Space Combat for The Old Republic Explained

TORStar Wars: The Old Republic is number one on my list for upcoming PC releases, doubly so because it has the delicious flavor of a BioWare Star Wars game and an MMO rolled in to one. I know that there was a Star Wars MMO previously, but that was Galaxies by Sony Online Entertainment, and my therapist has advised me not to speak of that relationship. Regardless of how Galaxies was handled, one of the few things SOE did well was the space combat, taking away the turn-based dance endemic to MMORPG ground combat and making a more twitch-based system that resembled the X-Wing games of yore. Before the special ships were introduced and ruined the space combat with their ability to stock the highest grade equipment, blasting around between the planets was great fun. Star Wars just isn’t Star Wars without extra-planetary combat, and it seems that BioWare feels the same way.

MMO mega-site Massively (via the upcoming October issue of PC Gamer) reports that the space segments of The Old Republic will be “tunnel-based” as opposed to the free-form combat of its predecessors. If you’re having trouble picturing this sort of gameplay, think StarFox 64 or the old Rebel Assault titles. BioWare is apparently doing this to create a “cinematic” feel for players. I’ll reserve my judgment until I play the game itself, but I’d rather see a X-Wing vs TIE Fighter scenario. Massively does mention achievements, though, so I’ll be easier to mollify if that’s the case.

What do you guys think about this? Down for some rail-shooting, or do you hope BioWare will break out the combat for the inevitable PVP arenas?

Source: Massivley

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mitch@gamersushi.com Twitter: @mi7ch Gamertag: Lubeius PSN ID: Lubeius SteamID: Lube182 Origin/EA:Lube182 Currently Playing: Stardew Valley, Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam, Knights of the Old Republic 2: The Sith Lords, Battlefield 4, Tom Clancy Double Feature: Rainbow Six Siege and The Division

3 thoughts on “Space Combat for The Old Republic Explained”

  1. Ah, Rebel Assault. My dad and I used to play that game. He’d aim with the joystick and I’d shoot with the button on the keyboard mapped to shoot.
    I know this has nothing to do with the KotoR MMO but it made me nostalgic.

  2. I’m not really a multiplayer person, let alone an MMO-er, so my opinion doesn’t hold much weight, but I don’t see how free-roaming controls are any less cinematic than rails. If anything, they’re more cinematic, because being able to fly freely feels more lively than going on a long pathway. It’s an immersion issue to me. If the space stuff is on-rails, it’ll feel more like a simple video game, but when you let the player roam freely, it becomes more cinematic.

  3. See, I feel like if you’re going to do space combat, you can’t do it on rails, because it’s all about those crazy 3D skirmishes. One of my favorite things in all of gaming was the huge firefight at the end of Shadows of the Empire on the N64, because you were able to fly around that whole arena with all of that chaos. I’d love to see PVP arenas that worked the same way in the Star Wars universe.

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