The guys over at Darth Hater had the opportunity to speak with Damion Schubert, the Principle Lead Systems Designer of Star Wars: The Old Republic, at this years GDC Online. The interview is an interesting read, were Schubert discusses topics that include character creation, animations, the design of planets, class stories, and the “Legacy System”.
“One of the questions we ask of our focus groups and in our player surveys when we give them is ‘Does this pace feel correct? Does this feel like a grind to you?’ I am actually incredibly gratified to find that most people give an answer of ‘this is about right’ with ‘little too fast’ and we get like a five-five which is actually good because players feel a little like they are cheating, and that is kind of where we want to be, and hopefully that feeling will extend throughout the experience of the entire level curve, that remains to be seen. We feel pretty good about where our grind is because people give us the best compliments which you can get about a grind is that it doesn’t feel like a grind.”
One of the most interesting bits is this though:
We really want to put in systems to encourage replay. The Legacy System, which we hope to get in, will hopefully be in that venue. I am not ready to talk about what exactly it is and how we do that, but we are really betting heavily on the level up game.
There’s a big discussion goin on at the official forums, as it seems to confirm that re-rolling is a big part of the end-game activity. Check out Schubert’s entire interview at Darth Hater for an interesting look at the making of Star Wars: The Old Republic.