Thursday, October 30, 2014


It's a WAR shirt kind of day.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

SWTOR 3.0 Q&A with BioWare

Recently, I had the opportunity to ask BioWare some questions about the upcoming 3.0 expansion, the Shadow of Revan.  The questions were answered by Andrew Horitz and Jesse Sky.  Thanks to BioWare for taking the time to answer my questions.  I am very much looking forward to the launch of the Shadow of Revan on December 9th (December 2nd for pre-orders).

1)      Revan is the primary focus of the 3.0 expansion.  Can players expect to take him on immediately, or will the story develop over the course of the 3.x patch cycle?

3.0 is your showdown with Revan.  We wanted to close that chapter of the KOTOR book, and open it up for bigger and newer things.

2)      There are no new PvP/GSF maps included in the expansion.  Are there any plans to add them in subsequent patches?

We absolutely want to continue to support PvP content in the game, and we plan on creating more Warzones in the future. 

3)      In Rise of the Hutt Cartel a new playable race was introduced, the Cathar.  Are any being introduced in the Shadow of Revan?

No new species in 3.0, but that does not exclude us from introducing them afterwards.

4)      Anything of note going on with the Cartel Market and the new expansion?  

We have a new shipment coming, The Shadow Packs, chock full of cool new stuff that’s themed around the expansion. 

5)      Are Seeker and Macrobinocular missions making a comeback in the SoR?

We’re using the Seeker Droid and Macrobinocular gameplay mechanics in a few places where appropriate, but nothing to the extent of the mission series in Rise of the Hutt Cartel.

6)      Will 3.0 come with new housing decorations, besides the gigantic Statue of Revan?

It will – there’s a bunch of new 3.0 themed decorations going into the packs.

7)      There is some concern among the players about the new Discipline system.   They are worried that it will become too simple and cookie cutter.  How do you respond to that worry?

We think a better term is “improve.”  This is a superior system to the Skill Trees, which, fundamentally, offered you the same or less amount of meaningful diversity than the Disciplines system does.  The Disciplines system reduces unnecessary complexity.  We want to get players into the game and playing, rather than impeding them with an obsolete skill system, and the Disciplines system does that.

8)      Is there a change coming with 3.0 that you are especially excited about which isn't in the feature list?

The real change with 3.0 comes in the form of how we are treating story in our game.  We are truly excited about what we did with the story in Shadow of Revan, as it will be a jumping off point for the compelling content we plan on creating in the future.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Making Credits from PvP

I spend a lot of my time in game doing warzones in SWTOR.  While I do enjoy doing them, they are not a great way to earn credits.  This is especially true if you tend to lose a lot, which I do.  That's a topic of another post though.  The rewards from most warzones are pretty paltry.  The exception would be winning an arena match, that can net you 14k.

There are two dailies which help, but even with them  the amount of credits you earn just doesn't compete with running daillies.  Or that's what I thought.  There is a very easy way to earn a decent amount of credits from warzones.

It turns out, buying stronghold decorations with warzone commendations and selling them on the GTN is a great way to earn credits.  By doing the dallies and selling stronghold decorations you can easily earn over 100k credits a day.  It also gives you something to do with those warzones commendations if you are at the cap.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Slippery Slope

I've noticed a slightly disturbing trend with myself.  Lately,  I have been much more willing to spend my Cartel Coins.  Prior to this, I pretty much hoarded them gaining up to 11,000 coins.  Now I am down in the 5,000's with plans to spend more.

I've spent them mostly on Cartel Packs and decoration bundles.  I still need to purchase the new Republic decoration bundle, and an armor set for my Inquisitor.  So that will drop me down even more.  I find that since I started spending the coins, the idea of buying more doesn't seem all that unlikely.

I have even given thought to buying a hypercrate, something which I would have never considered a few months ago.  So I pretty much 'broke the seal' when it comes to Cartel Coins.  Oh, and I want to buy the Tatooine stronghold with Cartel Coins.  So that 5k I have saved up will quickly vanish.  I even put some Cartel Coins on my Christmas list.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Sneak Peek: Social Questing

For the last few weeks I have been working on a new projects:  Social Questing.  This is actually the next generation of Sites with Benefits.  The big difference is the new version is much more user friendly.  Social Questing is a system which lets you create quests (Twitter, Facebook, Youtube, Twitch etc) for your users to do.  They get points which they can spend in your reward store.  I put together a quick video that shows it off.

If you would like to help me beta test Social Questing, let me know!

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Cartel Pack Pricing

For the latest Cartel pack, Seneschal, BioWare decided to raise the price a bit.  Lately, they have cost 210 Cartel Coins per pack and ~4400 per hypercrate (24 packs).  The new price is 300 per pack and roughly 6500 per hypercrate.  If my math is correct, that's a 42% increase.

Eric responded to players concerns stating that the pricing is still cheaper than some previous packs which were priced around 320 cartel coins.  They were just raising the price closer to normal levels.

It is, of course, BioWare's prerogative to raise the price.  I do think it was a mistake though.  The hypercrate price especially.  With the old price, you could purchase a 5,500 Cartel Coin card for $40 and buy a hypercrate.  Now with the price above 6k, you may need to make a second purchase.  I think this will lead to less sales for them.  You want to make it as easy as possible for people to spend money.

I know I have been tempted to buy a hypercrate lately, but the new cost has done a good job in keeping me from doing that.  As for the individual pack price increase, I am less concerned.  I'll still buy a few of each.  Although, this does drop the amount a subscriber can buy with their stipend from 2 down to 1.

Has the new price affected your purchases?

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

What's wrong with me?

By all accounts, I should be all over Elite Dangerous.  I love space trading games, well I used to anyway.  ED looks like the pinnacle of that type of game.  The graphics look amazing and the scope is just crazy ( 400 billion stars!).  It also supports a solo mode, which is right up my alley.  So why aren't I playing it right now?

Honestly, I start to get excited about it, then I think of the actual gameplay.  The act of trading just looks so tedious.  Docking and flying place to place looks like it will get old real fast.  Sure, you can buy a docking computer, but you still have to fly from point A to point B.  I'm just not sure I want to spend my precious free time doing that.

They are adding mining in Beta 3, but that looks pretty tedious too.  I like making decisions and planning, not doing menial labor.  So that is the main reason I haven't jumped on the Elite Dangerous bandwagon.  It is still tempting though, and I am always just one good story away from jumping in.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Turn Up the Radio

I love that song.  Yesterday, I posted about being stuck decorating my stronghold.  Well, that pretty much cleared itself up.  When I logged in, I found my item had sold for 750,000 credits on the GTN.  Not only that,  there was a Jukebox: Stellar Hits priced at 700,000 credits.  Needless to say, I scooped that sucker up right away!

I am really happy with my purchase. Turns out it has multiple songs.  I count 3 so far, plus two of them have vocals.  I was not expecting that, as I don't remember any cantina's with singing going on.  Now that the jukebox is installed, I am going to purchase the cantina bundle off of the Cartel Market.

A while ago I spent some time raising my CZ-198 reputations so I could purchase a pair of Info Screens for my stronghold.  Last night, I finally got around to purchasing them.  I had to first make a couple of Universal Prefab MK-3's.  The end result looks pretty good I think.

While on CZ-198 I did the dailies again for extra cash.  I figured I may as well since I was there.  This was the first time I did them while spec'd as a DPS.  It was quite a bit quicker when not playing as a healer.

Finally, I tested a theory.  I purchased another Seneschal pack figuring I was sure to get a Jukebox now that I had one.  Much to my surprise, I didn't get one.  I thought for sure the RNG would have a sense of humor.

Monday, October 20, 2014

SWTOR Problems

I have to admit, I have not done too much decorating of my Stronghold lately.  The Officer's Club, which is what I have planned to do next has stalled.  This is mainly due to me missing one item: a Jukebox.  What kind of cantina does not have some music?  A pretty poor one.  It would really tie the room together. The dude abides.

The Jukeboxes are obtained through Cartel Packs, and I have not been lucky enough to get one.  They can also be bought off of the GTN, but generally run around 900k credits on my server.  I'm just not prepared to spend that much.  I did get a nice tunic, I forget the name, from a Seneschal pack which seems to sell for ~800k.  So if I manage to sell that,  I'll spend the credits on a Jukebox.

So these are the kinds of problems facing me in SWTOR right now.  It's funny what a housing system can add to the game.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Episode 13: Seneschal Packs and 12x XP

This week, a new Cartel Pack hit the market.  In the Seneschal Pack, there are a few items that look pretty attractive to me.  First is the Massive Anti-Air turret which looks amazing.  The next is the always just out of reach jukebox.  I ended up opening up 5 packs, did I get anything that I want?  During the second half of the video I talk a bit about the 12x XP bonus which came with the Shadow of Revan pre-order.

P.S.  Seneschal means:  the steward or major-domo of a medieval great house