Knights Of The Online Republic: KOTOR MMO Is Go

By Alec Meer on July 17th, 2008 at 8:32 pm.

Classes will include Jedi, Jedi, Jedi and Gungan

It’s a big day for Bioware. First, Dragon Age scrubs up very nice indeed, and now EA have only bleedin’ gone and revealed they’re planning Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic: The MMO. Yes, with Bioware at the till. [Pauses for internet-wide cheer]. “As if millions of voices suddenly cried out in rapture and were suddenly fanboys…”

It’s been rumoured for ages, but E3 saw EA’s John Riccitiello drop a conclusive bombshell. Quote’n’that under the jump.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – I’d better be able to play as a Jawa.

“We’ve got two of the most compelling MMOs in the industry in development,” said Riccitiello. The first title, based on the Warhammer property, will launch soon. “And the one that people are dying for us to talk to them about — in partnership with Lucas, coming out of BioWare, which is, I think, quite possibly the most anticipated game, full stop, for the industry at the point when we get closer to telling you about it.”

Does Riccitiello mean the oft rumored Knights of the Old Republic Online? “Yes,” he said.

(From Portfolio via VG247).

“Yes” can be such a magical word.

In a way, the Bioware involvement is in many ways the least important element of this. It’s a certain seal of quality, sure – and crucially it’s the first time they’ve done Massively Multi – but what’s really big here is that it’s a Star Wars MMO. From EA. In a post-WoW climate (which puts it on an entirely different footing to poor Galaxies right from the off). In other words, perhaps the most serious rival World of Warcraft could possibly have.

We’ll be needing to hear your name suggestions now, please.

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207 Comments »

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  1. Sylexus says:

    Im not too worried about the whole over populated jedi thing, Im more hyped about playable Mandalorians. Bounty hunter, Commando, and Spy were my three favorite classes in Galaxies (though ive stopped playing that cause of the huge player loss after 2005). If Mandalorians are playable it will be the sweetest S*** in forever. If not:
    IT STILL WILL BE THE SWEETEST S*** EVER

  2. andy m says:

    sideboob.

  3. Okami says:

    Wow! A Star Wars MMO! Woooooooot!

    Wait. Hold on a second..

    Let’s see. I don’t like MMOs, since they involve me having to put up with other human beeings and I’m deeply bored by Star Wars…

    Guess I’ll pass…

  4. Nimic says:

    This isn’t a Star Wars MMO. It’s a KotOR MMO. Trust me, there’s a difference :P

  5. Colinmarc says:

    I’m be Mandalorian. YES.

    Wait, before or after civil/mandalorian war?

    Mandalorians. Ah.

  6. SSG Dante says:

    Crap. As if ole Karen wasn’t wanky enough…please let there be a Mandalorian shooting gallery. They’re bloody redshirts, not uber commandos, Traviss!

  7. hmmmm says:

    I wonder what this will mean for swg.

  8. Freeid says:

    Jedi Ewoks, or I aint playing!

  9. Sir Unimaginative says:

    So this will kill both Star Wars Galaxies (not a big deal) and any chance for a proper ending for the KotOR series (this sorta is, though).

    In response to this, I have prepared a statement.

    *shuffles papers, nudges superfluous reading glasses* Ahem.

    FUCK.

    Of course, the saddest part of all this is that I’ll still pay good money to play this anyway.

  10. Nate says:

    The “everyone is a jedi” problem isn’t exactly one new to MMOs. Isn’t anyone else bothered by every third face being a Gandalf analogue in every fantasy MMO?

    It would work in KOTOR to just design around a jedi/nonjedi ratio of around 1/1, as long as there were sufficient NPCs.

  11. Davik says:

    This had better be fucking amazing. If it isn’t epic, I might just die.

  12. Binho says:

    When I first read the announcement, i was really excited! but about two seconds after I realized how wrong this could potentially go. I even went so far as to think it might be “WoW with Lightsabers”

    I think the problem is it will probably never be as brave or creative as Star Wars Galaxies. It could be more polished and complete, but it probably will always be under the shadow of the wasted potential of SWG

    BioWare need to think of something good to stop there being the endless level grind of MMORPGs. Hopefully being new at MMORPGs they will try something new, for example the whole “Everyone is a Jedi” could easily be worked to their advantage (Even though I’m no Jedi fan, and would rather have a XvT MMO):

    – Make the MMO about Jedi’s and Sith/Dark Jedi (You could only be a jedi in the games anyways. It’s [b]Knights[/b] of the Old Republic, and not Merchants of the Old Republic):

    – Have the tutorial be the Jedi Trials.
    – Have the Jedi Council, or the Sith Lords give out missions and quests. This can potentially make for more interesting quests, if written correctly. Talk to, pacify, conquer, kill, turn, rescue, explore, save, convince, retrieve, etc.
    – Make the primary storyline be the quest to construct your own lightsaber, and/or the quest to become a Jedi Master/Sith Lord. It’s an “epic quest” which would make sense for everybody…

    Those are just some examples. This approach would satisfy your average players “I want to be a superhero” complex, and honestly a working Jedi/Sith system would be better than a broken Jedi/Bounty Hunter/Soldier/Medic/Merchant system. Both in terms of gameplay and immersion.

    Plus, most average people like Star Wars for the Jedi anyways. Toss in some space flight (Like owning your own ship and crew), and voila! you have a recipe for a good MMO.

  13. omicron1 says:

    They should make everyone able to be Jedi. There’s no lore-based reason not to in that period; it would help populate the Jedi counsel, there’s an interesting dynamic available (players switching alliances midgame, as with falling to the dark side), and they can make every player feel like a hero. Or a villain. Plus, it would allow for interesting “wars” if they did it right – say a Level 232 Jedi switched sides, taking a bunch of lesser characters with him, and suddenly everyone became engaged in a war for galactic dominance… or something. Sort of the whole “Darth Malak/Revan” mechanic – plus, this would mean a lot of PKers would go Sith, and act just like a proper Sith would…

    Also, they should have a companion system like in Guild Wars: Nightfall. That would allow them to keep much of the same group dynamic, while allowing multiple-character customization and the ability to solo most quests.

  14. Tony says:

    Probably just horribly tainted nostalgia goggles, but I way prefer the Galactic Civil War stuff. Alas, poor SWG.

    And I still haven’t actually completed KoTOR, though. I probably should.

  15. Hmm-hmm. says:

    My first thought is that this could go wrong in soo many ways (like with many MMOs, except more since.. well, this is Star Wars). And right in but a few.

    But who knows. Maybe they’ll be able to make a good MMO out of it.

  16. araczynski says:

    let me be the only intergeek then who thinks bioware has been going down hill for years now.

    this dragonage stuff if disappointing, and i’ve never liked the stop/go ‘action’ of KOTOR so i have nothing to look forward to with this KOTOR mmo.

    sucks to be me, well not really, just two less games to not waste time with.

  17. ScubaV says:

    This will fail. Not epic fail, but fail.

  18. DSX says:

    *prays* Dear Lord, don’t let them screw it up.

    KOTOR + X-Wing (EVE style) = WoW Death.

  19. Steven says:

    YES! I LOVE MY LIFE!

  20. Rhade says:

    As far as I’m concerned, this isn’t a KOTOR sequel.

    It’s a Star Wars MMORPG made by Bioware and Lucas Arts.

    Which makes me wet my pants in excitement. I CAN’T WAIT!

  21. tmp says:

    I wouldn’t say “Bioware” is making this. It’s their new MMO studio making it, which is located in Texas, and if I recall is mainly composed of local SOE devs. So don’t have much hope for this.

    So, it’ll be Star Wars: KotOR Episode III: Revenge of the SOE?

  22. Jigglybean says:

    I’ve heard that LucasArts/Lucasfilm registered a bunch of domains a while back and starwarstheoldrepublic was amongst them.

  23. DG says:

    Rather than being KOTOR, it likely is a new intellectual property set in the Old Republic. Search the United States Patent and Trademark Office. Lucas just registered 3 new trademarks on July 3rd.

    STAR WARS SAGAS
    STAR WARS LEGENDS
    STAR WARS THE OLD REPUBLIC

    In the description of the trademarks, they all say: “Entertainment services provided on-line by means of global and local area networks, namely, providing interactive computer game software, interactive video game software and interactive computer games and interactive video games, all on-line by means of global and local area networks”

    Sounds like these new trademarks are for the Star Wars MMO.

  24. Erlam says:

    I really hope they tier this in a way that allows non-Jedi to have an entire game to themselves: I.E. you can play as Luke Skywalker and massacre people in Jabbas Palace, or you can be Han Solo, and cart stuff around in jolly space-faring adventures.

    I know, timewise, yes, yes, but I mean in terms of stuff you can do outside of swing a Lightsaber at a giant monster for 5 minutes.

  25. RichPowers says:

    Gah, I wish the world would stop using the phrase “intellectual property.” What an absurd concept.

    They should include a Death Star and allow you to vaporize the newbie starting area planets. Harharhar

  26. DraconianOne says:

    Hmmm: KOTORO – sounds like a Mortal Kombat boss.

    Kotoro wins! Banality!

  27. Sturdee says:

    It’s a shame these developers have gotten such a bad wrap for these games. I mean, it would be nice if it did turn out awesome , but even if it doesn’t, won’t we all still be those nerds playing it anyway?

    And why is everyone so upset about no Kotor 3? I was under the impression they were doing both?

  28. Nny says:

    “KOTOR + X-Wing (EVE style) = WoW Death.”

    Don’t those two things contradict each other? X-Wing games had really engaging combat which which took skill and wits to be successful in, EVE is just boring point and click…?

  29. Dante says:

    On the contrary I think Bioware being at the helm is the most important thing here. I’d love to see their take on the MMORPG, because I suspect it’ll be slightly different from the ‘kill five wolves, now kill five slightly different wolves’ fare.

  30. Lu-Tze says:

    *hopes that Droid is a player class*

  31. Dante says:

    If I was at E3 for this I’d just be asking:

    “Is HK in it?
    “Really?”
    “You promise?”
    “Don’t toy with my emotions here”

  32. Malagate says:

    Freeid says: “Jedi Ewoks, or I aint playing!”

    I’d only play if I could duel your Jedi Ewok with my Sith Wookiee. That would be possibly the best fight ever.

    As this MMO could never live up to such a lofty dream I will live in hope of Noc’s awesome ideas. I really do like the idea of factions which put out bounties on players, especially if you could travel around the place and team up with people who you later find out are wanted by your faction. Do you stun his ass and haul him in, or let him roam free because you’ve been teamed up for awhile now and he’s saved your life more than a few times?

    Now that’d be a proper dilemma.

  33. NickVader says:

    About the whole Jedi issue…there should be a random chance of a character becoming Force sensitive every time they level up, and before they can become a Jedi, they have to seek out a master for their training. And I want to play an HK-47 type character.

  34. H says:

    Actually, SW Legends doesn’t sound so bad.

  35. Warthog2k says:

    I want to see X-Wing vs Street Fighter (or X-Men vs Tie-Fighter).

    JEDI HADOUKEN!

  36. pauleyc says:

    Looks very promising. And it doesn’t have to ruin the unfinished KotOR saga; there is still time for a third and final RPG installment before the MMO launches. Which of course also means it could be as rushed as Obsidian’s part 2.

    Time will tell, sooner or later, time will tell…

  37. Keith says:

    >> How about a Firefly-universe MMO?

    This. Definitely this. Excited about KOTOR: Race Of The Ontar Kerber? Yes, I am.

    But sheeeeee: a Firefly MMO/RPG? A chance to play in a universe which is easily understood, deep, and practically unexplored? Yes please.

  38. CrashT says:

    There already going to be a Firefly MMO.

  39. Iain says:

    I almost hope that this is going to be rubbish. Because if it’s any cop at all, I might as well say goodbye to my girlfriend, social life and career right now…

  40. Simon says:

    zanbower:

    They might base an MMO on the Firefly universe, but Fox would just cancel it.

  41. DarkeSword says:

    I have a feeling that this game isn’t going to take place in the TotJ/KotOR era (around 4 thousand years before the movies), but in the New Sith Wars era (http://starwars.wikia.com/wiki/New_Sith_Wars), which was detailed in Jedi vs. Sith, Path of Destruction, and Rule of Two (the latter two being books written by Drew Karpyshyn, the writer for KotOR and Mass Effect).

    It’s a relatively fresh era in the Expanded Universe, taking place around 1000 before the movies; it’s a time when there were lots of Jedi and lots of Sith fighting a big war, and it ended with Darth Bane taking the Sith into hiding. Karpyshyn laid a lot of groundwork with his two novels, and it’d be a perfect setting for a faction based MMO (Alliance = Army of Light, Horde = Brotherhood of Darkness).

  42. KingMob says:

    I refuse to get excited about this.

    That said, I’ll be playing as a HK droid.

  43. SANE says:

    Wow. Wow. And… Wow.

    I almost don’t care what era it takes place in, as long as it’s a Jedi and Sith lush era. The mistake of SWG was the era, and all the foul-ups later on.

    Warcraft should be shaking in it’s T6 boots, unlike before this Star Wars game is being done by a proven RPG developer, and in-theory will be in a proper era for massive amounts of Jedi and Sith. Everyone wants to play those. Lots of people love Star Wars.

  44. Pus Filled Sac says:

    Enough with the MMOs already.

  45. Fumarole says:

    “Mass Effect style combat would be good”

    I cannot believe I just read that.

  46. jayndsun says:

    OMG like OM Fing G!!

    IF and a BIG IF, if they do this right say SWG at launch-like in regards to skills… I really hope its skill based..

    also LOVE the faction idea.. PVP could be like current SWG overt depending on how bad you are or how “good” you are in defeating bad guys.. .Deaths would have to be worked out.. nothing perma I don’t like the idea of an MMO death item penalty… then the best players can/would farm the casual players and they’d never catch up.

    I personally think this is a good thing casual fans a drawn to Star Wars because of Vader, Luke ie Jedi.. now us g33k fanboys and girls, while we LOVE Jedi would play other classes as well.

    I hope the classes are simular to KoTR .. then you can have tank Jedi, Buffer/support Jedi and all around Jedi or any of the aforementioned combination.

    This was the best news all week.. I really hope this comes to fruition

  47. James T says:

    Speaking as someone who has never played a Star Wars game and feels no pressing need to… would it be viable for a Star Wars MMO to make Jedi knighthood the culmination of levelling/other progression, rather than its own class? So everyone would start in their various trades, and then at some point around, I dunno, level 50, they can decide to continue with their class and become a Level 60 Gunfighter, or they can start to go down the Jedi path (and the Jedi would presumably have their super-piloting skills nerfed so a pilot class wouldn’t be redundant). It’d reflect the ‘eliteness’ of the Jedi, although I guess it’d turn off all the people who wanna be a Jedi RIGHT NOW… (and it contradicts all that ‘younglings’ crap from the mythos/prequels, but then, hey, so did Luke!…)

  48. brandon says:

    thats all well and good but i would personally like to know what happen to revan and the exile and i don’t see them explaining all that in an mmo they should finish off the story before making and mmo out of the series. and if they do make an mmo out of kotor where does that leave the people who want to know what happen to revan and the exile

  49. Mandalore says:

    A KotOR MMO? What the fuck are they thinking? If it’s just taking place in that era then ok, but if it’s supposed to be the sequel to KotOR II they can take it and shove it up their ass!!

    –Mandalore–

  50. Nimic says:

    After the initial thrill, I have to admit I’m getting increasingly disenchanted by the thought that there might never be a proper KotOR 3. I was hoping for something like “Where did Revan go?” for plot. If we’re lucky, if they do it right, then this is set in the KotOR Universe, but doesn’t directly deal with the plot of either game. For that matter, it could be set before the events of KotOR, when Revan was a bad guy (or even before that, when he was good (AGAIN). Mandalorian wars, and all that. It could be fun.

    Ok, I’m excited again.