|Title||Star Wars: the Old Republic|
|Type||Massively Multi-player RPG|
|Kelly Score ™||95 / 100|
Massively multi-player role playing games have, with very few exceptions, a standard motif. You create a character, complete a few “orientation” or introductory quests, and are then left to your own devices. Thousands of boring and repetitive quests combine with your character having complete lack of any perceivable impact or even place within the background story to encourage a kind of hamster like behaviour. You run in your little questing “wheel”, seeking levels or gear to help you continue to run in that wheel. Your long term goal: running in the wheel long enough and fast enough to eventually jump to the big, shiny end game hamster wheel of raid content. Raiding is where you get to spend all of your time staring at a wall, or the back end of some other person’s character, for hours on end as you beat some giant monster to get more shiny gear so you can do the next bigger raid. Most people don’t even read the story associated with each quest, and in many MMOGs that is a blessing: the stories are vanishingly thin and comically trivial. They have to be, since your character has no impact on the world whatsoever.
Star Wars: the Old Republic (SWtOR) breaks out of that motif. It plays more like a single player RPG, where your character is the hero of his or her own story. Other players and “group” dungeons (flash points, operations, and Heroics in SWtOR parlance) certainly exist, but the personal story your character is playing through is paramount. It is a refreshing and welcome change, even though the basic mechanics of the game are otherwise pretty traditional.