Monday, March 10, 2014

The Saga is On Hold

Today my subscription to Star Wars: The Old Republic ran out. Considering the fact that I'll be away from home for weeks at a time over the course of the next month, I've decided not to renew my subscription until I feel ready to return.

If I ever decide to do so at all, I mean. Let's see what I've accomplished in my 60 days of The Old Republic, shall we?

First, I should clarify that I did not play TOR every day, not by any stretch. in fact, when I first renewed my subscription back in January, I don't think i actually launched the game for a few days while I was getting over an illness. I've also left on trips a few times, spent the night at a few other places, and sometimes simply didn't feel like playing on some days.

I got most of my play time in on the weekends, with a few hours here and there during the week if I didn't have anything else going on.

When I began, I had gotten all 8 of my characters off of their starting worlds (Tython, Ord Mantell, Hutta, and Korriban) and had started getting a few of them through each faction's homeworld (Coruscant and Dromund Kaas). As per my usual habit, I got hung up on grinding for crafting materials, so progress was slow. Altogether, I believe I had completed 10 planets worth of progress: 8 starting worlds, and 2 completed quests on homeworlds.

However, after assessing the situation on each of my characters, I quickly finished my crafting hang-ups and have figured out a more efficient system ever since. Now, due to a greater understanding of how it all works, I was able to get most of my crafting needs taken care of while the character was completing missions, with only a few hours of crafting after each character finished their tasks on a planet, to get the next character ready.

And so, during the past month I got each of the remaining characters to finish their work on Coruscant and Dromund Kaas and, as of last night, I had all but two of complete their quests on the next planet in their stories (Balmorra for Imperials, Taris for the Republic).

So, in the past 60 days, with less-than-obsessive amounts of play time, I managed to complete 12 planets worth of progress.

...So, really, not much better than before. But, still, that was more than one planet each week, meaning each week I was spending time with another character, on another story.

By this time, I've definitely found some preferences:

I like playing healing classes most of all, since often times I can just let my companions go fight things, and I just have to keep them alive until the enemy dies. Likewise, if I'm in a group, I almost never have to attack an enemy--my team does the damage, I just have to keep them alive.

Being a good healer means that I take notice when I'm handling a different role in a party (a tank, for instance) and our healer is bad at their job. Many people feel the need to participate in battle, doing their part to shave off an enemy's health bar. What they don't realize, though, is that by focusing on keeping the tank and other people alive they're contributing way more than, say, another DPS could ever do.

I also have a few favorite storylines so far: The Commando's story of chasing down a traitorous faction soldiers is great, as has so far led me to killing Dr. Venture (basically). The fact that I'm still not sure what made the soldiers decide to defect makes me excited to find out more, while chasing down interesting villains along the way.

Likewise, the Bounty Hunter's story of a great hunt taking place in the midst of a brewing war is awesome, especially since, really, the Bounty Hunter doesn't care about either the Empire nor the Republic--if he participates, it's only because the Empire is paying him. Effectively so far, the brewing war is just an opportunity for side jobs while he's busy doing his real work.

And, finally, the character that combines both my preference for being a healer with an interesting storyline: the Imperial Agent. Tasked with the job of eliminating terrorist cells that threaten the Empire, one by one he's infiltrating each group and saving the lives of innocents by sabotaging terrorist efforts. How cool is that? And from an Imperial character, no less.

Anyway, to be honest, I'm way too deep into these stories to stay away for long. I'll probably be renewing my subscription once I return from PAX next month. Just 2-3 more 60 day sessions like that and I'll probably have all 8 of my characters at the end game.

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