Star Wars: The Old Republic review diary, level 1-15

After several years of waiting, Star Wars: The Old Republic has finally gone live, launching BioWare’s first foray into the MMO genre. We’ll post a full, cohesive, in-depth, Midi-chlorian-filled review next month, but in the meantime we’re writing weekly review diaries to fill you in on what we’ve done so far, and to let you know how we’re enjoying our time in The Old Republic.   

Above: Take a look at the first few minutes of Hollander's journey

We jumped into the game late last week, and spent the past 17 in-game hours grinding up to level 15. Our main character – a Twi’lek Sith Inquisitor named Hollander – has gone from slave to apprentice after a lengthy, interesting quest that involved solving puzzles on the Sith homeworld of Korriban for an extremely rude Sith who we genuinely enjoyed pissing off. During the early levels it really did feel more like a Knights of the Old Republic game than an actual MMO, with a focus on solo quests over group encounters, but that was shed once we hit level 10.

Our friend Khem hates us

During one of our final missions on Korriban (after completely and utterly pissing off the guy in charge) we met up with our companion, a monstrous Dashade named Khem Val. Khem Val freaking hates us. We found him in stasis, where he was kept by his Sith master, but after his Master’s death he was just… left there. Once we set him free (and beat the crap out of him) he has agreed to to follow us, but he does little to hide his disdain, calling us “Little Sith” and making frequent mention to his desire to eat us. He follows Hollander everywhere regardless, however, fighting alongside him in every battle and mumbling angrily whenever we choose the “weak” dialog options. 

Above: We can't help but feel like he's just waiting for an opportunity to bite our faces off

We don’t actually know for sure what happens with our companion’s loyalty – or what it means when it goes up or down – but we hope to find out soon, considering how important companions are in The Old Republic. Currently we’ve only unlocked one companion, but others are gathered as the game goes on (though only one can be used at a time). They essentially act like the squad members from Mass Effect and Dragon Age, following us around and fighting by our side, while occasionally making snide comments about the people we’re forcing them to hang out with. They can be equipped with items and bonuses, they take part in dialog sections every so often, and they can even lead to their own storylines from time to time (we think). But beyond that, they actually have another gameplay implication: crew skills and crafting.

Putting our friends to work

Above: We're often given the option to "flirt," an option we always take

When we hit level 10 we made our way off Korriban and into the Imperial Fleet, where we were able to choose crew skills. We picked three crew skills – one crafting, and two gathering – and began to figure out how they worked. Instead of working himself to the bone to craft items, Hollander can send out his companion to gather and craft, letting him continue to fight while Khem harvests the resources we need to create medical supplies. While we can still gather things from the world itself, we can also send our crew on missions that will not only improve our crafting ability, but reward us with materials to craft with. This might be one of the neatest changes to the MMO formula BioWare came up with, and lets us multitask by sending our companions on crafting runs while we fight.

Check out page two for more Sith-y adventures...


  • ObliqueZombie - December 22, 2011 11:49 p.m.

    Can't get enough of this game... just entered in my card information, and I've never been happier to give out my Visa numbers to a company before.
  • Shinra - December 22, 2011 6:14 p.m.

    Aaaarrrrrgggghhhh! Sponsor message was FFXIII-2 AND I SAW SOMETHING I WASN'T SUPPOSED TO SEE. Why didn't I get something else x.x And that is the weirdest Twi'lek I've ever seen.
  • ColorBlind - December 22, 2011 12:27 a.m.

    This game looks so awesome... I need it right now
  • dizzzydragon - December 21, 2011 9:04 p.m.

    Gamesradar has an officaial guild, GR DARK on hyperspace cannon
  • Crylast - December 21, 2011 3:50 p.m.

    I can't wait to pick this game up!
  • SideOfBeef - December 21, 2011 10:27 a.m.

    I'm just going to suggest that it's a little weird reading about what is very clearly one person's exerience, but using "we." I can understand if this article is supposed to be in the voice of GR as a whole, but that doesn't match the article's content at all. Also, probably gonna try this game.
  • Letter11 - December 20, 2011 7:55 p.m.

    Bioware is so good at what they do. This game is great.
  • Wade D McGinnis - December 20, 2011 6:32 p.m.

    Your going to find as a healer, you have many tools then just "push button to heal". The great healers I have seen are great because they CC/stun/heal/dps(typically the free attack they have). The fighting becomes far more enjoyable when your not standing there face rolling lol.
  • Dragonflame - December 20, 2011 3:17 p.m.

    Gamesradar you might want to mention under specilizations that Sith assasin is not strictly damage and Sith Sorceror not strictly healing. In fact Sith Assasin can also specialize as Tank and the Sith Sorceror can also deal competetive damage. It might not seem like much, but many people care about knowing these soughts of things from what I have seen.
  • ObliqueZombie - December 22, 2011 11:48 p.m.

    Right, but the Assassin is an off-tank, meaning if he was the primary tank in higher-level Flashpoints, he'd get murdered and everyone would wipe. As for Sorcerer, I'm not entirely sure their DPS stands up to Assassins', but I could be TOTALLY wrong. But I digress, they SHOULD have mentioned it a little.
  • trent-power - December 20, 2011 2:46 p.m.

    Loving this game.

Showing 1-12 of 12 comments

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