Jedi Immersion Day: General Information LearnedCarefully examining and dissecting content for Star Wars: The Old Republic is the keystone of our work at Darth Hater. This meticulous approach is seen throughout our articles, but it becomes even more pronounced when we are actually playing the game. At both E3 and PAX this year we examined many of the nuts and bolts of SWTOR, but there is always more to find. The following is our list of new general notes from our multiple hours of gameplay at last month's Jedi Immersion Day.
- Page 1: Group Flashpoint, Republic Class Notes, General Tython/Coruscant Impressions
- Page 2: User Interface, Codex System, Quest system
- Page 3: World Quests, Emotes, Itemization, Companions, Audio, AI
Update: A correction was made regarding our notes about Multiplayer Dialog Party Chat after notification from Principal Lead Combat Designer Georg Zoeller.
A correction to their notes regarding party chat.
Party chat is in fact available during multiplayer dialog (or any dialog), so you can coordinate with your group on what choices to pick. This is an MMO after all, so even during cutscenes and dialogs you will retain the ability to communicate in chat.
We apologize for the error in that segment.
After many hours with the two Jedi classes, we grouped up for one of the first major flashpoints in The Old Republic. Each member of the team played a Republic class: Sado the Jedi Knight, Orionark the Smuggler, Emleah the Jedi Consular, and Dover the Trooper. This specific flashpoint contained the multiplayer battle shown at E3 and the airlock sequence from the Designing the Lightside Developer Dispatch. The back story to the event is we are on our way to Coruscant by taking a faster shuttle. While on a totally normal trip to Coruscant, things go wrong. Grand Moff Kilran intercepts your vessel and it is up to us to save the ship. We were warned what we were about to see was a giant bug with some content hidden in it.
Multiplayer dialog system was actually really fun; it felt like it was an accomplishment to get a word in edgewise during the conversation. It was interesting to hear the different responses from the group members, and this made the entire thing flow quite well. Some people would choose noble and honest answers, and some of us called people jerks and said we want to shoot something. It feels like a real conversation between people with differing opinions.
- The group Flashpoint we played occurs directly before we traveled to Coruscant. You take a different shuttle as a quest rather than the normal one, and an Imperial ship ambushes you en route. Suffice to say, taking the normal shuttle gets you to Coruscant with no problems.
- Different classes have different dialogue choices.
- Map doesn't show Flashpoint goals initially, but then shows a goal in the form of a green arrow.
- Pre-event dialog is involved and lengthy. It took approximately ten decisions to get to the action, which allows some group discussion to decide what they want to do. RNG is random; Dover talked maybe twice in the Flashpoint, where Emlaeh won the bulk of the decision making.
- In order for a group to participate in a group conversation, one person must initiate the conversation and everyone else has a short time to click the quest giver and join in.
- Lots of elevators serve as transition points and make the buildings/areas bigger than they are. You can easily get lost if you don't take the right elevator.
- Possibly related to latency: can't target someone out of range or LOS to heal them, even by clicking on portrait.
- Currently, you're in combat when any of your party members are in combat no matter where they are in the Flashpoint. This creates a bug where you can't interact with objects, as you are in combat. Therefore, you must wait for everyone at each stage of the Flashpoint (and not leave your healer in the elevator while pulling mobs on you).
- Mobs included some Imperial Agents, a variety of droids, Sith Troopers, Sith Acolytes, and the Lieutenant was a Sith Warrior. Mobs were generally in small groups or singles. We didn't need to take time to pull mobs; we simply ran up to them to aggro them.
- We're Darth Hater. We choose to let the crew die after making every obvious Dark side choice we could make. Those who chose the option to let the crew live encountered a different experience to finish the Flashpoint a la "Kill/Save The Captain."
- Every class has an out-of-combat resurrection ability.
- M1-4X was the Trooper's companion during the flashpoint. He is an assault droid that resembles a white AR-34 (not the same but similar in look). M1-4X's special ability is called Cryo Blast, an instant cast ability that reduces enemy armor with a two minute cooldown. (Originally we described M1-4X as the initial companion for the trooper. We retracted that point as it is an assumption.)
- Smuggler Companion was Corso Riggs during the flashpoint.
After we complete this Flashpoint, we would then get to Coruscant, ruled by martial law. After completing tasks there, we would eventually end up at Taris where we can explore one of the most famous ships from the original Battle of Taris. Our adventures would then lead us to Nar Shaddaa, land of Enormous floating casinos and crazy nightlife; we are told we would have giant battles in the middle of nightclubs and other very different feeling environments. After that, we travel to Tatooine where there are amazing secrets under the sands of Tatooine because Czerka is there doing bad things. And then our travels would take us to Alderaan, with amazing giant castles with feuding lords and all that nobility. You'll find out about Killiks, a crazy bug species. Tython is much, much smaller than all these other worlds. All of this is what they call "Chapter 1."
- The speeder bike taxi, a non-player controlled mode of transportation similar to World of Warcraft's gryphon system, was extremely slow getting you from point A to point B but still faster than walking.
- You don't receive your personal ship or pick your Advanced Class on your origin world.
- Exploration yields XP, as you can progress from Level 1 to Level 2 without completing a single quest.
- We were warned that all of the Flesh Raiders used the same model (makes more sense now in context with this Friday Update), but they were hardly the only enemies in the area. Some had big Manka cats with them; there were Wingmaw Raiders/Scavengers around, and we fought some big rock-like Guid creatures in the mountains. We also saw Uxibeasts roaming around very, very slowly, and there were a plethora of droids.
- There weren't any vendors located near the trainers in the Jedi Temple, so you had to run around looking for one to vendor stuff in order to purchase skills if you were short on cash and didn't yet acquire your companion. You also can't sell anything to the trainers; dragging items over the trainer skill window didn't do anything.
- Around the temple are Jedi Watchman NPCs who are Level 9 and classified as "Strong."
- Although there are some guards around the temple grounds, all NPCs are able to fight. Multiple NPCs from Level 8 to Level 50 engaged and destroyed a random mob knocked onto the temple grounds.
- A Jedi Consular cannot speak to the Jedi Knight trainer, and vice versa.
- Some NPCs performed vocal and text emotes when you clicked on them.
- A crafting bench isn't just on your ship, but also in various areas on Tython.
- Couldn't locate area or a NPC to learn Crew Skills.
- You can acquire Tython Commendations as random drops from mobs or as quest rewards. These function as badge currency for the Artifact and Quartermaster vendors.
- Quick Travel replaced Call Shuttle; the casting time remains 10s and the cooldown is still 30m.
- Holoconference replaced Holocom.
- We saw a Selkath who appeared to be a Jedi NPC on Tython.
- Elevation plays a big role in Tython's layout. There did not appear to be invisible walls but areas are divided by sheer rock faces too steep to climb.
- Very little, if any, ambient sound in the Jedi Temple. You see groups of NPCs talking but you don't hear muffled voices.
- Players cannot prematurely leave Tython. We accessed an actual shuttle bay in the Jedi Temple, a casting bar titled "Accessing" appears, and then an error message comes up: "Shuttle Door. The Shuttle is not currently in service."
- Sith prisoner seen in the Jedi temple on Tython floating in a statis chamber similar to the one holding Obi-wan in Episode 2. The Sith has facial augmentations similar to the respirator seen on Darth Malak.
- During a quest on Tython we encountered a droid named A-4P0. This droid seems to be voiced by Anthony Daniels, the actor who played C-3P0.
- A shuttle leads you to Coruscant after a landing at midpoint transit station. You had to cross the station to take an additional shuttle, which brings you to Coruscant's hangar.
- There was a bare-bones and very placeholder loading screen when we traveled from Tython to Coruscant. It displayed download status messages and a background image of our respective classes. We confirmed with a developer that this loading screen was nowhere near a final transition from planet to planet.
- Coruscant is significantly larger than Tython, and quite beautiful.
- You walk through a hangar bay when you first arrive on Coruscant. This leads to a terrace with a gorgeous view of the city's massive skyscrapers. These skyscrapers aren't part of Coruscant's skybox or a matte, as they are rendered with a high level of detail and gave the impression that they are possibly accessible.
- The immediate zone map revealed approximately six to eight other areas around us. Hitting the World Map option revealed multiple adjacent zones. One of the developers said we could zoom out even further to reveal even more areas after discovering them.
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