I'm shocked - I did a search and only found older threads for this upcoming MMO. And considering release is speculated at now only being a couple of months away, it's time to get ourselves ready for some Star Wars goodness!!!!! Simply put - Star Wars The Old Republic (or SWTOR from here on) is World of Warcraft, but with Star Wars. The UI is incredibly similar, the combat is incredibly similar (there are differences and I'll explain), it has the same loot concept (white/yellow/blue/purple as opposed to gray/white/green/blue/purple/gold). But there are some big differences that should make this game "hella" fun. What is the idea behind the game? This game takes place some 3,500 years before "Star Wars: Episode I the Phantom Menace". The Republic and the Imperial Empire are at war (obviously) and both have enlisted the help from The Force - the Republic with Jedis and the Empire with Siths. You choose a faction (just like in WoW) as Republic or Empire, a class, and you begin your journey. The game world progresses as your character's own story progresses as well. Sounds like WoW to me. What makes it different? Well, World of Warcraft has a very deep and rich story behind it. However, with World of Warcraft, the story is entirely optional - you can just go out and start grinding (and now doing dungeons over and over) and level up no problem, never once taking a quest. You can't do that in SWTOR - in fact, they even say it's nearly impossible. If you want to play this game, get gear, get good, and enjoy it, you HAVE to play out the storyline. The game is so heavily story-related that you have your typical "World quests" that reveal stories about the world, but also your character has their own unique "class" quest system, that tells the storyline of your character. So it's linear? Lame. Who said it's linear? The game is non-linear. Once you get your spaceship around level 10 (yup, your own spaceship) you can go to any planet you want to ... just remember that you'll probably die on most of them except for the ones in your level range. You can refuse quests or take as many as you want - it's up to you. Okay. What classes are there? Glad you asked. Each side has a mirror class, more or less. Jedi Knight / Sith Warrior [*]Jedi Consular / Seth Inquisitor [*]Smuggler / Bounty Hunter [*]Trooper / Imperial Agent In World of Warcraft, once you've chosen your class and reach a certain level, you can pick one of three "tech-trees" to advance the skills of your character. Example being instead of just being a "Hunter" you can be a "Hunter Marksman" or a "Hunter Beastmaster", all based on the tech-tree you select. The same goes for SWTOR, only they actually call it picking a "second-class". Jedi Knight = Guardian (Tank) / Sentinel (DPS) Sith Warrior = Juggernaut (Tank) / Marauder (DPS) Jedi Consular = Sage (DPS/Heals) / Shadow (DPS) Sith Inquisitor = Assassin (DPS) / Sorceror (DPS/Heals) Smuggler = Gunslinger (DPS) / Scoundral (DPS) Bounty Hunter = Powertech (DPS) / Mercenary (DPS) Trooper = Vanguard (DPS) / Commando (DPS) Imperial Agent = Operative (DPS/Heals) / Sniper (DPS) It's important to note that all classes will have abilities to heal, I just listed some of the more "primary roles" that each extra class will have. Is this another one of those stupid "have to group" games? Grouping with other players is suggested and preferred, but actually no, you don't have to. As you progress through the game, you're given companions that automatically follow you and become part of your personal story. They can fight in battle with you (each have their own class), they can grow to love you or hate you based on the decisions you make in the game, they can even go out and gather materials for you to craft from, or even just craft them for you! They level up with you and get stronger as you do (though they are useless in endgame content, so says BioWare). I want to be a Jedi and wield a lightsaber and go kill stuff. Can I? You can pick one of the two Jedi classes (Knight/Consular) and eventually get your lightsaber (via a class storyline quest) and then go do whatever you want. Obviously you're a "good guy" so you can't go too evil, but apparently if you choose enough storyline options that have you more aligned to the "dark side" of the force, apparently you will be able to wield a lightsaber with a red crystal (ie: a red lightsaber). Same for the Sith side for those who want to be the most good evil guy ever. Is this another game where you attack something and can read a book while your character auto-attacks? Yes and no. The character will automatically stay in battle as you fight, and the fighting is slowed down a little bit from the other MMO's on the market, but what makes SWTOR unique is the number of animations they have for each movie - anywhere from 6 to 20 different "animations" depending on what you're fighting, what you're fighting with, status effects, etc. And for those pesky lightsaber on lightsaber battles ... yes, they incorporated a lot of "lightsaber blockings/cool moves" for those epic battles. Is there PvP? There will be three types of servers (just like WoW) ... PvP/PvE/RP. A PvP server means any planet that is neutral is fair game, and there's nothing to stop high levels from ganking lower level players. In PvE/RP servers, you will have a PvP switch you can toggle on/off depending on what you feel like doing. Some areas in PvE worlds will still be forceful PvP, as well as many PvP arenas (just like in WoW). Other random notes - Auction House accessable through your spaceship - All voice acting. No text. - Pets - Green/Blue/Yellow/Red/Purple lightsabers - Various colors for blasters - A ton of armor looks (including the ability to change the armor colors to match your chest piece) - Imagine WoW, now imagine that it's Star Wars themed, and throw in some extra goodies, and you have SWTOR You can pre-order the game now (Collectors Edition or Regular Edition) to get some cool extras (including early access, aka, "stress test weekends"). www.swtor.com Discuss!