back to article BioWare blows brains with intro cinematics for Star Wars MMO

BioWare has bowled over E3 with a taste of its highly-anticipated MMO Star Wars: The Old Republic. Fans have been patiently waiting for this particular Star Wars title to appear since it was first announced in 2008 amid bold claims it would attract more players than World of Warcraft. Periodically, we've been reminded the game …


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  1. lglethal Silver badge
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    One word comes to mind...

    ... DAMN!!!

  2. bolccg


    When was this set (relative to, say, the prequels and Knights of the OId Republic)?

    Looks like a mismash of tech is all - clone trooper armour and TIE style ships (plus star destroyer-esque stuff).

    A good Zabrak jedi was a nice touch though - judge a book by its cover, you should not!

    1. Helldesk Dogsbody


      AFAIK the timeline is post KoToR by about 300 years or so.

      The trailer looks excellent but don't expect the game to look even close - it has the typical graphical limitations of an MMO and they have deliberately gone for a cartoonish style in the gameplay videos I've seen so far.

    2. Jonathan 10

      It is set in the past

      3,500 years before the films. This is why there are lots of Sith. It was Darth Bane who came along quite a bit later who introduced the rule of two.

      Tech in SW doesn't seem to change much.

  3. LPF
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  4. Scott 2
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    RE: Timeline #

    This is set a few hundered years after KOTOR2 (I could look up the exact time, but it doesn't really matter)

    That intro had more class and style - and lovable characters than the last 3 SW films put together.

  5. Citizen Kaned

    anyone else sad its not the era we know and love?

    i would love to play a proper RPG/FPS with the proper star wars characters. you know, han the man solo and chewy. maybe the big endor fight or hoth?

    1. Jerome 0


      Spoken like a man who's never played Knights of the Old Republic.

      If you're into RPGs and don't mind some retro graphics, give it a try. It beats any of the prequel films hand down in the plot and character front, and I guarantee you'll find yourself loving this era as much as (or more than) that of the films.

    2. This post has been deleted by its author

  6. Anonymous Coward
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    Why are they making a game instead of a movie?!

  7. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    Nice video

    But unfortunately, it seems chock full of Sith and Jedi, just like almost every other SW-themed game out there (Republic Commando being a notable exception).

    I like the SW universe very much. I am unhappy with the fact that nobody seems to be able to make any other part of it interesting.

  8. Filippo Silver badge

    Awesome, but...

    ...where's the gameplay, dammit?

    1. firefly

      Gameplay spoiler

      After that amazing intro you are given your first quest:

      Collect 10 rat tails

    2. simm0

      Are you serious?

      Or have you not seen the last 3 movies?

      1. Danny 14


        so you mean we get to collect gungan tails?

  9. Ian Yates


    Some hands-on previews I've read have said that it is good but there may be some hyperbole in what we've been told.

    Specifically, they were referring to the usual grind in fighting swamp rats (etc.) and masses of similar quests with some names/locations swapped out; though they did emphasise that these have all been previews.

    Still, worth a watch - loved the KOTOR games.

  10. DragonKin37
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    The WoW killer ?

    I dont think this will kill WoW's user base, but it will come really really close

    1. Tzael

      Re: The WoW killer ?

      I'm not a fan of WoW, but I do understand the gameplay qualities that Blizzard have capitalised upon to draw in a large playerbase who are susceptible to gambling addiction.

      What got me interested in this article was the quote stating "amid bold claims it would attract more players than World of Warcraft"... I'd love to know where such a quote was sourced from, as it is fair to say that Bioware have _never_ made such a claim. Maybe hopeful fans have made such a claim, but certainly not Bioware.

      1. Caleb Cox (Written by Reg staff)

        Re: Re: The WoW killer ?

        Actually LucasArts said it. If you follow the link in the article, which points to when the game was announced, it says

        "And Tom Nichols, a LucasArts executive, has told VideoGaming247 that he believes it’ll attract more subscribers than WoW"

        There is another link in that article that takes you to the source.

        1. Anonymous Coward

          >"Tom Nichols, a LucasArts executive"

          Let me guess:

          >"And Tom Nichols, a LucasArts executive, has told VideoGaming247 that he believes it’ll attract more subscribers than WoW"

          A *marketing* executive, by any chance?

    2. Figgus

      re: The WoW killer ?

      This won't kill WoW. The thing that is killing WoW is Blizztard's crappy game designers. Balance? Yeah, they've heard of it....

    3. sT0rNG b4R3 duRiD

      WoW Killer...

      Hmm... I recall a mythic and then bioware (after assimilation) game touted to be a WoW killer too... Where is it now? :P

      WoW has just too much momentum.

      And mythic/bioware are idiots (at least as far as the administration of this other MMO they have is concerned).

      Besides, seriously... Who'd you rather be? a druid or a jedi?

      The starwars peeps have Obi-wan etc... but... we... have Alamo!

  11. Dave Murray
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    'nuff said

  12. banjomike
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    I want!!

    That looks damn good.

    1. sT0rNG b4R3 duRiD

      Good from far...

      but far from good.

      Of course, that is but speculation. But I suspect it may well turn out to be true.

  13. LauRoman

    cut in half?

    When the Jedi master died all i could think was isn't there another way for Zabraks to die other than be cut in half?

  14. SteveBalmer
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    Coming to PS3... Nice....

  15. Glenn Amspaugh

    George is now ready... make the next Star Wars movies. With CGI now at this level, he won't need any actors at all!

    1. Anonymous Coward

      no way

      George Lucas, your fired!

      These guys should be making StarWars from now on. I bet its a better plot too!

  16. Anonymous Coward

    Yeah yeah

    One word... HYPE!

    Fuck Bioware, they've left Warhammer Online to die a slow death just so they can fund this piece of shit with our fucking subscriptions.

  17. Adam T
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    Superb trailer. I could stomach a few feature-length versions of that.

    Made by Blur studios if you're interested. Pure class.

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Just clarify for me

    Have we actually seen anything which shows what the in-game content will look like?

    Yes, Lucasarts can do great CGI. We've known that for a decade by now. Hell, episode 3 was entirely shot on greenscreen.

    However, I have not seen anything to say that any of this CGI is from the game engine. For all I know the game engine renders everyone as stick men with cardboard tubes. Can we see some actual previews instead of unrelated cinematics?

    1. Euchrid

      re: Just clarify me

      "Have we actually seen anything which shows what the in-game content will look like?"


      Around a couple of months ago, there were numerous hands-on preview articles online - more than a few of the writers were able to play with the game for a couple of days. Plus, there's been other previews from E3. At least one site (Gamespot, I think) had video footage of gameplay in the last few days.

      However, if you go back 3-4 years, you'll see that gameplay footage was being shown as long ago as that. Obviously, things have moved on since then, but Bioware have been showing the public what to expect for a *very* long time.

      Also, I think it's worth mentioning that the recent previews allowed hard-working hacks to try out low-level and/or high-level missions with different character classes, so they weren't all playing the same content. I think two editors at Gamespy compared their experiences, a couple of months back and the spaceship combat was discussed.

  19. Aristotles slow and dimwitted horse
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    Sure, it looks great...

    But I'm not sure I agree that it in any way demonstrates that "it's getting harder to differentiate between real video and computer graphics" in the same way that say Jurassic Park, or District 9 did for example.

    To me, it's a pointless video because we all know that the real game will be nothing like this - and will most likely add nothing of significance to the Star Wars canon except more of the same tedious mish mash of ill through through content that blighted the 3 prequel movies.

    I'm sorry to say it - but the more the Star Wars brand is milked as a cash cow, the more it becomes nothing more than a parody of itself that is fast eating away at the genius and shine of the original 3 movies.

    Correction : the first two movies.

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Is this Blur Studios again?

    As per title

  21. Charlie van Becelaere

    I don't even like SW

    but that was spectacular CGA and far better than the recent films. Wow.

  22. technocrat
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    dont fancy it

    seen the gameplay, openworld it is not, very linear....

  23. cloudgazer

    very cool looking

    I don't think there's any doubt that this will have better cinematic sequences than WoW, or a more compelling backstory, or a more interesting world. But I those things aren't really what makes for a compelling and long lived MMO.

    What WoW got right and what pretty much every other western MMO has failed to was to continuously provide stuff to do in PVE. First you level, then you gear, then you raid, work on gear some more, hard modes, more gear - oh look a content patch - more raids, more gear, more hard modes - oh look an expansion, and back to levelling.

    LOTRO for example never rivalled that even though it's set in a far richer world.

    1. Danny 14


      it is also the content. LOTRO was just plain boring. Sure it had the mechanics spot on, the world was good, monsters were accurate but it was glued together by someone who had no idea about LOTRO. The same can be said for DDO - the world was spot on along with character progression but the dungeons were dull and uninspiring. No excuse as NVN spawned some fantastic adventures that could have been adapted (the theme of them, not the ACTUAL adventures!).

  24. The Mighty Spang
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    nice gfx, shame about the game

    that does not look like a barrel of fun to me. slow and limp I would say...

  25. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
    Big Brother

    They got it coming.

    "Smuggler", eh?

    I am supposed to root for tax-feeding protectionist Jedis interfering with honest trade?

    HELL NO!!

  26. Paul2724

    Very cool but...

    Before we all get too excited - where in there did it even imply that was "in game footage" ? Fancy CGI is all very well (and its a cool clip)..... but I'm not letting myself get my hopes too high for this one, the industry's been churning out too much rubbish of late... I so hope I'm wrong :)

    1. Jerome 0


      Nowhere did they imply that, because it blatantly isn't. If you want in-game footage like that, come back in 20 years.

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    all very pretty but as we all well known a cut scene doesn't make a game, more importantly, is it going to be yet another wow clone? "select target, select attack, hit special attack keys at correct moment, pot., repeat" pick thing up here take it there, kill some of those tell him, navigate this place kill that, find this, bring it back, collect my mail from the post office, o I died o no what a shame *respawn for no real loss* pointless pvp tedious pvm affair?

  28. Gordon 10
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    On that evidence, George L should let Bioware produce/write/direct the Ep 7-9 films and keep his JarJar/Mediclorian meddling well out.

  29. zemerick

    GO TOR!

    I'm on of the Oct 08ers that have been on the forums since they existed:)

    Head over to for tons of gameplay videos, and another TWO CG videos that are just as good as this one. ( Deceived and Hope )

    Oh, and there's lots of non-jedi/ fact, half of the classes are not jedi or sith. You have Republic Troopers from the Havoc Squad, Smugglers, Imperial Agents and Bounty Hunters.

    Well, I gotta head out, I might pop back in here to say a bit more about it. I'm zechio on the tor forums if anyone wants to say hi for any reason.

  30. Anonymous Coward

    Meh. Disagree.

    >"as the mouth-watering CG trailer for the Old Republic demonstrates, it's getting harder to differentiate between real video and computer graphics"

    Well, maybe you see it differently to me, but particularly Han Solo and the good-maul-guy's girlfriend looked really unnatural, in a we-got-our-skin-rendering-out-of-a-final-fantasy-game kind of way. And although they put a lot of effort into the fight scene, the ordinary walking and running still makes them all look really badly like computer game characters.

    It's good, but it don't pass the turing test / uncanny valley just yet.

    Also, would be more impressed to see actual game graphics rather than an expensively-high-end-rendered FMV. I suspect a lot of the salivation in this comment thread comes from people who think the actual game is going to look like this. Err.. no, not likely.

    1. The Indomitable Gall

      Expensive is the word...

      Yes, I agree that most of that animation is noticeably animation, and not real video. I'd also like suggest that the animation on that short clip is really absolute state-of-the-art to the point that it is so expensive that you couldn't produce a whole animated film/series at that quality without making a mind-blowing loss.

  31. breakfast Silver badge

    Good start

    So it begins like this and you're all like "WHOA! This is going to be amazing!"

    Then the game proper starts and you're a mook on Tatooine with some dude who wants you to kill ten wamprats, then fifteen wamprats, then twenty greater wamprats...

  32. Leon


    Hey, it's just CGI footage. No Gameplay no UI etc. If they made a full CGI trailer for PACMAN or Space Invaders would you get excited then. The only real news item here is BIOWARE made a random CGI trailer.

  33. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    WoW killer?

    Pretty much every MMO that has been released in the last 5 years made this claim.. maybe this one has a chance as it isn't yet another medieval fantasy mmo, but I doubt it.

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