BioWare delays SWTOR 5.2 for a week, might be working on KOTOR 3 and a ‘semi-MMO’

Let’s rip off this band-aid quickly: There will be no SWTOR Update 5.2 today. BioWare announced on the forums that it is delaying the patch, which contains the MMO’s first new raid in two years, to next week. In the meantime, SWTOR will be extending its XP/CXP event through the 18th as compensation.

The studio said that the delay was due to a quality issue with the update: “At this point in time, we are not satisfied with the quality of the Iokath update. For that reason, we are delaying the release of 5.2 by one week, to release on April 18th. This allows the team more time to make improvements to address some of the issues still pending.”

And as one Old Republic game sees a delay, another might be forthcoming. Scuttlebutt this week is that BioWare Edmonton is working on a Knights of the Old Republic game. The rumor’s source said that it is unclear whether this is a remake of the original, a revival of the franchise, or something else entirely, but that BioWare is currently working on Star Wars games exclusively.

The new Star Wars game appears to be different from another co-op game with a new IP discussed as part of the same leak, which one of the sources “described […] as a ‘semi-MMO’,” according to the journalist who broke the story, Liam Robertson. Expect more details at E3.

Update: The KOTOR 3 rumor has been partially retracted by the journalist who broke it. He told Kotaku that he likely misheard and didn’t expect to be quoted on the front page of damn near everything. “Let me clarify that I don’t think KOTOR’s a current project. From the same people I learned about Dylan from, I did hear that they prototyped a KOTOR revival at Austin a while back. I believe it may have evolved into something else since then or fizzled out since then. I’m still confident Austin is doing something Star Wars related though and I’m confident in that. I actually did know that they were contributing towards Dylan since I originally found out about it when I was researching Austin’s Shadow Realms, so if I said exclusively, then that was admittedly a mistake.”
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71 Comments on "BioWare delays SWTOR 5.2 for a week, might be working on KOTOR 3 and a ‘semi-MMO’"

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Jokerchyld

MMO lite means online play to me, which is the future as it is a strong detractor to piracy. Since you can’t pirate an online game, and it supports residual income for each IP. Make a base game. Extend with cheaper/smaller DLC online. The evolution will be how to make going between single-player content and multi-player content seamless and economical.

amkosh
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amkosh

I wouldn’t be surprised if this KOTOR game is just SWTOR, but they make it a 2-4 person coop game and remove all the larger multiplayer. Something like Funcom is doing for TSW….

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Crowe

Isn’t SWTOR itself a semi-mmo?

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Alien Legion

The bonus XP event on SWTOR cracks me up.

They introduced level scaling game wide. Levels are irrelevant, there is no progression. Experience is pointless, what difference does it matter if you collect pointless XP 100% faster? Is it 100% more pointless?

If you are level 7 or 70, what difference does it matter? The most powerful Sith in generations and you still need to fight swamp bats which are mysteriously at the same level as you.

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Arktouros

I’m so burned on the words that people use and the context that they use them I don’t know what any of this means anymore. They say something like “MMO Lite” and really it’s some 4v4 MOBA title that hundreds or thousands play so clearly it’s massively multiplayer!

amkosh
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amkosh

By the old definition, a MMO was 64 or more players in the same place doing the same content, either via PvE or PvP. most 4v4 MOBAs have thousands of people grouped in 6-10 players per place which is not the same. If you want to know the difference look up some of the old UO content which had a few hundred players raiding a dungeon at once, or Everquest 70 man raids. I’m sure there are probably videos of this, and you’ll see its not the same as a MOBA or really any modern multiplayer game which is called an MMO.

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wayshuba

Semi-MMO is something EA does in almost any game now. That means a game with a 4 or 5 hour mediocre campaign with a multi-player online Call of Duty style battlefield game with RNG gambling boxes out the wazoo. It is the same for every game they do today.

BioWare (as a company) no longer exists. It is wholly EA now and BW is just a brand. As such, all they are doing is pumping out the EA game formula for every game they do. Which is why ME3, ME:A and the last couple years of SWTOR have all been a bunch of micro-transaction rip-off garbage.

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Rottenrotny

Oh boy! A ‘semi-MMO’! Just what I wanted!

Said no one ever.

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Fenryr Grey

except every solo- MMORPG- player ever :(

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Crowe

I don’t think I’ve ever heard a solo MMORPG player say that either. You could be the first, if you say it! :)

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Rottenrotny

Yeah I suppose. I’m just being facetious.
But I do hate this trend of taking the MM out of MMORPG.

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BDJ

Face it. People don’t want to interact in MMOs anymore. If they did, there would be more focus on the MM. A game like vanilla FFXI would probably die pretty fast today.

I do wonder though. SWTOR is already a semi-mmo. Why make another. It has to be a survival game. I dont know what else it could be. Survival or CCG.

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Rottenrotny

fair points. Though I do feel there are still some people who want to do the classic MMO thing, but I suspect you are correct about a lot of newer games to the genre.

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BDJ

Honestly, a semi-MMO is probably a Star Wars survival game just like H1Z1, Conan Exiles, Ark, etc.

And honestly, Id play the holy hell out of it. Build blasters, T-21s. Fight rancors. PvP against other players. Star Wars type land with star wars architecture.

Id throw my money at it in a heartbeat.

Sarigar
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Sarigar

Make each server group a different world with its own challenges: Tatooine, Dathomir, Belsavis, Onderon, Hoth, etc. Players could make a character on each world, and do their best to survive!

Crow
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Crow

Dathomir survival with force witches…

Sounds grand.

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BDJ

Oh man. Yea. The possibilities….

Bree Royce
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Bree Royce

We have updated our post with the statement from the journalist who broke the KOTOR story; he has partially retracted the original claim and clarified the situation.

Crow
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Crow

Too good to be true is always too good to be true :/

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Cypher

Bet its a frickin mobile game.

/angrysigh

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Dug From The Earth

This news is kinda… incorrect.

The rumors going around are that bioware is working on some sort of KoToR 1 remake. Not KoToR 3.

The debate is if its going to be a remaster, or a complete reinvisioning of the game.

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Paragon Lost

Ah Bioware, never ready for prime time should be your motto.

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Drainage

What goes into KOTOR 3? The Revan story was completed with the last SWTOR expansion. Take all of that and put it into KOTOR form?

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Hirku

Jump ahead a century or three from SWTOR and see what’s going on.

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Drainage

Yeah, could fill in gaps as well.

The Old Republic universe is wide open for creativity.

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life_isnt_just_dank_memes

KOTOR 3 in my opnion is the most anticipated “3” in gaming outside of half life 3. That is exciting news if true. Mass Effect: Andromeda was an unmitigated disaster from a technical standpoint. It’s a bug riddled mess. Hopefully they clean up their act. At this point I am more excited for that single player star wars game Amy Henning is working on.

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Schlag Sweetleaf

.

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Bree Royce
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Bree Royce

Oh I like this one. :D

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Schlag Sweetleaf

(n_n)

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theblackmage75

KOTOR 3 doesn’t make any sense in light of all the area that SWTOR has covered. They’d have to do some deft gymnastics with the timeline to inject a new, epic storyline that makes sense amid the rest of the tangle of lore that has now been established. Not to mention possibly taking the legs out from their current SW game by offering what BioWare believes people seemingly want in their MMO, too– more singleplayer adventures.

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Crowe

They could have a KOTOR game with its own new story. Not necessarily a continuation of 1 & 2. I know originality would be a bit tough with the current EA staff but they could hire external writers.

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Witches

There’s over 200 years between KOTOR and SWTOR, they can also go back to a time before the first game.

pepperzine
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pepperzine

They could just choose to ignore the plot of SWTOR completely, especially considering that neither of them are considered official canon (except for the Mandalorian Wars, which were mentioned in Star Wars Rebels and the Clone Wars, and thus part of the canon).

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Mikey's Bored

To clarify, it is BioWare Austin that is working on Star Wars games exclusively at the moment. The guy who wrote the original Mass Effect was re-hired by BioWare and sent to Austin to work on SW:TOR a year or so ago and now their “unnamed” Star Wars project.

BioWare Edmonton is working on the rumored Destiny-Inspired semi-MMO. And BioWare Montreal is focused on supporting Andromeda, and probably the next Dragon Age.

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wayshuba

The guy who wrote Mass Effect and was a big part of early SWTOR is named Casey Hudson (https://twitter.com/caseydhudson). He was not rehired by BioWare Austin. He works for Microsoft and is in charge of HoloLens and Windows Experiences.

He left shortly before work started on ME:A because he knew the ship was sinking at BioWare.

Crow
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Crow

To clarify, it is BioWare Austin that is working on Star Wars games exclusively at the moment. The guy who wrote the original Mass Effect was re-hired by BioWare and sent to Austin to work on SW:TOR a year or so ago and now their “unnamed” Star Wars project.

This… this is something to look out for.

The drive behind ME1 married to KotOR could possibly be the greatest RPG ever made if Bioware-minus-the-doctors can pull it off without needing to lick EA’s feet.

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Cypher

Me1/kotor hybrid!?!?!?!?

OMG

I’m nursing a semi right now…

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Jeff

A semi MMo

More proof MMo’s are dead.

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Drainage

Evolution is hard to accept for all walks of life.

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MrNastyButler

I hope it’s an entirely new story. Ditch the KOTOR story world and make something a lot less “god power” level.

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Melissa McDonald

jedi fans are all attracted to “power”, so that’s unlikely.

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Hirku

Since I don’t play SWTOR or MMOs anymore, I was really excited about this until I followed your link to the pcgamesn article which says it’s Austin and not Edmonton that’s supposedly working on this remake/revival and future SW games. Austin-level quality for free is bad enough, I’m not inclined to pay them $60 for it.

venatis
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venatis

If it is a reboot of KOTOR I wonder what will happen to SWTOR? Either way people are going to be upset. If it’s a reboot people are going to be mad. If it’s KOTOR 3 people are going to be mad because it’s being made by BioWare who haven’t been on form for a long while.

This semi-mmo thing I imagine is going to be a bit like Destiny. Destiny was, and Destiny 2 will be, huge and still has a really healthy player base. So why not go that route?

pepperzine
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pepperzine

Please be making KotOR 3! I really wish they would have just continued the single player franchise rather than ever going the MMO route. What people like in SWTOR is the story, and it would have been so much more intricate and developed if they didn’t have to waste time on the online elements.

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Melissa McDonald

I think that’s the point. Single-player fans feel that way. Multi-player fans want a proper MMO. You won’t make anybody happy with this “sorta” stuff…

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Schmidt.Capela

It’s not just because they had to “waste time on the online elements.”

Take story moments where the player has to choose between what feels right for the player or character and what gives them more power or rewards; a common example is avoidable deaths of companions. That can be a part of a single-player, offline game, and those moments when done well deliver incredibly powerful storytelling; but those moments have absolutely no place in even marginally competitive, online, games like MMOs, so all that potential richness is immediately lost simply by shifting from an offline single-player game to a MMO.

It’s part of the reason I haven’t played SWTOR, and I doubt I will ever bother with it. A proper, offline, KotOR 3 is a game I would get at launch, even overriding my dislike of EA’s Origin store; a MMO version of KotOR, on the other hand, loses too much of what made the previous KotOR games so special for me.

pepperzine
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pepperzine

Exactly. I enjoy a ton of MMOs, and I also enjoy a ton of single player RPGs. However, SWTOR never really hooked me because it didn’t feel like it did either genre justice.

It’s really a shame, because I’m a huge star wars fan as well as both an ex-SWG player and a KotOR player, and most likely part of the target market they were aiming for. I had such high hopes for SWTOR :(

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Drainage

It is the KOTOR story with a ton more options.

Everything is tied up nicely.

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rafael12104

Oh yeah a Semi-MMO? WTF is that? In my book it either is an MMO or it is not. There is no hybrid.

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Denice J. Cook

Destiny and Elder Scrolls Online both fall into that category, and they’re both wildly successful. I think the days of complex databases housing millions of auction house items, and multiple servers hosting thousands of players in seamless open worlds, are pretty much over. It is just too costly, especially in a glutted market where players demand unrestricted F2P models.

Buy to play with purchasable DLCs, extremely restricted or no trading, a heavy mix of single player storylines to complete in with low population caps in public instanced zones/mirrors, put on single-server architecture, is becoming the wave of the future. Look for modded and unmodded player-run servers and more tool set releases to become the norm over time, too.

Also, console multiplayer-like “player hosted matches/instances” within those tupes of games are already the norm on Xbox Live and Playstation Plus.

All of this takes a lot of the heat off the devs and publishers financially, and frees them up to pursue adding content alongside their players, which, when charged to customers prior to its consumption, helps feed said devs and publishers.

It could be far worse– everything could be single player, period.

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Drainage

Would like to mention that this aging gamer is enjoying the gaming evolution. Less time wasted, more playing.

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Utakata

SMORPG (Smallish Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game)

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Schmidt.Capela

You might be joking, but there are games that could be better defined as massively single-player online games; games where other players influence what you experience, perhaps where you can even occasionally join others in small scale multiplayer, but that are otherwise mainly a single-player game.

An example is the Dark Souls series; those games are basically single-player, but you can see messages (and the echo of deaths) from other players and join them temporarily either to cooperate or to fight against them.

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Utakata

MSORPG is a bit cumbersome though…and looks like a product of Microsoft. o.O

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Sally Bowls

Smallish Multiplayer Online Roleplaying Experiences – SMOREs

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Utakata

Here, have one! <3

smores-bars+srgb.jpg
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Adam Babloyan

And I was on a diet. Was. I hate you.

Crow
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Crow

At a certain point we should really just make the reasonable assumption that online play is something most games try to include in 2017. We’re past the sparkling “Everything is a MMO!” phase and that can only be good for a glutted industry that really played chicken with a lowest-common-denominator development approach.

Crow
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Crow

…and full circle. I’d love KotOR3, but I fear that window passed years ago.

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Drainage

It passed because it has already happened. They can label it KOTOR3, but that story has been written, published and played.

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Melissa McDonald

the mantra of 2017… MMO Lite. This is why we better support the good ones. Voices merely squeak like mice. Purses roar like lions.

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rafael12104

I guess MMO is a four letter word. Or maybe they saw that Funcom’s ambivalence and decided to not commit.

Crow
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Crow

The dev industry has leaned so far away from MMORPG that none of this surprising. It isn’t inherently good or bad, but if anything it is a needed market correction. Frankly, less half-baked MMORPGs that are MMORPGs because “that was what was in vogue” is better for everyone. So many games would work better as softer co-op/single-player experiences, leaving the deeper kind of sandbox-y MMORPG to nudge out some elbow room to grow again.

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Drainage

Crow, I’m with you brother. Evolution, market correction. Oh and… the new MMO-lite games like GTAO, The Division and Destiny are also damn fun. Fun is good. We need more fun.

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Fenryr Grey

Just too bad that “fun” is a very subjective thing. I personally don’t “feel the fun” in your mentioned games :(.

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Drainage

1) You have that right, of course.

2) Have you played them?

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Fenryr Grey

All of them and many more, and I didn’t like them. Those games have the right to exist, but the industry is just focusing too much on those unfun experiences and are turning good MMO games into lobby based experiences. You must understand that this is very frustrating for people who actually want to play an MMO.

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Drainage

Trying to figure out just how many MMOs are necessary. :-)

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Fenryr Grey

Ofc it’s a matter of definition, atm there are 0 AAA MMORPG’s. The “single player with occasional grp play RPG” is huge though. I’ll give you that. Considering your implied question I’d answer: more than 0.

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rafael12104

Hmm. Well, my first thought is that these last few weeks have been difficult for Bioware with the MEA debacle. They don’t need more quality issues to dogpile on top of at the moment. The SWTOR update has to be as smooth as possible.

As for the rest? Well, ok. We will see. But they better think things through before making an announcement at E3. You want to see a mass migration away from SWTOR? Mention a competing product by the very company that is maintaining SWTOR.

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Denice J. Cook

Then again, people naturally move on from one game to another anyway. Why not keep them in the fold with more choices?

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