Nov 18, 2011

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Fan Site Summit: Directive 7 Flashpoint

While everything we saw and did during last week’s Fan Site Summit at BioWare Austin was awesome, arguably the biggest deal was our opportunity to sit down and play Directive 7. D7 is a level 50 end-game Flashpoint, playable by both the Republic and Empire, that hadn’t been played outside of BioWare until then!

The storyline for Directive 7 is, well, the robots have taken over. And surprisingly, we have to stop them:

Mutinous droids on a remote moon develop a technology that could lead to massive destruction for both the Republic and the Empire. Your team must shut down the rebellion before it’s too late.

Zone In

Players access Directive 7 from Carrick Station, which is the Republic’s central hub. On the Empire side, Vaiken Spacedock serves the same purpose. Once you accept the mission, you and your party board a shuttle and are whisked away to your destination. True to BioWare form, you’re treated to a cut scene that shows your shuttle landing on the planet where your party hops off and begins the march through the facility.

Needless to say, we were excited. But it was also a little intimidating. And not just because of the whole “Georg Zoeller standing over your shoulder judging your use of his combat system” thing… but the fact that we’d be stepping into high-level characters with a huge slate of abilities that we had no idea what to really do with!

Our party for Directive 7 consisted of a Republic group with myself, Lethality, playing as a Gunslinger. Also from Ask A Jedi was Momus who was playing a Jedi Shadow. Rounding out the team were our good buddies from R2-Db, Jesta playing a silver-tongued Commando and Gnarf tanking it up on a Jedi Guardian.

Look Around

The first thing we noticed is the environment. It felt truly alive. As it was an outdoor zone, there were star fighters flying overhead and all kinds of atmospheric stuff such as explosions going on. But it didn’t stop there. The environment itself provided some great interactivity. At one point, some troops blew up a bridge to impede our progress, but by using a nearby missile cache to create an explosion and topple a tower, we were able to create a new make-shift bridge to advance across a different part of the trench!

I’m not sure if this was optional or if it was one of many choices to get around the troops (fight them perhaps?) But I loved the variety and choice in the action (and it game DURING the action, not a cut scene!)

Look Out!

Getting into combat felt familiar if you’ve played many MMOs with instanced content, sometimes known as dungeons. All of the enemies are there just for you! As you progress, you find a mixture of large droid patrols as well as packs of smaller droids and some humanoid minions.

Crown control played a very important role, especially considering we were new to playing our characters. We had to make sure we weren’t ever just charging in and “AoE-ing it down!” The Gunslinger had an ability called “Slice Droid” that was especially useful in a compound full of them! It was a 60 second form of crowd control that “short-circuited” a droid while the team went to work on other enemies. This ability worked on every level of enemy, from normal to strong to elite. But it didn’t work on the boss droids, of course. That’s why their the boss!

We chose to post a short snippet of our gameplay video below, narrated by Momus, that should give you a taste of the combat showcasing these abilities and more… up to and including the first boss fight of Directive 7!

While we didn’t get to finish the Flashpoint, only making it to the second boss (a trio of three very charismatic and bad-ass droids who promptly dispatched of us) it was cool to see what BioWare envisions for high level content, particularly in terms of environments and story. If this is what we can expect from all Flashpoints, there’s no reason to ever go “back”, if you know what I mean!

If you’re interested in talking about Directive 7 or anything else from the Fan Site Summit, stop by the Ask A Jedi Cantina tonight, Friday November 18th at 9:00PM EST. We’ll be holding a live Q&A, and while we may not be able to answer everything, we’ll give it a whirl!

Gameplay Video

Screenshot Gallery

  1. Thanks for uplaoding the vid, it’s awesome to see some high level FP gameplay. Aside from some of the glitchy graphics, which I’m sure will be ironed out before launch, it looks really great.

    One quick comment, if you record more stuff like this in the future, which I hope AAJ does, turn down the game volume and turn up the recording levels. It was a bit difficult to hear you. You might not be Dallas Dickinson, but you’ve got a great voice for walkthroughs/commentary, we want to hear it!

    Also, lol at Lethality’s “11111qqq222444” That was hilarious!

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