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A few suggestions


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Here are some suggestions to improve SWTOR found on a Civ 5 modders blog site. The full post can be found at http://thearmchairdev.com/2012/05/02/how-i-would-improve-swtor-star-wars-the-old-republic/


Since it is rather lengthy i'll highlight some of the things I found interesting.


LFG Tools


When Bioware announced they would be adding LFG (Looking For Group) functionality to SWTOR, I, like most of the community I assume was quite excited. It got me too thinking however; how should the LFG tool be implemented and what if any innovation could they bring too it? If I were designing the LFG tool in addition too the standard elements I would add the following. First a unanimous consent to kick option similar to that found in Mass Effect 3′s multiplayer lobby. With this feature the remaining members together would be responsible for making group makeup decisions, which usually leads to more thorough outcomes. The second feature I would add is a rating system for the performance of your group mates. At the completion of your flashpoint each member would have the opportunity too rate the others on a 4 star scale. The third and final feature I would add to the LFG Tool is a page to showcase information about each group member. This information would include a FP completion percentage, % = (Flash Point end Bosses Killed) / ( Flash Point’s began ) and the previously mentioned FP performance rating. With these feature the integrity of the tool will be directly tied too the integrity of the server community.




I thoroughly enjoy SWTOR PvP. I find the warzones fun and relaxing with well balanced classes. If the forums are any indication, I am clearly in the minority in this assessment. The disparity in opinion could come from the fact that I spend much more time playing in the 1 -49 brackets than I do the 50 only bracket. Thus my suggestions won’t be on expertise or the rated warzones proposed by Bioware. Rather using my experience gained with two valor 40+, one 30+, and three mid 20 characters I will talk about overall PvP changes.


The first change I would implement is too make valor rank shared between all characters on the server. In a game like SWTOR which is clearly designed too encourage the player to partake in all the stories, it makes no sense to have them start from valor rank 0. The limiter to the acquisition of gear would still be warzone commendations. One common desire I have found from PvPers since I picked up my first MMO in 2003 is the ability too showcase their ability. In modern MMOs or more appropriately in the post-WoW period that we currently find ourselves in, showcasing of ones PvP ability has been limited to gear or basic information on a website. The second change I would make is to take a page from WoW’s playbook and create a portion of the main website and dedicate it to PvP statistics. This page would include more than just a warzone win loss ratio and mvp votes earned. It would also include the kill:death ratio between each character, giving players a means by which to compare their performance against one another. Other statistics tracked would be: largest single hit damage/heal, max healing/damage/protection achieved in a warzone, and number of medals earned per type. The web application should also be able to compare players which will fuel the competitive nature of the PvP community.


The third change I would make is too Ilum. One of Ilum’s major drawbacks is the population imbalance, in fact for Ilum to reach its full potential imo it requires reaching an ideal threshold of players. This in effect turns Ilum, the games major world pvp hub into no more than an open area warzone. This is very disheartening not only form the standpoint of those of us whom enjoy world PvP but also for the fact so much work was obviously put in to the design and layout of Ilum. However its implementation was a bit lacking. My suggestion would be too bring some life too Ilum, ironically through the use of more NPCs. Start with 100 NPC infantry troops per side (20 per section) every time a player character enters the Ilum battle area remove 2 NPCs, this will allow for the battlefield too adjust and make it more easy for the underpopulated side too compete. Now these NPCs could not just act like the normal; scripted fire a hundred blasters at each other and never hit anything type, these NPCs would actually attempt to defeat the opposing side. The NPCs would have to be a mix of elites and strongs in order too replicate opposing players as close as possible. This simple change would allow for more PvP quests in Ilum by turning it into a living battleground, one who’s enjoyment isn’t predicated by a minimum player threshold.


The fourth and final change would come to the warzones themselves. In a game which has severely limited world PvP and even severely limited world interaction between the factions, almost the entirety of PvP occurs inside instanced warzones. This being the case 4 warzones offer hardly enough variety for both casual and hardcore PvPers alike. Thus I suggest adding 3 more warzones over the summer months. I really enjoy the innovation that Bioware brought to the traditional CTF gameplay, in thier design of Huttball. I believe the PvP development team would be well served continuing along those lines however I will offer three suggestions of my own.


The first warzone type would be point capture & regicide. This warzone would start similiar too the other two capture point warzones in swtor ( Alderaan Civil War & Noveria Coast ) both teams would have a base that would take damage so long as the capture points are under enemy control. Now the first change to this warzone from others would be instead of turrets, controlling a point would send Republic/Imperial troops too storm the base. These soldiers would be immune too player activity and disappear when control is lost, thus acting the same as a turret. While this is an aesthetic change it brings a visual variety to the casual PvPer and should increase warzone replay-ability for the hardcore. At random during the game, every 1min to 2mins a player on each side will be highlighted. If this player is killed or stealths his or her base will take a significant portion of damage. If one highlighted player gets credit for the kill of the other highlighted player this damage will double. The regicide portion of this warzone forces teams to use strategy on the fly. Do you hide your “king” or do they take part in the battle too increase the chance of the double damage? Even the numbers used in how you attack or defend a control point will vary by team. The randomness of the “kinging” would most likely end up punishing reckless gameplay and support strategy.


The next warzone would be “quickest to the goal” in the ilk of Voidstar. Instead of taking turns too reach the end, both teams would simultaneously race too the finish. On top of just reaching the end goal teams will be presented with a second way of winning, achieving 1200 points. The points will be earned in the following manner each door (3) will be worth 300 points, each player killed 4 points, and each siege speeder 50 points. Siege Speeders!? Yes, siege speeders, each team would have a vehicle spawn point near their respawn. These speeders would be the means by which the team destroys the doors. Again as in the first warzone the goal of this one is to encourage strategy among teammates.


For the third suggestion I am going to go a little different, instead of innovation I would like too see a downright unabashed copy of one of the most exciting PvP instances I ever played. Ok I admit that may be a little much but it is very fun, especially for those times when you are pugging or just want to focus on killing your opponents. The PvP instance I am talking about is of course is Black Garden from Rift. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VkzcrgRnZ_4 The basic concept of this game is that both sides rush too the middle to grab the fang of regolus. While holding the fang your points increase ( first to 500 wins) however the player holding the fang takes constant damage which increases the longer it is held. Every time a player is killed points are gained and if the player holding the fang kills a player those points are increased. In addition the closer the fang is held to its original spawn point the faster fang points are gained.

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