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Archive for November, 2011

The Day BioWare Won

Published by under Editorial on Nov. 29. 2011.

There was one fear that every BioWare and Star Wars: The Old Republic fan had about the upcoming MMO. We knew that the game would have story. We knew that it would have quality. From all the footage we’ve seen, we knew that the game would have everything a modern MMORPG had to have. We knew BioWare made good games and we were optimistic that they would deliver with SWTOR. What we didn’t know is whether BioWare’s inexperience in making Massively Multiplayer Online games would show when millions of users started playing the game. Will their server technology fail?
The short answer is – BioWare Won!
They handed out hundreds of thousands of beta keys. They invited everyone that applied within the last three years to test their game. My best guesstimate is that they had around one million beta testers hitting their servers at some point. Things were not 100 percent smooth, but they were 90 percent good. I tested how the whole beta went myself by going to a European server right from the start. These were hit very hard because there weren’t enough of them early on. I logged on the very minute the servers went live. It took about 10 minutes to get through the whole login procedure, but I got in and started playing. Things in game might not have been as smooth as they were when the regular game testing happened, but they were very playable. There were a lot of issues the first few hours and BioWare addressed as many as possible right away, trying to get every single player into the game. That is what beta testing is all about — discovering problems you weren’t aware of before. We had a patch of the launcher on Saturday and several more fixes in the meantime. In the end, BioWare passed the test of technology with flying colors. Now they have a good game and have the technology that will support all of its players.
Before closing this article I wanted to address one more issue. There must have been thousands, if not tens of thousands, of players that had problems during this weekend’s beta test. Based on my experience during all three days, nothing happened that was out of the ordinary. There were server disconnects and queues and login problems. All of this falls within the scope of a beta stress test. The beta was not staged so that people could fully enjoy SWTOR as a finished product. This was meant to uncover bugs that may pop up so that people may enjoy SW:TOR in December. As such, this test was a great success. Also, if they had 50,000 “unsatisfied” customers, that may seem like a huge number. In fact, that is only 5 percent out of the guesstimated 1 million testers. This is an OK number to me.
All I have to say in the end is Congratulations, BioWare. Our faith in you through all these years turned out to be justified. We are sorry we doubted you… at times ;).

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SWTOR Pre Launch Guild Program Update

Published by under Breaking News on Nov. 29. 2011.

In a email that was sent to the community this afternoon by Bioware we learned that the Pre Launch Guild Program will be ending soon, here is the details from the news post located here.

A few weeks ago we announced that Phase 3 of our Pre-Launch Guild Program had begun. Phase 3: Deployment allows guild members to see whether or not their guild qualifies for transfer into the game. As we approach Early Game Access for Star Wars™: The Old Republic™, we want to remind all of you in guilds that the Pre-Launch Guild Program will end on December 2nd, 11:59PM CST so that guilds can be assigned to servers for Early Game Access.

This is your last chance to:

Make any changes to your guild
Ensure your guild meets requirements for deployment into the game
Designate your guild’s Allies and Adversaries
Review and accept pending guild applications

So how do you ensure that your guild makes it into the game for launch? It’s simple! All you have to do is make sure at least four members of your guild have pre-ordered the game and redeemed their Pre-Order Code at our Code Redemption Center. Once you’ve done that, you can check your guild’s page within the Guild HQ to see if you have met all of the pre-designated conditions.

If your guild does not yet qualify for transfer to the game, you still have time. Visit our Pre-Order page, secure your copy of Star Wars: The Old Republic, and redeem your Pre-Order Code to help ensure that your guild makes the cut for launch!

To learn more about guilds in The Old Republic, check out the Guilds Game System page for details and visit the Guilds FAQ for answers to commonly asked questions.

*Customers who pre-order Star Wars: The Old Republic will be able to play the game before the official launch. “Early Game Access” is the period of time before the official game launch when pre-order customers may access the game. Early Game Access may be up to 5 days. The length of your Early Game Access depends on the date and order in which you redeemed your Pre-Order Code at the Code Redemption Center. See Pre-Order FAQ for more details.

**We will make reasonable efforts to ensure that qualifying guilds are imported into a server that meets your specified preferences, but we cannot make any guarantees given the anticipated volume of guilds (among other factors). All server placements therefore remain in our sole discretion. We also cannot take responsibility for technical errors or glitches that prevent your guild from importing into the game as planned. See Terms of Service for more details.

Also here from the email is the fine print that you might be interested in reading. It has some interesting insights into the how and why of the program.

* At the end of the Pre-Launch Guild Program and before your guild is deployed to The Old Republic, guilds on the website may not be altered in any way. This includes creating/disbanding guilds, adding/removing guild members, promoting/demoting guild members, adding/removing allies and adversaries, as well as changing guild’s server type, time zone, and language preference. During this period, guilds can continue posting in their public and private forums. For more details, visit the Guilds FAQ.

Customers who pre-order Star Wars™: The Old Republic™ will be able to play the game before the official launch. “Early Game Access” is the period of time before the official game launch when pre-order customers may access the game. Early Game Access may be up to 5 days. The length of your Early Game Access depends on the date and order in which you redeemed your Pre-Order Code at See Pre-Order FAQ for more details.

††We will make reasonable efforts to ensure that qualifying guilds are imported into a server that meets your specified preferences, but we cannot make any guarantees given the anticipated volume of guilds (among other factors). All server placements therefore remain in our sole discretion. We also cannot take responsibility for technical errors or system malfunctions that prevent your guild from importing into the game as planned. See Terms of Service for more details.

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BioWare and the BioWare logo are trademarks of EA International (Studio and Publishing) Ltd. EA and the EA logo are trademarks of Electronic Arts Inc. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

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Galaxy’s Most Wanted: WeekendJedi

Published by under Uncategorized on Nov. 27. 2011.

This week’s Most Wanted comes to us from the EU and has a brand spanking new baby boy to introduce to the world of Star Wars. He goes by the name WeekendJedi, but you can just call him Lee.

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Early Solo Play In TOR

Published by under Beta,beta testing,Blog,Class,Game Mechanics on Nov. 26. 2011.


With the NDA lifted in TOR, I decided to take a big hit for the team and amassed around 70 hours of play time in the past week to get a good feel for the solo game-play.


First things first. Playing solo, or mostly solo, works very well. You will be faced with challenges that will need more than one player, yet these tend to be outside your story quest lines and, as such, can be bypassed.

Also, some content can only be completed solo when you gain your first companion at around  level 8 or 9. For those wishing to be companion-free and still play solo, you are going to have a real hard time at this game. Each companion is tailored for your class needs, and as such, will hit you hard if you try and play without them by your side.


I played solo on every class apart from the Imperial Agent. I had major concerns about the cover system on both the IA and on the Smuggler. After playing the smuggler, however, I have to admit I enjoyed it greatly. Its not all about sneaking up from behind cover. You have some good AOE skills early on that makes it play different from what I expected.

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5 responses so far

SWTOR Database

Published by under Site news on Nov. 25. 2011.

Today is important for Star Wars :The Old Republic fans because today begins the biggest beta event ever held for the game. We, here at SWTOR Life, are very excited as well, because this will probably be the first time people will want to find more information about quests, datacron locations and Skill trees of their characters, and all of this information is available on our sister site SWTOR Spy. is a SWTOR Database we have been working on for the past several months. It is currently the only non-corporate, created and operated by community members and fans, SWTOR database out there. We will try to bring the information to SWTOR players in a more personal way, while providing features you would expect from a database site. The site is, just like the game, still in beta, but some sections are already fully operational.

  • Quests Database – is the flagship of our database. It will provide you not only with every step of every quest in the game, but also different choice outcomes and full screenshot walkthroughs for those hard to do quests! We have all quests on all Origin planets covered by image guides already, and a certain portion of quests all the way up to level 25.
  • Datacron locations – We provide guides with coordinates and images that will describe how to get to a particular datacron.
  • Skill Tree Calculator – a perfect way to spend your time while waiting the beta to start is to plan your character’s talent build. You can do that with our Skill Tree calculators for every class in the game
  • Companions – Our list of companions will help you determine what Crew skills you might want to take due to bonuses companions provide, or you can check out our world exclusive list of gifts every companion likes or dislikes!
  • Lore Objects – SWTOR Codex is the collector’s best friend. It lists all the interesting things you’ve encountered while exploring the Galaxy. We will help you find those hard to find entries. There are Lore Objects in the world that provide unique Code Lore entires and we give coordinates along with screenshot guides to their locations.
  • Crew Skills (beta) – Check out the list of all crew skills and which crew skills go best together. We even have a list of all the recipes and components for Crafting Crew Skills, but the functionality is still not fully operational so check back in a few days to see it in its full glory.

We have also started a Guides section that will help novice, as well as advanced, MMORPG gamers find their way, with our very own SWTORCrafter giving expert tips for crafters of all profiles.
There are many more things to come in the future, but for now, check out what we’ve already put up or just use the quick search light saber we freshly installed on SWTOR Life and you will be taken straight to relevant information.

10 responses so far

SWTOR Big Beta is Live

Published by under Beta on Nov. 25. 2011.

There was a great disturbance in the Force. It is as if hundreds of thousands gamers sighed in relief and clicked on the Login button!
The day has finaly come and EVERYONE that applied for the SWTOR beta will get to experience it. So far things are doing alright. There are a ton of servers available (as you can see from the image above). Please keep in mind that the purpose of this test is to STRESS Test the severs and not to provide you with an enjoyable gaming experience. I am starting this post in order to keep you updated about any issues that might arise and any possible solutions to these problems. Here’s a first couple:

  • There is an official Launcher Troubleshooting Guide available on the official forums
  • If your play button is grayed out please double check your email, your start date and time is likely tomorrow and not today.
  • We’re continuing to bring up more EU servers; another EN one going up soon.
  • If you are unable to load characters from a previous Weekend Test we recommend you create a new character at this time. Thanks!
  • Official SWTOR: We have now opened 3 more EU servers! We thank you as you continue to #TestSWTOR.
  • Rockjaw: If you are unable to see a server list, you probably need to re-allow SWTOR via Windows Firewall. Known issue we’re fixing.
  • Rockjaw: European folk: Yes there will be more EU servers, specifically English. Remember we’re trying to stress-test this weekend.
  • Rockjaw: Anyone with questions about servers: these are not the final numbers or distribution.
  • It takes a while for the game to load and start. Do not panic if you are “stuck” on a single screen or nothing is happening when you click the Login button on the launcher. However, waiting for more than 5-10 minutes probably means something is wrong
  • Doctordake: This must be like what an Air Traffic Control center feels like. Or a newsroom command center. Or an MMO Live team.

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Spreading the Holiday Thanks!

Published by under Role Play on Nov. 25. 2011.

((The RP XP with MJ #14))


I hope those of you relative to my time zone here in the U.S. had a spectacular Thanksgiving, and I hope those of you about to try Star Wars: The Old Republic for the first time ever during today’s launch of the Beta Stress Test Weekend have as much fun testing the game as I have.


Since I’ve been tied up with all kinds of holiday fun this week, not to mention all the holiday fun we’ll be experiencing in open–err, I mean ‘weekend‘–beta, I thought I’d make this week’s RP XP with MJ much, much shorter. In fact, I’m going to make it so short I’m not even going to write it.
I’ll be back next week with a very special edition of ((The RP XP with MJ)). Until then, good hunting out there in Betaland! And, if you see someone throw up a “LFG-RP” in General chat, it’s probably me. Come say ‘hi’… In character, of course.
Now, I’ll head out and let these guys take it from here. You’ve probably heard that RolePlayers “hear voices.” Well, sometimes we like to let ’em out. These guys, whom you might recognize, wanted to come out and say a few words about what they’re thankful for….
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4 responses so far

TOR Lore: The Shan Family

Published by under Lore on Nov. 24. 2011.

Disclaimer: This article will reveal some minor spoilers from Revan, as well as some other novels/comics that have been released regarding The Old Republic.

The Shan family has stood out as one of the most important families in the Old Republic era, with at least two members of the family playing extremely important roles in some of the biggest conflicts during their time. Known for their prodigious talent in whatever area of expertise they specialized in, the Shan family has the ability to get things done. With their tendency to be tied into the grand scheme of things, it is important to look back on what this family has contributed to the galaxy, and their members’ roles in moving the story of The Old Republic forward. Continue Reading »

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SWTOR Crafting: Crew Skill Combos & More

Published by under Beta,Crafting on Nov. 23. 2011.

In our last look at Crafting, we examined how Reverse Engineering adds a new layer of refinement to SWTOR’s crafting.  Today, we’re going to take a look at how the current skills interface with one another.  Even if you had a chance to play with an earlier revision, some changes have been introduced resulting in certain skill pairings that were not previously in place.  Fret not though, for we’re here to explain how things are implemented in the current build!


One thing to bear in mind is that, while certain Crew Skills benefit each other greatly (e.g., self-sufficient Armormech crafters would likely take Scavenging to provide their own materials), there is nothing that forces you to do so.  On the contrary, if one were so inclined, they could take 3 Gathering skills, or 3 Mission Skills.  The only limit to the system is that you can only take one Crafting Skill.  Other than that, it’s completely up to you.

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7 responses so far

Reverse Engineering: SWTOR’s Ace in the Sleeve for Crafting

Published by under Beta,Crafting,Game Mechanics on Nov. 22. 2011.

Like in other games, once you hit a certain level of crafting in SWTOR, you’ll go to your nearest Crew Skill Trainer and learn a number of new recipes.  In this regard, crafting in SWTOR hasn’t broken any new ground, but BioWare has an ace up their sleeve in this department.  Crafting has undergone a number of iterations throughout Beta, but one aspect that has crafters excited is the ability to reverse engineer our goods. There have been changes made to this mechanic as well, to expand its role in how crafters will approach their trades.

Do we have your attention yet?  Excellent.  Now here comes the fun part.

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