“Star Wars: The Old Republic” MMO trailer from Bioware.

It’s E3 week so I’ll probably be talking about video games quite a bit over the next few days as there are lots of announcements and first-showings taking place. Stuff like the official trailer for Bioware’s MMO based on the Star Wars license:

It looks cool as hell, but I’m not going to allow myself to get excited about it at all for several reasons. First, I remember how excited I got over Sony’s attempt to turn the original Star Wars trilogy into a MMORPG and what a major disappointment it turned out to be. It seems like it would be a great fit, but in reality the standard mission types found in an MMO just seem silly and stupid when wrapped in SW imagery. Second, there’s no way in hell the gameplay is going be to anything close to what the trailer depicts. That’s probably asking a bit much, but I’d love to play a game capable of stuff like that. Thirdly, I never got into Bioware’s other Old Republic games. I only own one and I’ve never gotten more than 20 minutes into before growing bored with the mechanics and giving up.

So the trailer looks pretty cool and I would love to have a great Star Wars game to play, but I won’t be holding my breath for it. Still, I’d love to be proven wrong in my prejudices on this count.

5 thoughts on ““Star Wars: The Old Republic” MMO trailer from Bioware.

  1. Actually, I know the company that developed the game engine (Simutronics) that Bioware licensed, and it’s supposed to be outstanding. Graphics are tied into the game engine, but Bioware probably was able to customize, too.

    This one very well may be a winner.

  2. Scott, I’m hoping it defies my expectations, but with as big a disappointment as Star Wars Galaxies was… well, you know.

    JRY, I thought the same thing while watching that trailer.

  3. I loved the KOTOR games, so I’m kind of scared by this – if it’s awesome I’m going to have to make room in my time for a MMORPG addiction? Maybe it will suck and I can ignore it.

  4. The folks at Shack News got a chance to see the game in action and they’re impressed:

    Star Wars The Old Republic E3 Impressions: Ready to Play KOTOR 3 With a Few Thousand People?

    BioWare’s target is to make this the first MMO to squarely focus on story, and immediately impressive were the dialogue scenes, the first initiated with an NPC quest-giver. The camera cuts back and forth as characters converse, with a minimal, Mass Effect-style radial menu providing the response options. Every scene in the game is fully voice-acted, and the end result is that the MMO plays more or less like a singleplayer experience.

    Even more impressive was the addition of a second party member. When talking to NPCs in The Old Republic, the other players in your party will also be participating in the conversation with their own options. So while you might choose one response, the other player will be picking another, and you’ll see your guild-mate interact in the dialogue scene based on his response.

    […] Our demo drivers then picked a fight with a few locals, revealing a surprisingly engaging combat system. The Bounty Hunter fights from a distance, but can move freely as he fires off his blaster. As enemies shoot back, missing laser blasts whiz overhead, zipping straight into the camera. Every character has a unique close-combat option; as an example, the Bounty Hunter steps up close to douse his enemies with a wrist-mounted flamethrower.

    Each class’ abilities reflect its inherent personality traits. For instance, the Smuggler’s character reflects Han Solo’s—he snipes at targets with a pistol, and issues sucker punches and kicks between the legs when up close. In an ambitious twist for an MMO, the Smuggler also makes use of a cover system, which highlights potential hiding places with a circle and a green outline of a man. The Smuggler can take cover behind rocks, trees and other debris, offering him extra protection during long-distance firefights.

    […] The take away? A lot of money is being spent on this game, and it shows. And though it may not have the broad fantasy appeal of World of Warcraft, this is the first game that I can see challenging it. It’s hitting a different genre, it’s doing things that Warcraft is not, and it will still have all the MMO conventions—PVP, crafting, guilds and raiding are all planned.

    I may not be a fan of the “stylized realism” BioWare is using for character art style, but beyond that, I found very little to criticize in this demonstration, and a great deal to be excited about.

    So it sounds like if you loved KOTOR then this will be a must have.

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