Mar 19, 2012

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Important News About Ask A Jedi: The Sith Did It!

Although I knew the day to write this post would come, I didn’t expect it to sneak up on me so quickly!

Recently, my personal and professional life has gotten more demanding on several fronts, and I found that I was struggling to put the time into Ask A Jedi that it needed and deserved. Unfortunately I just could not work it out to my satisfaction, and it doesn’t look like it’s going to change any time soon. So,  rather than letting Ask A Jedi wither and die on the vine, I decided to stop publishing the site all together as of today, March 19, 2012.

I understand that this might come as a shock to some fans, as we remain one of the largest and longest-running Star Wars: The Old Republic fan sites. This wasn’t an easy decision in the first place, and that’s entirely due to all of the members of the AAJ Army! We’ve grown quite a community over the 2 years we’ve been doing this, and many of the friends I made extend outside of the game.

Turn The Page

So what’s next? Glad you asked!

I’ve become really good buds with the guys over at TORWars during our incessant chase of TOR during it’s development. If for some reason you’ve never visited before, you should be ashamed. It is easily the highest-quality, most professionally written Star Wars: The Old Republic site out there. Thanks to Jeff and Co. over there, I’ll be a guest poster and editor on TORWars from time to time going forward, which will give me an opportunity to stay involved with the community at the same time dealing with the increased workload at work. I can’t thank Jeff enough for this opportunity, and want everyone in the AAJ Army to now consider themselves TOR Warriors and make themselves at home over there!

A Million Thanks

I’d like to thank BioWare, LucasArts and Electronic Arts on the behalf of Ask A Jedi, all of our staff, and myself for all of the support and generosity they’ve shown us over the years. The incredible accessibility to developers, gameplay at conventions and not to mention being invited to Austin on several occasions made the dream possible. The dynamic duo of David Bass and Stephen Reid are easily the best 1-2 punch in community management in the games industry. I’d call them Batman and Robin except I think Stephen’s more of a Marvel guy. I can’t call out everyone else on the community teams and the development teams by name, but suffice it to so I was blown away time and time again how nice and accommodating everyone was. And on the several occasions I got to meet and chat with BioWare co-founders Dr. Ray Muzyka and Dr. Greg Zeschuk, they inspired me to be better at what I did and to never let go of your dream! Doctors – thank you.

I’d also like to thank the AAJ staff… Momus, Zlatto, Kray, Lady Republic, Reedyn, Cormeister, Professor Walsh, Lord Paladin, Twin Hits, Sa’Chi, Cealog, ReDDoT as well as all previous staffers and contributors for helping to make Ask A Jedi what it is today, and that is nothing less than a top-quality narrative-driven fan site. I owe all of you big time.

And last but definitely not least, I want to thank you, the readers – the AAJ Army! I never in a million years that I’d be able to start some blog and have several hundred thousand visitors read it every month. Meeting many of you either virtually or physically has made this one of the more rewarding things I’ve done.

Please let me know if you have any question or concern about any of this in the comments below… and please visit every day for all of your TOR needs, including class guides, videos, opinons and more… and as I mentioned, I’ll even show up there from time to time so come and flame be over there instead! :)

May the Force be with you. Always.

– Bill


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Feb 2, 2012

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Ask A Jedi: Class Quests And Speeders

Stand aside Master Gnost-Dural! The Ask A Jedi crew is here to answer all of your burning questions about Star Wars: The Old Republic! Powered by R2-Db’s question and answer feature, we will answer the highest rated questions each and every week. So sit back, relax, and let us drop some knowledge on you, Ask A Jedi-style!

Just a pair of questions for you this week. First, Winterborne asks: “Can other people help out with class quests?“. The answer to that question is comprised of two parts. To begin, yes, as with any quest in the game, you can group up with someone to make your class quests a little bit easier. However, since your class quests are your personal story, the player that you group up with will not be able to participate in the dialog options for any of your class quests (but they can listen to the dialog).

Your choices for your class quests are your own and no one can force you to watch a cutscene or make a choice that you do not want to make. By contrast, you can be forced to watch a cutscene that you did not want to see during a normal group quest Flashpoint, depending on what dialog options your group mates selected.

The second part of this is that if the player you are grouping with is the same class as you, they will need to go into the game settings and enable an option to allow them to enter class quest areas of a player that is the same class as they. The main reason for this is that your character may be farther along in the story than the player that you are grouping with. In order to prevent story spoiling, the game will actually disallow a player from entering the class quest area of another player with whom they share the same class, unless they specifically say that they want to be able to enter those areas. Be careful of spoilers if you plan on going into a class quest instance of a friend who is playing the same class as you!

Lastly, gnarf posted this question on R2-DB: “Where can I buy 110% speeders?” If you just recently hit level 50 and bought the highest level speeder training, you may be on the lookout for vendors where you can buy better looking 110% speeders. Credit must go to DevliN who found this terrific article on that lists most (if not all) of the 110% speeder models available in TOR. This compendium describes where all of the speeders are located and how much they cost or what is required to obtain them (some drop off of Operation bosses). You will definitely want to check out this article if you are in the market for a new 110% speeder.


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Jan 19, 2012

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Ask A Jedi: Legacy System, Magenta Crystals, And Operatives

Stand aside Master Gnost-Dural! The Ask A Jedi crew is here to answer all of your burning questions about Star Wars: The Old Republic! Powered by R2-Db’s question and answer feature, we will answer the highest rated questions each and every week. So sit back, relax, and let us drop some knowledge on you, Ask A Jedi-style!

The most popular question over on R2-DB this week was posed by Ajamison. He asks, “Is there any more information on when the Legacy system will be fully implemented instead of just allowing a Legacy name and Legacy leveling which currently does nothing?”. Indeed, this week got us our first update from a developer about the upcoming plans for the Legacy system. James Ohlen (Game Director) gave an interview to Gamespot about the Legacy system and other game features. Very generally, here is Mr. Ohlen’s vision for the Legacy system:

We wanted to have a system that encouraged players to create alts and to play the game through the different story paths. So the legacy system is meant to do that.

More specifically, here are some details from the Gamespot interview about the Legacy system:

…and then you gain legacy experience points and legacy levels, and with legacy experience points and levels, that gives you–that allows you to unlock abilities, perks, a whole slew of different advantages, essentially, that all the members of your legacy tree will be able to enjoy.


…and it’s something we want to push towards players who enjoy the level-up game. It’ll also be beneficial to the end game, but it really is going to have a lot of abilities that make leveling up even more enjoyable and allow you to customize your leveling experience.

TOR has really made me an “alt-aholic” so the idea of more perks as you level more and more characters really appeals to me. Like a lot of people, I plan on making at least one character of each class and I suspect I will be utilizing the Legacy system perks rather extensively.

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Jan 11, 2012

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Ask A Jedi: Commendations, Reverse Engineering, And Game Settings

Stand aside Master Gnost-Dural! The Ask A Jedi crew is here to answer all of your burning questions about Star Wars: The Old Republic! Powered by R2-Db’s question and answer feature, we will answer the highest rated questions each and every week. So sit back, relax, and let us drop some knowledge on you, Ask A Jedi-style!

To start us off this week, MammaGamer asks What has the best drop rate for Hutta Commendations? Well, unfortunately the game is too new to have definitive drop rates on items yet, but we do know that Hutta Commendations, and indeed all planetary commendations, have a chance to drop from most if not all mobs on a planet. It is probably safe to assume that commendations have a higher chance to drop from Strong or Elite mobs. So, get out there and get to “persuading” those mobs to give up their commendations!

R2-DB user Sakasa asks this question: Does reverse engineering have more then one path? For those that don’t know, when you reverse engineer a item, you have a chance to learn a new schematic of either higher quality (blue or purple) or learn a new schematic with a “prefix” that indicates the type of stats that the new item has. So the short answer is yes, there are many different schematics that you can learn through reverse engineering just a single item. For more information about reverse engineering (including what all of the prefix’s mean), check out this article from our very own Zlatto and this collaborative article from Slaign. They know way more about crafting and reverse engineering than I ever will!

Last up, ido-goldberg asked: Will SWTOR settings save for 2 PCs? Basically, he wants to know if SWTOR’s settings are saved on the server so that he can switch computers easily without having to re-enable a bunch of options. This is a tough questions because it seems that some settings are saved server-side while others are saved locally to your computer. There also doesn’t seem to be a way to (easily) copy those local settings from one computer to another.

The consensus is that keybindings are saved to the server, while UI options and graphics settings appear to be saved locally and saved per character. This means that you will have to set up those UI settings for each computer that you play SWTOR on as well as each character. I can testify that I have had to enable the extra quickslots for each character individually when I have created them and there is not a way to copy the setting from one character to another in game or to set a default layout for the UI on all my characters, newly created or not. Hopefully with the UI updates that BioWare is working on, we will see a some improvements for the ability to copy settings between characters and computers.

Remember, if you want your question answered, visit R2-DB’s question and answer web page to ask your question. If you get enough up-votes, I shall do my best to find an answer for you!

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