SWTOR Day 3 and a Little Rifting too
So last night I began to play my Trooper in earnest, since all the alts are now logged out in cantinas where I want them. I didn’t play long since I was rather tired, but I got well into level 5 and completed the 1st early quest series and need to head out to the 1st remote quest hub.
Compared to the other starting worlds, I find Ord Mantell to be a bit lacking. The quest hubs aren’t well designed, everything’s sprawling every which way. . . I’m running and running and running around endlessly. Add to it that the combat animations are slooooooow and always have to go off 1st before the ability is actually tripped and I feel like I’m playing in molasses while on this world.
After completing that 1st series of quests in the main hub, I didn’t feel like running out to the next hub, as the completionist in me would feel compelled to finish those quests too and I was getting tired, so I logged out after a little over an hour.
I fired Rift up, since I’d gotten some new gear the other night that I’d told a friend about and he wanted to see the screenshots which I hadn’t taken. Got in, took the screenies (see to the left for an example), had enough rested xp for a level, so figured I’d burn it out for about a half hour and see how far I got.
At the end of my time limit for myself, a guild group was going to run an instance and needed 1 more dps to fill the group, and I didn’t want to go to bed yet, so I joined up. We ran the Fall of Lantern Hook and it took about 40 minutes overall. Not bad considering it was the tank’s 1st time there. I got my level in there too, so now my rogue is 44. Only 6 more to go!
Since I was playing the 2 games juxtaposed so closely, I couldn’t help but compare how the combat felt. Rift felt snappy and responsive, especially in comparison to SWTOR. Rift tends to have the skills set as “hit the button, skill fires when the cast time is complete (instantly for instants)” and they’ve done an excellent job of having either an instant animation, or an animation that exactly matches the cast time of the skill. Interestingly enough, there is 1 move that the rogue does that has a longer animation. It’s an instant, and does fire off instantly, but it’s a huge swing of both swords way out to the sides, and it takes a little bit to pull back out of it. This serves as a break in the flow of the animation and if the skill didn’t do so much damage I’d be tempted to take it out of the macro just so it wouldn’t have that clunky feel to it. And that’s just with a long animation AFTER the skill fired off.
Now imagine that *every* skill felt like that but with the delay happening BEFORE the skill fired off. And yeah, that’s how I feel in SWTOR. Every skill (even the instant ones) still has some long-ass animation that has to play out before it applies the skill. Exacerbating the clunky feel is that the mobs react as though they got hit instantly by your decidedly non-instant skill.
So. . . for now, at least, I find myself preferring the SWTOR “4th pillar” storytelling to Rift’s lore, but I vastly prefer Rift’s combat to SWTOR’s. I did a short foray into the SWTOR forums and am finding similar complaints from others, so we’ll see if BioWare can improve on the feel of the combat as they move forward. And I’ll continue to play both games, not exclude the one for the other. Nothing says I can’t like them both, right?