After the finale of the new sequel trilogy, Rise of Skywalker, and the finale of the Mandalorian the Star Wars bug has hit me harder than ever. I have always been an avid Star Wars fan and even more so a die-hard Knights of the Old Republic fan (KOTOR), I never had the chance to get into Star Wars the Old Republic (SWTOR) in the same way. It came out at a time when World of Warcraft was at an all-time high, which for me was always my MMO of choice. Now almost 9 years later I completely regret that mistake.
If you are a fan of the Knights of the Old Republic games, then this game seems like the obvious choice. While the lack of freedom in terms of classes put me off, I still thoroughly enjoyed the companion and story mode system. SWTOR is a little more active in terms of combat compared to its predecessor. Rather than turn-based action, you have real-time action which naturally plays out better in an MMORPG. This gives the developers the chance to create dungeons, raids, and even a solid PVP system.
While as it sits the game seems to be nearly dying. I would actually say that the community is thriving. While it isn’t at its original peak, the MMO genre is struggling to retain a player base even the most popular games have seen a downtick in subscribers. Server merging and free to play is the way to go for many of these games, and I would say whatever keeps the servers up and running is a good strategy.
The Problem With Free to Play
The main problem with SWTOR’s free to play system is that it is truly very limiting. You can play the base game no problem, but you are at an EXP and bag space disadvantage. Not only that you are also capped at how many credits you can gain and your chat options are locked until level 25 as well. While I definitely recommend everyone play the game on Free to play until you are ready to commit, it is still a tad off-putting. To unlock all the features you can easily subscribe for $15 a month, but not everyone wants to get locked into another subscription service. I was hesitant at first, but eventually decided it was for the best. This slightly affects my overall rating.
At Least Its Star Wars
The name is really the biggest pro to this game’s success. With the death of star wars galaxy and the limited release of Star Wars RPGs, we were kind of in a drought for Star Wars content. I think if this game was just some generic Sci-fi MMORPG it wouldn’t be able to stand on its own. I was a huge fan of Star Wars Battlefront both the old and the new, and I was happy to play them on release even with the bad press they received. The only other competitor in terms of Sci-fi MMOs would be Destiny 2.
In all, I think Star Wars the Old Republic is worth downloading and at least trying. There are multiple different classes and each has a unique storyline. The voice acting really sold me on the game and made me feel more related to my character. Being able to earn light side, and dark side points regardless of the faction you choose is an interesting feature. Right now I am playing as a very neutral Republic Commando. Overall the game has its faults, but if you are a Star Wars fan it is at least worth trying out.