Friday, December 2, 2011

Your Twenty-second Assignment: The Precipice

Keeper, this is Targeter.  I am at the rendezvous point.  The enemy is here.  Preparing for assault.  This is the endgame.

Lock and load, agents.  This is it.

We're entering the final beta test weekend and what we'll be seeing will be the full retail client.  This is, frankly, a very scary time.  I've waited for this game since I first heard inklings of it in 2007, I've patiently slogged through years of lackluster updates, I've watched videos about walls and maps.  I've been oh so loyal.  Bioware will reward us all very soon.

So here at the precipice, as I ready myself to plunge once more into the beta breach, why do I feel a slight tremor of dread?  Why does my stomach knot up?  Why do I secretly cringe when I hit the play button?

I know it will sound insane, especially given my overly vocal support of The Old Republic, but deep down, I almost don't want this game to come out.  I've been waiting so long for it, devouring all the scraps of information I can find.  I've pored over Trollsbane's posts on MMO-Champion, secretly visited Betacake and gobbled up video after video, plumbed the depths of EA quarterly finance calls, all in hopes of gleaning what little information I could so I could share it with you, my guildmates and readers.

And soon everyone will know; everyone will be able to experience the game I've so jealously hoarded information about for over 4 years.  It's selfish and stupid, but the idea of that makes me sad.  Soon, TOR will be broken wide open and ushered into the light for everyone to see (and judge).  And all those little scraps I've so painstakingly gathered will be blasted into dust.

Forgive me a minor moment of jealousy; to me it's like watching something you've guarded be thrust into the public to face all of its praise and criticism.  It's a trying time but, ultimately, a necessary one.  Okay, enough emo ranting, onto the good stuff.

The new client is patching this weekend with the full retail version of the game.  Of course, changes can (and will) be made, but this is a 99.99% finalized version of the game and as close as it's going to get without a Day 1 patch.  Now, what am I looking for in this new build?  Well, there have been a few problems ...

  • Opening Cinematics: When starting a new character, the opening text scroll had a tendency to flash  occasionally when displaying.  This has been a problem in multiple builds.  Also, the video sometimes cuts out during the opening cutscene (re: Smuggler landing his ship).
  • Sound Cutout: Occasionally during combat on the origin worlds (and curiously enough, only the origin worlds) the sounds of combat will become muted.
  • Action Bars: Upon restarting the game after a client crash, quickslot bars tend to disappear.
  • The Loot Bug: You can't loot.  Disabling/enabling AoE Loot and Loot All have no effect.  A restart is required.
  • Server Lag: At times, the server-based lag gets too intense and actions become delayed.  This is especially noticeable in Huttball and Alderaan PVP.
  • Dialogue Subtitle Fixes: Occasional misspellings or misquoted lines in dialogue scenes when captions are used.
  • Conversation Rolls: I've noticed that sometimes when engaging in group conversation, you can roll over 100 (someone even rolled a 500).  I don't know if this is intended or accidental.
  • Weapons Holster/Ready Properly: During combat, guns stay holstered and fire anyways, or a force-user swings his hand around with no actual sword in his hand.
  • Floating characters: NPCs float over the landscape at preternatural speed.
  • Sith Inquistor Balance: Still too powerful, especially in a solo environment.
All in all, not a terrible list of fixes that need to be implemented, and that's just from my little time playing.  Here's to hoping that the new build addresses most of these issues.  Post any bugs you find in the comments!

Fly safe, shoot straight.  For the glory of the Empire!

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