Several years back, maybe in the vicinity of 2015, I would have had no qualms putting SWTOR in the top five of MMOs, both in population and overall quality/content offerings. The base game was simply huge with eight class stories. Rise of the Hutt Cartel and Shadow of Revan were two really meaty expansions, and on top of that the game added space combat and housing.
But then we got into the Eternal Throne expansions, and after the initial boost of excitement, there was a sharp fall in enthusiasm and engagement. For the first time, there was a lot of content but not quite the quality and engagement. Fast-forward a couple of years past that, and the game saw its smallest “expansion” to date (Onslaught), which players zipped through faster than a Guild Wars 2 DLC drop.
There was so much riding on last week’s Legacy of the Sith expansion — especially after a multi-month delay — and instead of returning the game to form, it immediately disappointed pretty much everyone. The content was just as skimpy as Onslaught, and on top of that, the game’s UI got a loathed rework and classes were monkeyed with in unhelpful ways. BioWare got *pummeled* on the release, and you could sense many people holding back a bit even so because they knew that BioWare’s SWTOR team is understaffed and lacking the resources to pull off another big expansion.
It’s honestly sad, and this is coming from someone who genuinely likes the game — and liked it when I played it last month. It’s never fun watching a property that you enjoyed decline into irrelevance, but this is exactly what I fear is happening to SWTOR. If Legacy of the Sith is the absolute best that BioWare can put out these days — for its much-ballyhooed 10th anniversary, no less — then what real future does this game have?
SWTOR was always a really expensive game to create new story content for (Secret World hears your pain), but after 10 years, I would’ve hoped BioWare would have found a faster and more economical way to deliver more narrative and planets without a two-year wait… and disappointment at the end of it.