SWTOR Three Years Later

After leaving The Elder Scrolls Online (ESO), I've been bouncing back and forth between different games and couldn't find anything that interested me.  I then returned to Star Wars the Old Republic (SWTOR) since I knew there were new stories to play and was excited to rekindle my passion for the game.  This is a post about my experiences coming back to  SWTOR three years later, the good, the bad and the ugly so you can decide if it's a game worth playing a long side me.

The Good

  • The Story - The best part about SWTOR, then, and now has been it's story.  There are eight core stories then a plethora of ones to pursue after the class specific story.  After leaving the game during the Makeb update I picked up playing Revan's story line.  I could tell the extraordinary detail and vision they had for a massive story arc.  While the graphics are dated, the quality and story telling seemed on par with a great single player game.  Cut scenes, impactful choices, Star Wars lore and incentive to keep going and play them over made it easy to blow through Revan over the weekend.  Continuing on was even more rewarding and it's hard to put down, but lets not forget this is a multiplayer game.
  • Solo -My next point can be good or bad depending and that's that nearly everything in the game can now be done solo.  From flashpoints (called dungeons in other games), stories, quest, leveling, etc all solo.  This is also a dangerous problem because it gives players little incentive to group up and take actions.  However, they did implement guild housing, taking over planets and claiming locations as a guild which gives incentives on that planet.  While I personally love it since I can complete content at 3am when my son is asleep, it can be viewed as a negative.
  • Player vs Player (PvP) - Oh my god, I love SWTOR PvP.  Instanced based, high pace, always someone to fight and competitive arenas I love the PvP.  Do I miss ESO's large scale PvP? Not really. I felt it mainly came down to gear and who had more numbers vs anything else.  SWTOR tried open world PvP and failed miserably but has a great instanced based system.  However, it's far from perfect.  Win trading, throwing matches and toxicity are the main reasons I left the game in the first place and they are still there.  Overall I can't get enough of PvP and love the experience still.
  • Advancing Your Character - A huge problem I had with ESO was character advancement, specifically gear.  You could spend eight hours in a dungeon you didn't want to play, just waiting on RNG (random) to bless you with a specific piece of gear (or not).  SWTOR has two systems, one RNG based and one where you earn tokens to buy specific pieces you want.  Additionally, every action you take at end game helps you reach that goal.  Think of it as ESO's champion points, but better.  Lastly, gear isn't as invaluable as it is in other games.  Yes, end game gear is super impactful, but it doesn't make or break your performance, you the player control that.

The Bad

  • Heavy Micro-transactions - The Electronic Arts money fest hasn't stopped what so ever and now you can buy tokens to instantly get a character to 65. Most games have something similar implemented along with cash shops but SWTOR's shop allows you to sell items from these cash shop items on an open trader.  This can be considered pay to win since you can use gold to purchase end game gear (though not top of the line).  As gamers, it seems we cannot escape this type of business model now a days and I had to ask myself, do I keep playing games or retire from it until something better comes along?  I decided to spend little on it as to not promote it, but accept the fact that we are going to be farmed for every emotional penny we can spend on electronic items.  Whether in SWTOR or ESO, micro transactions aren't inherently bad, but they can ruin a game.
  • No Mega Server - One of the major plus sides to ESO is the mega server.  You have everyone on one server allowing for a larger community and one that's more active.  However, SWTOR has had many server mergers and when I returned, I found mine nearly completely dead.  I then transferred to the Harbinger and was excited to see a lot of life.  The fact remains, the mega servers in ESO are a great idea that was well implemented and I wish it was in SWTOR.
  • Combat - Another thing I loved about ESO was the combat and action bar.  SWTOR has the old MMO model, one with 30 buttons, long 1.5 second global cooldowns and limited crowd control breaking.  While I prefer ESO's model, it's not a deal breaker to go back to this type of game play.  SWTOR has also simplified the "builds" into really only a few important choices otherwise your class is dependent more on how you play rather than your build.  More games are going to a simplistic setup mainly for casual folks that don't have the time and or want to to invest hours into "getting gud," and I understand but don't like it.

Should I Play?

Yes if, you like instanced based PvP, massive story, simplistic leveling and character progression.

No if you want a game free of micro-transactions, super populated and action based combat.

For me, I've decided to come back and play this game as my main MMO because I love the story, I can progress my characters slowly without a massive time investment and most importantly I'm excited about making content.  Yes I will keep my ESO guides posted, but look forward to a lot more SWTOR content in the future.  Thanks for reading and hopefully this overview can help you decide on if you should play this particular MMO or not.

Want to play? Use this link for a free 7 days of access and support me at the same time!

Want a guild? You can join our Discord and ask for invite.  We are playing both Republic and Empire and have a casual friendly guild for those looking to socialize.

16 Comments

  1. Casyjones on May 18, 2017 at 5:50 pm

    We are gona miss you in Teso.
    Good luck on swtor, The story os fun, but once done its starts to get boring. PvP is fun. We will see how teso arenas are…

  2. Shankerz on May 23, 2017 at 4:40 pm

    wish you would return to ESO. New druid class is awesome would love to see your build on him and update your night-blade stam pvp build for this latest expansion <3

  3. Russell (deets) on May 23, 2017 at 4:54 pm

    whats your toons name on SWTOR?

  4. deets on May 23, 2017 at 6:27 pm

    whats your characters name on swtor?

  5. Drivan on May 24, 2017 at 2:51 am

    I actually just left SWTOR for good not that long ago and I have to present a counter statement to what you are saying about that game. I am going to focus just on your statement about gearing right now.

    In ESO it took me about 2 months to earn 3 full sets of gear, 2 DPS and 1 healing set and Gold them out.
    In SWTOR I raided at the highest level for 4 years and never once had a full set of gear because of RNG AND the fact that you have to roll against your teamates to get that piece of gear.
    PLUS with the introduction of the Command system you have to grind command levels to earn the special currency that allows you to use those tokens to buy the piece of gear you want. Through the Pure RNG Command System my highest Command rank earned was 150 and in 150 ranks I earned 4 pieces of gear, out or 9 total pieces that you need. Not to mention that each of those 9 pieces has between 2 and 4 custom slots that need to be switched out to Min/Max your gear.
    Again in 150 levels I managed to get 4 pieces of useful gear. I started grinding Command points in December of 2016 and was command level 150 at the end of March…
    I played SWTOR for 5 year straight, 4-5 hours a day raiding between 2 and 4 nights a week and running Flashpoints etc as often as I could.
    SWTOR is a dying game, KotFE was a joke, especially once you play KotET and find out half of what you did in the previous story run was pointless. The stories themselves are poorly written and make NO SENSE to the over all plot or to the back story of the vanilla game.
    BW/EA is struggling to release a raid, 1 boss at a time over the next… however long it take them to finish it with no expressed plan to the community. Their communication is HORRIBLE and the game is a transaction based, profit focused, grind fest designed to keep achievement hunters and completionists paying as subscription fee for what remains of the life of the game. Their last major endgame/raid content is 2 and a half years old and is buggy as hell and so reliant on RNG that a great raid team could spend a night banging their heads against a boss they have downed a million times.
    But I digress, back to gearing…
    If you had a hard time with how much time you were spending on gearing in ESO, be prepared to dislike how many times you will have to beat your head against Master & Blaster or the Revanite Commanders…

    • Leah on May 24, 2017 at 6:40 pm

      yes, yes to all of this. I mean.. I literally left swtor and started to play ESO more BECAUSE of command system and how much better and alt friendly I find champion system to be vs command ranks. and here Deltia is.. praising it? in ESO I can do just fine with crafted gear. its not best in slot, but its not nearly as inferior as crafted gear in swtor is to that of the actual tier.

      moreover. pvp. right now, thanks to gear rng and changes to scaling – the later you join it, the worse off you are. gear difference makes a HUGE impact. command rank makes more of a difference in some ways that champion points where at least I can just join champion point free campaign. and the best part is? the game that used to be all about alts? is practically penalizing me for having them, since command ranks have to be earned from scratch on each and every toon. it like what ESO’s veteran system used to be.

      I didn’t like the newest story either, can’t even bring myself to finish KOTET once, let alone more then once and I don’t feel like my choices had any more impact than choices I made in ESO, but enjoyment of story is subjective, I suppose. I did used to love swtor pvp a LOT prior to command system and its pretty awesome while you are still leveling, its just… not as awesome at end game anymore, now that instead of being able to be decently geared in a week or so of semi casual play – it takes… a LOT longer.

      I used to love TOR. it was THE mmo for me. now? the only thing I barely enjoy is strongholds and even those I don’t enjoy as much as housing in ESO. back when they were just introduced, I didn’t have a problem with hook based decorating. now? I have seen how much more fun the freedom of placing and building things as I want them can be. ESO housing s far from perfect and I still hate the prices, but the big thing is.. vast majority of the decor is still earned through gameplay. vast VAST majority of swtor decor is earned.. through gambling packs. the very gambling packs that ESO now added and that Deltia disliked so much.

      I suppose it could be the absence makes the heart grown fonder or something, I don’t know.

    • SLackerLX on May 26, 2017 at 12:51 am

      [quote]KotFE was a joke, especially once you play KotET and find out half of what you did in the previous story run was pointless. The stories themselves are poorly written and make NO SENSE to the over all plot or to the back story of the vanilla game.[/quote]

      I couldn’t agree more. I left SWTOR the the same reasons, Moreover, with the KotFE the revamp on planets which you have already DONE is disastrous

  6. Naq on May 24, 2017 at 11:10 pm

    “Think of it as ESO’s champion points, but better.”

    What? No. ESO’s champion points offer you alternate advancement to give you actual choices and variation to your builds. Swtors command points are a garbage grind system that never ends, and has to be repeated on every character. EVERY character. It doesn’t enrich your experience, its just clunky nonsense hacked together by tonedeaf developers who are out of touch with their audience. While you might be heading into swtor, the revolving door has a ton more traffic heading the other way, and for a reason.

  7. Kplease on May 27, 2017 at 2:23 pm

    I feel sorry for you going back to swtor. For the entire month of May there are 9 swtor posts. 8 of which are Cartel Market micro transaction sales and previews. 1 is from the new designer saying he was off from work and still working on a roadmap. That was May 9. He promised by 5.31. Still nothing. 0 communication, 0 new content and a population of maybe 100 that you can ever see. HM and NIM is dead and the game to follow soon at this rate.

    • Deltia on May 27, 2017 at 8:46 pm

      Yeah I play casually so it’s fun for now.

      • Drivan on May 30, 2017 at 5:40 pm

        SWTOR is ok for the casual player, or for those who have been away from it for a good long while and are just trying to see the new stuff. It isn’t a game to take seriously anymore though. They talked about releasing an Op back in December and so far they have manged to release 1 boss of that Op… It’s amateur hour at the BW studios man, they seem to be phoning it in these days.

  8. Belan on May 29, 2017 at 8:39 pm

    Yeah, not sure why you chose a dying game to go back to. Even with it’s faults ESO still has some life in it.

    • Deltia on May 30, 2017 at 5:44 pm

      Because I like the game….

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