Lok’tar ogar, and welcome fellow MMO fans. We know that it’s tough to keep up with all the news about Star Wars: The Old Republic when you’re busy with daily quests and guild raids. But even if you have no plans to relocate from Azeroth to greener pastures in a galaxy far far away, BioWare’s first MMO deserves your attention. That’s why we put together this WoW-friendly field guide to help you make sense of the promising new features Old Republic plans on introducing to the MMO genre later next year.
Troopers, Bounty Hunters and Hunters
In WoW, Hunters play the role of ranged DPS, snaring enemies with traps and suppressing foes with their bow. If you prefer to pick off opponents from a distance, Old Republic’s Trooper and Bounty Hunter classes will suit your style of play. From what we’ve seen so far, it looks like grenades will be one of the Trooper’s favorite toys. Sticky grenades and a grenade launcher rifle attachment should make short work of Sith scum. But Bounty Hunters also have a deadly selection of skills and weapons to choose from. Our favorite: an attack where the Bounty Hunter uses his jetpack to hover over the battlefield while he rains down blaster fire on his enemies below. It looks like a great way to put some distance between yourself and enemies while dealing damage at the same time.
Above: A Trooper, Bounty Hunter, and Night Elf Hunter
That’s not to say that the Trooper and Bounty Hunter will be helpless in close quarters. The Trooper will get a rifle butt attack that knocks the enemy to the ground. The Bounty Hunter also can also use a flamethrower, which was designed with damage and crowd control in mind.
Above: The Bounty Hunter’s flamethrower looks like it’ll be great for close ranged crowd control
Imperial Agents, Smugglers and Rogues
Smugglers and Imperial Agents will also excel at dealing ranged damage, but their sneaky skills and stealthy maneuvers make them the most Rogue-like classes in Old Republic. Like the Rogue, the Smuggler is quite dexterous. With blasters blazing, the Smuggler is always on the move, bombarding enemies with a barrage of blaster fire while he nimbly avoids attacks and pops in and out of cover. On the other hand, the Imperial Agent’s skills seem more devious and calculated. During a brief demo, we saw the Imperial Agent infiltrate a hostile area by immobilizing a patrolling guard with a stun dart before silently finishing him off.
Above: An Imperial Agent, a Smuggler, and a Gnome Rogue
Sith Warriors, Jedi Knights and Warriors
It seems like the Sith Warriors and Jedi Knights will play the role of the pure melee class in Old Republic. Like WoW’s Warriors, expect the Jedi Knights and Sith Warriors to be at the very frontlines of combat, tearing apart enemies with their lightsabers and force skills. We’ve already seen the return of classic light and dark side powers, like Force push, Force, choke, and Force lightning. But we’ve also seem a few Warrior-like skills that let you quickly charge into the fray, stunning enemies and buying you time to follow up with dangerous saber strikes.
Above: A Jedi Knight, a Sith Warrior, and a Tauren Warrior
Above: Force choke is back
Above: Why are Jedi so pushy?
Jedi Consular, Sith Inquisitor and Death Knights
The last two classes revealed by BioWare and LucasArts are the Jedi Consulars and Sith Inquisitors. Like the Jedi Knight and Sith Warrior, the Consular and Inquisitor are handy with a lightsaber, but more powerful in the ways of the Force. After spending some time with the Sith Inquisitor and checking out a demo of the Consular, we feel that their more Force-centric skill set makes them the most like the Death Knight. The Consular and Inquisitor still look like strong melee classes - and while exploring a Sith Temple with a pre-made Inquisitor, we did our fair share of hacking and slashing with our lightsaber. But with more crowd control skills like Force lightning and other ranged skills at their disposal, they seem less like a meat shield and more like a DPS class with a mix of close quarters and ranged skills.
Above: A Jedi Consular, Sith Inquisitor, and Death Knight
Above: The Consular and Inquisitor can handle themselves in melee combat with their lightsabers, but they tend to rely more on their Force powers