27. June 2012 09:47
This has been an exciting week for me as two of my favorite games received significant updates this week. First Dungeons & Dragons Online released their Menace of the Underdark expansion which boosted the level cap from 20 to 25, introduced a new Druid class and introduced Forgotten Realms to DDO. If this was not enough excitement already Star Wars: The Old Republic also released Patch 1.3 which introduced a much needed Looking for Group tool as well as Ranked (PvP) War-zones.
To be honest I have not had much time to check out DDO this week. I got as far as installing the update, logging in and confirming that I can now earn experience past level 20. However I spent quite a bit of time in SWTOR both pre-patch and post patch and I can tell the game has never been better.
I had a chance to test the LFG tool for a Heroic mission and a Hard Mode flashpoint. In both cases the group finder matched me with a group instantly. This has to do with a fact that I play a Sith Assassin Tank. I bet DPS players have a longer wait. Once I was matched up with a group, the group finder game me an option to travel to my heroic/flashpoint which saves allot of travel time. Please note that although the Group Finder takes you to your quest, it does not take you back. So if you queue up for an Illum Heroic and you are in the fleet, it will take you there but not back.
I also purchased a bunch of legacy character perks such as a portable repair droid as well as instant travel to my home world, fleet and Black Hole. Unlike the previous legacy perks these were actually more reasonably priced.
As the week progresses I will hopefully get more time to try out more all this new content
23. June 2012 09:25
Bioware has released the date for SWTOR's Update 1.3. On June 26th there will be a scheduled maintenance for four hours on Tuesday, from 2AM CDT (12AM PDT/3AM EDT/8 AM BST/9AM CEST/5PM AEST) until 6AM CDT (4AM PDT/7AM EDT/12PM BST/1PM CEST/9PM AEST). All game servers and SWTOR.com will be offline during this period. This maintenance is expected to take no more than four hours, but could be extended.
Game Update 1.3: Allies introduces new features for all SWTOR players including a Group Finder tool, Legacy Perks, Ranked Warzones, and Adaptive Gear! Now you will be able to quickly find groups to take on Flashpoints, Operations, Warzones, and Planetary Heroic Missions. The Legacy System incorporates new bonuses including Advancement Perks which allows you to customize your leveling experience. With Adaptive Gear, social gear can now be used in combat, by fusing it with corresponding armor bonuses and creating slots for modifications.
24. May 2012 11:48
When SWTOR's Lead Game Designer Daniel Erickson was asked about cross server LFG tool in PC Gamer's interview he answered:
"They will not be cross-server as we are coming up on a huge move to servers with massively higher population caps than we have today."
This seems to suggest that we could see a large server merge to servers that will host a much higher player population, or "Mega Servers". Although server mergers do not usually suggest that a game is doing well, in SWTORs case I believe they added too many servers at launch to handle the initial login storm. For SWTOR a server merge is very badly needed.
22. May 2012 13:38
GameBreaker.tv The Republic show discusses SWTORs upcoming Update 1.3
22. May 2012 11:49
Video previewing some of the features coming soon to Star Wars: The Old Republic in Game Update 1.3: Allies.
16. May 2012 15:36
Following the monster SWTOR Update 1.2 Bioware is promising a lighter and faster Update 1.3 that will focus more on quality-of-life features and less on new content.
What we know so far:
The main feature coming in SWTOR Update 1.3 is a Looking for Group (LFG) tool. As far as we know it will not be cross server. Players will be able to choose their role as well as if they want to queue up for Heroic Missions, Normal Flashpoints, Hardmode Flashpoints and Story Mode Operations. Choosing a random encounter will provide players with a daily reward.
Furthermore social gear will no longer be limited to light armor, the armor type will adapt based on the class wearing it (this may extend to other armor types in the future). You will be able to add augment slots to existing gear using the modification tables no one currently uses. There will be new additions to the Legacy system currently listed in the Coming Soon Legacy tab. Some form of Server Transfers will also be released with the Update or just prior to it. The current rumor is that the first transfer will be free.
Some wild guesses:
Ranked Warzones may be coming in 1.3 but we have not seen any confirmation of this. There is also a possibility of a new HK-51 companion (we at least know the artwork is there). I would also guess we may get a new world event around the Update 1.3 release. Server populations are also a large issue in SWTOR as there were just too many servers created at launch to handle the initial login storm. I am guessing that 1.3 will have some server transfer/merges functionality although we do not have any details.
What I would like to see:
One of the biggest issues I have with SWTOR is server populations. There are lots of people playing SWTOR but they are spread out between too many servers. If you log into some servers outside of 6PM-8PM it can be very challenging to make a Flashpoint group. An LFG tool will not change that. Bioware has to solve this somehow if the game is to continue to attract players. The 2 easiest solutions would be a cross server LFG tool or server transfer/merges. For me this is a crucial moment for SWTOR and a solution to this issue is already overdue.
I would also like to see some additional content in a form of a new warzone or flashpoint, however I am not holding my breath.
So far all we know is that Update 1.3 is scheduled for sometime in the beginning of summer. I am hoping this means June. My official guess is the last week of June.
Check out the new Update 1.3 Video Preview:
Coming Soon to Star Wars The Old Republic Game Update 1.3 Allies