Looking over the past two decades or so, MMORPGs have grown by leaps and bounds with regular releases, events, and (of course) expansion packs. Hundreds of expansions have now flooded the scene, with some of the longest-running titles seeing upwards of two dozen or more.
That got me thinking: Which expansion was the best? Not overall, I mean, but the best for each game that it serviced? Every MMO player harbors strong feelings about which was the best expansion for the titles they enjoy, and I have read many articles in which expansions were ranked, reviewed, and debated.
For this week’s Perfect Ten, we’ll be trying to put a finger on the best expansion for 10 specific MMOs. I’ve taken the additional step of polling the Massively OP staff to give me input on MMOs that they have played extensively over the years. So what’s the best? Let’s find out!
OK, I’ll come right out and say it: I love the Rishi stronghold. The Star Wars: The Old Republic
developers have outdone themselves. I will unlock that whole stronghold as soon as it’s available on the live servers. It will be expensive, even for me. But I will do it, and I will not regret it.
Star Wars: The Old Republic, an MMORPG that has taken some hits for not doing things right for its community, might be turning some things around with its latest patch 5.9.2. Of course, this latest update puts a lot of focus on PvP, but for an MMO that places the story as a major pillar of its design, we know that PvP will never be its only focus on any patch.
Even though I admit that I love the new patch and stronghold, I am not blind to its flaws, so let’s take a tour of the new stronghold to examine the good and the bad.
Last night, BioWare Creative Director Charles Boyd
and Community Manager Eric Musco
were guests on the Passionately Casual Podcast
to discuss the lore of Star Wars: The Old Republic
. And since I host a segment on that podcast regularly about roleplaying in the Star Wars universe, I got to sit in on that interview and pose my own questions about the current and upcoming lore for the game.
I realized after listening to the questions that I asked last night that some of them deserve a follow-up to help strengthen your understanding of where the question came from or understand why I put forth the question in the first place. I’d like to spend a moment talking about the answers that Boyd gave to my questions and what I think they mean for the MMORPG. Of course, there might be some spoilers for the latest additions to the game story, but if you’ve not played through it by now and are still reading this column, spoilers probably aren’t that important to you.
With April Fool’s Day falling on a Sunday, Passover, and Easter, I didn’t actually spend a lot of time on the internet watching the pranks and funny videos. Even Star Wars: The Old Republic
didn’t have its normal joke videos or Cartel Market sales. However, the SWTOR
influencers did have a little bit of fun. SWTORista
, Kid Lee
, and especially Vulkk
participated in a little bit of fun on the prankster’s holiday by making videos about the game.
Sid Caeser is quoted as saying, “Comedy has to be based on truth.” And I was surprised how close to the truth Vulkk’s video was. But that’s not the only things that as hitting home with long-time SWTOR players and even the most loyal fans of the game. Let’s take a few moments to talk about Vulkk’s video and the recent changes to the Cartel Market.
Star Wars: The Old Republic
did not have a banner year in 2017. It was the first year since the launch year that did not include an expansion. And the expansion that it released in late 2016 didn’t actually live up to its expectations.
Despite this, we did see some good things come out of 2017, like a couple of new PvP maps and some great changes to group finder. But what kinds of things can we see added to or improved upon in 2018 that would make up for this underperformance? Well, I have three of them. And I have done my absolute best make them realistic and doable with the existing team of developers. Let’s talk about that.
Happy birthday, Star Wars: The Old Republic
. I don’t think your birthday has actually ever fallen on the same day that my article released, so this is a great treat. And it’s also an interesting time for SWTOR
because things have changed so much since launch, and it continues to evolve as does its audience to some extent. (Except me; I have not evolved.)
I started writing professionally about SWTOR a year and a half before it launched, so I have been there since the beginning. And although I’ve had my ups and downs with the actual amount of time I spent with the game, I have remained a subscriber and participant in all the activities that the game has to offer. Admittedly, my time in the game as made me a little bit jaded, which is why I have taken some breaks when the content cycle was low. Regardless, I have always stepped back into the game because, at the end of the day, I still believe that it is a good game with an even better community.
Today, in celebration of SWTOR‘s birthday, I would like take a look back to the game’s launch and each of the major stages of the game’s life cycle. I also invite you to talk about your favorite SWTOR moment in the comments.
Those players who were looking for consequence in their Star Wars: The Old Republic
, I’m glad to say, look to Knights of the Eternal Throne
to get it. Although the Vaylin side of the story will remain virtually unchanged regardless of the player’s choices, it’s possible to lose multiple companions, and there is even one choice where you have to choose one companion over the other. However, the quality of the story really hinges on how much you like or dislike Valkorion’s family. They are a bunch of rich brats doing bratty things, so on a personal level, I couldn’t care less about them.
You know what I do care about, though? The Empire and the Republic. You know what most fans of Star Wars care about? The Empire and the Republic, or possibly the Jedi and the Sith. Whether it’s a story buried in the conflict of those two armies colliding or it’s a gangster taking advantage of being in the middle of those two opposing parties, the Empire and the Republic have been central to all the engaging Star Wars stories.
For this specific reason, it’s time for BioWare to tear down the Eternal Empire.
Legendary BioWare writer Drew Karpyshyn
is joining the celebration for this month’s release of the classic Knights of the Old Republic
on Xbox One. In a short but interesting post
, Karpyshyn expresses amazement over the longevity of the character of Revan and his satisfaction over how the team wrapped up his story in Star Wars: The Old Republic
“With the release of Shadow of Revan, the 2014 expansion for Star Wars: The Old Republic, the conclusion of Revan’s tale was finally told,” he wrote. “It’s amazing to me that the story of this character I helped to create has now spanned more than a decade. The tale of Revan winds its way through all the BioWare Old Republic games, uniting them with a shared heritage and mythology — a common thread linking KOTOR to SWTOR.”
To synergize with the release of KOTOR on Xbox One, SWTOR is currently giving the Rise of the Hutt Cartel and Shadow of Revan expansions to players for free.
It’s been a while since the classic RPG Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic
first launched, but Xbox One players are just getting to jump in on October 24th. Of course, odds are high that anyone playing Star Wars: The Old Republic
is already familiar with that game… but have you played the sequel expansion where you go and beat the snot out of Revan a few hundred years later?
Look, it makes sense in context. You can find out yourself by taking part in the MMORPG’s new promotion, which is giving away the first two expansions (Rise of the Hutt Cartel and Shadow of Revan) and a KOTOR-inspired speeder for all players. So there’s something fun even if you already have the expansions.
BioWare is also opening direct sales for SWTOR stuff inspired by KOTOR, including Darth Malak’s outfit, the Revan’s Heir title, an Ebon Hawk model for your personal stronghold, and a pack of multiple armors. So why not celebrate a new group of people playing an old game by dressing up like the characters?
We are a couple days early with the Hyperspace Beacon
this week for a reason you’re going to love: We had an exclusive conversation with Creative Director Charles Boyd
about the Star Wars: The Old Republic
update releasing tomorrow, and we wanted to give you some insight into what Defend the Throne might offer you. Even though you won the day at the end of the latest expansion Knights of the Eternal Throne
, there are still factions that have problems with you and your Alliance. There are still uprisings all over the galaxy.
The new group content called Uprisings (pretty on the nose there, right?) is the focus of the next update. We’ll see five more four-player, intense instances launch tomorrow, along with changes to the Command XP system and (of course) a new Cartel Market Pack.
I talked to Charles Boyd on Friday to get his input on the new content and a breakdown of each new Uprising and the overarching purpose behind them all.
Here we are again. Star Wars: The Old Republic
survived another year despite those who predicted five years ago that it would shut down in less than a year. Although I’ve been pessimistic about the game at times, I’ve never believed that Electronic Arts
would give up on the game. And it’s clear by the enthusiasm of its producers and developers that there is still a strong love for the game at the creators’ studio.
Some people believe that 2017 will be the last year for SWTOR, but I choose not to believe that either. I think that SWTOR has made a strong showing and continues to make the studio money, despite my best effort to discourage the purchase of lockboxes.
Since the game will still carry on in 2017, let me give my predictions for it. But first, let’s talk about last year’s predictions.
MassivelyOP’s MJ and Larry finally faced Revan — only to learn that things weren’t what they seemed. Now they must continue on to unmask and neutralize the threat against the galaxy in SWTOR
. Can the duo save the day? And don’t forget, you the viewers choose whether MJ’s Chiss Agent leans toward the dark side or the light side in all her decisions! Join us live at 2:00 p.m. as the adventure hurtles toward its conclusion.
What: Star Wars: The Old Republic
Who: Larry Everett & MJ Guthrie
When: 2:00 p.m. EDT on Wednesday, August 31st, 2016
As the pair continues to hunt Revan (and foil all his plans!) in SWTOR
, MassivelyOP’s Larry and MJ are heading off to Yavin. While there, why not mix business with pleasure and do a little sightseeing? They may take a peek at the iconic Massassi Temples from Star Wars: A New Hope before continuing on to lay the smack down on Mr. Uppity Pants. Just how much will MJ’s Agent revel in her role? That depends on you. Join us live at 2:00 p.m. and help direct the adventure by choosing her alignment.
What: Star Wars: The Old Republic
Who: Larry Everett & MJ Guthrie
When: 2:00 p.m. EDT on Wednesday, August 17th, 2016