Bioware and LucasArts annouce “Star Wars: The Old Republic” MMORPG.

When Sony first announced the Star Wars Galaxies MMORPG back in March of 2000 I was really excited at the possibilities only to be really disappointed with the end product. After watching my friend Hairboy play the beta it seemed very much like it was just Everquest redressed with Star Wars graphics. I never did end up buying the game. Now word comes that Bioware and LucasArts have teamed up to produce a MMORPG based on the highly successful Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic RPGs:

The story-based MMO will be set roughly 300 years after BioWare’s 2004 single-player RPG Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic (PC, Xbox) and the Obsidian-developed sequel, or 3500 years before the beloved film series.

“We’re making KOTOR 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 and beyond—this game is that big, it’s got that much content in it,” explained BioWare co-founder Ray Muzyka. “It’s very innovative—it’s story based.”

The game has seen a team of 12 full-time writers producing content for the past few years, according to IGN, with each class getting its own story arc as “not everybody’s fantasy was to be Luke [Skywalker].”

“You get to choose many things in the game—your faction, your class, good and evil, how your story unfolds,” explained lead designer James Ohlen.

“We thought of a Howard the Duck MMO, we thought it was a little too crazy,” Muzyka joked. He also noted that the game will feature a “full economy.”

“The game is playable,” asserted BioWare co-founder Greg Zeschuk, though a playable version was not shown today.

The Old Republic will allow players to choose a companion, as with the previous KOTOR games, and will have full PVP, PVE and RVR (realm vs. realm) combat along with raids. No classes have been revealed as of yet.

I have to admit that I’m not all that excited about it this time around. It probably doesn’t help that I was one of the few people who didn’t really care for Knights of the Old Republic. I bought it for the PC and played maybe a quarter of it before I got bored and moved on to other things. I never picked up the sequel. Granted, just like with Warcraft, the MMORPG by its very nature will have to play much differently than the RPG games did, but I’m still not all that excited about it. The setting is too far back in the past for me to give a crap. I’m much more interesting in the setting used by Star Wars Galaxies, but they fucked that game up so much that it’s not worth playing.

Of course my opinion may change as the game gets closer to release and we learn more about it, but my initial reaction is a solid “meh” at the announcement for now.

“APB” just might pull me away from “World of Warcraft.”

WoW has spoiled me when it comes to massively multiplayer online games and it would take something very different to pull me away. That title may not be too far off in the distance if APB lives up to its promise. What is it? Imagine taking Grand Theft Auto and making it an MMORPG, but without the grind of traditional games and more of a third-person shooter feel. Players can be either crooks or enforcers (police) and will face off against each other in various missions. Here’s a video clip of the game in action from the Game Developer’s Conference:

Apparently the game has a ridiculously extensive character creation system to help ensure you have a easily distinguishable avatar. In another demonstration clip you can see over at they go so far as to show you how they made versions of famous video game developers such as Warren Specter and Peter Molyneux. They game is still very early in its development, but it’s looking good already and could be just the ticket to get me to leave WoW, at least for a little while.