Despite the fact that very little is known about the combat system in BioWare's Star Wars: The Old Republic, Ten Ton Hammer has decided to discuss it at length in a new editorial.
...one issue with ranged combat in Galaxies was that blasters were about as effective as a high powered flashlight, which is in sharp contrast to the deadly beams of energy they emitted in the Star Wars films. Looking at past BioWare titles, this is another area the developer nailed perfectly. Avoiding incoming fire is often just as important as getting a clear shot at your enemies, who typically make the latter extremely difficult.
Some of that was made much easier in previous BioWare single player RPGs thanks to the ability to pause the game and consider tactics. Turning that feature off not only ramps up the difficulty, but makes combat an exhilarating experience. Being an MMO, I highly doubt that players will be able to pause the action in TOR to consider tactical options in the heat of battle, but I'm all for keeping the same sense of urgency once the pause option is removed.
Companion AI has been another staple of BioWare titles over the years, so I was thankful to learn this will also play a key role in the world of The Old Republic. These aren't simple pets you summon with a spell, or a cat you found roaming around the Ghostlands, but living, breathing characters in their own rights. Not only will your companions have an impact on how story is presented in TOR, but if their use in previous games is any indication, their inclusion can add a new layer of depth to combat situations since players need to consider not only their own actions, but those of their companions as well.