The Perfect Ten: Predictions for The Old Republic

I'm going to share with you a deep secret about the Massively staff: Pretty much all of us hate Larry. Oh, as a person he's likable enough, and he showers regularly, so no complaints there. He even saved the President's dog once and earned the Merit of Patriotic Pooches. Women swoon at his feet, and men occasionally throw their billfolds at him just so that he can afford to live the luxurious lifestyle that he obviously deserves.

No, we hate him for a different reason entirely. You see, Larry gets the privilege and honor of being the Star Wars: The Old Republic reporter in these here parts, which has earned him no end of envy from the rest of us. Whenever we're all talking about TOR, Shawn will come in the room and tell all of us to cut it out -- except Larry. "Larry, it's your job to talk about The Old Republic. Keep on truckin', pal! You're the best!"

And then Larry sticks his tongue out at us and makes pretend lightsaber noises for an hour or so while we grit our teeth.

But then I remembered: I have a top ten column! In which I can talk about anything! And if that subject so happened to be TOR, then for one glorious week I could actually talk about BioWare's upcoming MMO without fear of reprisal from upper management! So today is all about my predictions for The Old Republic. Nine of them will come true; one will not. Have fun guessing which one!

1. Jawa Jedi

Until the game launches -- and probably past even then -- I'll be holding out hope that BioWare sees the light and makes Jawas a playable race. It makes a lot of sense: Jawas are very popular in the Star Wars community, they fill the requirement of a "short" race, and there really is nothing more goosebump-raising than the thought of a Jawa wielding a lightsaber. Besides, what are the Jawas' main attributes? They're scavengers and crafters. What a coincidence -- so are most MMO players!

Jawa life, foo!

2. Sarlacc flashpoint

Everyone who watched Return of the Jedi always wondered just what was down in that Sarlacc pit. What would keep someone alive for a thousand years of pain and suffering? And is there a raid boss at the end of it?

I predict that BioWare will make a Sarlacc flashpoint into one of the game's crown jewels. Players will leap off a skiff barge into its waiting orifice, hacking and shooting their way down into the literal belly of the beast. It would probably be time-limited: If the team can't beat the flashpoint within an hour, the Sarlacc will consume them and their characters will be locked for the next thousand years.

3. Non-Force users will be discriminated against

The Old Republic will eventually become a case study for cyber-discrimination between the "haves" and the "have nots" of the Force. Those who have a high midi-chlorian count will be treated as royalty in the game, benefiting from increased loot drops and overpowered PvP abilities. The Smugglers, Bounty Hunters, Imperial Agents and Troopers will be forced to eat a steady diet of vendor trash, long queues, and demeaning slurs.

Eventually, the discrimination will be so bad that Force users will clamor -- and receive -- their own premium server where the filth of the Non-Forcies will be kept from their sight.

4. Time travel cameos

Just because The Old Republic is set a few thousand years before the movies doesn't mean that BioWare can't cash in on a little nostalgia. This is science fiction, after all, so don't be surprised if you're exploring a planet and you discover a modified YT-1300 that's crash-landed on the surface. Try to act nonchalant as the roguish pilot and his hairy companion ask for your help to send them back... to the future! Maybe if you're lucky, you'll get to lock lips with him as a reward, choosing the conversation option for "I love you!" only to hear "I know" in return.

5. By 2015, everyone will call new MMOs "TOR clones"

The Old Republic will not only be a crushing success and revitalize the subscription model -- it's my column, I can't hear you, la la la -- but as it becomes the most-recognized MMO on the planet, every subsequent game will be judged against it and labeled as a clone of it. Plus, let's face it: "TOR clone" sounds so much cooler than "WoW clone."

6. Nobody will spell "Wookiee" right and it'll drive hardcore fans mad

To tell you the truth, I'm not 100% sure I spelled Wookiee right in that title there. Is it one "e" or two? Should the "k" be doubled as well so it doesn't feel left out?

In any case, the militant Star Wars fans in general chat will leap all over the poor souls who dare desecrate this strong, proud race from Kay... Kaskyk... Kashyyk... crud, how many times do I have to use "y" in Kashyyyk? Three? Are you joking?

7. Companions will unionize

In Update 3, BioWare will add a controversial feature that allows companions to form a union in protest to being left on the ship crafting all the time. While this is meant to encourage players to give equal attention to all of their traveling buddies, the unions will quickly backfire and start making unreasonable demands, such as time off from the game and unnecessary pit stops to pleasure planets, even if the player is in the middle of an important mission.

8. TOR will be the first MMO to cause guild breakups over dialogue choices

"Dammit, Kev, I thought we all agreed to be gruff and aggressive with this prisoner!"

"Sorry Jim, but it's just not what my character would say."

"What would your character say if he were threatened with a /gkick, hm?"

"He'd say... let's see... 'Up yours with a Bantha stick.' Sweet, +2 Light side points for that."

"GROW UP!"

9. Chuck Norris jokes will be replaced with Wedge Antilles facts
  • Wedge Antilles isn't invincible. Invincibility means being Wedge Antilles.
  • Wedge Antilles and Darth Vader once fought each other on a bet. The loser had to be a mouth-breather for the next 10 years.
  • When Jabba the Hutt goes to sleep every night, he checks his Rancor pit for Wedge Antilles.
  • Luke wanted to know the ways of the Force. The Force wanted to know the ways of Wedge Antilles.
  • Gravity is space's way of trying to keep Wedge Antilles away from it.
10. To celebrate the game's 10th anniversary, George Lucas will release a "special edition" of TOR

And it will suck, because none of your characters will be allowed to attack unless the enemy shoots first.

Justin "Syp" Olivetti enjoys counting up to ten, a feat that he considers the apex of his career. If you'd like to learn how to count as well, check out The Perfect Ten. You can contact him via email at justin@massively.com or through his gaming blog, Bio Break.
This article was originally published on Massively.