HoloNet Links #215
If you haven’t heard by now about a small little expansion, then where have you been? BioWare released Knights of the Fallen Empire to Early Access October 20th. SWTOR has been changed. It is still the game we have come to love, but yet it has changed in many ways. On top of all the changes to gameplay there also was the brand new story content. I have been playing SWTOR since back in beta before the game launched. This story has got to be one of the best. I will go into more of my thoughts concerning the new content later in the article.
Find out my thoughts concerning KotFE after the Jump…
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- My thoughts on KotFE
So, how do I feel about the latest expansion? I have enjoyed it immensely. Granted I have only played the story content and a small bit of the new changes in the other gameplay systems, but I can safely say this is one of the better expansions SWTOR has seen.
First off, the story in Knights of the Fallen Empire is amazing. It reminds me of the single player RPG, Knights of the Old Republic. The story has had many twists and turns with moments where I was in disbelief. Companions are a big focus in KotFE and I mean in the story. The reveals and familiar faces you see along the way are great. The subject matter addressed in the story also reminds me of some other BioWare games. The story is top notch and I can see a progress in the SWTOR plot. Starting in the beginning it is all about your character and their class story, next we see how our heroes need to focus to save or exploit an entire planet in Rise of the Hutt Cartel. The third evolution of the character story started to bring in the lore and how our actions would impact the galaxy we know with Shadow of Revan. Now we have Knights of the Fallen Empire, our characters are off to Wild Space and the fringes of other galaxies. What is the destiny of your character and how will it impact every galaxy as the story’s scope grows even larger? I’m not about to give any spoilers. All I can say is make sure you find out by becoming a subscriber to experience the story for yourself.
Story is a major element in this expansion, but it is not the only thing. There are several game systems that have seen some quality of life changes to them. The interface editor has a couple changes. There is now a grid, so you can get your ability bars all lined up how you want them precisely. There is also a snap-to-grid feature that helps utilize the added grid feature. Related to the UI is the ability to save and share your keybind settings. This feature is great for making your toons more uniformed or as customized as you want to make them. For me, this feature is a hug time saver and one less thing to even think about when making a new toon.
Another feature I found to be a positive for the expansion is the Weekly Heroics. The ability to pick-up the heroic from one location, the Weekly Heroic terminal is convenient. However, the best feature has to be the instant quick travel icon attached to each Heroic mission. This icon allows you to click it and be transported right to the beginning of the Heroic mission. Rewards have also been streamlined and are received via an instant pop-up upon completion of the heroic. The rewards are also level appropriate and make doing these missions a benefit to higher level toons, even when they have to be level synced.
If you haven’t noticed I like the expansion. However, it doesn’t mean there are things I do not like or wish they would get changed. Personally, I feel there is too much XP being given out for the class missions. I do not want leveling to be a grind, but reaching level 65 after only four of the nine new story chapters seems a bit quick in my opinion. BioWare also is utilizing a different style of conversation during some the Alliance system in the game. The idea is to give players more options or choices for the conversations. The system is almost a throwback to the original Kotor game. This is interesting, but I offer that it breaks immersion by taking away the player’s voice. BioWare has other games like Mass Effect 2 & 3, Dragon Age 2 & Dragon Age Inquisition which keeps the voice and has more than three options. In fact, these games have some multi-layer choice menus during conversations. To me saying that the classic conversation offers more choices doesn’t quite add up. However if it was due to cost or time issues, I would be more apt to understand the change.
Overall, my first impression of the expansion is very good. The story content definitely stands out and I can see that BioWare is focused on showcasing story, BioWare story. The other aspects in this expansion are the upgrades to Quality of Life. It is the lifeblood of an MMO to have content and they are making a concerted effort to better the quality for players in the game. There are still some bugs and areas for BioWare to continue to improve, but it is clear SWTOR is moving in the right direction.
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- SWTOR music video for Extra Life Day
This week I wanted to share a fun video with the message on how to help heal kids. Many have heard me mention about the Extra Life Day charity event on November 7th. Here is a video highlighting UA/Wookiee Mistake’s team of “heroes.” Are you ready to become a hero to some kids needing your assistance? Join us to “Play Games. Heal Kids.”
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