Choose My Adventure: Awestruck by Star Wars Galaxies’ crafting and housing potential

    
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This week has been something of a rollercoaster for me. Of emotions. Of discovery. And, slowly yet surely, of deeper appreciation and enjoyment of Star Wars Galaxies.

By the slimmest of margins, setting up some housing beat out digging into crafting in last week’s poll, but I soon started to discover that they absolutely both held hands. My first task was finding out what kind of house I wanted to build and where – an open set of options that, frankly, I hadn’t really felt in MMORPG gaming before; sure, I’ve had housing in other titles before, but the variety of options and customization wasn’t really something I felt was attainable for a very, very, very long time.

For a little while there, though, the systems behind crafting seemed like they were keeping my dream out of reach. While I had gotten the very basic routine of crafting things down as I leveled up my Structures Trader to cap, the actual work of putting together a house had layers on top of layers to it. I needed to build a bunch of wall sections, which in turn needed their own set of materials, which in turn could really best be put together using a factory.

Mercifully, I had access to a factory thanks to Bree’s incredible levels of generosity, but the whole thing felt like it was pointlessly obtuse in the beginning. It took me roughly one hour to figure out how to make just one wall piece, using four different UI windows and a calculator. And I was still screwing things up regardless.

I admit that I can frustrate pretty easily, but when I do, two things tend to happen: I either storm off and roar about it, or I angrily bulldoze forward, stubbornly adamant to not have something beat me. Luckily for me, this is what happened as I finally began to piece together how to make a schematic, put a schematic into place, set up materials, and fire up the factory. Though I’d be remiss if I didn’t grant the lion’s share of the credit for figuring this out to Bree, as she very patiently guided me through things in spite of my rising agitation.

Soon enough, I was starting to get a little deeper into the crafting hole. I set up a factory run of materials while I went about the task of wandering Dantooine for the right type of gas I needed to start making power cores. Tasks started to line up, goals slowly became reachable, and I started finding myself become both accustomed and addicted to a deeper crafting and gathering loop. Granted, I was only really using one factory to make wall sections and was using hand sampling instead of a harvester to gather materials, but everyone has to start somewhere, right?

Naturally, it occurred to me that this was going to take far too long. Bree to the rescue once again, as she provided a frankly obscene number of materials to put together some house holdings. This woman is like a cheat code for this game, I swear.

On top of materials, Bree further suggested that I plant roots on planet Lok, owing to its close proximity to a bazaar and spaceport, which would in turn make it easier for me to keep eyes on the market and make planetary trips for resources. As intrigued as I was to dig into all of that, though, I was more eager to plop down my freshly created houses. Apparently, I could own my own guild hall despite not being in a guild and I had visions of creating a spacious business front with a luxurious house nearby.

I found my spot. I used my deeds. I placed them down. And then stood in absolute slack-jawed awe at the size of the things I had put down.

I’m not sure screenshots do this justice. These things are huge, with an absurd wealth of rooms just waiting and eager to be filled with stuff. I had no idea they would be so big, so spacious, so full of potential. Astonishing, terrifying potential. And yes, I do mean terrifying; now that I have a closer understanding of just how much goes into building literally everything in SWG, I have a new appreciation for the amount of things that people have put into their houses. This stuff doesn’t just happen immediately but is the result of months of gathering, factory running, crafting, playing the market to keep lights on and power running… it’s a lifestyle.

It also means that all I’ve really gotten to do is put down are a couple of crafting stations. Every journey starts with a couple of steps; these are mine.

I probably have bitten off more than I can chew, but damned if I’m not going to slowly try now. The sense of immediate ownership that doing this has provided is palpable. This is why I rage against the stupidity of badly applied housing systems (or in some games the full lack thereof) in MMOs. Because as insane and unlearned and very likely unprepared as I might be, I want to make this a home. I’m going to dig into crafting more. And by God, I’m going to become a shipwright. I have a long-term goal now. And no amount of crappy AI, obtuse crafting mechanics, or weird requirements are going to stop me. I will wrestle this bear and wear it like a coat.

That sort of leads into this week’s polling question, but just like last time I don’t want my excitement around crafting to steer the polls. Because, just as I promised, I will be putting to two losing poll choices up against one another, and just like before I am genuinely eager to try both of these things. So let’s close out this month in SWG Legends strong, friends.

What should be my final focus in Star Wars Galaxies?

  • More crafting. You're sort of about to get into it anyway. (54%, 63 Votes)
  • Space things. Enough of the pastoral, time to go to space! (46%, 54 Votes)

Total Voters: 117

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Did I say “close out this month”? Yes, yes I did. I am pretty well invested in this game now, and while we’ve still got one more week of things to experience in this game to go, it’s about high time I look towards next month’s gaming adventure. Here are the choices I’m considering.

What game should we try next? Choose My Adventure!

  • Occupy White Walls. Let's get weird (and artistic) (20%, 17 Votes)
  • Core. Like Roblox but less blocky! (7%, 6 Votes)
  • PlanetSide 2. Drop in and shoot people, maybe (36%, 30 Votes)
  • Wakfu. It's been around a while; there must be a reason why (36%, 30 Votes)

Total Voters: 83

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As ever, polling will close up at 1:00 p.m. EDT this coming Friday, June 25th. In the meantime, I’ve got a whole mess of furniture I’m going to have to look into creating.

Welcome to Choose My Adventure, the column in which you join Chris each week as he journeys through mystical lands on fantastic adventures – and you get to decide his fate. Which is good because he can often be a pretty indecisive person unless he’s ordering a burger.
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Jason Murdick

Such an amazing game. Loved my house on Naboo, filled with trophies and pictures. My character was primarily a bounty hunter and my basement had my wanted posters and computer terminals.

Favorite thing each week was the ​Home Show to see the truly awe-inspiring creations people made and if I was lucky visit them in person

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Bruno Brito

And by God, I’m going to become a shipwright. I have a long-term goal now. And no amount of crappy AI, obtuse crafting mechanics, or weird requirements are going to stop me. I will wrestle this bear and wear it like a coat.

boss-Bree right now:
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Cory James Hill

The entire resource, crafting and vending system in SWG was one of the main reasons the game was so special to so many of us. It was also one of the core reasons the game was so much more social than most other MMORPGs.

It’s too much to get into here, but SWG relied on layers of different systems working together, which themselves relied on characters communicating and working with each other. As a result player interactions were a common and constant thing, resulting in an extremely community-based game. Sure, you could go it alone if you wanted to avoid others, but you had to pay for multiple accounts to do so.

I’ll say the same thing I always say about SWG: The core content of the game was the PLAYERS. The game itself provided the setting, systems and tools to facilitate this.

Anyone who plays SWG today will only experience a fraction of what made it special back in the day, but even then it’s more interesting than most other MMORPGs.

I wish someone would take these concepts and build a modern game with them.

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Loopy

I’m curious: without Bree’s generosity and help, would you have endured and continued on your crafting adventures? Would it feel as enjoyable?

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Kickstarter Donor
Java Jawa

You’ve pretty much begun to dig into one of the things that has made SWG endure and at it’s core it’s magic. The deep complexity of crafting and housing, it’s what makes it a true Star Wars sandbox.

Space, it’s okay — however it really depends if you liked X-Wing v TIE. If you don’t want to dig into the pew pew aspect of it, you CAN decorate your ships and even do space mining, it’s a bit more on the relaxing side, up until pirates attack you!

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Ardra Diva

Housing was good in Galaxies. I miss my spanish-style mansion on the lake on Naboo. When you see that scene in epsiode III where Padme is home and going to give birth there on Naboo, it’s very similar to the view I had. You had enormous storage space in your house too, and decorating it was a mini-game as it should be.

Funniest part is that there was a squad of stormtroopers that kept spawning on my front lawn. Eventually I complained to the game devs about it and the gentleman very correctly responded: “get some rebel friends and drive them off.”

So my in-game husband was an Imperial Colonel. He went down to see if he could give orders to the NPC Stormtrooper Sgt. I was absolutely astonished when the sergeant slapped him to the ground! I put my laser pistol in his face and clicked Fire but was told he was not an eligible target.

SWG was full of unexpected moments like that. I’m assuming he was later disciplined harshly for striking an Imperial officer ;-)