Star Wars: The Old Republic Interview

Darth Hater caught up with BioWare Austin's Blaine Christine at this past weekend's Penny Arcade Expo for a pretty informative interview about some of the recent Star Wars: The Old Republic details they've released. The Jedi Wizard seems to be taking a lot of flak:
There is really a controversy on the forums right now about the Jedi Wizard, and the meanings behind that name and why it was chosen.

Blaine Christine: I'm not intimately involved with that particular naming process, but all I can say at this point is we watched the forums closely... the Darth Hater forums, our forums, and we paid attention to what the community was saying. We certainly noticed the frenzy around that particular name, and there may be some announcements forthcoming in the future around that particular name.


You all spoke about various topics that caused issues in MMO class design; can you talk to specifics about some of these issues you wanted to avoid?

Blaine Christine: The way I look at it is that we want to make it as easy as possible to play the game how they want to play it. If we take the example of companions, they can serve functions when I'm a solo player. For example, if I'm playing an Inquisitor specializing in my ranged abilities then I may want that sort of tank role fulfilled because maybe I like to play by myself. That is my style of play, and therefore, I'm going to use the Dashade as a tank and he goes out there to work for me in that regard.

Now on the flip side, if I'm grouped, then it is a way to augment my abilities as well. For example, if you and I are playing together... you're playing the Sith Inquisitor and I'm playing the Sith Warrior, and we're like "ah, we don't have a healer at this time." If both of our companions have healing abilities, then we can add those companions to go along with us and we have our healing back up without having to go out and find other group mates. That is kind of solving the whole traditional "oh crap, we can't run this instance until we get a healer." Well, guess what? We have companion characters that are one option for you. Maybe it isn't as powerful as a true healing class along with you, but it should allow you to get through the encounter or quest that you want to complete.

And everyone can have a companion out in the party as well. I gave the example of two of us in a group, and the same is true for a group of four. Imagine you have four Sith Warriors grouped up, you can do that. But if you wanted a ranged DPS guy, then hey, I have a companion that can do that.