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10.31.2012 , 01:43 PM | #46
Quote: Originally Posted by CharlesBoyd View Post
Things have been getting a little heated in this thread and while I don't mind critiques of my work (that's what this forum is for!), everyone should try to remain civil while discussing such critiques.

With that being said, I'm happy to give a little insight into our thinking when we developed the Trooper story, and the interactions with General Garza in particular. As with the rest of the game, evoking the spirit of the films was the top priority; and in the films, the protagonists almost always receive their military-style briefings from generals or equivalently high-ranking individuals. In A New Hope, General Dodonna briefs Red and Gold squadrons directly; in Return of the Jedi, the squadron commanders and ground teams are briefed by General Madine, Admiral Ackbar, and Mon Mothma. Leia gives Rogue Squadron their briefing in Empire Strikes Back; I can't recall what exact rank Leia carries at that point in the story, but she and General Rieekan seem to treat each other more or less as equals, so Leia certainly carries a lot of responsibility regardless. All of the Jedi Generals in the Clone Wars regularly lead and give orders to individual clone squads.

I never interpreted these scenes as indicating that there are no chains of command or support staff anywhere in the galaxy far, far away; we just don't see them because they're not dramatically relevant. Watching Mon Mothma's directives filter down to Admiral Ackbar and General Madine, then down to their subordinate officers, and so on wouldn't fit the films' storytelling style.

So, we adjust things in order to achieve those same dramatic goals. Havoc Squad is designated as a special, elite team with a huge amount of operational freedom, reporting directly to General Garza instead of running through the normal chain of command like the rest of the Republic military. This allows the Trooper to have a single "command" character to develop their thoughts and reactions to over the whole course of the plot; it allows the Trooper to have a personal ship and take it anywhere they want; it allows the Trooper to take on any side quest at any time, rather than calling to secure approval to operate outside of given mission objectives; and basically glosses over all of the many, many other realistic aspects of military life that don't fit with the get-to-the-drama pacing of Star Wars and the gameplay requirements of our design.

I'm certainly not here to tell you that you're wrong for finding these things unrealistic or unenjoyable. But everything we do is done for a reason.
I have a huge problem with the concept of class quests in general. That they are very linear and choices don't matter, and the player always is the big hero there, which is a contradiction to the world as a hole. I mean, there are hundreds of thousands of Havoc squad leaders in the world (as many as there are SWTOR players who played the trooper class story), which makes no sense. One essential rule in role playing is not to try to play the big super-hero/defeater of the emperor or whatever, and that means for role players that they have to think of their class quest as a whole different game with a different person than anything else they do while role playing with others or doing OPs. Just to make clear where I stand on the class quest concept in swtor in general.

But within these given limitations, you did a great job on the trooper story. Someone who picks a trooper will certainly expect and want a little (!!!) less Star Wars than a Jedi Knight player, and a tiny little dose of Mass Effect to fill that hole. It's a wonderful story, every bit of it, and the logical problems that have been pointed out are true, but they were necessary to fit it in the general class quest line concept. Well done! And I played it twice, even though I have only 3 characters.