The Old Republic's Space Combat is Best Described as a 'Tunnel Shooter'

Star Wars: The Old Republic - Spaceship Concept

Space combat in Star Wars: The Old Republic doesn't look like it will be as free flowing as the X-Wing series of games, meaning you likely won't have full control of your ship. Instead, the combat is said to be more like a 'Tunnel Shooter', similar to 1993 game Rebel Assault. At least, those are the facts according to the August Issue of German magazine PC Action. One user described a a modern 'tunnel shooter' would be Kingdom Hearts' Gummi spaceship combat.Some additional details pertaining to  space combat include:

  • Six types of spaceship, which are each class specific. A Jedi may receive a Vanguard-type ship and a Sith a Fury-type.
  • Space PvP isn't planned for launch, but is in discussion for a future patch or expansion.
  • Player's who have not interest in the space combat don't have to partake in it.
  • Each space mission will only last between 15 and 30 minutes.

Honestly, this news surprised me in a positive manner. I was completely skeptical about the inclusion of space combat, figuring it would be shrunk to the point of a quicktime event or Galaga-style shooter mini-game. While a tunnel shooter certainly isn't as robust as some players would like, I think it could provide an excellent change of pace from the typical mechanics of MMO combat.

The next news I would like to hear is how many of my comrades-in-arms I can take with me into space combat. I'm hoping to have a wookie at my side navigating and a Jedi and a princess firing the laser guns, all while I fly my speedy ship through an asteroid belt. Without a crew, the idea of space combat sounds so dreary. I don't see how BioWare could create space combat without cooperative play though, but I still remain worried.

What do you think of the space combat feature now that you know the details of it, Ranters? Is this something that makes you more or less interested in purchasing The Old Republic?

Star Wars: The Old Republic is currently in closed beta testing and is scheduled for release in the Spring of 2011 for the PC.

Source: (Translated)

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