Jun 21, 2011

Posted by in Columns, Trivial Matters | 6 Comments

Trivial Matters: TOR Cribz

Welcome to Trivial Matters, a regular column that delves into some of the more frivolous aspects of Star Wars: The Old Republic, and desperately tries to add weight to them. While in many cases the issues discussed here are brushed under the rug, to some, trivial does matter, and we would encourage you to weigh in on the discussion as well.

For some, there’s just something about owning virtual real estate that adds value to a game, and for a select few, their lives. I personally don’t fall into this category, but I did hold on to some hope that player ships in Star Wars: The Old Republic would allow for at least some form of cosmetic customization. These hopes were recently dashed by the game’s developers, and we were informed that such a feature would not be available, at least at launch.

While we now know we won’t be doing any interior decorating at launch, Daniel Erickson did mention in our recent E3 interview with him that we will likely see ship customization sometime after launch, before we would see any customization of player mounts. Personally, I’m not sure if I would prefer the ability to customize the interior of my ship or the exterior. Would a rancor head look better mounted on the wall of my situation room, or chrome plated and affixed to the front of my ship as a ballin’ ass hood ornament?

Think about it.

Of course there are plenty of reasons to justify a desire to customize one’s property, whether it be real or virtual, but the demand from certain members of the community for ground based player housing simply baffles me. Most of us are aware that Star Wars: The Old Republic is not Star Wars Galaxies, nor is it trying to be. Within the context of the game’s classes, permanent player housing hardly makes sense. Player’s cannot be nerf herders, we aren’t going to be playing as cantina employees, and from what we’ve seen of the game’s story so far, each class in Star Wars: The Old Republic gets around more than your mom at Mardi Gras.

Ah Susan, I'll never forget you.

With almost every possible amenity available on our personal starships, what reason could we possibly have for visiting a residential structure that is permanently affixed to the surface of a planet? If my apartment had rocket boosters, you bet your ass I’d be in a different city every night, futilely(read: drunkenly) attempting to recruit “companion characters”. Some may cite individual freedom, roleplaying, and/or increased player customization as reasons for owning a home on a specific planet, but I personally feel that ship customization would absolutely fill those needs.

If Star Wars: The Old Republic’s classes had any context for maintaining a permanent residence, perhaps my stance on the subject would change. However, as the game stands now, each class is either serving in the military or occupying a profession that requires constant travel. One can always hope that BioWare will implement an aging system, pension plans, and a crocheting profession, but in the meantime ask yourself this: “If I owned a starship, would I ever go home?”

******. No.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got an appointment with Craigslist, a vintage RV, and some discarded aircraft parts.

What’s your take on TOR’s approach to using out starships as player housing? Should we still look forward to surface-based structures as well, or is space where its at? Discuss!


  1. gamer_ladyp says:

    I was psyched when I heard the comment in a demo that ships will have cargo capacity. Give me the chance to add a few more smuggler’s compartments and the pack rat in me will dance and sing. Yes, in a cantina no less!

    I really don’t understand the call for being planet bound in this game.

  2. definitely not planet side. I don’t see the need to outfit the outside of your ship either. From what I understand the hangars are instanced by class and people can only see your ship if they are in a group with you. I could see the interior as an option. And if they do implement Guild ships I would definitely love to see customization there.

  3. Since I plan on being crazy about space combat, I wouldn’t mind seeing visual evolution of my craft as I progress through the missions and purchase upgrades for my ship’s armament and outfitting.

    However, I think its important for people to have the flexibility of being able to change their ship to make it more attractive to them to feel pride in their craft. Not to mention helping with the feeling of immersion in being able to really make your craft your own.

  4. Redeker says:

    I think having them turn the ships into housing is the best way to do it. It would need to have some sort of benefit however, even if it is quite small. I like making housing in MMOs my own and unique as much as the next guy, but it’s easily twice as fun when you get a benefit, however small.

    Also, I am in full support of guild cruisers. They would of course be totally instanced, and I imagine there would just be an option when you’re on your ship to travel to the guild cruiser.

    Ah well, a man can dream.

  5. Thalick says:

    I would be down for some color customization of the outside of the ship, maybe get some bigger guns once you upgrade your firepower, but no fixed ornaments just for aesthetics. If they add interior design later, could be fun; if they don’t, I won’t lose sleep over it. They would have to designate a team (maybe even a raid 0_0) to focusing just on interior design pieces for the ships for at least a 4-6 months. Not worth it prior to launch.

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