Apr 18, 2011

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Yellow Posts: Hi! My name is [Master Lord Darth]

A week after the London press event, the pace has finally settled down… and so did the developer posts.

Every once in a while a thread on the official forums will surface with a member wanting the answer to some questions.  Some can be answered, others cannot for certain reasons.  In this weeks case, those questions can still not be answered.  Forum member Dayrun, made a post that highlighted concerns and questions on open beta, system specifications, and when the game will be released.

Georg Zoller came in to straighten up those concerns and answer why some things just cannot be discussed right now.

I don’t think we are avoiding these questions. We do our best to let people know that status of things, but we can’t make announcements until we know we’re ready. 

Answers to these questions are being worked out. For a project like SWTOR, with many parties involved, final answers can take time to sort out. Once everything is decided, we can talk about it. Before then, we don’t, because we don’t want to change things on people. It wouldn’t be fair for us to announce something like the minimum PC spec, have people buy new machines, and then change it on them. We appreciate everyone’s patience so far, and will keep everyone up-to-date on these questions – we know they’re important!
The release window is 2011. As more information becomes available, we’ll let everyone know.


The philosophy of not announcing certain features until they are complete or ready for public viewing has been consistent throughout development.  This is why we have not seen any official screenshots or video on feature that is very near and dear to many – character creation.  What has been seen on a few occasions is not feature complete; or it may not be an accurate representation of what we will see at release.

Staying on the subject of Game Testing, the rumor mill was busy baking some new treats, those being beta key giveaways. Unfortunately Georg had to squish that rumor saying no such thing exists and the game testing program does not run on a key system.

At this time, there are no keys – the Game Testing Program doesn’t use a key system right now. Any such sites would be a scam. If you see anyone offering “keys,” you should report that site. Please make sure you’ve read this thread about scams: http://www.swtor.com/community/showthread.php?t=283091

This does reflect what we have been told about Game Testing previously.  BioWare can detect, with some ease, those who do not belong in testing.  So a word of advice for those looking around: if that eBay auction looks to good to be true, it is.

“Oh caught in a bad romance”…with my companion?  It seems getting lucky with that companion of choice may be a little harder than expected, or so Randy Begel says.

Something to note: you don’t really gain light side points just for being nice to someone or dark side points just for being a jerk. It takes more than that. Maybe you’re just being manipulative when you’re saying the “L” word to your romantic interest, or you were just having a bad day when you told them that thing they just gave you was garbage.

Forum member Silencing, asked:

1. Will different characters have to be treated differently in order to be romanced?

2. Will any of these companions be romance-able by telling them they “will be killed if they disobey my orders?” (treating them like trash basically)

Randy responded saying:

Absolutely. [To question one]
Basically, there are definitely more than a few romances suitable for you bad boys and girls out there, so I wouldn’t worry about getting left out. 
However, if you’re really dying to romance a particular character and they don’t care for your antics you’re going to have to make some compromises, like being nicer around them or maybe just keeping them away from your cacklingly evil behavior.

Also this week, a long awaited question was answered; will Darth and Lord be player-achieveable titles and if so how rare will they be? Daniel Erickson enlightens us with some background on the titles in terms of the lore and time period, he also hints that not every Sith player will receive the title just from playing.

Hey Folks,
Darth and Lord are ranks in the Old Republic time period and while they represent an increasingly smaller percentage of overall Sith, they are clearly not at as rare as only having one or two running around in the galaxy. There are already numerous Darths (Baras, Malgus) we’ve seen who are not on the Dark Council.
It will likely not come as a surprise to most people that the titles of Darth and Lord are story-based rewards (one does not become a Darth by grinding frog-dogs) as are Master, etc. What may come as a surprise is that not everyone who completes a Sith or Jedi story will achieve them. There are always choices and those choices matter in many ways, including your notoriety and the rewards or reputation you earn. Darth will absolutely be off-limits when creating names.
Hope that helps!
Daniel Erickson

Will a game guide or database site have this information up before the game goes live?  It is probable, but like story spoilers I think a lot of players want to find out if their choices and consequences grant such a high title.  Personally, I would hate to see every Sith player with a lightsaber jumping around Dromund Kaas and having the Darth and Lord title above their head.  Will these titles be reserved for the more conservative Sith player who only picks the darker choices?  Or will this title come from being not only loyal to the Emperor, but showing you can go against his wishes to grow in power and prestige?  It will be fun to find the outcome.

For those wanting more information on PvP here is “some.” No, it is not a new Warzone but how PvE and PvP servers will be handled in terms of PvP.  It had been stated a long time ago that you would not be forced to PvP, Gabe Amatangelo, confirmed it this week.

By design, players on PVE servers will not be forced into PvP.
We definitely want players to be able to enjoy PvE content without threat of PvP, if that is what they want.
For the rest of us, I’ll see you on a PvP server. 

Is Gabe asking for a challenge?  Someone please oblige him.

Lastly this week is news on crafting. Nothing too big, but Damion did have time to jump into a thread and talk about crafting “crits.” Having crafted items get a critical hit, much like damage can, is not new but it is the execution that makes the difference.  That balance and execution is exactly what is being worked on right now.

I will confirm that crafting crits are in the game right now. We’re still working on exactly how powerful they are balance-wise, and we’ll talk more about them once we feel comfortable with our answer.

Hopefully we can get some in-depth crafting news in the months to come,  while we do have a solid foundation, the devil is in the details.

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