Flesh Raiders Sound So Dirty To Me

November 19, 2010

Yep, today’s Star Wars: The Old Republic update is November’s edition of Fan Friday — a community feature that showcases things like fan creations, game concept art, new avatars and a small Developer Corner.

Except today’s developer insights have been expanded into a Studio Insider article, giving us a closer look at some of the creative processes behind the game. Today, concept artist Diego Almazan details the processes behind creating a set of Flesh Raiders.

If I recall correctly, these are the brutal marauders your Jedi will have to fight on your starting planet of Tython.

Also included in the update is a new Community Q & A section. Couldn’t have come at a better time, if you ask me. The recent string of Friday updates have garnered a wide range of comments, complaints and praise. For some fans, an information downswing can lead to disappointment and frustration rather than much needed revelation. Going by the reaction on the forums for those weeks, it would seem that no one gives a crap about Fan Fridays or lore updates.

Look, I care about any and all news about the game, but I can also see the problem here. Spring 2011 is about six months away. People are anxious. They demand details. Combat! Economy! End game! Guilds! PvP! Bioware won’t release information on anything until they feel it’s ready, and I applaud them for it. But that’s not going to fly for a community in an uproar that demands to know everything RIGHT NOW NOW NOW. My guess is that’s why Q & A was added, to promote two-way communication and to attempt to mollify complaints concerning the lack of dev interaction with the community. Sure, it might not be all the information, but for now, it’s an opportunity to reach out, combat the negativity and put a few real or imagined worries to rest.

Some good questions in there, can’t wait to see more. This probably isn’t a very significant thing to get excited about, but it did pique my interest to see helmet on/off toggle confirmed. All risk of romantic kissy scenes and awkward bonky bonky moments aside, I didn’t spend half an hour customizing my character’s face just to hide it behind a clunky helm!


  1. I really wish I wasn’t so excited about SWTOR. The game that’s living in my head right now is probably a lot better than anything I can reasonably expect at launch. Still, every damn new thing I hear seems like they are going in a good direction, at elast as far as my tastes are concerned.

    • Heh heh, I don’t need to tell you how super excited I am about SWTOR, but in this calm, composed, zen mode kinda way. It’s so weird, because anyone who knows me in real life will tell you I’m as impulsive and impatient as they come 😛

  2. ackbar smiley ftw!

    • They had more Mon Calamari ones too, but damn image limit.

      • i tried to add a couple of them into msn, but they end up being too small.

  3. Spring 2011 is about 4 months away, not 6 (which would be the end of Spring 2011). Also keep in mind if you are doing the usual Open Beta drill, thats a month before the launch date. You pretty much want all your information releases done before then. So they have 3 to 5 months to get everything out, assuming its not delayed. I think the last batch of crunchy information really brought them back in line with where they need to be to maintain that schedule. I say a few more weeks of fluff updates (timelines, more bio’s, etc.) and then the week after Cataclysm we probably get our next class unveil (BH is my guess, given the hints in the crafting video).

    • I wrote Spring is about six months away, and in my mind whenever you see such a vague window you should expect the worse. i really didn’t take them to mean March TBH, that’s just setting up for likely disappointment. At this rate I’m thinking late spring or even quite possibly early summer, and they’d still be on track (yes, I’m being really generous 😛 ).

      And I agree, I wouldn’t be surprised to see a big info dump incoming soon after Cataclysm.

  4. The helmet toggle bit may seem like a small thing, but I actually wondered about it almost to the point of nervousness. Since I take care in all games to create an awesome face for my character, I like to know I will be able to display it when I play without having to de-equip my helmet. I’ve heard people say “Of course they’re going to have helmet toggle in the game. They have to.” before, but it doesn’t have the same weight as it does coming from the mouth of a developer. Especially when that confirmation comes from the King of Uber Viking Pwnage himself: Daniel Erickson.

    On a broader scale, having a Q&A on the forum helps immensely by showing that the devs do, in fact, listen to the fan base. The little miniscule things tend to be the biggest bitches when you’re anticipating something–in life and in waiting for a video game. It is nice to have some of those little things cleared up so you feel a bit better about the larger picture.

    The progression of the Flesh Raider concept art was something to behold. What hit me most was seeing how different they can look just by adding some armor pieces. I thought they looked intimidating without them–add a few cybernetic pieces and some plate-style armor, and you have yourself a wicked, mutated hammerhead shark-alien that looks like it wants to devour your soul. The possibility that I will run into one of those beasts in a forest alone makes me look forward to when I do eventually roll a Jedi.

    As far as the smilies go…come on…Ackbar, ftw…

    Having the ability to toggle off the helmet is awesome for non-cutscenes; the truth, however, is I never really expected them to affect the cutscenes.

    Just like in DA:O, you can be fully decked out, head-to-toe, in gear, and your helm will magically vanish when you have a talking scene. I could have lived with it if that were the case for SWTOR, but I do like knowing I will be in control of it. Mostly because there WILL be moments where I want my helmet on, especially considering Daniel E confirmed voice modulation (as seen in the Mysteries of KoTOR video).

    There are going to be times when I am going to make a dark side decision in SWTOR, and I want that “this guy is %$#@! evil” feeling to shine through–nothing sells that feeling quite like an evil voice modulation. Ask Vader or Malak.

    Overall, I was happy with this update. Some of the questions answered seem small, but I was glad to have some confirmation.

    Judging by the comments I’ve seen, I’d say the Q&A looks like a much welcomed feature to the site.

    • Yeah, I’m going to be pretty torn between having my helmet off vs wanting cool voice modulation!

      Anyway, after all the great stuff on crafting and pvp, it’s hard to get excited about a Fan Friday, but I don’t expect every week to be an amazing update. What we got this week was light, but there’s still interesting things to find, if one cares to look. I liked the little details, but also thought the questions they answered on group dynamics were very informative. Whether or not you can have, say, five bounty hunters in a group questing together isn’t something you’d normally find on a game’s info page, but I bet it’s a question that’s on a lot of people’s minds (I also liked his comment about troopers appearing over a hill, I’m trying to picture that and it is awesome) And stuff like what happens to a quest conversation if someone in your group goes offline or skips…it’s nice to know my experience will be largely unaffected by something like that. Looks like Q&A is going to a feature I’ll look forward to every month.

      • Indeed. The whole group dynamics tidbit caught my eye, as well. Mostly because myself and all of my friends plan to play Sith classes, and I wanted to have confirmation that we will be able to group up even if we don’t fit into the traditional trinity composition; it was nice to have that cleared up by the developers.

        One other little piece of news this week that has me intrigued came from the dev tracker. Damion Schubert came out with a completely different perspective on sending your companion over to gather a node than I had considered. According to him, in the testing, sending your companion to gather while you keep fighting carries a “I got this” feeling. I don’t know why I didn’t think of that before, but when I read it, I could immediately visualize exactly what he said.

        Those little aesthetic things are hard to really grasp when you don’t have the game in front of you. I truly think people will be astonished when they do something ingame that elicits an actual response from your companions, and they may even be surprised when they find themselves giving a crap about what their companions think of them.

        Count me in as another person who will look forward to the Q&A every month.

        P.S. – Congratulations on the end of your house hunting. I hope you enjoy your new place, neighborhood, and that your move is quick and painless.

      • I saw the dev tracker update too, though I said this once and I’ll say it again, the first thing I thought of was, “Nice, now no one can ninja my node while I’m fighting.” Clearly, I’ve been completely jaded by WoW 😛

        And thank you so much, I’m glad it’s over too! Now for the hardest part, the packing!

  5. I am OD’ing on Star Wars these days.

    Force Unleashed II.

    Clone Wars Animated Series.

    And then the plethora of information coming from the BioWare camp on SW:TOR.

    • I still need to play Force Unleashed, I have the Sith edition sitting there just beckoning to me…

      And I’m way behind on Clone Wars. Though I saw recently that everyone got a costume change!

  6. […] not expect. Is it that time of the month already? It didn’t seem very long ago that we had the last Fan Friday, and it’s a little strange to think that the next one we get will be in the new year. If you […]

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