Sep 2, 2011

Posted by in Blue Milk & Cereal | 32 Comments

Blue Milk & Cereal: Should TOR Have Flying Vehicles/Mounts?

No day would be complete without the breakfast of Jedi: Blue Milk & Cereal.  Every morning, the team at Ask A Jedi will get Force-induced thoughts coursing through your head with delicious issues from around the galaxy! Join in the discussion below to make your voice heard!

Every MMO player knows that one of the exciting things about progressing through the game is getting access to other forms of travel – be it special spells, vehicles, mounts or other means of transporting oneself.

Player vehicles or mounts generally allow players to move at a faster speed and sometimes offer other perks – such as giving your friend a lift, the ability to reach areas otherwise unreachable on-foot and even  advantages in PvP.

Some games even allow flying mounts, enabling players to freely control their transportation in virtually any direction they wish to go. In fact, just recently (and completely out of the blue), Star Wars Galaxies announced atmospheric flight, which is especially odd since that game is shutting down in December.

But, flying vehicles can also create a few problems of its own, such as bypassing content or not doing/going to the places where the developers planned the content. Of course you could attribute that to poor design on developers part – but adding an entire extra axis to the game world doesn’t exactly make game design any easier!

We already know that TOR is going to have quite a variety of ground-based player vehicles, but it seems that we won’t be getting any player-controlled flying mounts, at least not at launch. It makes some sense when you understand that BioWare is very focused on story and delivering a great experience to the player. There are a couple of threads on the official forums on this topic, here and here. It seems to depend on the perspective which way the player-base votes.

Personally, I hope to see flying vehicles in a future expansion, if not sooner. Perhaps the same exapsnion that brings multiplayer space combat to the game. Let it be a PvP region or simple co-op – both would greatly enhance the game we all cannot wait to get our hands on.

So what do you think? Should TOR have atmospheric travel / flying mounts? Let us know below!

Should TOR have flying vehicles/atmospheric flight?

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  1. I was one of the ‘maybe, if’ people. The Maybe is, if they can add it down the road with out full redesign, or to much cost it would be a nice addition. I see this having a better chance to getting added in say a operation or, flashpoint. For instance in eternity vault you take a ride into action on escape pods, wouldn’t it be cool for another operation down the road it was air speeder sort of thing from Empire Strikes back. Maybe objective to destroy some control points or giant war machines. This approach would get it in there but would keep it from disrupting areas that weren’t meant to be seen or dealt with from above. It would also be very iconic, heroic. Words they like to toss around. *winks*

  2. The only reason I can see the game even “needing” flying mounts is if the area is expanded over those mountains that contain the content. But even through out Star Wars were there any “flying mounts” aside from maybe the Snow Speeders in V? (movie canon)

    Anything I saw flying from place to place was just a ship that could break into space, it wasn’t really a “flying mount”

    It would be cool to have but I don’t think the game really needs them. Swimming before flying anyway ;p

    • Well, you got the snow speeders on Hoth, You got the cloud city little ships, you go the speeders on Endor that could fly higher as well. In cloud city though the falcan actually flew through there… That would also be cool flying your ship through there and jumping off while the companions that aren’t with you keep flying it… You also have Darth Maul’s speeder.

  3. I wouldn´t say I want flying viechles that can fly on the planets but it would be awsome to have somekind of player vs player spaceship battles that would maybe have same mechanic as Battlefront. If we would expand the idea, say if or when guild capitalship will be added into the game it would be an awsome guild pvp spaceship battle :D everyones dream right?

  4. it would be kinda immersion breaking to see something like this
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9OvbZsH7xAg&feature=related

  5. anything more than this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TKx0qVY_Amk would be nasty

  6. I am a maybe …. and here is my reasoning.
    It makes sense if I get some sort of gain in the credit sink, and if it add more longer term play-ability for SWTOR then its worth it for the devs.
    It could be an easy way to add a few more operational locations, floating platforms are easy to integrate.
    It could be an advanced PvP option where ship to ship is migrated to a more granular (I can see the sith trueblood’s face as he crashes makes me happy) level.
    If its just a little faster travel and a credit sink, then the amount of development to make all the worlds and terrains work with it might not be worth it (imho)

  7. I would love see atmospheric flight added to the game, but only if they’ve planned for it ahead of time, and it wouldn’t involve a complete remake of the world.

    The films have had a few instances of low flying animals and vehicles so it wouldn’t be unthinkable – snowspeeders, the troop transports, whatever the Wookies flew, the things the dudes on Kamino rode, etc.

  8. It’s kind of hard for me to say on this one without having played the game yet. It depends on how much area there is for us to do things on various planets. If each planet only consists of a few zones worth of playable content then a flying mount probably isn’t necessary unless the terrain itself dictates the ability to fly.

    If each planet is literally planet-sized and we can roam around the whole thing, then I definitely want to have a flying mount as that’s a lot of area you need to be able to cover and a ground mount is a waste of time in those situations.

  9. I can see it working well in a Gas Giant type world like Bespin, where there are separate areas specially designed to account for flight, and perhaps with “islands” of action (separate mining facilities, etc) which require a flying mount to get from place to place.

    Other than that, maybe they should allow a little elevation control on the speeder bikes, but still keep a pretty tight limit on it.

  10. Flying mounts arguably brought the end of open PVP in WoW.
    I wouldn’t want people circling overhead divebombing on unsupecting prey. A flying mount also means stealth for everyone – the higher you fly the stealthier you get. Thus allowing everyone to avoid PVP encounters.

    Plus the world gets much smaller when you are able to soar above it mitigating beautiful scenerey that was meant to look at from eye level.
    It also somewhat reduces a planet’s topography to “meh whatever… I’ll just fly there”

  11. I voted no. I enjoyed flying around on my mount in WoW at first, until i realized that it destroyed exploration in the game. Of course it doesn’t HAVE to do so, but once you can get anywhere at any time, it just changes the entire flow of movement and travel within the game. Not to mention what it does to world PvP.

    I would, however, love to see atmospheric “space combat” missions similar to Rogue Squadron planet levels. They would be perfect, imo, as just the space combat minigame extended into things like the Battle of Hoth.

  12. OneCharacter says:

    With flying mounts comes a plethora of problems in an MMO and most notably for me, is that it gives developers an excuse to quite literally “cut corners” in the content they create.

    Look at Cataclysm for example: the only WoW expansion that allowed flying mounts from the beginning and it took the average person what, 12 hours max to hit lvl 85? Not to mention the fact that there is not a SINGLE road or way of travel in the Cata zones as they are just a bunch of random crap thrown together since you can just fly through it all anyways.

    Adding flying mounts to ToR would be terrible for the game in the same it was for WoW (whether or not it appeared that way; in the long run, it was.)

    If they DO decide to add them, I hope it’s much later rather than sooner!

  13. Lord Slavakov says:

    No.

    There is no need to fly in this game. Definitely not considering flying absolutely destroys open world pvp.

  14. As a longtime WoW player I’ve seen the negative impact that flying mounts can have
    on world pvp and just general immersion. What if they had space ports you could only take off and land from. This would work like flight paths but also allow you to explore the world from the sky.

    Just a random thought trying to find a middle ground and it would explain how your ship just disappeared.

    Thoughts?

    • This is a good thought… you can only take off and land from certain areas but still free to explore in the air… I like it!

    • I initially wanted to be an ornery old man and say “no, no flying mounts!” But then i started thinking about this. I actually love this idea.

      Gives the player control over fast travel methods. Allows players to see and appreciate the world from above. And they could create hidden, “secret” landing platforms throughout the various planets as bonuses for exploration. These could lead to datacrons, opportunities to fight rare spawns for loot or codex entries, meeting places for explorers, and all sorts of other opportunities.

      Now i want this! :)

  15. If the land mounts are fast enough, I don’t need flying. If I am zipping along at 200% speed, I see absolutely no need to get airborne. As long as the mobs can’t dismount you I am happy.

    Flying works better in sandbox games as opposed to theme-park games. They’d have to turn this into a sandbox game, expand the planets, add fatigue zones, or worst possible thing…. invisible walls. I am totally fine without those.

  16. I said no. As the BW team have stated it allows people to skip content. I recall getting flight in WOW some of the outlands quest stated kill a mob that is located in the tree tops I would just fly land kill him and then fly off. Just got boring, with very little risk. Allowed people to fast track.

  17. ScytheNoire says:

    It’s a maybe for me. There are good and bad points to flying mounts.

    How about instead of flying mounts they work on better space combat that isn’t on rails. That’s much more important.

    • I would just buy a flight simulator. Then again, I guess they did add Huttball – maybe they were going for the Madden crowd?

  18. SorcererBiggz says:

    I took a yes approach. But I’m fine without it.

    Flying mounts adds another element to the game. Later content can be distinguished by it. Etc etc.

  19. I voted no. There is no reason to have flying mounts if the game is designed correctly.

  20. I really see now reason for flying mounts/atmospheric flight as long as its easy enough to get around on land. You can do a few things to speed up player movement without having to hand out personal flight machines. Plus I think in this type game the focus is more on space flight/combat than air flight. I am all for a better space combat experience, with massive multiplayer space battles because that “fits” STAR WARS. Maybe a better question would be, Would you rather have a flying “mount” you can goof around on, or huge awesome multiplayer space battles?

  21. I put yes, but I would not want them until end game. That way they could be used to quickly go back to get to content you wanted to do or areas you wanted to explore. As far as leveling up you would not want this type of transport as it would make for missing content. Maybe you could add a mission tracker into this type of transport. This all would only work if it works on the back end of coarse.

  22. Frank "The Tank" says:

    MAYBE IF…

    If there was one specific planet that was dedicated to dogfights or something. That’d be alright. It ruins pvp, though from what i’ve seen in games that allow it everywhere, and you lose alot of the grand scale of it all.

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