A few months back I started playing Star Wars: The Old Republic. I was instantly drawn to the storylines. I had not played Bioware games before, so had no expectations of the infamous “story-based games” that Bioware is so well known for. Having played WoW, SWTOR was an amazing alternative. I loved WoW when I played it, but being one that’s always more interested in the stories, I was spending more time on wowwiki reading the lore than actually playing the game. SWTOR hit my sweet spot, and I immediately immersed into the stories.
My first toon was a Sith Inquisitor. I was completely entranced by the eerie, dark mood the storyline. Then I started a Bounty Hunter, and was in awe by the completely different mood of the BT storyline. I eventually settled on a Sith Warrior as my main, finding the character suiting to my personality. I took my time to finish all four classes on the Imperial side, and then started the Republic stories. Clearly the storylines are not finished, especially some of the companion stories, but I didn’t mind. That’s the deal with MMOs, you are supposed to get more contents in subsequent updates.
However, as time goes on, things don’t look good for SWTOR. The game has lost majority of its subscribers. There have been many unplanned and inconvenient patches that took away game time. They are now going to F2P. All these are not good signs of success.
Mind you, I don’t think the game will shut down completely. They have recently successfully merged the large number of servers into a handful. With good set of small features that incents micropayments, I can see the game continue to exist indefinitely. However, without a healthy base of subscribers, I am not seeing the storylines continue to develop, at least not with the quality the base game has (i.e. the high-quality animations and voice acting, etc.). It almost feel like an untimely demise of the characters.
I am still continuing to play, trying to finish the Republic side of the story. But it sure feel gloomy these days. Bummer.