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The Little Things

Xinjadu's Avatar

12.03.2012 , 04:45 PM | #1
This will seem cosmetic to most no doubt and at the end of the day it is. However, many of the things that keep me playing this game are based on flavour (it certainly has nothing to do with interface, stability or end game).

One of the wonderful things about SWTOR are the ships in my opinion. I love them, love having a sanctuary all my own. However, I notice the occasionally mistake that proves irksome. The kind of thing that a moment's thought would have avoided - of course this applies to many things in SWTOR.

My latest observation concerns the Sith Inquisitor Starship Astromech - a premium feature for which we pay big bucks. They placed it right in front of the crafting station in the cargo hold. I knew as soon as I saw it that once I set my crew to crafting this was going to look silly. For example Khem, while crafting, stands fully inside the astromech; they intersect. Whoever put it there clearly either knew nothing about the ship, had never played the sith or, more likely, did not give it a moment's thought. This does not stop me from being able to use the little droid, but having paid top dollar I would have hoped that the developer's could have a least taken a few seconds to place him intelligently ... like one single meter over.

To me, it is this apparent indifference, almost as much as the horrible bugs, that demoralises me about the game. Since I am giving my time and money to SWTOR when there is a universe of competition out there I would like to feel that the developers are similarly committed and see that expressed in the little details (such as after a year I still cannot login to a character from the selection screen by pressing enter, or every time I use a crafting menu it defaults to the useless difficulty sort instead of level; which is what I have to switch it to every single time to make meaningful decisions [and does it remember this? No.] .... and so on).

I still love the game or I would not be bothering to post. There are lots of things that the SWTOR team got right. I just want to remind them that the little things matter and it is important not to let them be eclipsed by the "big" ones. It is surprising how much of an impact such things can have on player satisfaction over time.

I appreciate your taking the time to read this.


Oggthebase's Avatar

12.03.2012 , 05:29 PM | #2
I completely agree that it's the details and the polish that make one really feel whether the developers poured their hearts into the game or not.

But the game one year after release still seems it was rushed and the people who crafted lovingly were not given the time to make it a jewel.

One can sit in the ships, but nowhere else. And only in the Imperial Agent's ship can one sit in the main room. There are numerous animations that are well done while others are half baked (I was really impressed to see that when you eat, your jaws move as you chew with your cheeks being filled, but the characters going from the stand up to sitting position is horrible)

And with the launch, came the horde of trolls that lynched the game for months, giving it such a bad press that people called the game Tortanic... while in reality it was very decent. This bad publicity spiralled into people not picking the game up, or abandoning it because their "idiot" friends said it was bad and the social pressure to play "a bad game" is too high.

This resulted in two waves of layoffs at Bioware, plus many others leaving because they felt demoralized.
And just when one would think that they took all they could take in the gut, management pushed F2P down their throat so the development ressources were spent on adapting the game to a F2P model instead of working on the super secret space projet or Makeb. Makeb was announced at E3 "before the end of year", and James Ohlen promised "regular content" at the start of 2012. But all of this had to be delayed because of the F2P redesign...

So as much as I'd like them to correct every little things, I believe the few developers that are left and who genuinely care about the game are way overextended at this moment.
Did you watch the recent livestream when Damion Schubert and Jeff Hickman said that they would try to stick to a 6 weeks release cycle but not for the end of the year holiday season, because last year they released the game and did not have any vacation over New Year?
All because some "upper management" idiot at EAware decided it was a good idea to rush the release for "Christmas" as if kids would buy the game, while the real target was the Star Wars fan community who couldn't care less about Christmas to base their buying decision on...

I'm paying my subscription and I do expect regular content, but I don't expect lovingly crafted details anymore because I know that EAware management has been killing its developers over and over, for more than a year, just like they've always done.

If this game dies, it will be again their fault.

Wolfninjajedi's Avatar

12.03.2012 , 05:29 PM | #3
This is in the wrong section.
"There is one lesson you've yet to learn. How to become one with the Force!"
―Cin Drallig to Darth Vader

Maucs the Tauntaun King, former SWG player.

Xinjadu's Avatar

12.03.2012 , 08:07 PM | #4
I'm paying my subscription and I do expect regular content, but I don't expect lovingly crafted details anymore because I know that EAware management has been killing its developers over and over, for more than a year, just like they've always done.
All very good points. On the whole, I have to agree with you. I actually did leave the game when my friends left the game. Being an altoholic they hit end game long before I did. After months away I am giving it another chance, content to solo the content and for the moment I am having a blast.

Hopefully EA and Bioware will hear the pleas of its fan base and start valuing is talent, if that's where the real problems lie.