Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Star Wars Heritage

I've been doing so many Star Wars posts that it has been (temporarily, at least) completely over-running my blog.  I'm thinking of coming up with a temporary banner that reflects it.  But, honestly... I probably won't.  Following my recent refocus, after all, Star Wars related posts are completely on-topic, along with DARK•HERITAGE posts; of which I don't have a lot of "new" material in the works anyway; it's more repackaging existing material.  So today is... more Star Wars.  More Old Republic specifically.

I haven't played it much lately, but I've watched a lot of a fairly detailed Smuggler play-through.  I'm starting to find the plotting, the writing, and the interminable stupid NPCs and their stupid quests to be tedious beyond belief.  It's almost impossible for me to believe, at this point, that I'd actually play this thing all the way through.  The game simply isn't very good.  What a shame; it's a great concept; and it's a great take on the setting (mostly.)  There's some great visual design associated with the game.  It looks pretty good (although it doesn't really look terribly better than over ten years old Knights of the Old Republic now that I mention it) but it's simply too tedious and cringe-worthy to justify playing it through.  The writing is worthy of the prequels, both in terms of roll-eyes plot holes and nonsense and in terms of face-palm bad dialogue.

As an aside, it apparently won Game of the Year by MSNBC back in 2011 or 2012 when it was newer.  That probably tells you quite a bit about it right there.  MSNBC.  Ugh.

But if I had Kathleen Kennedy or Tony To's job, what would I do to salvage the concept of the Old Republic?  Assuming that licensing rights allowed me to?

Create an animated ensemble cast TV show, probably!  Not unlike Star Wars: Rebels or the earlier Clone Wars show except with at least one big difference: I'd take an archetypal character from the game: one for each of the eight main character classes, actually: and kinda sorta rewrite their plots from the game, mingle them together somewhat, and spread them out over several seasons worth of action.  Some of the constraints of the game: most notably the need to keep players busy so they keep coming back, hence the inclusion of so many asinine and banal quests for completely unlikable and unsympathetic NPCs, will be eliminated.  In fact, all kinds of writing and pacing constraints can be replaced with some that actually work for the new medium.

You can't do anything about SJW except not hire them to write or supervise your product, I suppose.  In general, although they're not completely immune from it, the Marvel and LucasFilm divisions of Disney seem to have managed to avoid the worst of SJW excesses ruining their fun in their entertainment products, however.  I'm hopeful that they can still pull it off.

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