Category Archives: TOR

SWTOR: Utilizing vanity pets and events

Confession time: I’m a vanity pet pack rat.

Vanity pets serve no real purpose. They don’t add stats (at least none I’ve seen). They just follow the character around the area.

Nevertheless, I can’t get enough of the things.

The other day I received my Tauntaun in SWTOR. He’s adorable. Look at that face. How can anyone say no to that?

The vanity pet collecting started during the first round of World of Warcraft. My friend gave me the duplicates she had and we’d go out pet hunting when there was nothing better to do. I didn’t have many on my little gnome Rogue, but it was fun.

The second round of WoW, when I played Horde, was different. I collected more than 100 of them by the time I quit. I know, I know. That’s a lot of time and gold. It didn’t matter what the pet was; I tried to collect it. The floating skull, a scorpion and a tabby cat, I had no criteria.

I didn’t have time to earn enough DNA samples to buy the Rakghoul event pets nor have I had a chance to look for the few out there that come from the eggs. There aren’t many in TOR yet, but let’s hope BioWare will remedy that. Monkey lizards, nerfs, crystal snakes and little destroyer droids would all be great to see.

Fun stuff like vanity pets and events give MMOs an extra “umpf.” Vanity pets are simply fun while events give people some to do that breaks up the monotony that plagues gamers. It seemed as if people loved the Rakghoul event. I didn’t mind it, save for the plague. It was rather annoying to have to buy vaccines for the lower level players all the time just to quest without interruption.

Little gaming events bring players together in another way. Years ago during Brewfest in WoW, I beat the boss so many times trying to help as many people as possible earn the mount. I’d lucked out and received it at the first drop. Shortly after that, it was time for the Halloween event. None of the people I typically ran with earned the flying broom mount, but it was fun fighting the Headless Horseman up at the old Scarlet Monastery.

These types of events encourage players that don’t normally associate to work together. PVP and PVE players want the goodies.

In addition to boss fighting, there’s also gathering of items, using wands, throwing petals and so many more activities available through WoW’s holiday events. TOR’s Rakghoul event captured a similar spirit.

It’s necessary to introduce new activities for players to do to keep subscribers (in addition to other issues). Bored players eventually leave.

TOR’s first event was a disease outbreak. Rather than make it a holiday, they went with a logical epidemic. The events don’t need to be galaxy-wide. What about a sabaac or other game event on Nar Shaddaa? Bring in the idea of Treasure Ship Row on Corellia and hold a weeklong festival. Events could be based around the planet’s lore.

The possibilities are limitless for both events and pets.

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Filed under MMORPG, SWTOR, TOR, World of Warcraft, WoW

SWTOR: Why the Character Name Matters

What’s in name? Why does it matter?

In late December, I will create my characters in Star Wars: The Old Republic. While it’s easy to decide the character’s appearance, the name is a whole other issue.

The name is the key identifying feature of the character.

Selecting a character’s name in a MMORPG may not sound like it matters, but that is how people identify you. In past games, I never put much thought in the name. I usually chose names based off book characters. Even doing that, I still debated about the name.

With Star Wars: The Old Republic, I intend to make up the names beforehand. Instead of selecting a name from a book or movie and changing the spelling, I plan to come up with original names. That being said, I want these names to fit Star Wars. For example, my Chiss Imperial Agent will have an appropriate Chiss name, not something more appropriate for a Corellian nerf farmer. You don’t need to know that Malgus is a Sith to know he’s evil; his name says it all.

For role players, the name is even more important. It acts as part of the character’s story. Many role players create a back-story, personality, traits, history and other facts. While I am not a role player, SWTOR caters to RP players in addition to the regular gamer.

The ability to select exactly which response to a quest fits your character makes the character more customizable. This, along with selecting the right name, makes the character feel more like it’s “yours.” In “World of Warcraft,” as much as I enjoyed my character, there was nothing about her that made her feel “different” from any other undead arcane mage walking around Orgimmar. That I can select how moral my Imperial Agent or Jedi Knight is adds something extra to the game.

And there is certainly some irony to making a “dark side Jedi” or “light side Sith.”

These factors play into the naming decision- along with what I want people to call me in chats. I’ll pass on Boss Nass.

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Filed under Star Wars, Star Wars The Old Republic, SWTOR, TOR

Star Wars: The Old Republic to Launch Dec. 20

Star Wars and gaming fans rejoice. Star Wars: The Old Republic is coming out Dec. 20 (North America) and Dec. 22 (Europe).

Finally!

In addition to the release dates, the monthly subscription fees were released.

•1 Month Subscription: $14.99 (£8.99/€12.99)
•3 Month Subscription: $13.99 per month (one-time charge of $41.97/£25.17/€35.97)
•6 Month Subscription: $12.99 per month (one-time charge of $77.94/£46.14/€65.94)

The rates fit in with World of Warcraft, the biggest competitor. The one, three or six month options are very reasonable. I am more willing to pay the six-month fee for the lower price than a year’s worth of fees. I imagine that the three-month plan will be the most popular.

Sounds like a great early Christmas present for everyone!

Check out the official forums announcement here: SWTOR Release Announcement.

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Filed under Release Date, Star Wars, SWTOR, SWTOR Release Date, TOR