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Monday Musings: Barsen’… Wha?

Another week has gone by, and once again I’ve failed to produce anything but a Monday Musings post. I like writing them, so I’m not complaining too much, but I’ve got 19 posts in my drafts area that I can seem to finish. I think my next blog project is going to be nothing but half written posts. I’ll get the post to a certain point, and then say screw it and hit publish.

Truth is between I’ve been so busy leveling my Consular that I haven’t taken the time to blog. Seriously I’ve been going at it like the game was just released or something.

A couple that I’ve started here are nearly done, so maybe if you check back later this week you’ll find a post on that amazing companion gear, and Patch 3.2 and the mysterious Outfit Designer. For now let me catch you up on my previous week.

  • I didn’t get my Sage to 60, but I did get her to Rishi. If you recall I was last on Belsavis, so that means I cleared Voss, Corellia and Makeb as well as the Shadow of Revan prelude. Not a bad week.
  • You can go to Makeb at level 47, which I hit while I was on Voss. I decided to finish Voss, and then move onto Corellia. It doesn’t make any sense not to finish the class story. That might be an interesting experiment though.
  • I did the entire first zone in Corellia and then just focused on the class story after that. I was hoping it would be enough to get me to level 50, but it wasn’t.
  • My main reason for moving on is that I was under geared for Corellia and didn’t want that struggle of barely surviving fights. I really wanted to get the bolster.
  • Makeb went by much faster than I ever remembered. It’s probably because I’ve played through it so much now that I know exactly when and where to go. I was pleasantly surprised by the speed at which it went.
  • Once you get to Makeb I feel that you’re home free as far leveling. By that I mean everything is in place to keep you geared well enough to get to 60.
  • One thing I realized is that the awesome companion gear that I want to write about can be equipped at level 55. That’s right, I have leveling companion in full 192 gear including main and off-hand. Unbelievable, and most welcome.
  • I also realized that you can equip the level 186 trinkets at 56. Another nice DPS boost for my character.
  • One thing I did while leveling was choose Basic Comms as rewards almost every time they were offered. By the time I hit 60 I should have close to 1000 comms which will buy a lot of basic gear right away.
  • When buying basic gear always remember to get the Earpiece and Implants first. There aren’t moddable so can’t use other character’s comms to buy other pieces. I made that mistake once and had to unnecessarily grind out comms on one of my characters.
  • I completed the Consular personal story on Rishi. I’m going to rank this one near the top. The only one I haven’t done yet is the Smuggler.
  • I’ll try and keep things spoiler free here, but I did want to point out a few things that I liked about the story.
  • First was the character you work with on the quest. He’s new, and he’s a species that you don’t encounter much in SWTOR. He also reminds me a little of Paul Giamatti, or a least a character that he could play.
  • The other thing I liked about the story is that it tried to give more significance to my character in terms of her history in the Jedi Order.
  • Being named Barsen’thor was supposed to do that, but I have to admit I didn’t feel that special after getting the title.
  • I get that my character is only the third in the history of the Jedi Order to receive it, but we don’t learn much about the other two, or what it really means. Being named Barsen’thor didn’t feel that special to me.
  • I was more excited when my character became a Knight and then a Master. Those are titles I understand. Those have meaning. Those were titles I expected to get on my journey.
  • With Barsen’thor I felt like I was being trolled a little by the Jedi Council. It didn’t feel epic to me. The personal story made me feel a little more special.
  • Well that’s it for this Monday. Shorter than normal, I know, but hey that gives me time to maybe write something else.

May the Force Be With You!

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Monday Musings: I’ll Save You, but First…

I’ve been focusing on leveling up my Sage. She’s currently level 43 and working her way through that god awful maze know as Belsavis.

  • I get that Belsavis is a prison and designed to keep people in, but c’mon. No matter how many times I quest there I still get lost or trapped.
  • I’ll be done with it soon, and I’m quickly approaching an important decision point. At level 47 you can go to Makeb and level there.
  • I absolutely plan to finish the Consular story. The question is how much time do I want to spend doing the planetary story and side quests?
  • I’m pretty sure I’ll hit 47 on Voss. After Voss it’s just Corellia.
  • The nice thing about Makeb is the bolster. I don’t have to worry about gear. I’m worried that if I go there too soon, I won’t be level 55 when I’m done with all the quests. Still, once I get to Makeb I won’t have to worry about upgrading gear anymore. The Shadow of Revan prelude and expansion itself will get me everything I need to get to 60.
  • That’s the one thing I hate about leveling. I have to stop and take time to upgrade my gear periodically.
  • It’s this unnatural break in the process. I just want to continue saving the galaxy, but I can’t do it with crappy gear.
  • I don’t upgrade at every level. I did that one time when I leveled my Jedi Knight. Every other level I equipped him with prototype quality armoring, mods and enhancements. Never doing that again.
  • I know I need to upgrade my gear when NPCs are too hard to kill, and I’m too easy to kill. Also Voss. The difficulty on Voss seems to ramp up, and I always find it necessary to upgrade when I get there.
  • I find that common quality armoring, mods and enhancements are enough to get me by. I just hate having to stop and craft them.
  • Luckily I’m a pack rat and have piles of low level mats hanging around. I usually find there’s one level where I don’t have enough and have to buy them, which can be expensive.
  • I think it’s usually grade 4 or 5 that I’m lacking. Once I get to the grade above that I usually have tons and tons of those mats. Anything that was gathered at level 50 or 55 I’m swimming in.
  • I’m of course using XP boosts to level. I hate wasting them, and every now and then I reach a point where I feel I need to upgrade my gear, but I have an XP boost going.
  • If I’ve stretched my gear too far, I have to bite the bullet and craft while I have the XP boost running. My Sage is a Cybertech and crafts my armoring and mods.
  • It’s start crafting, logout, wait, and log back in, and try to conserve as much of the XP boost as I can.
  • I think I’ve stated before that the Consular story is my least favorite. Playing through it a second time, I’ve come to appreciate it a bit more.
  • I especially like the Consular’s companions. Therax, Zenith, Iresso and Nadia are quickly becoming four of my favorites.
  • I like Zenith because I believe he is voiced by the same actor who does Theron Shan. He masks his voice well, but you can definitely hear Theron coming through.
  • I like Iresso because he sounds a lot like Agent Fauler from the Tatooine planetary story, and I always thought that Fauler would make a great companion.
  • Therax has a real Neil Patrick Harris vibe going on. I also think the whole Holiday hologram is a clever aspect to his character.
  • Nadia is my second favorite Force using companion, with Kira Carsen being my first.
  • I’m trying to have a bit of fun leveling this time around. I want to get to 60 fast, but I don’t feel a need to rush through everything.
  • When I got to Hoth, I took the time to outfit my character in Thermal Retention gear. It’s part of my collection and I think I got it for almost nothing during one of those Cartel fire sales.
  • If there’s one feature that needs some improvement it’s the Collection UI.
  • Was it really that hard to build a search function?
  • Was it really that hard to allow you to filter by items in your collection?
  • I’m half tempted to create a spreadsheet to track what I have in my collection, because having to remember which pack something came in and click through page after page is beyond tedious.
  • While I’m thinking about features, the GTN really needs to put companion gifts in their own category and subcategory. Category would be Companion gifts, and subcategory would be rank.
  • One thing I won’t complain about is the free skills training. If you aren’t aware this also applies to the speeder piloting skills. There’s no reason not to pay for Speeder Piloting I at level 10, but I would hold off on purchasing the other two since you can get them for free. Yes, the Legacy allows you to get II and III five levels earlier, but I find that leveling is fast enough that it’s better to wait and get them for free. I like free.
  • Anyway it was fun to get my RP on when I got to Hoth. The only thing I wish I had done was shell out the 1.5 million credits for a Tundra Tauntaun. Still fun to play the part though.
  • I imagine that by this time next week I’ll have hit 60 on my Sage. If that happens you’ll hear about it in my next Monday Musings.
  • Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to go break myself out of prison.

May the Force Be With You!

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The Gree are Back!

The Gree event is starting today, and will run until March 3rd. I like this event for a couple of reasons. First, I get to spend time on Illum one of the most beautiful planets in the game. Second, it offers some incredible rewards. I got the Cyan Sphere during the Lifeday event, so I won’t be pursuing a mount this week.

Nope, my goal for this week will be to pick up one or two legacy off-hands, and a light saber.

They’re the only items which I don’t have a legacy item to pass around mods, enhancements, etc. I figure I’ll need 34 relics for a main hand and two off hands. I’ve got eight characters and seven days to work with. Oh, and I should be able to finish off my Gree rep. It’s going to be a busy week.

What are your Gree goals?

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Monday Musings: Sage Advice

With the double XP weekend long gone, I decide to reroll my Jedi Consular and start from level one.

  • The Jedi Consular I got to 60 last weekend is a Shadow, and I don’t like it.
  • I knew that going Shadow would be a risk, but I really wanted to try something different. I did this knowing that I usually don’t like melee and DOT classes.
  • My Shadow is Serenity which isn’t terrible, but try as I might, I just don’t enjoy playing it.
  • My Lightning Sorcerer is my second favorite Advanced class, so you can imagine how I might enjoy a Telekinetics Sage.
  • WTB ADVANCED CLASS CHANGE!
  • If I could change Advanced Classes without having to reroll I would do it in a heartbeat.
  • I’d pay real money to have that capability.
  • I don’t think we’ll ever see Advanced Class changes make it to the game.
  • If BioWare was going to introduce that as a feature, they would have made it part of the Discipline changes they rolled out in Shadow of Revan.
  • It would still be nice if it were a feature though, but one that would need restrictions.
  • The ability to change Advanced Classes at will would be stupid. It would negate the need to have Advanced Classes altogether. It would be like having a class with five disciplines.
  • It would be very confusing to new players and, depending on the class, confusing this old player as well.
  • I like having the Advanced Class choice be meaningful, but sometimes you make a mistake and it would be nice to correct it easily.
  • I’d put a six month cooldown per toon, and I’d charge a lot for it. At least $25.00 worth of coins.
  • I would also make it so that all it does is change your Advanced Class and give you the default items that you receive when first choose your Advanced Class.
  • That’s it. You’re on your own for getting gear and whatever else you need.
  • Since there is no Advanced Class change in the game, I was forced to create a new character if I wanted a Sage, and I wanted a Sage.
  • My Sage is about to ding level 20, and is working her way through Taris.
  • Ugh. Taris.
  • Did I mention the Consular story is my least favorite?
  • I hate that I will have played through this story twice, while only playing the Trooper and Imperial Agent stories once. Those are two of my favorites.
  • I’ve done the Bounty Hunter, Jedi Knight, and Sith Inquisitor twice.
  • The Jedi Knight and Sith Inquisitor stories are my two favorites. The Consular is definitely my least favorite.
  • It’s been a while since I truly leveled a character from scratch where I didn’t have much for bonuses.
  • I’m using XP boosts plus the 10% guild boost. It’s obviously nothing compared to the 12x XP. That’s another feature I’d pay money for.
  • The goal of leveling these days is either to experience the class story, or get to the end-game ASAP.
  • With two level cap expansions, the original game is no longer the focus of players.
  • I do like that fact that if you choose not use XP boosts or join a guild, or use Treek or HK, you can experience the leveling just as it was when the game launched. I have no desire to do this, but it’s nice to know that you could.
  • Despite it not be a double XP weekend, there were a lot of players still leveling toons.
  • PROTIP: Most planets will have more than one active instance. If you happen to be on an instance with a lot of players consider switching. Much nicer playing on an instance with 20 people versus 150.
  • I decided to go down the path of the Dark Side this time. I don’t like it. Being a Dark Side Consular not about being evil or even Sith like. There’s no style to it at all. My Dark Side Inquisitor was deliciously evil. My Consular is just a dick. I don’t think I’ll see the Dark Side through on this one.
  • I picked up Treek right away. Holy Hell is she overpowered.
  • She and I breezed through the Esseles flashpoint. I was surprised to realize that it was the first time I’d ever done that flashpoint. Very high quality stuff there.
  • Treek makes soloing some of the Heroic 4 missions feasible at level.
  • For class missions and story I use Qyzen, and for everything else Treek.
  • I’ve also been using Treek as tank, and not a healer. Still very much OP right now.
  • Level 12 for the Consular is a seminal moment. It’s when you get Forcequake. I liken this to Vanilla WoW when you got your first pet as Hunter at level 10.
  • Forcequake + Treek = AMAZING.
  • Eventually I’ll have to upgrade Treek’s gear to keep up, but for now she’s doing just fine.
  • Upgrading gear is one of things I truly hate about leveling.
  • WTB MAKEB BOLSTER ON ALL THE PLANETS!
  • I think that would be awesome and make for a much smoother leveling experience.
  • As it is now, I’m stopping to craft mods and enhancements so that I have decent gear to work with.
  • By the way, low level +41 stat crystals are awesome.
  • I’ll probably outfit this Consular in Shatele San’s armor. I broke down and added it to my collection.
  • I’m happy to say that I made back the 7 million credits and then some that I spent on the armor last weekend.
  • Well, time to trudge through Taris.

May the Force Be With You!

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Manaan, Manaan Doot-Doot-Do-Do-Do

In the latest Producer’s Roadmap 2015 it was mentioned that another stronghold is planned for later this year. This got me thinking about a couple of things. First, where will this new stronghold be, and second where would I like to live?

If I were a gambling man I would lay all my Sabacc cards on the table and bet that the new stronghold will be on Alderaan. It’s the most neutral of the planets in the game. It’s where the Treaty of Coruscant was signed, and it hasn’t been ravaged by the Empire or the Republic. As a long-term investment property to hand down to future generations Alderaan is not ideal, but there are arguably some beautiful places that one could live there for now.

Despite that fact that it’s doomed for destruction it’s a just a better choice for a stronghold that the rest of the core worlds. Sure the real estate prices on Corellia are great if you’re a buyer willing to hold onto it while you wait for a post war boon, but as a place to live today? I’d rather be chained to a Hutt and live in one of their palaces.

Balmorra is equally bad as Corellia. Belsavis is a prison. Taris is full of Rakghouls. Hoth and Illum are too cold for my tastes. Although Illum is a damn beautiful planet. You might be able to talk me into buying a winter getaway there.

Quesh is toxic. Hutta is full of Hutts, although owning Hutt palace would be cool. We just bombed the crap out of Korriban and Tython so those are out.

I just think Alderaan is it. That said, i’m not sure Alderaan is attractive enough to make me want to shutdown one of my other strongholds and go live there. I’ll reserve final judgement once I know exactly what the next stronghold will be.

Now if it were up to me, and sadly it is not, I would choose to live on Manaan. It’s one of my favorite planets in the game. It’s so peaceful and relaxing. Everything looks clean, the music is soothing. The fountains are beautiful. It’s just a wonderful place, and one where I would love to chill after a hard day of slaughtering the galaxy’s denizens. Granted every time I hear a Selkath speak I want to drive a pencil through my eardrums, but they wouldn’t be part of the stronghold.

I’m imagining a three tiered, circular over the water stronghold with an enclosed upper level with lots of windows, a 360 degree balcony, and an underwater aquarium level with giant windows so you could watch the incredible sea life. I’d spend all my free time there.

I think the next stronghold will be Alderaan, but I’d pay handsomely for Manaan.

Where would you like to live next?

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Monday Musings: Lonely Hearts Club

Double XP meant double the fun this weekend as I got both my Smuggler and Jedi Counselor to level 60.

  • This is now eight level 60 characters, one of each class for the Empire and the Republic.
  • I have a Powertech, and Inquisitor at level 55, but outside of Crew Skills, there’s no real need for me to level them up.
  • I guess BioWare figures a lot of the playerbase are single and available since they released double XP on Valentines weekend?
  • As if double XP wasn’t enough to keep us occupied, they also brought back Bounty week.
  • They must really think we’re lonely.
  • I enjoyed the double XP, although it’s not as good at 12x XP.
  • If it were up to me I would replace double XP weekends  with 12x XP weekends.
  • If it had been a 12x XP weekend I  would have leveled characters below level 55. Double XP was not enough incentive for me to do that.
  • I’d also like to see them add a GSI bolster to all the planets like they did on Makeb.
  • One of the things I hate about leveling lower toons is that you have to keep them geared or you’ll get your butt handed to you.
  • Whenever there’s accelerated XP gains, your gear becomes obsolete faster. It’d be nice not to have to fuss with that as you level.
  • Let’s face it, with two level cap increases the original game is no more. This is not unique to SWTOR. WoW suffered a similar fate.
  • Players need a means to get to level 60 quickly, and have fun doing it.
  • 12x XP and planetary bolsters are the way to go.
  • Now that I have eight level 60s, I don’t know what I’m going to do with all of these characters.
  • I’ve taken a very casual approach to the game this time around. I’ve only set foot in an Operation once, and haven’t run any hard mode flashpoints yet.
  • I know why I haven’t done the Ops. I don’t have time in my schedule to commit to it.
  • I’m not sure why I haven’t done the flashpoints though. Part of it is I’ve heard they’re hard, and the other part is I play DPS and don’t like the long queue waits.
  • I assume the queues are still long for DPS. I can’t say for sure since I haven’t queued for anything yet.
  • I really would like to start collecting elite comms and getting the 192 gear though. Maybe this week I’ll give the HM FPs a go.
  • Since I’m not running Ops or FPs, I’ve been mostly running Yavin IV dailies and working on crew skills.
  • I’ve got all the crafting professions to 500 except Cybertech.
  • I’ve got all the missions up to 500 except for Investigation.
  • I have all of the gathering skills to 500 as well.
  • I’m not very balanced with my Crew Skills though. I have too much redundancy with gathering, and not enough coverage with the mission skills.
  • I’d like to drop some gathering for mission skills so I can better my chances of getting grade 11 artifacts.
  • It’s funny, I never realized how ridiculously over powered that slot machine was until I started crafting items that used grade 11 artifacts.
  • How the slot machine ever made it to the live game in that state is beyond me.
  • I’ve been playing the GTN a lot more this expansion.
  • I sold a few steady items in Rise of the Hutt Cartel, but now I’m branching out.
  • When you don’t run Ops and FPs, you have a lot of time to craft and sell stuff.
  • I currently have more credits than I need, but less credits than I want.
  • My goal is to have 100 million credits on hand.
  • There’s no reason to have 100 million credits, other than to tell people you have 100 millions credits.
  • I hope to be able to tell you that one day.
  • As of a few hours ago I was more than half way to that goal with 53.6 million credits in hand, but then I bought stuff.
  • Specifically I bought Satele Shan’s armor set for my Jedi Counselor.
  • You can get the belt, gloves and pants for almost nothing.
  • The chest and the boots on the other hand…
  • It was 2,800,000 for the chest and 4,500,000 for the boots.
  • I’m feeling a little better about the purchase today. When I checked the GTN this morning there was one chest selling for over 5 million, and no boots for sale.
  • Those are pretty sweet boots though, and those alone might make this worth adding to my account collection.
  • You can add Satele’s armor to the list of uncreative outfits I’ve acquired for my characters. Smuggler – Interstellar Privateer. Jedi – Humble Heroes (i.e., the Luke Skywalker RotJ outfit). Bounty Hunter – Shae Vizla. Sith Warrior – Reaver’s (i.e., Darth Marr like). Sith Inquisitor – Thana Vesh. Anyway, you get the idea.
  • I have made 2 million in sales since buying the set. Like I said when you don’t run FPs or Ops you have a lot of time to craft and sell stuff.
  • I’m now leveraging Biochem, Slicing, Armortech and Synthweaving to craft and sell stuff.
  • I need to take a break from crafting to finish the Revan story on my Smugger and Jedi Counselor.
  • I haven’t gotten to their personal story lines yet, and I can’t wait for that.
  • That’s the one thing that makes repeating the Revan story worthwhile.
  • I’ll have more to say on the Revan story, but I like the Empire’s version better.
  • I really like Darth Marr, and I felt the Republic treated him like crap.
  • Overall I thought the Republic was far more distrusting of the Empire.
  • Satele Shan, who is Marr’s  counterpart was treated with much more respect in the Empire’s version of the story.
  • I liked the Revan story better than the Makeb story, but I thought the Makeb story was done better.
  • Without giving too much away, Makeb was two parallel stories surrounding the same circumstances.
  • Revan is just one story with a version for the Empire and the Republic.
  • It’s up to you to decide which version of the events really happened. There’s no way for both to have occurred.
  • I’m choosing to believe the Empire’s version, because I liked it better.
  • I though the ending of the Revan fight was told better on the Empire’s side than it was on the Republic’s.
  • I didn’t think I had and Imperial bias, but perhaps I do.
  • I know there have been other stories where the Republic and Empire have the same story. The recent Dread Masters storyline comes to mind. Still I prefer the way they did Makeb and wish they would do that for these major stories.
  • I get that it would suck if only one faction got to face off against Revan. Having two different Hutt villains worked, but two different Revans? Actually…
  • I also don’t care for these the enemy of my enemy is my friend stories. It’s okay once in a while, but I much prefer it when the Republic and Empire are fighting one another. We need to get back to more of that.
  • Given how Revan ended, we may have to wait a little bit until that happens, but I’m hopeful they’ll be back to mortal enemies before too long.
  • Well that’s the end of this story for now.

May the Force Be With You!

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Double XP Time!

It’s a double XP weekend, starting today at 10 a.m. PST (1 p.m. EST). It’s scheduled to last until February 16th at 12 a.m. PST (3 a.m. EST). Here in the U.S., Monday is a holiday, so it would have been nice if they chose to end it on February 17th. It should still be enough time for me to accomplish my goals which are Smugger from 57-60, Jedi Counselor from 55-60, and Bounty Hunter from 55-60. If I’m not completely burned out by then I may squeeze in a Sith Inquisitor from 55-60.

That will just leave a Jedi Knight sitting at level 44. I’d love to finish her off, but going from 55-60 is a much more manageable affair than 44-60.

As always you can supplement the double XP with an XP boost. On the Shadowlands server the Major XP Boosts are selling for 90K at the low end. The Minor XP boosts sell for around 21K at the low end.

If you don’t want to shell out all those credits you should consider getting some Class Mission XP boosts. The prelude to Revan the main Rishi and Yavin quests are considered class missions. You won’t get the boost for killing stuff or doing side quests, but you will for the main missions. It’s a cheap alternative to that all encompassing XP boosts.

I’ll update on Twitter if/when I level any of these guys up. Almost time to rock ‘n roll here.

What are your plans for this double XP extravaganza?

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Roadmap 2015 Update

Remember the other day when I wrote about the SWTOR 2015 Roadmap and I said the following,

“Patch 3.2, which I mentioned is slated for April 28th is introducing the Outfit Designer and a continuing story arc on the planet Ziost. Sounds like a pretty major update to me, but April is not Summer.”

What was it that Han Solo once said? Oh yeah, “You know, sometimes I amaze even myself.” It turns out that Ziost is one of the two major updates that was talked about, and it is indeed targeted for April 28th, which of course is Spring and not Summer.

 Eric Musco

Hey folks,

Did some double and double-double checking. Ziost is indeed one of those big updates and it is currently targeting a spring release. The note of the first update being in the Summer was in error. I let my main man Tait know and he will get it updated shortly. Thanks for the heads up on the discrepancy, good catch!

-eric

I’m glad that Eric went an clarified this because I felt like the distinction between expansion, major update, and simple patch was clear as mud. I think I get it now though. Maybe.

Now we just need some details on that Outfit Designer.

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SWTOR 2015 Roadmap

EDIT: In the Stronghold section I mentioned that I thought we could have five active Strongholds. That’s not correct. We can have four as noted by my astute readers and this statement from Eric Musco back in July. Sorry for the mess.

I meant to post this two weeks ago, but you know – busy. During the PAX South Cantina Tour there was a reading of Bruce Maclean’s upcoming Producer letter which highlighted key features coming to SWTOR in 2015. All of it subject to change by the way.

Apparently not everyone has seen or read a transcript of the letter, and this has led to some folks having delusions of grandeur on what to expect in 2015.

Shintar from Going Commando took the time to explain why swtor probably won’t have two expansions this year. Not to spoil too much of what she wrote, but the reason why is because they never said that there were two expansions coming.

Remember, rumors are the path to the darkside. Rumors lead to false promises. False promises lead to broken promises. Broken promises lead to nerd rage.

Youtuber Physics Mcawesome (I don’t make names folks), posted a video of the letter being read so you can see first hand what’s being “promised”. Please watch the video, and let’s talk about what’s coming to SWTOR in 2015.

SWTOR Bruce Maclean 2015 letter

A New Stronghold

Galactic Strongholds was released right around the time I was easing back into World of Warcraft so I haven’t spent much time with it. I own one of each stronghold, but I haven’t done any sort of decorating. Right now they serve as a more convenient version of my ships. I setup my Dromund Kaas apartment and Tatooine estate with a mailbox, cargo hold, legacy storage, and GTN kiosk in close proximity to one another.

I’ve unlocked a few rooms, hung a few paintings, and acquired an enormous appreciation for the folks whose job it is setup the world environments in the Old Republic. That’s a post for another day though.

I really like the strongholds, but find them overwhelming, and thus I’ve been hesitant to invest any real time with them. That said, I’d be happy to own another one, and if my math is correct we’re able to have five active strongholds, and this would be number five, so no need to deactivate one.

New Species Torgruta

That’s right, we’re getting a new playable species later this year. I’m betting they’ll do the same thing they did with Cathar and it will be a Cartel Market unlock.

I wasn’t a big fan of Cathar, and I’m not that excited about Torgrutas. Ashara Zavros is a Torgruta and she’s my least favorite companion. I would have much preferred Nautolans as a playable species.

Still I’m glad to see them go with a more alien looking species this time. It’s definitely an improvement over human, blue human, green human, red human, pale human, spikey human, blind human, robot human, and Twi’lek that launched with the game.

Outfit Designer

This featured is targeted for patch 3.2 which they plan to release on April 28th (subject to change of course). No details have been provided on this feature, and I think it behooves BioWare to give the community some information before speculation runs out of control.

It’d be a shame to convince yourself it’s going to be transmogrification like system, only to find out it’s an equipment manager. I’ll be more than happy to speculate, but I’ll keep my expectations in check until I hear something official.

Major Updates and Story

There was mention of two major updates, one in the Summer and one at the end of the year. I have no idea what defines a major update. Part of me wants to think it’s something along the lines of Galactic Starfighter or Galactic Strongholds. Another part of me wants to thinks it’s a patch that introduces a new Operation and new levels of gear and more story.

Patch 3.2, which I mentioned is slated for April 28th is introducing the Outfit Designer and a continuing story arc on the planet Ziost. Sounds like a pretty major update to me, but April is not Summer.

I’m hoping BioWare will publish the letter this week along with more details on what to expect. I’ll be writing about some of these features in more detail this week, so stay tuned.

crystalclear1

It’s Crystal Clear to Me Now

If you read yesterday’s Monday Musings post then you saw this brilliant method I devised for creating a cheap and endless supply of color crystals for the arsenal of companions weapons that you will be collecting throughout this expansion. If you’re at all like me and have one of each class and a full compliment of eight companions on each, well that’s 128 crystals that you’ll need. That’s a lot.

My method was simple. Get a cheap Cartel Mark crystal and add it to your account collection for the low price of 60 cc. Some crystals cost a lot more coins to add to a collection, so you can’t grab any random one. The Eviscerating, which give +crit, are reliably cheap to purchase and cheap to add to a collection. Never mind all that though, there’s a smarter way to go about this, which I’ll explain.

Remember in yesterday’s post how I said Sgt. Geiz is an idiot and that he rubs off on those around him? Well to paraphrase George Costanza, “a little respect please, for I am Darkbrew, Lord of the Idiots.” 

What I discovered this morning, is something that I suspect all of you already know. When you use a Cartel Market crystal, it’s automatically added to that character’s collection, meaning that character can generate one at any time.

Since the companion weapons are legacy, you can just send the weapon to the character who owns the crystal, pop it in the weapon and send it to the character who needs it. This works for any legacy weapon by the way and isn’t just a companion thing.

What this means is you can get a Cartel Market crystal of any stat you want, and effectively have it be added to your account collection, without actually adding it your account collection.

Is this an exploit? Is this above board? Is this intended? Is it too good be true? It’s certainly too good be true, and it’s also not an exploit.

 Eric Musco

Correct, using a Legacy Weapon to move a Color Crystal which you pulled down from your Collections UI is not an exploit. This is the case because there is no way to manipulate the system to allow for a large amount of credit gain as there was prior to 2.1.0b.

So other than paying mucho credits to get the color and stats that you want, you don’t have to break the bank getting crystals for all of those companion weapons.

Who knew? I’m guessing you!