09/02/2017

The Best Classes to Take into KotFE / KotET

If you're someone who has returned to SWTOR for one of the "Knights of" expansions and already had more than one old character in the wings to take into the new content, you may have been wondering which class is the most suited for this purpose, based on how the new story plays out, as well as taking into account practical considerations such as what happens to your character's companions.

Well, I am here to give you the answer to this question! Or my own interpretation of it, anyway. Please note: I haven't actually completed the entire story on all of the eight base classes yet, but I think I've seen enough to be able to make an educated judgement. If you disagree with my choices, feel free to let me know in the comments! Also, be warned: Each class's analysis may contain spoilers for their origin (class) story. There will also be vague references to some things that happen in KotFE / KotET, but nothing I would consider a spoiler. Beware of actual spoilers in the comments though!


1. Jedi Knight

I think it's hard to deny that the knight was the class that KotFE and KotET were pretty much written for. KotFE and KotET largely focus on the Force ghost formerly known as the Sith Emperor, who was nothing but a mysterious background character for most of the story content of the base game... unless you were a knight. The knight is the only one who gets up close and personal with the Emperor in the 1-50 story, in a tale of epic struggle and revenge with culminates in you penetrating the very heart of the Sith Empire and striking down your foe on Dromund Kaas itself... or at least the body he was inhabiting at the time, as we find out later. Who else would be better suited to take him on after he returns? There's just no question about it. Sadly, no knight companions play a major role in the story (only T7 makes an appearance at all), but that doesn't outweigh just how tailor-made the storyline is for this class.

2. Sith Inquisitor

While the Emperor doesn't feature in the Sith inquisitor's class story, this class's origin tale is one of constant struggle. You want to make your mark upon the Empire and gain power, but you keep coming up against people more entrenched in the system than you, who try to manipulate and kill you. Also, there are those pesky Force ghosts. Guess what happens in KotFE / KotET? After having attained the lofty rank of Dark Council member by the end of your class story, being frozen in a block of Carbonite for five years is merely another setback of the type you're used to encountering, and after that, it's back to business as usual! Annoying ghost in your head threatening your life? Check! Proving your strength in the Force against mightier and mightier opponents? Check! Building a power base with the goal of rising to the highest possible rank? Check! I haven't seen this particular outcome myself yet, but I imagine that the ending of KotET must feel pretty damn satisfying as a Sith inquisitor, even if none of your old companions are officially by your side. (Two come back as Alliance alerts.)

3. Sith Warrior

Next to the knight, the warrior is the one other class who has a background with the Emperor in the base game... though unlike the knight, the warrior never actually meets him. (EDIT: I've been reminded that you do talk to his "Voice" once, but the point remains that he's quite distant compared to how personal things get with the knight.) You mostly serve as the Emperor's loyal enforcer via proxy, which puts you in an... interesting position in KotFE / KotET. As a bonus, one of the male warrior's potential love interests, Vette, returns as part of the main storyline, and by 5.2, only one warrior companion will remain missing. Good times! The reason I rate this below the Sith inquisitor despite of the personal connection to the Emperor is that things can actually get a bit awkward depending on your roleplaying angle. On my own warrior I was happy to offer my services to the Emperor's new incarnation, and at first there were some dialogue options that reflected this too... but gradually, they just disappeared, so that my character started being snarky and dismissive of her "boss" for no apparent reason. If you don't want to be friends with the Emperor however, jump right in and have fun!

  
4. Trooper

Much has been said about how the "Knights of" stories feel a lot more tailored towards Force users than your regular old heroes, and I strongly agree. Still, thinking about the non-Force users, the one that deals with the events of KotFE / KotET the best in my opinion is the trooper. Maybe I'm biased, but regardless of how you played your trooper while levelling up, they are used to waging war and taking charge to make things go their way while leading others into battle, and all the Force stuff aside, this is a lot of what KotFE / KotET is about. You may not necessarily want to rule the galaxy, but whether you've previously played the selfless hero of the people or the ruthless enforcer, you're used to fighting for a cause.

Also, with Elara Dorne being slated to make a return in 5.2, the trooper will be the first class to get all their old companions back. Okay, strictly speaking we can't re-recruit Tanno Vik, but who misses him anyway? At least we know what he's been up to.

5. Jedi Consular

I imagine that many would contest my decision to place a Force-using class below a non-Force user, but I do think it's justified at this point in time. Of all the Force users, the consular is definitely the least well-suited to the role of being the Outlander. Sure, you're a special snowflake in the Force all right, but from 1-50 you've mostly been a peace-keeper, diplomat and uncoverer of secret plots. Your enemies in the two "Knights of" expansions are remarkably resistant to negotiation, there's no real surprise in them wanting to kill you, and most of the time things come down to brute force. It's not that you can't do it, but it's not really your style.

Anyway, the main reason I've ranked the consular below the trooper right now is that not a single consular companion returns during the KotFE / KotET storyline, and even through the optional Alliance alerts you only get one of your original five companions back. Being a consular in a post-KotFE world is a lonely life. If they ever get all their companions back too, I would rank them above the trooper.

6. Imperial Agent

As we're getting closer to the bottom of the list, things start to become increasingly awkward. The agent is used to operating in the shadows, what's this about being thrown into the spotlight as some sort of "chosen one" and military leader?! I suppose the upside is that the agent is used to politics and to powerful Force users trying to make his or her life a misery, so that part fits. Also, two returning agent companions play significant roles in KotFE / KotET, which makes for some nice opportunities for some class specific dialogue.


7. Bounty Hunter

The bounty hunter loves to amass power and glory, but only for themselves, and they have little interest in fighting for a cause. In fact, the bounty hunter's story is one of someone who doesn't like to be tied down. Why they would actually want to lead the Alliance instead of setting off to do some actual bounty hunting or pretty much do anything else to further their own personal agenda instead of championing someone else's cause is a bit of a mystery. At least two bounty hunter companions also return during the story and get some good lines.

8. Smuggler

Last and definitely least in this case, we have the smuggler. I suppose if you took your smuggler fully dark side, aiming to become an underworld boss, there is an argument to be made for you being a powerful figure and having some interest in taking charge, but like the bounty hunter you're more out for yourself than for any grand cause, so why a smuggler of all people would lead the Alliance is a bit... eh. There's also hardly anything more pathetically out of place than a blaster-whipping scoundrel repeatedly going up against extremely powerful Force users in supposedly epic one-on-one duels. To top it off, no smuggler companions feature in the KotFE / KotET storyline, and only two out of five return as Alliance alerts. As much as I hate to say it (as the basic smuggler story is one of my favourites): taking them into the current content is just not very rewarding at all.

It's worth noting that the above ranking is based on taking an existing character into KotFE / KotET. If you use a token from the Cartel Market to start at a higher level, many of the concerns listed here won't really apply, since you don't have a detailed backstory and can't really miss companions you never interacted with. In that case I would simply say: Force using classes > non-Force users.

Agree/disagree? Share your opinion in the comments!

21 comments :

  1. I agree with you, with one exception - I'd nudge the Inquisitor over the Knight in the ranking. The Knight does indeed have all this history with the Emperor, but I do not see the light side version taking the Throne at all, no matter how the writers couch it in 'heal the galaxy' language. After all, the Star Wars Jedi narrative is all about rejecting political power when some oily old man with an English accent offers it to you. :) They would likely disable/destroy the Eternal Fleet, or hand it over to Senate control and wash their hands of it.

    The Inquisitor, on the other hand (as you have observed) is built specifically to seize political power.

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  2. I havent finished KotET yet on any character but agree with your assessments for KotFE content.
    Smuggler and Bounty hunter just dont suit the story with their previous lives. They are still fun classes to play though!

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    1. Yeah, it's not exactly a terrible experience on those classes either. There are some fun lines, like this one. But if one wants to limit oneself to one or two characters, there are better options.

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  3. Another point in the Inquisitor's favour here is the relationship with Marr. While it isn't exactly deep, there is an odd sense of camaraderie on display, given that Nox is the "only on Marr trusts" out of the dark council, making his death a little bit more impactful than with the other classes.

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  4. Imperial Agent is number 6? Come on, interactions with Scorpio and his previous experience with manipulations and mind control make it perfect.

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    1. The interactions with the returning agent companions are definitely interesting and worth seeing. And I did mention that the whole politics/fight for control angle counts for something. But for me, the way the Outlander persona is set up clashes way too much with the basic premise of the agent. The Outlander is portrayed as a "chosen one", a leader of the people who gets into epic one-on-one duels with powerful Force users. The agent is a cog in a big machine that manages to succeed against the odds due to being clever and determined. KotFE & KotET just don't really provide for that kind of background.

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  5. Just so you're aware, people are being passive-agressive about your forgetting about the Warrior meeting the Emperor's Voice on Voss on the Reddit thread. Quite why people never take things to the horse's mouth, I'll never know, but there you go.

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    1. (And, yes, I was aware at the time of posting that this was first posted that this would be a notable discrepancy (since you only ever meet an Emperor's Voice and never his actual body). I decided not to point it out because, hey, its absence seemed harmless at the time; if I'd have known this post would have made Reddit I would have leapt to the fore then and there.)

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    2. I didn't even know someone had linked this on reddit, though that explains why it's been getting so many hits (was wondering).

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  6. Smuggler: Yep, that's me. Now you may be wondering how I got here. Well it all started with a scum named Skavak

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  7. If you chose to make your bounty hunter a mandalorian they make more sense as an outlander since you are fighting for your fallen clan mates ... also you where frozen for five years that definitely requires some revenge

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  8. I'm probably biased, as I main one, but I really think you've got Agent way too low.

    Scorpio plays such a big part in the story-line, and the custom interactions you have with Kaliyo during her recruitment chapter (who's also, IIRC, the first romanceable companion to return) are great.

    Also, getting addressed as "Commander" all the time feels less forced for the Agent, since that was your "official" rank at the end of your class story. (And of course doubled as a James Bond reference)

    The Agent had plenty of fights against force users in their story, so the idea of fighting Arcann with my trusty sniper rifle didn't seem so far fetched.

    You're spot on about the Smuggler tho. As they said themselves on Ziost: "Because the galaxy-eating ghost is what? Afraid I'm gonna beat it in a quick-draw?"

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    1. I think agent is the one about whose placement I've had the most disagreement, but to me the contrast between being a sneaky Operative working in the shadows and being thrown into the spotlight as leader of the Alliance and "chosen one" is just too great.

      Also, regarding the Commander title, in chapter nine Lana has that line about how you've been promoted from [your old title] to Commander, which sounds absolutely ridiculous for agents since both are the same and makes no sense. :D

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  9. I would like to add my two cents here.
    I think Inquisitor is the number one in that list, after all they had experience with all that is happening both inside the force story (ghosts, unburying story and powers) than outside (forging an alliance, building an army and leading a cult). Even the whole rakatta part and the discoveries about Scorpio, you had dealt with a similar situation on Belsavis.

    The I would say consular should be dividing number 3 with warrior, consulars do exactly the same thing we do in those expansions as well: forging alliances though diplomacy, dealing with several politicians and representative of different parties, we even secured a truce between the houses in Alderaan. Also we have a lot of experience with the force part of the story: dealing with possessions and force mistery.

    About the agent, well, after Corellia the agent became a military and after Makeb he becomes a Commander, so that would explain how is he placed in this mess.

    Bounty Hunter could make sense if you signed with the mandalories, after all, this is the biggest hunt of all.. then you get pulled towards this mess.

    Trooper would be the second last on this list for me, as the whole trooper story you don't deal with anything else that is happening to the galaxy other than cleaning up for the republic.. if you remember, as trooper we don't even met a sith in the main story. But then, they would be the time for a military dude to step up I guess...

    As for the smuggler you nailed, but then, every since the end of chapter 2 the only real motive there to keep the smuggler is if you, somehow, decided to take a side in the fight between republic and empire.. the whole story makes no sense but I guess if you went all over Hoth, Belsavis, Voss and Corellia at this point your smuggler consider himself as some republic Merc by now... I still think they should have make a more plausible reason for the smuggler to jump in the republic after finding Nok, maybe if the imps had killed someone they liked, or destroyed Nok's treasure (after all, you don't get any richer after that haha)

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    1. Agreed about the inquisitor; I actually changed my mind about that one later on - I briefly mentioned it in this post. :)

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    2. Oh, and I think your case for the consular makes sense if you think of the Alliance alerts, but not for the main story IMO.

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  10. Have you seen the contents of the Onslaught expansion?

    Idk why people don't believe Knight should be #1, but this expansion solidifies it as #1 without question.

    Inquisitor is #2.

    Rest of the list is fine, However like most I'd move the Agent up to #4. You seem to believe there's some contrast between specifically the Operative, and a Commander fighting force users head on. I'd argue that the Operative has its gadgets and gizmos precisely for that. How do you fight a Force user head on? Stealth, backstab, poison.

    Everyone mentions how skilled you are in combat, and Agents are the most trained.


    Something a lot of people don't understand is that these characters we are playing, are the best of the best of the best. Regardless of class, they are the chosen ones, hence why they get through their story in the first place. You're either the greatest force prodigy ever, or the best shot with the greatest accuracy known to man, and theey resist force powers with no effort. You can't compare say, the Smuggler to Han Solo, because the Smuggler has the highest "stats" a Smuggler can have. The same way a Trooper isn't your typical storm Trooper.

    The Agent isn't just a "cog", he isn't just a military agent. He'sHe's the best at the job ever, to the point where he can kind of contest with force users, which goes with every class.

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    1. Something I should add is that story-wise, the Alliance and the Saboteur routes of all the expansions work perfectly with the IA, which has that in its core story anyways. It really holds it all together if you go that route, as I can see them doing all of that over any other class.

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    2. I haven't played through Onslaught on my knight yet, but I'm looking forward to it. :)

      You're either the greatest force prodigy ever, or the best shot with the greatest accuracy known to man

      I don't think it's actually stated like that in game - you are very talented/skilled for sure, but I don't recall any class story ever making me out to be the best ever at everything. I think that's personal interpretation. As I'm not too fond of "chosen one" narratives myself I always preferred to see my character as one of many who are simply good at their job.

      I can see how KotFE would make more sense to you if you always viewed your character like you describe. For me it clashed with how I had always seen them though.

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    3. I can't talk about "ever", but I got a very "way way way above good" feeling with my consular. The very first cut scene has your new master reminding a Council member that at 4 I had more talent and connection to the Force than she had at 15, more than full knights. That's, literally, where you stand starting in. So, yeah, I do feel like Consular's meant to be a force prodigy from childhood - not in an Anakin way of ThePrinceThatWasPromised but in a Yoda Way of "incrediblemidcloriancounts" *shrugs*

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    4. Yeah, I do remember that. The consular story is probably the most explicit about how talented you are supposed to be. All the other class stories are a lot more humble about your skills though.

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