Star Wars: The Old Republic, Shadow of Revan Expansion

Recently, I got back into playing The Old Republic (or SWTOR) right before its latest expansion came out.  Star Wars: The Old Republic is set about 3600 years before Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope.  While the events herein are no longer canonical due to the recent acquisition of Lucasfilm by Disney (Editor’s Note: Worst. Buyout. Ever.), until the new Star Wars film comes out, this is the closest we can come.  I had hoped to get a chance to play Star Wars 1313 before it got scrapped but I am thankful that SWTOR is still coming out with new material for now.  But let’s get back to SWTOR.  This is actually the 3rd game in a series of sorts and is based off/successor to the highly successful Knight of the Old Republic series (which I plan to do a couple of retro reviews on).  Originally it was announced as the third installment in that series which would progress to an MMO.

The basic overall premise for the story is that the Galactic Republic and the Sith Empire, after decades of war are in a sort of cold war state.  You can play as either side as one of 4 classes, each of which has two advanced classes.  Not much news there right?

So what changed with the new expansion?  Besides raising the level cap to 60, a lot changed.  One major change was the removal of the old skill trees.  Now, we have new revised disciplines (you still have 3 to choose from based on your advanced class).  We also see 2 new planets which are both very well done along with a well-developed storyline.  This was something missing from the previous expansion as the Makeb storyline of the Rise of the Hutt Cartel was pretty lackluster, especially in comparison to the original storylines of SWTOR.

This expansion goes back into the Revan storyline and brings back Revan from over 300 years ago.  This is no surprise to anyone who’s had their chance to play through any of the recent high end flashpoints (Korriban, Tython, Manaan, and Rakata Prime) which were seen as a prequel to this expansion.  You also spend a lot of time interacting with the characters introduced as part of that flashpoint series.  We do get to see a new (non-playable) species in the native people of Rishi.

Some things this expansion lacks:  A new character class would have been nice to see, maybe even a new playable species or two.  “Flying” mounts would also have been a nice addition. However, I don’t think Bioware and EA want to put in the sheer enormous undertaking they would have to do for that which is too bad.  I also am not a fan of all the FTP limitations and would like Bioware to at least open more of the game up to newer players or even returning players who haven’t played in a while.  I don’t mind paying the subscription myself if I want to play, but I can understand the frustration of the game not being enjoyable once you are no longer paying (and considering some of the people I play with are on multiple MMO subscription games at once, The Old Republic can easily fall off the radar.)

Over all, this expansion is definitely worth playing for the story line alone.  However, consider that should only take you a week for anyone already level 55 and then you’re right back to the same issues SWTOR has always had, a lack of an engaging end game.  It’s certainly better than it was at launch, but I don’t see any but the most diehard Star Wars fans holding out.  Then again if you’re not into Star Wars, why are you playing this in the first place?

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~ by LibraryGamer2979 on February 17, 2015.

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