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Forum Friday: The Appearance Post

Published by under speculation on Apr. 01. 2011.

If you ever visit the Official Swtor Forums, you know that there are many, many discussions going on relating to what is known and what is still unknown in relation to the game. We all see these posts and probably even read some of the pages to see what everyone is talking about. One that I find interesting is a discussion on the General Forums talking about The Appearance Tab.


What this post, started by member Horeon, is about is whether or not there will be a system in place similar to the Outfit system currently used in Lotro and other games. This post deals mostly in how it works in relation to the PVP system in the game. Here is the original post:

Question: With the appearance tab we have two groups of players: Those who are well informed about the enemy’s weaknesses and those who are practically going blind. How will the a-tab manage to overcome such a serious and very important PvP issue?

For a person to “gimp” himself by using the a-tab system (keep it on during pvp), it means he will be able to see the a-tabs of ALL the players he encounters in his screen.

If the opposing team does not use a-tabs (which means have the a-tab off and thus see their opponents’ actual gear), then they will -by default- show their actual gear.

So in this case you have:

A-team: uses a-tab, sees all players’ a-tabs of those who have a-tabs on
B-team: doesn’t use a-tab, sees everyone’s actual gear and at the same time they show their actual gear.

This means that even though A-team chooses to see their opponents in the “wrong” gear, the opponents simply cannot be wearing it, unless they, too, choose to see their opponents “wrong gear”. Through this, it is impossible to hide your own gear, without hiding that of others. This completely solves the presented PvP “issue” of recognition and gear-identification.

I would love to see an appearance mechanic worked into Swtor. Just for those times you want to pull a Princess Leia and make everyone think you are a Bounty Hunter looking to claim a reward for the mark on a certain Wookie. It goes with the Universe. Not everyone is who you think they are or what they appear.


In regards to the forum post, most of the discussion is about its implementation in a PVP setting. In PVP, if using this system, how do you tell what class you are going up against to prepare yourself for the fight? Couldn’t the system be abused by some to give the false impression of being a certain class but in fact be another, thus trying to initially tip the outcome of the fight in their favor? sure it could and would most definitely.


This isn’t another character sheet to give you more gear options or anything like that. It is a feature that would let you keep the cosmetic look of gear that you find appealing on your character, while still being able to use better gear for stats and other features that outweigh the look of what you are showing everyone else.


Personally, even though I highly approve of the system itself, I don’t think it should ever be allowed in a PVP setting just because of those that would go out of their way to abuse it for their gain. For a game of this setting though, I think there should be something in place in case you want to look like how you want AND still PVP at the same time.


I’d like something to to make it so that you see your appearance look on your screen, but others could see you in the natural state of what your class is and what you are really wearing/equipped with. Exactly what is also stated in the thread:

We don’t want to look unique – we simply want to decide how we look.

We don’t want to appear with sexy sleeveless shirts while in fact we are wearing massive armor – we want limitations based on class.

We don’t want to enforce the appearance tab – we want everyone to be happy, so if you don’t like them, there should be a toggle available.

We don’t want people posting in this thread without reading the entire OP.

I think most people agree that an appearance tab on the Character Sheet would add massively to what already looks to be a huge game as is. Add another Appearance Tab to the Companion, and you would truly have something. Find the way to have it in PVP without it giving advantage to either side and I think you have a winner.


Forum Friday is a new weekly posting regarding the posts from the Official Swtor Forums. If you find a post you find interesting and would like to see it discussed here, then Contact Swtor Life with your idea.


5 responses so far

5 Responses to “Forum Friday: The Appearance Post”

  1. swtorcrafteron 01 Apr 2011 at 2:04 pm

    Great article Boruk, nice job. I think this will be a great feature to look forward to on Fridays I am all for it.

    I love the appearance tab in lotro its a very easy way to solve the “I dont want to look stupid about having mismatched gear, but I want to wear the best items and they don’t match” problem.

    However if it stayed up when you went into pvp I could see how that would be a problem for the people you are facing. Honestly though I think the OP of that post goes into way more complexity than is necessary.

    It’s really a very simple fix if the developers would do it. Have an appearance system in game like or similar to lotro, and when you go into a pvp zone or engage in pvp your character gets flagged internally and the coding of the game auto switches you off of the appearance tab and shows your real gear tab.

    Until such a time as you either leave the pvp zone or end combat with others, at that time allowing you the ability to have your appearance tab take over again if you wish and you have your customized look back.

    As far as I am concerned the appearance tab solves a lot of issues people have with their characters and personalization so I think they are a smart move for developers to add to a game.

    But, adding complexity for complexities sake? I don’t think its necessary.

    Keep up the great work! 🙂

  2. BorukBHon 02 Apr 2011 at 2:03 pm

    The only issue with how Lotro does their system, is that their PVP area is instanced so as you log in it disables the feature.

    Depending on how Bioware does their server rule-sets, I don’t believe it will work in their game.

    I have agree with you though that the appearance system is a great thing and hope it gets into the game.

  3. Seonon 03 Apr 2011 at 6:15 pm

    First of all I would like to thank the person who picked tha a-tab thread for Forum Friday. Its a support that is uplifting enough to help us keep discussing the subject. Just a heads up though, there is more in that post than shown in the article. There are a number of suggestions that offer a more elaborate description of a “fix” for including a-tab in PvE as well as in PvP. Its to give the player the option to disable or enable the feature client-side on their own free will. If people want to pvp in a-tab gear or not they should be able to do it on their own personal space on their screen.

  4. BorukBHon 04 Apr 2011 at 12:53 am

    Seon, I actually read that post a lot as I support parts of both sides of the argument. In my post, I mention my thing about its use in PVP, in that as long as it doesn’t give a side the an advantage, then I would have no problem with its use. Thanks for the support!

  5. […] last week I delved into the General Forum and brought you a glimpse into the Appearance tab discussion. This week I am doing something a little different and bringing you not just one forum post but […]