Mos Eisley Radio

MER Episode 43: The Butcher

MER Episode 43: The Butcher

This week we are joined by a SWTOR community fan favorite, Musco. As you may recall recently he departed from his gig over at Torocast, so in this episode we catch up with Musco to see how he is doing. In addition we talk about all the latest news from The Old Republic. We even take time to respond to a growing concern in our community about TOR and its comparisons to WoW as well.

In addition we announced a new contest in this episode as well. The prize you ask? Two passes to the upcoming Pax Prime. All of the details are on this episode as well. As always, head over to our forums for all of the latest discussion going on related to this episode.

Music for this show was provided by General Fuzz.

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Discussion Topics
– Latest video about the liberation of Alderaan
– SWG shutting down for good
– Your Questions

23 replies on “MER Episode 43: The Butcher”

The Alderaan video was not a flashpoint, one of the videos actually said specifically that it was not. It was “heroic group content” and part of the world story arc.

Good episode guys. With regards to the SWG IP fiasco I’ve got a good resource (current employee at Sony that used to work on SWG) that said it was primarily LucasArts that did not want the game to continue 1) because the game was dying/dead 2) because they would have 3 SW based MMO’s out there come year end 3) LucasArts is trying to reduce the number of third party developers based on their recent “restructuring”. Also LucasArts always does term contracts for its SW IP. BioWare/EA also has a 10-year contract, which is why EA made the comment that they expect the game to run for at least 10-years.

Regarding raids, the Broodlord was who you were referring to in Blackwing Lair. I absolutely LOVE vanilla WoW raids and I hope that SW:TOR has some of the elements of those encounters – specifically from BWL.

So just because WoW is popular it becomes the very definition of what MMORPG means? DAoC was nothing like WoW, are you saying that DAoC wasn’t an MMORPG? I don’t agree that WoW was terrible, it got alot of things right PvE wise but you can’t tell me that I can’t hope for something different PvP wise because that isn’t what an MMORPG is.

I look at SWtOR this way: Not only will they get the PvE right, I’m expecting it to be BETTER then WoW because of the emphasis on story. Any developer that tries to take the ‘kill 10 rats’ quests and changes things up is cool with me. My problem is that they aren’t making the same innovations on the PvP side, Bioware is choosing the same old PvP that WoW did and that was where WoW stunk.

I don’t really agree that PvE in WoW was simple or easy, what it was was ACCESSIBLE. In WoW you could max level solo, in EQ by the time you hit level 18 you’re solo days were done. The 2 games were so very different in theory that saying 1 was better than the other is a difficult stretch.

What I am hoping for is an MMORPG that puts more emphasis on Open World PvP and puts it in context. SWtOR is doing alot for story on the PvE side, why can’t they put in PvP quests into the storylines too? Why do they decide to instance PvP and turn it into a minigame when they could weave it into the story just as easily?

Primarily because PvP is more of a niche gameplay than PvE. That is why there are significantly more PvE based servers than PvP. PvP focused (MMO) games simply do not succeed because the audience is not large enough to make it the main focus.

As far as why PvP is not in the storyline is simple. Majority rules and that majority is PvE focused players that simply have no desire to PvP. So you cannot (logistically) force the majority to do something they do not want to do if you want your game to succeed. It is the same as “epic” items in WoW. The “majority” (non-raiders) wanted shiny epic loot, the same as raiders. So they added in the badge system, made raids more accessible to smaller groups and dumbed down much of the content for… you guessed it. The majority.

No Steve, no PvP focused game has succeeded yet because the market expected them to be near-perfect at launch, and they weren’t.

Warhammer Online and Age of Conan are the classic examples here that I know of, they were huge IP’s with massive interest and massive potential markets. Unfortunately when they released, they both failed to meet expectations, whether that was because of a lack of content, an end-game that was seen as “unfinished”, or the many bugs that had not yet been “squashed”.

It may well be true that the majority of WoW players want PvE. It MAY even be true that the majority of current MMORPG players want PvE content (and that’s a big maybe to my mind). But there are two flaws with designing a game exclusively to cater to these postulations.
1st, If we look over at the Asian market, they have a HUGE MMO gamer-base over there. I think it’s quite clear that the Western MMO market still has plenty of room to grow into, and who’s to say what that potential market will want? Will it be former FPS fans who want fast paced PvP? Or will it be a crowd who wants traditional PvE that’s accessible? Or will they want something completely new that we can’t even fathom yet? There’s just no telling, but the one thing we shouldn’t do is stagnate the genre by excluding certain types of players when making a game just because we see them as a “minority”.

2nd, you’re cutting yourself out of a sizeable existing market. I completely disagree with you in that I believe there are tons of PvP focused gamers in the genre. Maybe they’re spread out across a multitude of games, waiting for that awesome game that will bring them all together, or maybe they’ve separated for other reasons, but trust me, they’re out there! To ignore them is to ignore a chunk of your potential profits and that’s just not good business sense.

As for “forcing players to do something they don’t want to do”, who says we want Bioware to force PvP on anybody? They’ve already stated that the game will have separated PvP Lakes (ala – Warhammer Online), all we PvP’ers are asking for is that Bioware assure us that we’re not being given only 3 Warzones and ganking as our only outlets. We want meaningful, story driven PvP that is every bit as awesome as your Raids are probably going to be.

If Bioware had told PvE players “We’re going to give you quests, and we’re going to give you a couple of dungeons, and that’s it. Enjoy.”, you’d be pretty upset with them right? That’s how I feel at the moment as a PvP fan. I’m still waiting for a short, non-descriptive statement to assure me that Bioware will provide something for PvP’ers that is on equal footing with Raids.

For the record, I think this game needs to have meaningful, persistent PvP (or RvR) in order to be balanced and cater to the largest crowd possible. I also have come to believe that that experience should be separated somewhat from the PvE experience. Not completely, just mostly. We don’t want anyone’s enjoyment being ruined, we just want our slice of the cake.

To sum up, there is a sizeable PvP crowd out here waiting for this game just like everyone else. Many of us will enjoy the story, the Raids, the exploration, the crafting, etc… but we’d also like to have our PvP. Considering the IP’s title, it just plain makes sense.

Great show this week. I really enjoyed it and the conversation on WoW. It’s upsetting to see so much hate against WoW and other games. I don’t understand why hating the standard or making comparisons to WoW is a problem and I am glad you guys covered it. It was a great 15 minutes or so.


@iLkrehp I think you make a lot of good points. DAoC is a MMORPG, I personally never played it but my friends that played it absolutely loved the PvP in that game. It gave you a reason to World PvP. It had players wanting to make these big raids and take out cities from the stories I remember my friends telling me. I’ll try to talk to them to get more details and maybe see (if cool with zach & evan of course) could possibly come on the show and share those adventures. [@zach Jeff Lennington Played DAoC]

I agree with you completely about them getting PvE side very right. Seeing what they showed in the flash points and what the podcasts have been saying is, you’ve never felt more involved in your early character progression. You weigh decisions and actually feel like you’re making your own story ark sort of speak.

I do hope they maybe venture down a little more into the Warzones. From what I took at the Fansite Summit/SWTOUR was that most of the players have never had such a wonderful experience pvping and most have admitted they are not very strong PvP player and enjoyed it so I think there is still more hope there. They can do a lot with the story to make PvP feel more fun and a essential component of the game to truly experience it.

You’re right WoW was very accessible for content in every PvE aspect with a few minute exceptions and I haven’t heard the podcast yet but idk if they directly compared the games or just used as a reference of the community/industry changing.

I think if we make a calling for more world pvp incentive they’ll deliver. Just for the time being, I feel as if they’re trying to draw in competitive players from other mmos to enjoy their PvP and possibly bring out ladders/tournaments for it. Instanced PvP is easier to organize and caters to the player more for convenience.

There are a lot of things left to be said with some Cons to possibly answer those questions. They are still laying down the foundation, we can influence what they put on top of it. I think you made a lot of good points and hopefully Bioware will see our wants and incorporate it into the game for us to enjoy.

Great podcast, nice to hear from Musco! Thanks for discussing my question regarding the next big release for SWTOR. I agree, it will probably be at a big event. I believe we will get a lot more crafting info for one of the releases. I don’t have ITunes, but I’ll need to think about whether or not I’ll lay down the cash for PAX Prime, so not certain I’ll enter the contest just yet. Keep up the good work MER!

Great to hear musco! I don’t do twitter or facespace so I’ve been eager to hear the person who made torocast what it was! Come back and do more podcasting!

I wanted to agree with furthur. I haven’t even heard the podcast yet (downloading it now to play on the drive home) but I’m really happy that you guys had Musco on. While Torocast has moved on with new co-hosts I’m still sad that Musco isn’t on a regular show. I do think he made Torocast into what it was and I wish he was on a regular podcast. I would love it if he would round-robin all the podcasts as a guest host until launch.

I would like to listen to the opinions of a few DAoC fans who have played SWtOR PvP. IMO DAoC was closest to ‘right’ as far as PvP goes and I’d like them to compare and contast the 2.

How much did Zach and Evan play DAoC? Are we talking hardcore/RR10 or lvl42/epicarmor?

I guessing you leaving Warhammer out on purpose? I have played both Dark Age of Camlot & Warhammer online. Both were fun, groundbreaking PVP MMO. Both had some balance issues. As Most of Mythic is now helpings Bioware with SWTOR, I am pretty sure they going have sweet world PVP and 10x better Battleground then Wow. Most of Warhammer PVP battleground were unique & fun.

Just because the Mythic guys are helping on SWtOR doesn’t guarantee a good PvP system. Those Mythic guys did a great job on DAoC PvP but a terrible job on WAR PvP. They dropped the 3 faction system, dispersed the open world zones way too much, made those zones way too small, took out any real bite to death penalties, deluded themselves into thinking you can do open world AND instances at the same time, PvP rewards were PvE based, I could go on. Let’s just hope those Mythic guys learned alot from their WAR experience.

To my knowledge, I don’t think Zach or Evan never played DAoC. I’m not 100% but i’m almost certain they haven’t. But I think Jeff would bring a good opinion to the show covering that. Going to talk to Zach about possibly getting that in the works.

Oh yea worth the wait! Awesome show! You should have Musco on every other month. Call it “Fridays with Musco”

To the MER crew – Sorry about cluttering your comments section with my big wall of text. I can get carried away a little when people try to say why devs should ignore the part of MMO’s I’ve actually come to care about. 🙂

Thanks for the awesome work you guys continue to do for our community. Keep up the good work.

I have been listening to your podcast for a while now. You guys are so easy to listen to, therefore I check out your podcast the most. You seem like some chilled out guys, and that makes the 1+ hour fly by. Thanks for the great info. -Awall- from FTW Broadcasting

Lately I have not been as excited to listen to MER. I feel that lately Brooks brought both humor and actual game knowledge to the table. I feel like you guys have an idea of things, but are not totally on the ball. It’s just been downhill since Brooks left

Thanks for the great show! – re submitting questions, would you mind posting the address and subject title to use? I’ve been trying to jump back through the podcast to find the details you gave out but have not had any luck.

Keep up the good work!

The whole “hardcore vs. casual” problem can be and IS solved by having multiple difficulty levels. And by multiple I mean more than 2! (“cough” WoW) Look at DDO, as far as i know every dungeon has something like 4 or 5 difficulty levels. Including ones that are designed for even solo players. That is the ONLY way to fix this problem and not have to actually “dumb-down” the “core” content. And like it or not no one, let me repeat that NO ONE, is entitled to “see” or beat ALL the content. Unless that is somewhere in some contract you sign with the devs, that states that paying your subscription fee = “doing it all”. I’ll bet you that nothing like that is stated ANYWHERE in the EULA or otherwise for ANY game ever made.

Great episode, as usual. Awesome entertainment to keep me from literally killing over from boredom while at work.

That said, I just want to touch on a few subjects from this episode, hopefully briefly, but we’ll see how this turns out.

On the closing of Galaxies: Though the comments in the episode regarding the closing Galaxies could very well hold true, another way of looking at it is like the lease on a building taken out by a company, for example, a grocery store chain. A minor chain can lease a building from the building’s owner, use the building to suit their needs, and every 5-10 years, renew the lease. After 20 years, the minor grocery chain gets overshadowed by a larger chain, which while having the funds to build an entirely new store, would prefer to remodel a pre-existing building to suit their needs, as the minor company did. The end of the renewed lease comes up, and the owner could simply tell the older company to make way for the newer, more profitable company. In this scenario, the owner and lease would be Lukas Arts and their Star Wars license, while the older company is clearly SOE, and the newer company Bioware/EA. The store had a good run, but it can’t compete in modern times against newer, shinier businesses. Long story short, you can’t really have two grocery chains occupying the same building. It’s one or the other, not both.

On Gabe’s article: Though it was stated in the podcast that it was understood how and why “Gabe” was allowed to post his article, for those of your listeners that didn’t read his article, the commentary that followed made it sound like he did so “just because he could”, when he did clearly state that it took some convincing (begging) on his part before Bioware allowed him to do so. He didn’t just do so on a whim. Granted, he also said that they didn’t know -what- he was going to say until after the fact, but he did get permission to give his impressions before he gave them. That aside, though, Penny Arcade is huge in the gaming community, and with his opinion of SWTOR being, quite simply, awesome, that’s great advertising for them, either way.

And finally, this part directed to Evan: Huge props for mentioning Monster Hunter, especially Freedom Unite. I gave up playing the game, myself, months ago. My buddy and I just duoing it together before Ad-Hoc Party was launched in English eventually wore me down, since we could have used a regular group but never knew anyone else that played. Your mentioning of it has, in some way, rekindled my urge to play it again.

All in all, great show, and I mean it. You guys kept my brain stirring (all 12 or more times I listened to it) while I would have otherwise been completely braindead in the workplace. Keep up the good work, and looking forward to the next episode.