SWTOR: Knights of the Fallen Empire and the illusion of choice

    
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Knights of the Fallen Empire, the latest expansion for Star Wars: The Old Republic, launched early access today, and SWTOR fans are elated. They have been waiting for months, wondering why this expansion was so important for the MMO. Now we might have our answer.

BioWare proclaims that choice is paramount for this expansion, more than it has been previously in the game. At TwitchCon, BioWare would not let streamers play beyond to the dialogue choice when your character speaks to Emperor Valkorion in his throne room. Since the game is now available to the public, we can show you both outcomes and discuss the illusion of choice.

Warning: This video contains major spoilers.

 

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ConorKavanagh
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ConorKavanagh

I wouldn’t mind
Except for the fact that after this it’s essentially a combat simulator.
No more significant/interesting story points. Just skytroopers.
a lot
of fucking
skytroopers.

mourasaint
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mourasaint

erikmsandreid mourasaint thatchefdude infinitytool it really wasn’t.

erikmsandreid
Guest
erikmsandreid

mourasaint thatchefdude infinitytool ME1 was amazing. What’s wrong with you?

erikmsandreid
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erikmsandreid

Caec Are you for real? This expansion story is better than my BH 1-50 story? Or Warrior story? Agent? Inquisitor? Are you serious? This new story is a joke. I’m not a fan of it, like AT ALL. It’s so generic, boring and full of plot-holes. The villains are 1-dimensional and just wants to rule the world. Never heard that before, eh?

It insults my intelligence when the conflict I have been fighting for, the last 4 years, is being made irrelevant. It makes me sad, when the Sith Emperor’s Masterplan, which is the cause of this whole conflict between the Empire and Republic, doesn’t make any sense what so ever, because of this new “plot-twist”. It makes me mad, when they try to shoo horn in these false advertisements about consequences, when in reality, there are none. It’s dishonest moneygrabbing. Now, it’s obviously that they have been trying hard to tell a story, but when there are no consequences, don’t advertise it as such. I feel cheated, and my head is about to explode from all the plotholes introduced in just the first 9 chapters. I can’t wait for the rest, because that’s only gonna make it worse.

Kithred
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Kithred

paragonlostinspace Of course there’s no real choice, just a small selection of branches to experience the story, otherwise it would not work for me. If you want real effect and real choice, you need to make your own story in a more sandboxy environment, or dive deep into roleplaying. And even in a different environment, if there is a story, you experience the story as it was written. This is not just a SWTOR thing.

Qarran
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Qarran

Hmm… ok.  So I’m not unbiased here.  I have played ME all flavors, KoTOR all flavors and now I’m absolutely loving SWTOR’s new xpac.  It is fantastic for many reasons.  But you are wrong about the illusion of choice.  

You see, BW like some other companies focusing on story are, in fact, telling you a story.  As such, they have to have some control over the plot points and even some NPCs that drive the story forward.  It is their story.  But, what they are allowing you to do is to choose the branching therein.  Yes, that means real choices but not all the time.  In KoTFE, this means that there are real consequences in which NPCs live and die.  How NPCs react to you, and to some extent what they do.  

It seems incongruous with some of the examples shown, but, if BW holds true to some of their previous work, the impact of your choice will be felt later.  In a few chapters, this choice may be brought up again and in the most interesting ways.  So just because you think you are seeing no impact the outcome now, doesn’t mean that it doesn’t have an impact. And that is why these games and stories are compelling.

I won’t site examples as they are spoilers, but it has already happened in this xpac.  If there are those that want to know specifics given what we have now, I will be happy to provide them.

So… Kudos to BW.  Great job with this new yarn.  I’m curious to see where my choices take me because I know that while some of it is out of my hands, a great many things are not.  And I also know that the immediate consequences do not negate future consequences.

ArbsX
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ArbsX

Estranged You no take Peral!

paragonlostinspace
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paragonlostinspace

Sheesh, yeah that’s not “real” choice. There is no “real” effect upon the end results. Bioware already made the choice for you. This sucks in my opinion.

joshua12jd
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joshua12jd

mourasaint joshua12jd SwobyJ I agree with you at least on the Flashpoint options, that would be a great investment for them to make.
All suggestions are great I think, its just a shame that with  these companies they have investors and big wigs who are concerned with revenue over reputation.

mourasaint
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mourasaint

thatchefdude infinitytool Dragon Age was a great game. Mass Effect (and everything since) wasn’t.