Star Wars: The Old Republic E3 Trailer & Interview

GameSpot has an exclusive E3 trailer for BioWare's Star Wars: The Old Republic MMO, as well as an interview with writing director Daniel Erickson, lead flashpoint/raids/player-versus-player designer Gabe Amantangelo, and lead systems designer Damion Schubert.
GS: One of the most popular activities for high-level players in online games these days is to go on high-end raids in search of powerful loot and other rewards. Tell us about the raiding game in Star Wars: The Old Republic. How will it improve on the kinds of raid gameplay we've seen in other games?

Gabe Amantangelo: What you'd know as raids in other MMOs, we're calling "operations" in Star Wars: The Old Republic. Operations will be epic, multi-group events with settings and immersive gameplay inspired by scenes in the Star Wars movies. For examples, players will have to navigate the environment as a powerful Force wielder brings down the room around them; they'll have to work together to solve a code and fend off enemies while they're cornered, and so on.

Additionally, players will be able to enjoy operations as soon as they hit level 50. There will be varying difficulty modes, much like what is found in other BioWare games. The challenge, mechanics, and rewards will vary with the modes. So both the casual and hardcore player will be able to enjoy epic content alongside multiple groups of friends.

GS: We also understand that the team is ready to talk about personal mounts. What kind of mounts will players be able to commission? Any iconic Star Wars animal mounts, such as tauntauns or banthas? Any iconic vehicles like the speeder bikes we've already seen used for fast travel? Give us some specific examples. What purpose will mounts serve other than looking cool and helping players travel more quickly? Will some mounts have combat applications or provide specific bonuses, for instance?

Damion Schubert: Initially, we're just going with vehicles instead of animal mounts, although we definitely hope to get to the animals post-launch. We felt that, given a choice between the two, being on a vehicle felt more like Star Wars. The vehicles tend to be reminiscent of vehicles you've seen in the films, although it's a balancing act. As a designer, you want to be sure that the vehicles graduate in speed but also that the vehicles look appropriate for the speed at which they're travelling.