15/04/2020

Stuff Is Happening

While I've been busy gushing about my guild in particular, that doesn't mean that nothing else has been going on with SWTOR on a more general level.

Contrary to my predictions, we did have a Rakghoul Resurgence last week for example. I followed the responses to the Twitter announcement about the upcoming monthly events with some interest, and while there were one or two commenters who thought that running this event under the current circumstances was in bad taste, the most upvoted comment was in fact one that said: "If ever there was a good time to fight the rakghoul "PLAGUE" it is now!" Different coping strategies for different people I guess.

In terms of effects on EA and Bioware, they had to reduce support hours and channels (so better hope you don't run into any major problems with your account in the immediate future) and Charles Boyd confirmed a couple of days ago that the entire team has shifted to working from home to stay safe. Unsurprisingly, this also means some delays to new content, but one can hardly fault them for that.

Specifically, next week's patch will now "only" contain various quality of life changes and the start of a double XP event, with master mode Dxun getting delayed to June. Tantalisingly, Charles also announced that the June patch will feature the release of a new event centred around swoop racing. This is something that players have been asking about for a long time but that Bioware also had to shoot down in the past as their internal testing revealed that the game's engine couldn't deal with racing in a satisfying manner, as lag etc. would make people appear in slightly different positions on each screen so that the winner might not actually be who it appeared to be on yours. Charles mentioning "insane obstacle courses" makes me think that they decided to shift the focus on individual challenge instead, maybe with a leaderboard but certainly not involving any simultaneous races, which would make sense to me.

In less happy news, he also had to drop the bomb that the next story update would have to be delayed as the Coronavirus situation meant that their usual voice recording studios had to close down and many voice actors aren't able to record from home. Again, one can't fault anyone for that, but I do have to say I was still kind of surprised to hear it as I would have expected the recording for the next update to have already been done. I certainly always thought that this stuff happened much further in advance.

Either way, I guess we should all be glad that they are still working on bringing us entertainment, especially now that people have more time to stay at home and play games. It's not like there's a lack of things to do as it is.

3 comments :

  1. I'm particularly excited about the swoop racing event. Having so many trying to race each other could be problematic and create lag issues unless a small group can only compete with each other, maybe? No idea, though. If it's solo with lots of obstacles like KOTOR that would be fun.

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    1. I wasn't particularly fond of the swoop racing in KOTOR but I didn't like the combat in that either. I'm sure the SWTOR version will be fun enough. I do like that they can still drop announcements like these as surprises among the more regular updates. Never gets dull!

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  2. I'm going to be honest - I'm sad we will have to wait more for story, specially since they had WEEKS with the oncoming crisis that could've helped them arrange earlier voice recording than usual - but I'm also pretty happy we will get something, and I always think QoL is important! Curious about the changes in CQ, too...

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