The Metrics: Old Republic’s Imperial Agent

Good morning! Below you see the trailer for The Old Republic‘s Imperial Agent class. He’s a sneaky blue man, as you might expect, and should – via the magic of sniper rifles and backstabs – allow us to get our imperial evil on in roguish fashion. On what is basically an unrelated note, I can’t help feeling that The Old Republic was announced too early. Here I am posting the nth trailer, and the game is still ten thousand years away from release. Is the long trickle of information actually a good idea? Couldn’t games get away with that blaze of publicity thing like the movies? Perhaps this is a sub-curse of the internet: we asked for an endless supply of video game trailers, and by God we got them…

Nevermind, at least we have actual exciting news about The Old Republic coming up soon.


  1. poop says:

    APB did the incredibly long slow trickle of bi-tri weekly trailers and gameplay footage and all it did was raise peoples expectations crazy high :I

  2. Giant, fussy whingebag says:

    Ah Jim, surely the point of all the trailers is to show us a taste of everything?

    They want to convince MMOers that it will be different but the same enough from the others. They want to convince the rest of us that it’s not the same at all. Finally, they want to keep reminding us it’s Star Wars. Star Wars: we have to try it!

    Personally, I agree with you. I got bored of these a long while ago. They would perhaps have been better in fewer, larger chunks..

  3. Dawngreeter says:

    Every gameplay footage I see only further establishes that this is absolutely identical to every other boring whack-a-mole MMO out there. Teh combat looks boring, the mechanics in general look boring. I swear I played through everything I’ve seen here in the first 20 minutes of Allods. And Allods isn’t very good.

    My girlfriend is a Star Wars fan, though. So I think we’ll play this anyway. Oh well, at least I like gaming with her. I do suspect, however, that majority of SWTOR players will be like me – people who are aware it’s crap but still play it for various franchise-related reasons.

  4. Tuco says:

    I don’t think it looks identical to any other MMO around.
    I think it looks worse than most of them.

  5. Simon says:

    I’m with Dawngreeter above. The more I see of this game the less I’m convinced that it will be good. Which is a shame. I want it to be good!

    On a semi-related note, Republic Commando 2 please LucasArts.

  6. Mac says:

    I’m really hoping this turns out to be good – especially with Bioware at the helm – but hearing the stories about the VO budget, and the sudden influx of people to try and make it a playable game has me concerned.

  7. Chris D says:

    You have to feel a little sorry for any MMO trying to release in the shadow of Guild Wars 2

    • D says:

      I think this will dwarf Guild Wars 2. Thats a technical term that means that more dwarfs will be buying SWTOR, than normal folk will buy GW2.

    • Dominic White says:

      That’s only because GW2 will be proudly on the top-center shelves where dwarves cannot reach, wheras SWTOR will be stuck lower down.

    • RagingLion says:

      I will certainly be intrigued to see how this battle plays out. I really can’t tell at the moment how big they’re going to be, but they both could end up being HUGE. Guild wars doesn’t quite have the name recognition of ‘Warcraft’ but maybe word will get out there before release.

    • bleeters says:

      I plan to buy both, personally. Only one comes with a subscription fee after all.


    • Manley Pointer says:

      @Raginglion: When playing WoW I ran into a lot of people who seemed to never have played a Warcraft game before; I think most of the name recognition that Warcraft enjoys has come about since the release of WoW itself. It’ll be interesting to see if either GW2 or TOR can copy Blizzard’s trick of attracting a userbase of people who don’t necessarily play other games.

  8. Lobotomist says:

    Its actually very sad to see this as a result of 300 million dollar investment and a developer no less than Bioware.

    Yet every new clip looks worse and worse.

    But hey, at least it has voice acting !

    • Bill says:

      How closely are we trusting that $300m quote? The only citation I’ve seen for that figure is from one disgruntled soon-to-be-ex (probably now just ex ex) EA employee.

    • Sarkhan Lol says:

      I for one can’t wait to have Steve Blum growling in my ear every time I run out of mana.

    • Sarkhan Lol says:


  9. Inigo says:

    I thought Imperial agents were like that cloak-wearing elephant thing in Episode IV.

  10. mod the world says:

    Yes, they started their hype-machine way too early. People are either overhyped and have expectations that are bound to be disappointed or are already annoyed by yet another little TOR trailer. Reminds me of Black Mesa and some other mods btw.

    But i am a sucker for Star Wars, i want more RPS coverage of the Old Republic. MORE!

  11. sneetch says:

    Best bit is where he drops down behind a guy who has to take a half step forward to make room for him, I can see him tensing, waiting for the backstab, it can’t be fun being an NPC.

    Other than that it seems very… meh, mind you MMO gameplay doesn’t make very good viewing at the best of times.

  12. Jack says:

    Maybe I’m just an insane old man, but wouldn’t it be a good idea if games didn’t start advertising until the game in question is actually complete? Like movies do? Maybe that would prevent a lot of the Duke nukem forever style incidencts of heartbreak? And also lessen the scramble to reach deadlines?

    Maybe I’m just crazy.

    • Andrew Farrell says:

      You are pretty crazy if you think trailers always post-date the final cut of the film :)

    • Nick says:

      Yeah, thats why you’ll sometimes see bits in trailers that don’t actually appear in the film.

  13. CMaster says:

    Don’t forget that some of those millions were spent on building a jedi inner sanctum at E3, which only existed for a few days and only specially invited people were even allowed to see. These guys sure know what they are doing!

  14. DukhaDave says:

    Someone really needs to remix this footage with the soundtrack from Meet the Sniper.

  15. Skyturnedred says:

    Cool guys don’t look at explosions.

  16. MuscleHorse says:

    New news about Old Republic is getting old.


  17. afarrell says:

    On what is basically an unrelated note, I can’t help feeling that The Old Republic was announced too early.

    Earliest news on RPS about SWTOR (due Q1/Q2 2011): Oct 21 2008
    Ealierst news on RPS about Guild Wars 2 (due probably some point in 2011): Feb 2 2008 (in a ‘Games for 2008’ post) :)

  18. Tyra Banks says:

    The graphics are really quite underwhelming for a release that is not going to be out for some time.

  19. Jake says:

    This looks really clumsy, I’m surprised they chose to demonstrate the game with these clips. Unless I don’t know something about Star Wars lasers, when he has the laser dot on the guy with two body guards it’s not even where the gun is pointing. And he casually stands up to talk on his communicator and call down laser death? Why not do that crouching behind cover? All the animations look really wooden – or non-existent like when he leans out from behind the corner of the wall, he just pivots on his right foot. OK perhaps I am being pedantic, I just would have expected more attention to detail.

    • Dominic White says:

      Yeah, even their pre-scripted press release footage looks horribly awkward and not at all like Star Wars combat. I can only imagine that gameplay will look worse, because it always does.

      I know it’s a recurring theme, but we’ve seen Guild Wars 2 in action, and unscripted, pick-up-and-play combat in that looks a dozen times more convincing and dynamic than anything we saw in this trailer.

    • Jake says:

      Actually I just noticed it’s in the screen shot at the top of this article, how is that red dot sight thing over the trenchcoat dude when the gun is pointing in another direction?

    • Dominic White says:

      Yep, the sight is actually shining down through the barrel of the gun and to a guy about 20 degrees below where it’s actually aiming. Also, he’s not even holding the gun properly.

    • Fox says:

      He’s so badass, he snipes from the hip!

    • Dominic White says:

      I wasn’t even referring to that. I was just noting that he has the gun awkwardly perched on the heel of his hand/wrist. But the fact that he’s using his special super-snipe ability from the hip is equally bad.

      The sheer number of things wrong with that screenshot really is staggering.

  20. BlooDeck says:

    It just looks so.. ugh don’t know. But if I want to play a World of Warcraft style MMO, I’ll go play WoW, Blizzard are the best at making it. I might still get TOR to play through a storyline since Bioware tend to do those well, but for an actual new MMO to sink my teeth into I’m definitely in the GW2 camp.

  21. Urael says:

    Rememere, “they’ve spent 300 million on this already, and G Lucas is apparently aware”, so they’ll be desperate to keep/build interest in it. :)

  22. noobnob says:

    This looks more uninspired and boring than your average korean MMORPG, and that’s saying something.

  23. Simon Jones says:

    Before the footage came out, the concepts and ideas being talked about with TOR were pretty exciting. Interviews + concept art = wild imaginings, which unfortunately haven’t really been met by the videos which look very clunky. Only in a standard-MMO kind of way, but still disappointing for something which should really be a game-changer.

    I suspect the cost and franchise-link meant that TOR could never take the risks that are desperately needed within the genre.

    I’m finding Guild Wars 2 far more exciting, despite not finding much appeal in Guild Wars 1. GW2’s team seems to have more enthusiasm and determination to shake things up a bit – I’d rather see a MMO try some daring, risky new things and fall flat on its face than have another WoW clone with a facelift.

  24. clownst0pper says:

    This seriously can’t be for real? It looks the most clunky, dull game I’ve seen for a long time. It’s so rough, don’t you think?

    How is this ever an introduction to a class? Have they not seen the quality of Guild Wars 2 class introductions?

  25. Londinistan says:

    That looked more like a lame fan mash-up and then an official trailer.

    I’m just going to go ahead and call it, SWOTOR will fail the same way WAR failed, in other words it will start off strong with lots of people showing a great deal of interest but initial bugs, glitches and shitty gameplay will turn a large number of customers back to WoW leaving a community half of what it was shortly after launch and that will slowly shrink until you only have a hundred or so thousand people from the initial million or so who played the game in its opening month.

  26. Collic says:

    GWs 2 will be better than this in every way, right down to how you’ll pay for it.

  27. Bloodloss says:

    Looks utterly terrible. I don’t think they could’ve made the graphics and/or art style worse if they tried.

  28. Warth0g says:

    Looks like WOW in space, with what are now dated, old-school MMO mechanics and cutesy graphics. It’ll get stuck in the middle between the WOW original and the GW2 new-boy. Can’t see this surviving unless it’s free to play..

  29. Ben says:

    So he’s of the same race as Grand Admiral Thrawn then?

    • Devan says:

      I don’t get it. I thought Chiss were unknown to the Republic in this timeline, but now they’re a playable race? Well at least this is confirmation that we’ll be able to play nonhuman characters, so that’s good.

      Also, sniping from the hip looks awkward.

  30. TariqOne says:

    Yes. Let’s all race to damn it now, on scant facts and loads of rumor and innuendo.

    BioWare’s done OK by me in the past. I’ve never walked away from a BioWare game feeling ripped off, as I have with so many incomplete and buggy titles. And I like sci fi. And MMOs.

    Color me square but I’m rooting for it and for BioWare, and I’ll be picking it up day 1. They’ve earned my goodwill and my support.

    • Dominic White says:

      “Yes. Let’s all race to damn it now, on scant facts and loads of rumor and innuendo.”

      How about we damn it based on the promotional materials designed to sell the game to us looking five years out of date instead. MMO trailers tend to look significantly better than real gameplay, and if it’s looking this stilted and awkward in the promotional stuff, I really don’t have high hopes for the actual gameplay.

    • TariqOne says:

      Nevertheless, the glee and schadenfruede are as thick as pea soup. The great cycle of backlash has tightened so much that now we can yuck it up at the failure of a title a year or more PRIOR to its release.

      And sorry, but the “$300 million” business was nowhere in any trailer. That’s just an allegation from a disgruntled employee that has been reified into canonic fact. It may or may not be true, but these predictions of abject failure are sort of disappointing. I remain cautiously optimistic.

  31. Tim says:

    What is wrong with you people? Looking at the clip it sure doesn’t look cookie-cutter to me.

    #1 How often have you seen a PC kissing someone in an MMO?
    #2 Many one hit kills in this video. I’d be surprised if the game ended up like that. However just going off the trailer it is showing something that typically isn’t seen in MMOs.
    #3 The trailer shows positioning/surprise as a factor. Both with the drop down attack and the sniping from behind.
    #4 The tailer shows the agent calling in orbital bombardment. That is just fucking cool.

    • Hmm-Hmm. says:

      You know where number 3 and 4 were seen? Tabula Rasa. Of course, that wasn’t a bad MMO.

  32. Korgan says:

    Oh man, I signed up for their damn closed beta AGES ago. I’m the one guy really attracted to all this clunkiness and standard Bioware stuff. Can’t WAAAAAAAAAIT!!!!!!

  33. Sarkhan Lol says:

    Damn, I see Anarchy Online finally gave Agents that orbital strike ability.

  34. TooNu says:

    So the Republic equivelent is the Bothan spy, who will die just like irl.
    And on a trailer note, he was walking away at the end instead of looting. Tool.

  35. Trollwind says:

    I’m not worried about the clunky gameplay, I’m worried about the continuity of the Star Wars universe. Head shots? One-shot kills? Anyone who saw the movies knows that guns are incredibly inaccurate and the chances of hitting your intended target are pretty much nil.

    Luke and everyone else would have been unceremoniously sniped on their first trip to the Death Star if this atrocity were allowed to stand.

    I hope they come to their senses before they release.

  36. DiamondDog says:

    I think they lost me when I saw the video showing a Jedi used as a healer. I’m not sure if it’s something that will change by the time it gets to release, but it was very depressing seeing a Jedi barely swing their lightsaber in an entire fight. That just comes across as BioWare desperately trying to make the Star Wars universe fit in with the current MMO model. I don’t think it’s too much to ask that a Jedi always be in the middle of fight, not sat keeping the tank alive.

    Seems a very specific grumble, I know, but like I said it seems BioWare want to make this play as much like WoW as possible. I’m not sure why we need that.

  37. Ruiner66 says:

    The more I see of TOR, the less I’m interested in it. If anything, it is losing hype (imo).

    Maybe EA Louse was on to something

  38. Jezebeau says:

    Maybe a little too early, but it looks like they’ve learned from Blizzard’s success with WoW, which was primarily in advertising and bringing new players to the MMO market. SW:TOR stands to do the same, and if it has the same degree of polish, it could live up to most of its hype.

  39. Hmm-Hmm. says:

    Highly underwhelmed. SWTOR looks like it’ll be rather uninspired. Of course we’ll have to wait until the reviews come out (or, perhaps, wait a couple of months after it’s been released because this is an MMO).