Star Wars: The Old Republic Interview

Massively caught up with LucasArts producer Jake Neri and BioWare producer Blaine Christine during PAX and quizzed them both about the highly anticipated Star Wars: The Old Republic.
Especially since you've got such a strong singleplayer element in the story and choice features, how important is grouping to Star Wars: The Old Republic?

Blaine: I think it's a very important message we want to get out right now, because there's a lot of questions out there. People are saying, "Okay, we see it, we get it. It looks like a BioWare game and that looks like a singleplayer experience." We really want to make sure that it's clear that it's not [a singleplayer game]. Obviously what we've shown so far are the new things we're trying to bring to the MMO space, but grouping is going to be very important.

The closest demonstration we've had so far is where we show the flashpoint where we've got the the Sith Warrior grouped up with the Bounty Hunter. That's a grouping experience, and that includes your story experience, which is something we want to be sure people are clear on. When you're grouped, it doesn't impede the story whatsoever, so you can still progress the story as a group. It's not a singleplayer experience in any way, shape or form.

That said, if you want to do solo play that's something that you can do as well. It's a goal of ours to make sure that we cater to all those play styles. It someone is like, "I don't wanna group, I wanna play a BioWare game. I wanna go through the story and do things on my own." you can do that. You're gonna see other people running around the world, as you would in any other MMO. On the other hand, if you want to group you're gonna be able to go through the game that way as well.