SWTOR: Jedi, Jedi Everywhere (and all the stars did sink)

Hurrah for Europe and for publishers who don’t realise that in these internet-enabled days, even a magazine article in *gasp* a foreign language will be translated and spread all over the net in a matter of hours. Thanks to german magazine “PC Games” (PC Spielen?), the final two classes have been revealed for Bioware’s upcoming Star Wars MMO.

As Massively report in the previous link, Bioware did confirm that the Jedi Consular and Sith Inquisitor will complete the lineup. They have chosen to keep the numbers of classes small, and have stated that each class will have its own personal epic storyline.

So, what do we have on offer? I’m going to run down the list and make some assumptions about the styles of the storylines and what sort of role each class might play in combat. I am assuming a holy trinity based game, I love Dragon Age as if it was my own child, but Bioware’s strength is in storytelling and producing awesome gaming experiences, not in reinventing the rule book.

Republic

Trooper

“The fate of the galaxy rests upon ordinary men becoming extraordinary heroes. This is the path of the Republic Trooper.”

The Knights of the Jedi Order have defended the Republic for generations, but they have not fought alone. A host of unsung heroes have marched at the Jedi’s side—common men courageous enough to enlist and face the same risks as their Jedi comrades despite not having access to the Jedi powers of protection.”

It sounds as though this storyline is all about how ordinary guys and gals in the Republic special forces become extraordinary heroes and end up fighting alongside Jedi and … err.. smugglers. The gear has a strong military flavour.

As far as their role in combat goes, the official site has this to say:

“A Trooper’s rifle is his best friend, and the military is constantly challenged to design faster, more powerful and more reliable blaster rifles every year. Wielding such rifles and wearing protective battle armor designed by the Republic’s top engineers, the Trooper will not hesitate to step right into the crossfire.”

Sounds like a mostly ranged class to me.

Smuggler

“Stacking up enemies as fast as they stack up credits, Smugglers only survive in this galaxy by being slick, sneaky and street-smart.”

“Experienced in flying under the radar, Smugglers are amazingly elusive. Yet when backed into a corner, they quickly become cunning and often deadly combatants.”

OK, so the smuggler is Han Solo. Since he was the coolest character in Star Wars, that’s not a bad thing, and it  gives a good indication of the sort of storylines to expect.

For the role in combat:

“Smugglers often rely on the element of surprise, using stealth and trickery to catch opponents off guard. Despite the sly tactics, they are more than capable of holding their own in a fair fight.”

So it’ll be roguish, probably with some tricks and traps, but the flavour text sounds as though they prefer pistols to melee.

Jedi Knight

“A source of inspiration to allies and intimidation to adversaries, the Jedi Knight’s presence is welcome in any confrontation.”

“With unwavering allegiance to the Republic and the light side of the Force, the Jedi Knight fights with valiant determination, wading into the thick of any battle to protect freedom and democracy and hold fast against those who oppose it.”

Wading into the thick of battle to protect X  and Y, and hold fast against Z screams tank to me.

The combat tactics section reads:

“Whether defending allies by deflecting a barrage of blaster-fire or charging in to challenge a Sith Lord, the Knight’s role is crucial in any conflict.”

Defending, charging in to challenge nasty Sith Lords … it’s a tank. I have no idea where the storyline might unfold for this one, but I’m thinking Knight at King Arthur’s Court for the style of story and moral dilemma.

Jedi Consular

Not one but TWO Jedi classes on each side. We don’t have much information about this class yet, but it is known to be a ranged heal/ CC type of support class.

Sith

The Sith classes  sound stronger than their Republic counterparts — maybe to encourage players to pick the side they haven’t seen so much about in the films.

Bounty Hunter

“In the bounty business, one’s name is everything, and with each mark a Bounty Hunter takes down, his reputation grows, as does his price.”

Well that pretty much sums up what I’d expect in the storyline.

Tracking elusive targets across multiple star systems requires expertise, especially when the targets can be prominent, powerful, and often prepared for confrontation.”

“Bounty Hunters are renowned for their versatility on the battlefield and their ability to go toe-to-toe with force-users.”

“Whoever they must face, however, the Bounty Hunter comes armed with the most-advanced weaponry on the black market, packing heavy firepower but always keeping a variety of tricks and gadgets ready to go.”

It certainly sounds more flexible than the poor Trooper who only has her rifle to fall back on. The Bounty Hunter here sounds like a strong dps class with lots of tricks and gadgets up her sleeve.

Imperial Agent

“Agents of Imperial Intelligence track down and eliminate the Empire’s enemies—from intractable Republic senators to traitorous Imperial Moffs to bloodthirsty rebels with Republic ties.”

Though there are few idealists in Imperial Intelligence, the art of professional perfection is held in deep reverence, and the Agent embodies the Imperial ideal in this respect.”

So you’re going to be Evil James Bond if you play one of these chaps.

“Though striking from a distance or from the shadows plays to the Agent’s strengths, a well-equipped operative is more than capable of evading his enemies when necessary or moving in close to quietly slide a blade between an opponent’s ribs.”

Again, the Agent sounds like a more flexible class than her Republic counterpart. They will be stealthers, with some ability for assassination, and also have ranged capabilities.

Sith Warrior

“Sith Warriors crush their opponents and stride toward their goals with dreadful determination, leaving ruin and annihilation in their wake.”

A natural leader in any context, a Sith Warrior inspires both fear and undying loyalty into his followers and allies.”

It’s a tank.

“Protected by heavy armor and his powers of intimidation, the Warrior wades into the thick of the fight and unleashes pure hatred and fury to eliminate all who would stand against him.”

Huh, the Sith Warrior actually gets heavy armour. Well that screws up the plans for total world domination via robe.

Sith Inquisitor

The other newly revealed class, as with the Consular we don’t know a lot about this one yet. But it’s likely to fill a similar role.

Keeping down the Jedi numbers

So I think that all the Jedi are actually going to be support classes in this game. The Knight and Warrior will be tanking classes, and the Consular and Inquisitor will be support. The non-jedi will make up the bulk of dps and stealthers.

You have to admit, that’s quite a smart way to keep the numbers of Jedi limited …

About these ads

12 thoughts on “SWTOR: Jedi, Jedi Everywhere (and all the stars did sink)

  1. No Storm Trooper or Grand Moff Tarkin style Imperial Officer class for me? Seems they were too normal in the league of magic users (4, half of the classes are force users). But you are right with your last paragraph. Expect a ton of Bounty Hunters. They will probably become the Huntards of SWTOR.

    I think there will still be too many Jedis and Sith. “Always two there are, no more, no less. A master and an apprentice.” The common idea to say there will be more is that Sith candidates in training do not count to the number, still…

    I am not sure if the Star Wars Universe is really that cool. Lucas himself ruined it for me with his latest 3 movies, which totally deconstructed Darth Vader from a supercool villain to a troubled teenie. :(

    Too bad Bioware did not take the Star Trek license. But well, who knows, maybe Cryptic get their act together and make a great Star Trek game. I should add I am neither a Trekkie nor a Star Wars fan. The prototypical fantasy MMO geek, though I am quite bored by the usual tropes and archetypes if they get served in an uninspired fashion.

    I really wonder if Bioware can entice me to dig the Star Wars universum again.

    • @longasc: you may want to do some research before you judge something ;)
      “Always two there are” is a principle that only a certain sect of the sith has followed and which was practiced ~2500 years after the events of TOR…

      I’m somewhat saddened that there will be only 4 classes pro side, which even with two skillsets per class do not present a big enough landscape for me to develop and differentiate my character. Maybe I was spoiled by KotOR and the usual ammount of P&P classes… even SWG in its original form. But I do not have the problem with 50% of the classes being force-sensitive. It’s the age of all the Jedi civil wars and Jedi vs. Sith wars after all.

      I’m also hopeful for some form of space combat in TOR, otherwise I’ll have to get my dose of it in STO, Jumpgate or Eve…

  2. You have to admit, that’s quite a smart way to keep the numbers of Jedi limited …

    Or of you look at it from the other side, it’s a very smart way to keep the number of tanks and healers high.

    I just wonder if this game will go too far down the route of making healers interesting.

    The Diku trinity needs healers to heal.

    A character with these options:
    1) heal my tank
    2) waste the bad guys with my lightsaber
    3) unleash spectacular telekinetic powers to overwhelm the foes

    may need to usually pick 1) which is probably the least intuitive option.

    My friend in DDO has had to take some of the more fun spells off his hotbar because it was too tempting to use them rather than reserve mana for healing.

    Let’s put it this way. I think SWTOR will go further than any previous game in making healers have fun alternative options to spamming heals all night. What I’m not sure about is whether pug groups will be fun in SWTOR if that many of the healing classes will be played by people who don’t consider their characters to be healers.

    It’s the old Shaman, Druid, Paladin, Priest looking for one more (healer) syndrome taken a step further.

    • Who knows? They may go the CoH route of making healing just one of a range of support options that are all equally effective. If your CC consular can keep the group alive just as well as a healer then maybe it comes down to personal choice.

      There really is a lot we don’t know about this one yet. I also have no idea at all if this is intended to be balanced or not. Plus of course the companions — if they’re like DAO companions then they may be fully fledged support classes in their own right. Maybe you can be a jedi with a healer padawan.

  3. Pingback: Se7en Tidbits: “Thinning out Jedis” or “What MMO Costs More Than $15 a Month?” « Are We New At This?

  4. That’s not a good idea at all. If it’s true that they plan a typical tank/healer/dps model, a lot of people will get annoyed that they have to be a non-jedi to get a party. A lot of Jedi will also be annoyed that they have to tank or heal, because those players are a minority in any MMO.

    I’m guessing that you’ll see an alternate DD spec emerge from the light/dark side aspect of responding to in-game choices to enable Jedi or Sith to fill DD roles. Otherwise it would be a pretty boneheaded design decision to make a Star Wars game where the majority of people have to run around as clone troopers or imperial rogues while waiting on a Jedi to heal or tank for them.

    • That’ll happen anyway if they go with a tank/healer/dps model. The only difference is which class/spec you have to wait around for.

      But like I said, we still don’t know much about this game. Maybe every class can tank or heal. Maybe there will be companions who will be able to step in.

      • I don’t know. The fact that they even mention healing with the Jedi Consular is worrisome-wasn’t this game supposed to use a different mechanic altogether? Same with agents and stealth. I’m a little worried about that, but like you said, we have no idea how the game will go.

  5. The idea of making the (traditionally) least popular archetypes the coolest seems attractive at first, but I wonder if it will pass the idiot test. Is there not a risk that the world will be full of terribad tanks and healers?

  6. i’ve actually been thinking of it from another point of view. by making the imperial agent have super cool abilities like calling in air strikes, or similar abilities in other classes, you keep interest up in other classes.

  7. Plus it makes sense thematicaly to have a bunch of mundanes hanging about for the Jedi/Sith leaders for inspiration.

    Ie a Party full of Jedi with the odd other in seems a bit odd whereas a couple of Jedi with a bunch of hangers on/Sith with minions seems pretty much straight out of the Movies ;)

  8. Huh, the Sith Warrior actually gets heavy armour. Well that screws up the plans for total world domination via robe.

    It might just be a really heavy robe, perhaps a really luxurious guest bath robe from an expensive hotel.

    Can you get black bath robes? Hmm.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s