Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Star Wars Online done right?

Being on holiday I nearly missed the announcement from EA at E3 that yes, the unnamed Bioware MMO in the works is Knights of the Old Republic Online. Or maybe has a different name, but will certainly be based on the Knights of the Old Republic role-playing games. Good news indeed.

To understand why everyone is so excited, one has to have played some of the previous Bioware games. They are generally well done, smooth flowing gameplay, and have a stronger focus on storytelling than other RPGs. How that translates into an MMORPG is anyone's guess, but it could be quite exciting.

And of course any KotoR Online game will be significantly different from WoW in not having the typical orcs and elves. Star Wars is a great license to build on, and the previous MMORPG with that license, Star Wars Galaxies, got quite a solid number of players (for the time) in spite of lots of bugs, dubious game design decisions, and complete changes to gameplay in the middle. It is hard to imagine how Bioware could be doing *worse* with that license, so this has a shot at the "next big thing" label.

Of course we might do better to forget about it at the moment, and don't feed the hype. I don't expect this to come out before 2010, and we don't know anything yet about gameplay etc., so maybe it's best to just wait and see.

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