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LucasArts and BioWare officially announced Star Wars: The Old Republic yesterday, confirming what many suspected for quite a while: that the long-time Star Wars rpg maker had plans to enter the MMORPG market and LucasArts was desperate to retry an entry into the market and needed a prestigious game company such as BioWare to make gamers listen. Well, LucasArts was right, and to prove it, the blogosphere is full of a relatively positive spin on the new game, despite the major failings of LucasArt's prior MMORPG partnership with Sony dubbed "Star Wars: Galaxies". So what makes this version any different? For starters, it's made from scratch by BioWare, a company that has excelled at making games involving the space saga and RPGs. BioWare merely has to succesfully make the leap to making a stellar massive multiplayer RPG, and BioWare would have a formula that may dethrone the famed World of Warcraft as the top dog in the multi-billion dollar MMO market. In fact, the US market alone is nearing a $2 billion area, while the Asian MMO market is fielding almost $3 billion. Due to the international appeal of the Star Wars brand name, this could truly be monumental. The Star Wars appeal truly outdoes Warcraft's in many regards: while Warcraft is well-known by gamers internationally, the sci fi is known by almost everyone in the world, gamer or not. Such an appeal could lure in new first-time massive multiplayer gamers, even in international markets. Yet, due to the failings of this game to net such a positive reaction, how can it be any different for BioWare's attempt? First, "Galaxies" attempted to pull a fast one on gamers to make a quick buck. LucasArts was not heavily involved in the game-making process, and merely handed off a license to Sony to make the game. Sony then proceeded with the horrible idea of taking a medieval MMORPG engine, that of Everquest, and quite literally in some senses, repainting over the medieval settings to look like it was Star Wars. The more humorous aspect of Galaxies was in that, despite being a "Star Wars" game, at launch there was no space battle possible, and the possibility of being a jedi was negligible, and to top it off the combat involved little skill as it mostly involved auto-attacking, what many gamers call "sandwich combat", in that you can click, set a target, begin attacking them, and then walk off to eat a sandwich while your character fights the enemy. Indeed, if "Star Wars: The Old Republic" wishes to avoid these problems, BioWare must clearly address them and show how they are different from Galaxies in that regard.

Clarke Baldwin is a journalist who has worked for Dallas Morning News and other publications. You can find his story at Star Wars The Old Republic.


Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Clarke_Baldwin

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