SWTOR: Hammer Comes Down, NDA Goes Up

November 18, 2011

The Old Republic opens up.

There was an interesting tweet from Star Wars: The Old Republic community manager Stephen Reid yesterday, teasing an “interesting” Friday update. So when the “News and Announcements” forum was graced today with a preview of the Flashpoint “Bringing Down the Hammer“, I was a bit confused. Sure, a feature on a new FP is always nice, but this type of update isn’t exactly out of the ordinary.

But then 3pm came around and BOOM, we got this little doozy from Dr. Greg Zeschuk himself:

As of now, the non disclosure portion of our Game Testing Agreement is officially lifted.

Not sure if Mr. Reid was sort of hinting at this, but yeah, I guess it’s pretty big. Apparently, the NDA lift applies to anyone and everyone, including general testers. So for the next few days, I guess I’ll be preparing a bunch of posts. There’s…a lot I’d like to talk about.

Just some info on my time with the SWTOR beta:

  • Currently still testing, and have been in testing since June
  • Classes I had time to test extensively: Trooper and Smuggler
  • Classes I only dabbled in: Sith Inquisitor, Sith Warrior, Imperial Agent
  • Classes I didn’t touch at all: Either Jedi and the Bounty Hunter — the classes I did not want to spoil as I am most likely rolling them at launch
  • Farthest I’ve gotten: Level 50 (cap) with the Smuggler
  • All 17 planets minus Tython the Jedi starting area

I’ve had a blast testing, and it’s been almost half a year and I’m still not tired of it, so I guess that’s got to count for something!

Anyway, more info and updates coming to this blog soon. I’m sure lots of people will be talking about the game from now until launch, and yes, I’ll be doing my part adding to the deluge! If anyone has any questions about the game, especially the higher level content, I’ll be happy to answer or offer up commentary in a future post. More info and updates to the blog coming soon.


  1. Is the Smuggler as awesome as she looks? I saw the artbook artwork you posted of the “female Han Solo”, and I’m pretty set on that being my first class.

    • I have post planned for my Smuggler, but I just want to say it now anyway: The smuggler story is un-fucking-believable.

      It has the most action and humor as far as I could tell, and I’m not sure if this had anything to do with me playing a female smuggler (yes, I think decisions like that actually matter!) but I was taken on a roller coaster of emotions especially at the end of my story line.

      I think I might have spoiled myself, actually. The other class stories are also great, but I really had a lot of fun with the smuggler.

  2. In one weekend (Nov 11th through 13th) I got to level 10 on a Jedi Knight, level 13 on a Trooper, level 3 on a Sith Inquisitor, and level 3 on a Bounty Hunter.

    I was blown away by the Trooper’s story and I was thrilled by the Jedi Knight’s story. The SI and BH were really great but I didn’t get too far in them. I can’t wait to experience every story!

    Oh, I saved the Smuggler for later… I intend to play that primarily when the game goes live. 😛

    • Good idea re: smuggler. Seriously, if I had known how awesome the smuggler was, that would have been my class of choice at launch 😛

      And glad to hear that about the Jedi Knight’s story, I am looking forward to it!

  3. I too am planning on playing a random class I won’t want to play at launch whenever I get into the beta. I was planning on smuggler, but now I think maybe I should save that class. I am a bit curious as to how different the storylines for the various classes are. Are there really 8 KoTORs in there?

    • Good idea. That’s what I told myself right from the start — I had to save myself some surprises at launch. So I told myself hands off the BH, and Jedi (at the time, I wasn’t sure which one I’ll play).

      Yes, the class storylines themselves and their associated quests are completely different from each other. The bulk of the quests, however, are those shared between everyone (of the same faction) that are available on the planets.

  4. Finally wrote my article out.lol I can’t remember the last time I typed so furiously.

    I thoroughly enjoyed my time in SWTOR. I played a fem Smuggler just to hear Kath Soucie’s work (and she did not disappoint me). Other than that, I rolled all male toons: Sith Pureblood Jugg (I’m recreating him for launch), Zabrak BH Merc (again, recreating him), and a Chiss Imperial Agent (going to tweak his design at launch). Besides the toons, the stories were every bit as engaging as I hoped they would be. Mako endeared herself to me in the BH story, Vette was just starting to soften my cold, black Sith heart, and I fucking hated both Skavic in the Smuggler story, and the acolyte Vemron in the SW story. BioWare certainly continues to do a great job making villains you just want to strangle.

    • I will be checking out your article shortly. Going to read everyone’s impressions all at once 🙂

      The fem smuggler’s voice acting gets two thumbs up from me. Nothing cracked me up more than hearing her say, “I can charm the horns off a krayt dragon!”

      Ohhh man, Skavek is a slimeball, the hate they make you feel for him really fuels the story up to the later parts!

  5. \o/

    Happy days are here. My guildies can finally stop being banned from our forums for slipping up. 😀

    • I avoided playing the smuggler completely, I didn’t even want to play republic during the beta to avoid any crossover.

      • whoops

      • Good idea. I sort of didn’t go very far in Empire side for that very reason. Gotta save something for launch,

    • LOL wow, bans, really? We just told people on our forums to be careful, and even then it was pretty casual. Considering like half our members are probably in testing anyway lol.

      • Well, we’re a huge multi-game guild. Initial interest in SWTOR was 1200 spread across 4 in-game guilds, 2 per side. That’s with a hard-cap of one entry per person.

        Because of our size and presence across so many games we’ve got admins who approach company representatives directly. Which, in turn, means the those company representatives are aware of us as a group. So to keep the guild as a whole on good terms with devs in general we’ve got a strict no-breaking-NDA policy.

        The only thing people in betas are allowed to say is “I am/not in the beta.” Anything beyond that gets thread closed, warnings set and repeated offenses, a temporary ban.

      • Ah, huge guild, that explains it. Yeah, it would be hard, especially since your group would have a presence in the gaming community.

  6. […] “I’ve had a blast testing, and it’s been almost half a year and I’m still not tired of it, so I guess that’s got to count for something!” ~MMOGC […]

  7. Well we look forward to your impressions!

    TBH I’m not sure I’ll be playing this game unless a trial version is made available later on. I’m still having a good time w/ Rift and my budget only allows for one sub game at the moment. Also even though I’m a SW fan myself ( old enough that I got to see 2 of the original franchise /as/ they hit the theaters ❤ ) some of the other SW fans give me the creeping horrors. I think you may know the type of whom I speak. ;0)

    • I totally understand. I used to be able to juggle, but this year it’s been busy and I’ve had to start ditching one MMO sub for another, etc.

      I already have an impression piece up, just look above to the monster article LOL.

      • Hehe. My mistake, I’ll go read that now. ;P Too many things on my plate, been a little scatter-pated.

    • Well, re-checked one (lol) of my email addresses, looks like I’m cleared for take-off on the upcoming stress-test beta, so I may not need that Trial account after-all!

      The invite comes as a surprise though, I originally applied 2 years ago I think, so getting the notification from Bioware wasn’t really expected at this point.

      • Woot! Hope you will get in okay and grab some good time with the game. It’s stress testing, and if the last stress test was any indication, it’s gonna be hectic. And this weekend is going to be even bigger!

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