SWTOR: The other FAQ

Today with a special edition of Bookahneer’s Geekwatch. It’s all about Star Wars: The Old Republic!

Bioware announced the preorder and I think quite a lot of bloggers have already declared their allegiance: Pro or con CE. ;) I also saw lots of questions and had some people ask me whether I knew about X or Y. So I looked around and found some answers.

If you want to know something, your best bet is probably to go and look it up at Bioware’s FAQ. There, you will found out, among other things, that:

Will SWTOR have a monthly fee?
Yep. How much it will be is unclear at this point: Yes, a monthly subscription is required to play Star Wars: The Old Republic. Exact pricing will be revealed at a later date. (found under “Purchasing”)
Update July 24: Monthly fee will be revealed closer to launch date but the cost won’t be “anomalous”. (Source)

When will Early Access start?
No precise date yet. But the earlier you entered your preorder key, the earlier you will get in there. I saw rumours about it being 6 days for CE owners and 3 days for regular preorders. But that doesn’t seem to be the case. All that counts is apparently how fast you entered your preorder code, according to Stephen Reid, Community Manager for SWTOR.

What is this CE-exclusive in-game vendor?
Apparently an NPC in game that you can only buy stuff from if you have bought the physical Collector’s Edition. The Digital one does not count! A user summarized some things Bioware mentioned at San Diego Comic Con: 4th posting on this page. There is also mention of this vendor. In addition, Stephen Reid posted in his twitter: “We are being very careful not to unbalance things with CE.” – I personally have become rather cynical with stuff like that. Read it like he wrote it. Don’t interpret. In the best case, this means that there’ll never be more powerful stuff to buy at this vendor. In the worst case, while they tried to be careful, they still managed to unbalance stuff and you can buy things that are more powerful. Only time will tell, I guess. ;)

Some more stuff from that posting about SDCC:
– respeccing of advanced classes will be possible
– ship interior customization (that is, most likely, “housing”) will not be in game at launch but they’re planning to add it in the future
– SWTOR “runs great in Bootcamp” – for MAC users (no guarantee, though).
…and more. ;)

Who can preorder?
While SWTOR will be released in North America and “Europe”, what Bioware actually means is that it will be released in parts of Europe (9 countries that belong to the European Union are not part of Bioware’s Europe. More if you count countries that have territory in Europe but don’t belong to the European Union…). (Found under “International”). Stephen Reid “will look into it” when asked whether he could add a FAQ to help those players who aren’t part of SWTOR’s launch with more information.

I am in Europe and belong to those who can buy the game. Yay! But can I play together with friends from the USA?
Yep. :)

Will there be IP blocking?
Approximately 6 hours ago, Stephen Reid said “On IP / region blocking. Current plan is no blocking.”. He wasn’t sure, though. A bit later, he sent another tweet: “Sleep soon. Please understand on IP blocking stuff, I will investigate, doesn’t guarantee I am right or you will like answers.”
Update July 24: On region locking: right now things are unchanged, anyone can play #SWTOR from anywhere in the world on any server, but latency may affect. (Source). – Important to note is the “right now”. Hopefully, that’s just him making sure that even though there are no plans at all, you never know what happens in about 20 or 30 years and he doesn’t want to be called a liar in the future. ;)

What does that mean now? Nobody knows but Bioware. We’ll see soon, hopefully.