It may just be my imagination, but the press corps of The Old Republic are picking up the pace — in the past month, we’ve found out four new classes (!), a new planet, and other significant scraps of info. With the class list complete, TOR moves on into a new, unofficial stage of the pre-launch marketing.
Moon Over Endor has an excellent recap of a chunk of info on TOR that Total PC Gaming covered, and I’d like to pick out a few things to discuss.
We finally have some word on character customization — it seems as though every class will get to choose between one of two specialty paths at a certain point in the game. Smugglers become either Scoundrels or Gunslingers, Cousulars go either healing or mezzing, and Inquisitors go either lightsaber combat or controlling/lightning.
This is pretty cool — it turns 8 classes into 16, more or less, and how can you not love the idea of becoming a Gunslinger? Pshaw. I am so there. One of my biggest concerns of TOR was the role of healing in the game. Frankly, I’m at the point where a new MMO could be released without a dedicated healer, and I’d be ecstatic. No offense intended to healers and those who love to be healed, but it bottlenecks grouping (since everything’s balanced around having at least one healer in a group, you HAVE to have a healer) and makes players feel forced to take healing if they’re in a class that offers it as a specialty.
My “last hope” for this in TOR is that companion characters can function as healers in lou of a player character — and this article does address companions that are “unlocked” and stored at a central hub. They also mentioned that companions are unique (it seems) to certain classes, so a Knight and a Smuggler probably won’t be sharing the same companions.