New Ilum: Genius or Madness?
Posted by Blessing of Kings [HTML][XML][PERM][FULL] on 13 February 2013, 1:15 am
I can't decide if the new PvP area in Ilum in The Old Republic is genius or madness. All I know is that it is pretty hilarious.

To recap, the latest patch introduced a new area with dailies on Ilum. All rewards are cosmetic, aside from the fact that you unlock new bosses at some point. I believe the bosses drop gear from existing raids. There are 6 dailies in total, 4 in the PvE area, and 2 in the PvP area. So the PvP dailies are reasonably optional.

(At least as far as I am concerned. But there are a lot of people who disagree with me.)

The PvP area is interesting. It's a free-for-all zone, so you can attack your own faction. Only 4-person groups are permitted in the area. Larger raids get disbanded automatically.

The PvP objects respawn somewhat slowly. So there is significant advantage to killing other groups, because you remove your competition, and get your dailies done faster. As well, it gives the PvP groups points over which to fight.

It's really funny because people in chat are trying to get the factions to work together, and groups are instead randomly slaughtering each other.  Area chat is hilarious.The Imperial side is convinced that the Republic is working together as a team, while the Imperials are attacking each other. Ironically, this seems very true to form, and totally in-character for each faction. I blame the Sith.

(Though the Republic side is probably saying the same thing.)

The design of the new area is quite well thought out, in my opinion. Free-for-all keeps things balanced on servers with unbalanced factions. Small teams only keeps the feel of multiple forces running around, prevents raids from stomping everyone, and gives tanks and healers a place in combat. The quest objects and respawn timers give people something to fight over, rather than simply ganking. Plus, it's only 2 of 6 quests, so it is pretty optional if you absolutely hate PvP.

The final interesting note is that this is a temporary event, though it will be repeated in the future. By making it temporary, it means that when the event appears again, everyone will flock to it again. This keeps the numbers high and many people involved, which is essential for good PvP.

All in all, this looks like a winner for the SWTOR dev team.

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