Friday, January 20, 2012

The SW:TOR Phenomenon

I have recently been playing Star Wars: the Old Republic, the new MMO from Bioware, and I'm loving it! I'm not sure if my tastes in video games have changed since I'm a bit more "long in the tooth" nowadays, but I am really enjoying the leisurely pace that TOR sets with its cut-scene dialogues. When playing WoW, I have always been someone who pushes hard to reach max level as each new x-pac comes out so that I can reach end-game and stay competitive with everyone else doing the same. I've never been much interested in alts either because I've always felt like that was just repeating stuff that I'd already seen and done. Because of this, with seven years spent on WoW, I currently have only two max-level characters.

All of this is different in TOR. Now, I'm enjoying the questing; I look forward to the cut-scenes because the conversation choices are helping me develop my characters. And notice I said "characters"; that's right, I'm playing multiple characters at the same time because I am enjoying the story line of each, and I'm enjoying the differences in my characters. In fact, I've already created a character for all 8 classes in the game, though some of these are still below level 10. At this point, I have every intention of playing all of them to see the different story lines.

I've been reading lately that people are starting to leave TOR, and many of those leaving are disappointed with their experiences. I can honestly say that had I approached TOR with the same attitude that I approach WoW, I would probably be max level with my one and only character and bored with the lack of much end-game in TOR. But, honestly, these two games don't feel the same to me at all, so I'm not playing them the same way. The best description I've heard of TOR so far is "a single-player game you can play with your friends." That's the experience I'm getting out of it thus far.

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