Star Wars: The Old Republic Developer Blog

Lead cinematic designer Paul Marino is the latest developer to contribute a blog entry to the official Star Wars: The Old Republic website, during which he explains his job responsibilities and how each of the game's scenes are carefully directed in order to create memorable experiences for the player. He also provides two cinematic design example videos:

And here's a snip:
The inclusion of Cinematic Design is what sets The Old Republic apart from other MMO games. Rather than being led by a disjointed, text-driven narrative, the Player is part of a dynamic plot in The Old Republic. In conversations, we can show those subtle moments where characters interact with and affect one another; where choices matter. Do we kill the Sith acolyte? Do we spare him? Will he show up later in our character's path to be dealt with? Or will he fight alongside us, supporting us in the most crucial of times? These choices are gameplay, presented in cinematic form. Sure, they could be made through the use of simple point-and-click, text-only interface, but the reward of our choices would be passed over and the player would never fully experience the impact of those decisions.

Other BioWare games have proven how rewarding interaction in conversations can be. In The Old Republic, we extend this approach to the group level every player in the party has their say in which direction the conversation will go. A young exile takes an adversarial tone with the group, and challenges them to a duel. Your Sith Inquisitor grows impatient with him and chooses to detonate some nearby explosives but will it be overruled by another who votes to fight him? Beyond advancing your story, this system extends the gameplay experience into conversations, allowing the vote roll to factor into how the narrative plays out.