Archive for January 7th, 2011

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Who’s Who In The Galaxy

January 7, 2011

Three new biographies were added on the Star Wars: The Old Republic site today, which I’d normally just take at face value, until it was pointed out in the forums that we’ve actually heard of one of the entries, Jewl’a Nightbringer, more than a year ago in a Developer Walkthrough video when she was mentioned by the NPC Mako.

First of all, even though the article does mention her winning the Great Hunt, I don’t think I would have remembered to make the connection, so kudos to Aeterno, whose post was the one that caught my attention. Second, I thought it was worth pointing out because it really confirmed what I’ve always thought about these biographies and other similar updates — that they’re not trivial for those who really want to get into lore of the game. These characters aren’t just innocuous names thrown in for filler; presumably, each person with a biography page has his or her own story and a place in the galaxy, even the ones we figure are less significant and have never heard of. But like in the case of Jewl’a, maybe we have, and just forgot or plain didn’t notice.

I’m a big fan of using history and character lore to construct a sense of immersion, and like I’ve said before, these aspects contribute in making our virtual worlds richer and fuller places to be. There’s a lot of potential in these new entries — for example, I have to wonder if perhaps Darth Jadus has already personally infiltrated the Republic under a secret and influential identity, based on some of the keywords in his description. It could explain why they’re not letting us see his face for now. And regarding the political rivalry between Supreme Chancellor Janarus and General Garza of Republic Special Forces, come on, who doesn’t like a good old government leader vs. military honcho story? Last time we had a Biographies update, I said I would love to learn more about the NPCs in-game, and now I more confident that we’ll have the opportunity.