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Some general principles...

STAR WARS: The Old Republic > English > New Player Help
Some general principles...

Concheror's Avatar


Concheror
04.04.2012 , 07:34 AM | #1
I have seen a lot of specific issues in which someone wants to know how to handle a particular character or specialization, but I thought it might be useful to address some of the general issues that confront a first-time player to SWTOR, and how to get the most enjoyment from your character, at least in the first few levels of the game. I have watched a lot of LP videos and game-plays in which I felt myself wanting to scream at the screen as I watched folk struggling with some things that really ought to be easy. I have listed a few of the things I discovered which have greatly increased my pleasure. Please feel free to add anything you may have discovered to supplement these tips!

Be systematic. There is a pattern to each new area you discover and by availing yourself of that pattern you can make things a lot easier.
When a new area pops up on your screen, first look for (a) a quick travel bind point (b) a taxi or speeder stand (c) a med station or med bot (d) a cantina or other designated "rest" area. This will only take you a minute or two and will save lots of time and energy running about on a new map. BIND every single bind point, whether you plan to use it or not - it only takes a few seconds and gives you a good option for traveling back. Combine this with a cantina, i.e. bind a quick point in a cantina, and you have an instant point to return to when logging out, since you want to log out in a rest zone whenever possible.

Things are not always what they seem. For example, you do not need to track down a vendor if a med bot is nearby, and they often crop up in the most remote combat areas or dungeons, usually at or near the entrance. The bot can not only sell you med pacs and stims, but will also buy your junk and repair all of your equipment and weapons. Got a room full of enemies? No problem. In most cases you can avoid combat with many of them by planning carefully as you pass through. For why you should do this, see below. Like most games, enemies have an "aggro" zone, i.e. a point at which they will see and react to you. In many of the areas and dungeons, groups of enemies are clustered far enough apart that you can often get through the entire room without attracting any attention unless you want to fight. Also, get in the habit of checking your mailbox every time you pass one - you will often get letters from NPC or other non-human players you have interacted with, and sometimes they include credits or nice rewards.


Avoid unneeded combat whenever possible. Yes, combat will get you XP and often trigger bonus missions for even more XP. But on the other hand, fighting causes damage to your armor and weapons and those of your companion whether you win or lose. It is possible to fight your way through several rooms of enemies and confront the boss at the end, only to find that your equipment has degraded so much that you are not doing as much damage as you should, and are taking a lot more than necessary. What works for me is to slip through the preliminary rooms as quietly as possible, defeat the boss, then take on all of the other enemies on the way OUT.

Being defeated. Yes, it happens to the best of us from time to time. Aa defeat does major damage to your equipment, and if you are revived at the point of defeat that damage remains, plus your health bar will likely be less than half full, and you may be attacked by the enemy (who will of course have regained all of its health instantly) before you can heal or even take a medpac! If you must revive at point of death, and I have one instance below where you might want it, take advantage of your temporary invisibility to slip out of the enemy aggro range and heal fully before re-engaging. In most case, the Return to MedCenter option will take you to the nearest medbot, which may even be at the entrance to the same area, and will give you the opportunity to not only heal, but repair your equipment and stock up on stims/medpacs before going back into the fray!

The one situation where I will be revived at point of defeat is in a story instance, and then only of I have wiped out most or all of the minions in the instance and have only the boss to contend with. Bear in mind that if you leave a story instance all of the minions as well as the boss will respawn, but as long as you have not crossed the green force field you do not need to worry about them. You can slip out of the boss aggro range, heal up, re-buff, re-stim as needed, then renew your attack, hopefully taking advantage of the fact that you know know the boss strengths, weaknesses and pattern of attack.

Use all of your hot bars. There is an option in preferences to activate a second hot bar under the center bottom one, plus one vertical on the left and one vertical on the right. There is also a preference to extend the companion hot bar to full size and put it left, right or underneath your main bar. Since you will want to switch certain companion attacks or modes on or off, this can be very helpful. Bottom line, I suggest you give this a try and see if it works for you - double hot bars at bottom center, top for attacks, bottom for modes. Left bar for companion skills/attacks. Right for individual and party buffs and things like your restoration skill, plus quick travel, and your medpacs. Oh, and your Heroic Moment skill (which may be called Summon the Force or something else - the one that automagically restores health for a minute, and can only be used every 20 minutes?) should live on one of the side bars, where you are unlikely, as I have done before, to trigger it accidentally in the heat of combat.

There are many other useful principles which can make your game a lot more fun, and I hope others will list their ideas here so that we can all benefit from them.

Morfedd's Avatar


Morfedd
04.04.2012 , 08:08 AM | #2
Might have actually read this if you didn't have fonts in unreadable colors.

VanorDM's Avatar


VanorDM
04.04.2012 , 09:47 AM | #3
Quote: Originally Posted by Concheror View Post
Avoid unneeded combat whenever possible.
That's pretty bad advice.

If you do that you'll be likely to be under leveled for your story and class quests at one point or another.

Quote:
It is possible to fight your way through several rooms of enemies and confront the boss at the end, only to find that your equipment has degraded so much
Until you get into the mid 30's or so and start equipping a lot of orange gear, this should not be an issue. Unless you die ALOT you will never be situation where your armor is likely to fail, unless you skip repairing it for several play sessions... Like say 5 or 6 sessions. Even then, early on you're likely to replace anything you have long, long before it is damaged enough to matter.

Datamonger's Avatar


Datamonger
04.04.2012 , 09:50 AM | #4
Highlighting the useful points (as well as getting rid of the useless colorization):

Quote: Originally Posted by Concheror View Post
When a new area pops up on your screen, first look for (a) a quick travel bind point (b) a taxi or speeder stand (c) a med station or med bot (d) a cantina or other designated "rest" area.

You do not need to track down a vendor if a med bot is nearby, and they often crop up in the most remote combat areas or dungeons, usually at or near the entrance. The bot can not only sell you med pacs and stims, but will also buy your junk and repair all of your equipment and weapons

If you must revive at point of death, and I have one instance below where you might want it, take advantage of your temporary invisibility to slip out of the enemy aggro range and heal fully before re-engaging. In most case, the Return to MedCenter option will take you to the nearest medbot, which may even be at the entrance to the same area, and will give you the opportunity to not only heal, but repair your equipment and stock up on stims/medpacs before going back into the fray!

There is an option in preferences to activate a second hot bar under the center bottom one, plus one vertical on the left and one vertical on the right. There is also a preference to extend the companion hot bar to full size and put it left, right or underneath your main bar. Since you will want to switch certain companion attacks or modes on or off, this can be very helpful.


The following two points I have a problem with:


Quote: Originally Posted by Concheror View Post
Avoid unneeded combat whenever possible. Yes, combat will get you XP and often trigger bonus missions for even more XP. But on the other hand, fighting causes damage to your armor and weapons and those of your companion whether you win or lose. It is possible to fight your way through several rooms of enemies and confront the boss at the end, only to find that your equipment has degraded so much that you are not doing as much damage as you should, and are taking a lot more than necessary. What works for me is to slip through the preliminary rooms as quietly as possible, defeat the boss, then take on all of the other enemies on the way OUT.
I've never had that kind of a problem with equipment, mainly because I repair everything whenever I visit a vendor. You present a very one sided argument and it could be misleading to a new player. It should be reiterated, as you stated before (the underlined part in the previous quote) you can repair equipment, and it costs next to nothing.

Quote: Originally Posted by Concheror View Post
Oh, and your Heroic Moment skill (which may be called Summon the Force or something else - the one that automagically restores health for a minute, and can only be used every 20 minutes?) should live on one of the side bars, where you are unlikely, as I have done before, to trigger it accidentally in the heat of combat.
It doesn't matter where you put a power/skill. You always risk clicking it on accident. IMO throwing it to one of the sidebars doesn't diminish the risk.

Avenox's Avatar


Avenox
04.04.2012 , 09:55 AM | #5
Is he real or from the cartoon?

shama's Avatar


shama
04.04.2012 , 10:05 AM | #6
Quote: Originally Posted by Concheror View Post
The one situation where I will be revived at point of defeat is in a story instance, and then only of I have wiped out most or all of the minions in the instance and have only the boss to contend with.
I guess this shows that different people do things differently
The only time I won't revive at the point of defeat is when I've been taking a repeated pounding and the revive time is up to 9 minutes. In those cases I will go back to a med centre and seriously rethink things. Otherwise I'll revive at point of death always, because if you don't you've then got a walk (sometimes long) back to where you wanted to be in the first place.

Another general principle for the list, if you're going to use colours in your message rather than just the default white then choose them carefully ... some colours will be hard to read on a blue background and make the eyes hurt.
Quote: Originally Posted by Bertrand Russell
One of the painful things about our time is that those who feel certainty are stupid, and those with any imagination and understanding are filled with doubt and indecision