I’m on semester break and the days have been slow for me, but mostly in a good way. They’re filled with Diagnosis: Murder, tea, books, friends, playing Pokémon Alpha Sapphire on my new 3DS and spending lots of time with my cats whom I barely see during the semester. My motivation to log onto SWTOR has been… well, non-existent to be honest; not because I’m fed up with it, but because I sometimes need a bit of distance to the MMO I’m currently rooted in to avoid just that.
I know, I voiced my disappointment with the current situation in SWTOR not too long ago. And while most of what I wrote still holds true today, it has been put in perspective when BioWare announced a few things which serve as the perfect silver linings for me right now. Things I’m eagerly looking forward to and which make it easier to glance over the many glitches and long queue times that make my playtime not as smooth as it could be.
PvP: The Bone is About to be Thrown
FINALLY SOMETHING NEW TO CHEW ON. Finally. Finally finally finally. I’m more excited about this than I should be at this point, but why dampen my joy out of spite when I can have a good time instead? I’m not in the mood to play the ostentatiously pissed off PvPer right now.
They’re taking a step in the right direction here, in my opinion. Cross-faction 8vs8 map on a new, popular planet with a fitting story background? Perfect. A mechanic (“random spawn” king of the hill) we don’t already have? Yes please. A popular character serving as the announcer? Great. It does come a little late, but better now than never. I’m not too impatient when it comes to PvP content; other players are the actual content I consume, thus I’m happy to wait for new maps IF the developers manage to keep my “content” happy too – through class changes, QoL improvements and bugfixes. Maybe new fluff to spend commendations on here and there. That’s the biggest problem I have with the current state of affairs, but I digress – I’m very much looking forward to derping around with other players when nobody knows shit about good strats yet, especially on the PTS. It’s like one big temporary server merge for PvPers, I love that.
Aric: Comeback of a Survivor
Oh dear. I literally held my breath when I saw who was going to be the next “spotlight” companion for Chapter XI. I never expected to get him back so soon. While I’m still very sceptical about the whole companion rework in done 4.0, I do have to admit that the reunions are exciting.
If Khem could be called my Imperial favourite, Aric is his Republican counterpart. When I rolled my first trooper I didn’t know what to think of him at first, but I liked that they chose a Cathar for this role. By the end of the companion conversations I was completely enchanted by his down-to-earth, loyal, honest, pragmatic, respectful and sensible nature. Not to mention his voice. I even jokingly said to a friend that if I ever meet someone IRL who’s like him, I’d marry them on the spot. No, I’m not totally crazy, why are you asking.
Anyway, this is very good news for my lovely Ayy.
Story time: Her RP timeline is segmented by her different occupations – going from trooper (Commando in game) to bounty hunter (Mercenary) back to trooper (second Commando) and finally finding her place as a bitter… freelancer (Scoundrel). Incidentally (I swear!), there is/was a Cathar soldier and later love interest in her squad. I named him after a friend’s trooper; he unfortunately abandoned the game shortly after launch, but I liked the name he came up with so much that I didn’t want to let it go to waste.
So Aric is kind of the SWTOR story equivalent of that character, even though he does look a little different. This is important in regards to KOTFE because MercAyy too will finally be able to pretend to have her Cathar buddy with her, thanks to Disavowed.
That also resolves my issue as to which character to take through KOTFE next – I actually wanted to choose my shadow (for faction variation’s sake), but I’m not too keen on risking the Iresso-romance bug anyway and since I don’t really care about Torian, MercAyy gets the chance now. CAN’T WAIT.
QoL: More Kinks being Smoothed Out
I’ll make this one short.
Spaces in names: Hell yeah, I love them for taking the time to implement this! So many new combinations players can use. Will make server hopping that much easier for me, and I can also get rid of the lore conforming but clumsy spelling of some of my Twileks’ names (like Ayya’mersu – I like it, but it doesn’t look all that good ingame). Also: Simulating different last names or nicknames. Yass.
Server instances: Well, I would’ve understood that change better if servers were being merged, but we know now that this won’t happen. Still, it will definitely help reduce the whining so I’m all for it.
Lots of steps in right direction, imho. It’s just… slow. But I can live with that.
I love Star Wars more than I’d ever be willing to openly admit, so as long as this game doesn’t turn into the biggest pile of videogame crap ever conceived, I’ll probably never truly turn my back on it.
I love this game. There, I said it.