Quick time events: are they a useful gaming mechanic or unnecessary pain?
Star Wars: The Old Republic Update 2.0: The Bad Aspects
Previously, I wrote about all the good aspects of the latest Star Wars: The Old Republic update, 2.0, which is currently on the Public Test Server. While there aren’t many changes that disappoint me, they do exist. Of course, these come with some of those aspects I personally like, so I suppose they could be considered a little sacrifice for the overall enjoyment of BioWare’s Star Wars MMO.
In the previous article, I mentioned the addition of new attacks. While these attacks are well executed, and I love them to death, it upsets me knowing that, in order to get these new skills, they had to retire some of our stun skills. That isn’t to say they are removing stuns; they are simply removing abilities that are used when stunned. It doesn’t affect just one class – it applies to all classes. Pommel Strike, Opportune Strike, Savage Kick, Tumult, Headshot, Cheap Shot, Eviscerate, Blitz, and Shoulder Slam are gone now. Eviscerate and Shoulder Slam were my personal favorites – skills that I don’t believe Electro Net and other new skills will ever replace. It saddens me to see them go.
With the new change to Elder Game content, it makes sense that some older gear will be retiring as well. At the same time, it frustrates me knowing I’ve spent months grinding for gear, only to see it removed from Vendors. While you can still purchase Campaign gear, and Black Hole and Dread Guard will still drop in Hard Modes, there aren’t any introductory tiers for level 50 players anymore. They have retired Tionese, Columi, and Rakata. It doesn’t just affect PvE players though; PvP players are losing their Recruit gear.
While I love what they are doing to organize Commendations now, it irritates me to know end that there are limits on PvE Commendations, but no limits on PvP. Players can only have 100 Planetary Commendations, for example, with a weekly cap of 50 Commendations a week. While this may seem like a high amount, I don’t see it as such. For example, the Voss Weekly mission for reputation requires the player to complete four Heroic Missions. Each mission grants 3 Voss Commendations, with the Weekly granting 10. This means that, in about an hour, players will earn at least 22 commendations – almost half the weekly cap – and this doesn’t factor in Commendation earnings from enemy drops. Tie that in with those who play on a regular basis, be it leveling or otherwise, and some players will be reaching this cap in a matter of days, unless they drop the reward amount on Commendations. Some of us also grind commendations for those lovely Artifact Storage Cases on planets – how many people are going to complain because we can only hold enough commendations total to get 4?
The last thing to make me scratch my head involves the new Crew Skills. Cloths, Flux, and other crafting materials can be either purchased from a Crew Skill Trade Vendor, or gathered through Companion Missions. However, there are currently no Companion Missions that grant these needed materials for the new tier 9 Crew Skills. Whether they simply did not place the missions on Public Test to prevent crafting gear, or whether players can only purchase them on Makeb, is currently unknown. However, it is a little strange to have missions for Grade 9 metals, compounds, etc. but no missions for Companion Gifts or Crafting Materials. I even spent almost an hour on Public Test, grabbing Elder Game gear and pulling out mods to reverse engineer on my Cybertech, and never received Tricopper Flux.
With all that said, the good does overshadow the bad, and while these may be bad to some this is simply a matter of opinion. It’s the little things that make a difference in a game, and while this may upset me personally, they can’t please every single player. In short: I’m understanding, and can live with the changes, but it doesn’t mean I’m going to like them.