Star Wars – Impressions from the Weekend

That December date is coming up quickly.  It is just over a month away.

I am fortunate that my account is flagged so that I can play at this point.

So once I got the client up to date, I jumped right in.

As with everything Star Wars, it opens with the usual line about a galaxy far, far away.

Required item #1

Then, naturally, the Star Wars name/logo.

Star Wars? Ya think?

And once you have those two, you cannot skip the inevitable bottom to top text crawl of the situation.

There is conflict! Oh no!

These are the tropes of the Star Wars universe.  On the one hand they do seem a bit tired more than 30 years after the original movie.  But on the other hand, they do put you in the right state of mind.

And the game seems quite intent on placing you in that state of mind.  So it brings out the old stand-by smuggler.

We've seen his type before

He, of course, flies a ship… the fastest ship around naturally… that is of obvious Corellian manufacture and looks kind of like one we’ve seen in the movies.

I mean, it is about the same shape and all...

Naturally, there has to be a dramatic, last minute escape.

In reality the explosion would have killed us...

And then a narrow escape through very familiar “bad guy” ships.

Not the local bulk cruisers...

Which, of course, includes fighters of the usual configuration…

Fighters, 6 o'clock!

…and a manning of turrets to hold them off.

Scratch one fighter...

The bad guys are never happy about this sort of thing.

You and what... oh, yeah, that army...

All of which is wrapped up with the dramatic jump to lightspeed.

That was soooooo cool... in 1977

That is all exciting and good and puts you in the spirit of things.

Then things start to fall apart for me.  You have chosen your class.

9 choices there

And you get a quick intro into combat, but it becomes unsatisfying… to me at least… almost immediately.  Standing toe to toe and exchanging blaster fire just seems silly.

Bang! Bang! You're Dead!

Close combat like this makes sense in a fantasy game, where a sword fight requires you to get up close and an armored opponent might take several hits to die.

But here we have ranged energy weapons that ought to drop you with a single, solid hit.  Star Trek Online tried to cover this up a bit by giving you a personal force field.  But here blasters are either so weak or characters are so strong that the average player can take half a dozen hits without a problem.

Yes, you can use objects for cover.  The game tells you so.

Don't just stand there!

There is the usual corpse looting, this time for credits instead of gold.

I swear I thought he had a quest...

And experience points.  You cannot have a game like this without experience points it seems.

...or have you been experienced?

I did spend some time running around, doing a few quests, and trying to spot things that made the game different.

NPC interaction wheel

Honestly though, I couldn’t stick with it for a long stretch.

Fortunately, patching was quick and easy, so I did not have to wait to get into the game.  Not a lot of new stuff going in at this point I guess.

2.7 MB? Practically no patch at all!

And getting onto a server was no problem.  There are only a few from which to choose and there are no queues or anything to delay logging on.

All of this did give me a chance to get a small taste of what the first Star Wars MMO, Star Wars Galaxies, is currently like.  I will probably go back for a bit more between now and December 15, when the game shuts down for good.

I though it was important to have a feel for what had come before so that I could truly appreciate the changes and innovations that BioWare is bringing to the table with their Star Wars MMO.

11 thoughts on “Star Wars – Impressions from the Weekend

  1. Wilhelm Arcturus Post author

    BTW, the storm troopers in pictures 13 and 14 totally violate Star Wars canon. They have brought their blasters to their shoulders and are attempting to aim their shots. Imperial doctrine requires shooting wildly from the hip at all times. They must be total noobs.

    And, as much in jest as this post might seem, I am laying some groundwork here.


  2. saucelah

    You’ll never get a taste of what the original Star Wars MMO was like. It’s been gone for years, even if they kept the name for another game.


    I’d rather play SWG 1.0 then SWTOR, but even I would rather play SWTOR then SWG 2.0


  3. rht

    Actually you can get a taste for 1.0 by playing the swgemu. It feels like original swg, right down to the “work in progress” feeling. Jokes aside, it’s pretty fun in its own way. At any rate, I still wish current swg wasn’t being shut down by LA. It may not have been something nge haters would play, but there are aspects of gameplay that we may never see again. Unlike tor, which is fun in its own way, swg actually has worlds. TOR doesn’t even have Mos Eisley. Anchorhead does look nice, but I’m silly and wish there was more than one city on Tatooine.


  4. bhagpuss


    Until that last comment @Shadow there I think I’d totally missed the point. For the second time, really, because I was more than half way through the post before I twigged it was SWG. Even though I play SWG sometimes…

    Massively have 75,000 SW:toR beta keys to give away today, by the way, if anyone that’s interested still doesn’t have one. For about 5 seconds I considered registering and claiming one. Then I came to my senses.


  5. Green Armadillo

    I tried this trick back in August, and I didn’t get any “I c wut u did thar” comments either. It seems oddly disappointing, like the old SWG vets have just grown resigned to their fates.


  6. *vlad*

    I never understood why the StormTroopers wore all that bulky armour when it is completely useless. Also, how does the Empire manage to rule the galaxy when the quality of its pilots/troops/ships/weapons is so poor? The Empire are definitely the underdogs for me. I feel sorry for them.


  7. Wilhelm Arcturus Post author

    @Vlad – I think about the utility of storm trooper armor every time I see one of the movies. Their primary purposes appears to be to:

    -Look cool/evil
    -Hold a defective radio
    -Give rebels a convenient disguise for infiltration

    I suppose they might be environmental suits, but Storm troopers do not have the Sardaukar excuse of needing to breath a special atmosphere.

    They certainly appear to be no more useful against blaster fire than Han Solo’s vest. And who picked white? Great on Hoth… not so useful on Tatooine or Endor.

    That said, I still want a set for myself.


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