including entering DF/DP) was the day before 4.0 launched. It used to be part of my Daily Missions routine back when I did them virtually all the time (which went Ziost > Yavin > CZ-198 > Oricon) but as I've stopped doing Dailies altogether - I blame the restructured [HEROIC] Missions - I haven't had much 'purpose' being there.

    Shame really. I absolutely loved Oricon because it's the Star Wars equivalent of Mordor (including it's own version of Sauron - Zaoron!), and the missions actually made sense, which not a lot of Dailies do..!

    Plus, y'know, Dread Masters and all that. :p

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    1. Yeah, I'm not surprised that you stopped running regular dailies - I did have that post about heroics being the new dailies.

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  3. I had to play through Oricon dailies today, reading this obviously gave me the push!

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  4. I was very annoyed at first when with Oricon as it felt a little too packed with mobs all over the place, especially the heroic area.
    The title of the post reminded me of an epic classic Bulgarian poem called "O, Shipka!" :)

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    1. Yeah, I also noted in my original post that I found the mob density a bit off-putting for solo play at the time. However, with all the nerfs to mobs and buffs to player characters, that now just means that the area retains at least a small degree of challenge, which is fine by me.

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  5. I like Oricon too. I liked how spooky it was and the scary music that played while it loaded in. I liked how when I first went there it was more difficult and challenging than I was used to for single-player content (though it seems ridiculously easy now).

    I also have a fondness for the place because it was where I did my first ever operation (and I still think Dread Fortress is my favourite raid, maybe purely for the nostalgia). Probably would have never taken up doing ops if not for that lead-in quest from the single-player content. I wanted that damned Tauntaun and if becoming a raider was the only way to get it, then so be it.

    Also happy memories camping out that NPC to get that stupid "vampire bat" hat. Got it in the end, unlike with the stinky Czerka car, which I have never had the patience or luck to get, despite camping all night with a guildie. Didn't even want the damn thing, just wanted to BEAT it. Ah, maybe one day. :)

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    1. You're right about the music, it's very distinctive!

      Nice to hear that the whole "leading people into operations" angle worked successfully on someone. :)

      And oh man, I had forgotten all about the bat hat! Someone in my guild got it and it was funny how it was simultaneously a source of pride and one of ridiculue.

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