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Why TOR's storyline is so disappointing?

STAR WARS: The Old Republic > English > Story and Lore
Why TOR's storyline is so disappointing?

TKMaster's Avatar


TKMaster
06.09.2012 , 07:17 AM | #51
Quote: Originally Posted by wavyhill View Post
There are lots of reasons to be disappointed with SWTOR beyond the abuse of the patented Bioware "nothing you do matters beyond the next line of dialogue" method of 'player choice.' Poor pacing, lack of scope, short length, uneven writing, annoying characters, and other things abound. Personally, I find that the most consistently disappointing aspect to be how at odds the plot is with the game mechanics.

What I mean by that is that the structure of the leveling game, i.e. quest hubs sprinkled around with bread crumbs leading the player from one hub to the next, is not especially conductive to telling a strong story. What happens is that it gets muddled with all the other little stories that you have to pick up at these hubs so that you can advance properly. It's very easy to lose interest in a story if you keep having to dip in and out of it all the bloody time and can almost never really immerse yourself within it for any real length of time.

I mean, look at all the crap you have to keep straight when you're leveling: the class story, the planet story, a story for each of your pets, a story for every dungeon, and a story for damn near all of the incidental quests you have to pick up along the way. Having to pick up and drop stories so damn often is a lot to ask of someone in any medium, but even more so in a video game because you already have to drop in and out of the story a lot since video game stories are almost entirely told via cut scenes anymore. The part where you run around killing everything in sight rarely helps to move the plot along.

All this track switching all the bloody time is not a task many people excel at. For a good example go watch the ending of Ep. 1, which has 4 bloody concurrent plot threads for the audience to keep track of. As a result they don't ever get to spend too much time on any one thread and the audience never really gets to be immersed in any one part of the story. It's always switching back and forth between crap that [i]should[/i, in theory,] be interesting, but isn't because they can never become engrossed in any one segment long enough to form any sort of emotional connection to it.

So we have that crap going on almost the entire length of the leveling game in SWTOR. It's one of the major reasons that the non-planet quests you typically get near the end of the chapters tend to feel so much better than the ones you get on the planets as part of your allotment of xp grinding. There are certainly other issues with the game, but I feel that this is probably the biggest one. Most of the others can be mostly forgiven due to how infrequently they appear or excused as personal taste, but I don't believe this issue can be hand waved with such excuses.

Yes. Expectation management, both for the developers and the players, has obviously been way out of whack for a long, long time with this game. I mean, even with ~6 years and their hundreds of millions of dollars they still had to cut a lot of crap and scramble to launch when they did with what they had.

The sort of rampant, runaway hype that their marketing people cultivated years back is absolutely toxic to both developing and playing games and I have trouble fathoming why the industry still encourages it.

How predictably pedantic. The illusion of choice is still important, especially when it's one of the major taglines used to sell the bloody game.

You do realize that most people don't actually expect that every facet of a story be absolutely and utterly original, right? There are good reasons for things like genres and tropes to exist. Mostly people just want an engaging tale. Part of being engaging is not being too predictable because that's boring as hell. Unfortunately, not being predictable isn't something Bioware is very good at. They're typically much better at making interesting characters than interesting plots and the writing is uneven at best (ref. the 'payment in kisses' issue.)

And people think I'm insulting. Has it occurred to you that maybe, just maybe some of us have done all that jazz and still found the whole vaunted 'Fourth Pillar' to be, shall we say, underwhelming?

Maybe, but that doesn't explain why there is so very little carryover from one instanced area to another. There are a couple of nice touches here and there, but by and large it feels unimpressive and exceedingly minor to me.
Welcome to the MMO genre...enjoy your stay.

Inzuher's Avatar


Inzuher
06.09.2012 , 10:08 AM | #52
They're not disappointing they're great...
"I am that which grips the heart in fright, hearkens night, and silences the light.".