Yes, we are all aware that the latest expansion for World of Warcraft, is coming out soon, but just in case fantasy stuff isn't your bag, BioWare has released some more details for its upcoming MMO offering, Star Wars: The Old Republic. Specifically, BioWare spoke about how crafting and PvP arenas will work, which are two huge staples of the MMORPG genre. In an interview with Massively, lead writer of SWTOR, Daniel Erickson, talked about the unique approach to the crafting system:
If you wanted to play the old-style crafting game, and you wanted to watch that progress bar for 20 hours, I mean, you could. You could just stand there. But this is always the part that seems monotonous. In The Old Republic, I’m the crew boss. I decide what we make.
I’m the guy that knows all the recipes. I’m the guy that knows how to do everything. And then I’m putting all of these people to work as my whole crew, into one unit. And so, one, it makes all of your companion characters useful, which is nice. Two, it puts in skills for people who aren’t ever going to be real crafters.
Erickson further detailed that players who choose to ignore the craft system will be able to build up their mission skills and utilize their companion characters on missions. Either way, the companion characters appear to be very useful to the player.
PvP designer Gabe Amatangelo relayed how players can kill each for rewards (check out some of the PvP action in this trailer):
In the Alderaan Warzone, we took the angle of making it sort of all in-game objectives as opposed to arbitrary banners, flags, that kind of stuff. There's three different guns, like anti-aircraft guns, and you have your Empire and Republic drop-ship from which you as players are deploying, and the objective is to get those guns and aim it at the enemy ship to drive them out. So all those are available when the match starts, and they're available all up until the match ends. So it's not a series of objectives... they're all active at the same time.
In the particular example given, both sides start on their respective orbiting ship and they vie for control over planetary defense guns that can be used to destroy the opposing ship. What happens when one side successfully maintains control of the gun and uses it effectively? Amatangelo explained:
You're going to be fighting over the guns and re-aiming them and slicing (hacking) the targeting controls to re-aim them at your enemy. Once the ship is destroyed, you're going to see damage progress -- you'll see debris, smoke, fires on the ship, and even when you respawn inside your ship, you'll see fires in there and stuff, and you'll hear your commander say, "Our engines are damaged beyond repair!" This is a game of chicken, so to speak. But the match continues until one side is destroyed, till one ship is destroyed. Then the match ends.
The ships will be unable to be repaired and will act as a "timer" for the Warzone. In terms of rewards given at the end of the match, players will be rewarded on finishing matches and participating in other ones. To the victor, go the spoils, as it were. Amatangelo stated that further information regarding PvP would be available in the coming months until the game's release.
Nothing like new information to get your excitement going for the other MMORPG that could possibly tempt people away from the juggernaut that is WoW into the adventure and intrigue-filled galaxy that The Old Republic. To see the game in action, be sure to check out some of the trailers detailing the Smuggler class or the space combat.
Star Wars: The Old Republic will release in Q1 2011 on the PC.