I have the will of stars and the patience of stone – Anna plays Star Wars The Old Republic
The game I love playing most next to the Dragon Age and Mass Effect series is Star Wars The Old Republic or SWTOR for short. (Because seriously, no one wants to type that out constantly…) It’s an MMO by Bioware published in 2011. And that is pretty much when I got hooked. On and off, sometimes I take a break for a few months but stopping is just not in the cards. The game, being an MMO, has changed a lot over the years. Mainly it has become way more user friendly. Certain dudebros keep complaining that everything gets dumbed down but I am rather fond of a a game where you don’t have to read 15 guides from how to level to how to equip and optimise your stats just to play a story you are interested in. And that is the big plus of this game: the story.
There are eight different classes, four in the Republic and four in the Empire. All of them have two advanced classes of which you can choose one at level 10. Additionally each advanced class has three different roles you can choose, giving you the option to play as a damage dealer, a healer or a tank if you so prefer. Making for vastly different gameplay. Not every class can do everything though, reading the description before you actually make a character helps.
But each of the eight different base classes has their own unique story. Each modelled after an iconic figure or role in the star wars universe. For instance: the Jedi Knight is the typical galactic hero story (think Luke), the Jedi Consular is more of a Diplomat (think Qui-Gon or older Obi-Wan), the Smuggler is obviously a Han Solo type of person and the Trooper gives you the military experience. On the other side in the Empire you have the Sith Warrior who is clearly modelled after a certain bad guy with breathing problems, the Sith Inquisitor who lets you play the way to power of someone who dreams of becoming Emperor one day, the Imperial Agent who gives you a story of intrigue and shadows (think James Bond but in Space basically) and the Boba Fett inspired Bounty Hunter.
The background storyline about the galaxy is the same, but your glimpses into what is actually happening vary greatly from character to character. And of course you have the choice of playing you characters like decent persons, pragmatists or complete assholes in good old Bioware fashion.
Over the years I’ve played them all several times and I am still not bored. It helps if you actually like MMOs though. If the thought of other players running around bothers you this is not a game for you. Also if the classic MMO style of combat is not your thing this also might not be for you. If you don’t mind (or even enjoy) either you can have a great amount of fun in this game. The community on most servers is quite helpful most of the time. If you adhere to basic etiquette while asking stuff politely you can be sure someone explains you stuff or even helps you quickly. If you want to delve into actual group content and just announce right at the beginning that you are new to this I have made the experience that people are extremely helpful and don’t mind you making beginners mistakes at all. If you are not into group content at all everything story relevant is completely soloable by now.
But why am I writing about this game right now? Because at the moment there is an event running. It’s the game’s 5th anniversary and they implemented a light vs dark event for all players that gives you extra rewards for playing and levelling up new characters. Simultaneously the devs are tracking the amount of light side decisions vs dark side decisions and it will have an impact on the state of the Galaxy at the next bigger update, probably this fall. So I took this as an incentive to play my favourite character again. And an additional new one one the other side since most achievements require a new republic and a new empire player.
My favourite SWTOR OC has been my Jedi Knight Zhyi for years now. My little problematic fav basically. A Jedi who just wanted to help people but over time felt terribly let down by the Jedi Order. She is one of my dark side Characters. She is not evil though, she is pragmatic and feels she has to be the one that does what needs to be done so others don’t have to. I am playing her entire storyline again over the next weeks and will write a few posts about it probably. She is also the one I wrote this short story about.
My empire character for this event is a Bounty Hunter with a an actual moral code. Belet Seri is her name (after a Babylonian Godess who records the dead entering the underworld.) She want to become a big name but she wants do to it her way. Trying to bring people in alive, not murdering innocent people and hopefully make a living without getting into the crossfire herself. Even though most her contracts come from the Empire she doesn’t consider herself be a part of it and wants as little to do as possible with Empire politics.
There will be posts about both of them, but I’ll probably not be playing them simultaneously because that just gets incredibly confusing. Oh and if there are other SWTOR players here amongst the people who read out blog: Feel free to hit me up about game talk if you want!