I Don’t Want to Be Yoda

First, a follow-up to a previous post.  The last week of LotRO  wasn’t too bad.  I tried the sword/dagger dual wield combo.  It felt more responsive, and worked fine in Fervor stance.  However, the moment that you have to switch to Ardour or Glory, you end up with massive power issues.  So, I’ll be sticking with the sword/hammer combo that I have going right now.  I arranged for a little epic questing with my Kinship next weekend, but it’s going to be a challenge to get people interested in things other than Sword Hall runs.  I guess I can understand that – it gives you the most payout for your time.

So, to the meat of my topic for today – Star Wars games.  Since my work schedule has been changed, I decided to get a few single-player titles from the last few years that I was unable to play because I had my head stuck in one MMO or another.  I am enjoying the Star Wars titles that I bought, but I do have one complaint: every one wants you to play a Jedi.

I understand that the concept of the Jedi, the warrior-mystic, is central to the mythology of Star Wars.  However, I never had any real interest in playing one.  The smugglers, the scoundrels, the cynical gunslingers, and the mercenary scum of the universe always held more interest to me.  Blame the Han Solo books.  The idea of living by your wits in a universe of predators is far cooler than any pseudo-magic.

There aren’t many science-fiction games where you aren’t playing some sort of telepath or genetically-engineered super-human.  Wing Commander: Privateer was a pretty good trading and space combat sim, but it limited the planet-side action to negotiations and a few cutscenes.  The grand-daddy of the computer game genre (Elite) never really went into what the universe was like outside of your spaceship.  There was a Traveller CRPG released back in the 90’s, but it got pretty ludicrous (granting your party unrestricted access to high-end military hardware).  There just hvaen’t been that many games written.

So, when a member of my LotRO Kinship asked if anyone was considering whether or not to play The Old Republic when it gets released, I had to think about it for about two seconds before coming to the conclusion that I shall not play it.  I played the train-wreck of a game called “Star Wars Galaxies.”  I saw what happened when people got access to the Jedi class.  Almost everyone was a damn Jedi.  Seriously.  I used to travel to the most remote areas on distant planets just so that I could be free of the constant hum and buzz of lightsabers.  Additionally, you get the inevitable “game balance” adjustments when you have a melee class in such a prominent position.  If I’m firing a freaking laser rifle, then my potential range should be all the way to the horizon.  In the past, game devs have cut way back on weapon range in order to favor the ranged classes.  I’m calling bull$#!& on that one, folks.  You have to take the good with the bad – if you’re fantastically powerful in melee, then you’ll have to accept that there is some sneaky bastard of a sniper out there waiting for you to let your guard down so he can burn you down at extreme range.

Anyway, that’s my post/rant for today.  I don’t want to be a Jedi, I don’t want to be forced into a knife fight when I have a perfectly good rifle, and I don’t want to be forced to listen to old Barbara Streisand recordings.


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