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The Old Republic: All I Want is the Cutscenes

Posted on 13th Jun 2011 at 07:29 by Clive Webster with 24 comments

Clive Webster
The latest trailer for Star Wars: The Old Republic has been released and it’s freaking awesome. This follows previous cut-scene and video releases that have been similarly impressive, engaging and enjoyable. However, with the game looking a bit duff, I’m wondering if Electronic Arts, Bioware and LucasArts could be persuaded into releasing a cut-scene-only version? I’d happily pay to watch a short film made from them.



If you’re not sure what I’m on about, have a look at the Star Wars: The Old Republic intro cinematic (watch it in fullscreen mode) above, then the other trailers (not the gameplay videos) and come back.

See what I mean? They’re much more reminiscent of the original trilogy than the rubbish prequel films. There’s a focus on people that you readily recognise and empathise with overcoming obstacles; the classic setup for injecting drama and interest into a scene or story. Furthermore, there’s absolutely no mention of trade disputes, midi-sodding-chlorians or annoying lizard-rabbits.

In fact, some of the intros' cinematic characters are really close to those of Episodes IV to VI. There’s a dependable droid that happily receives rushed instructions, and it’s on a ship with dingy, circular corridors and laser-cannon pods. Then there’s the pilot of this ship – he’s instantly introduced as a likeable yet roguish smuggler, and his attire hardly suggests otherwise. He even seems to steal Han’s dialogue: his is the fastest ship in the fleet, even though it might not look like much. All we need is a co-pilot with a shaving phobia and we’re done.

But who cares if Bioware is borrowing heavily from the source material to produce something this fun? Arguably, the mistake that George Lucas made with his prequels was refusing to follow his own conventions. We wanted a bit more of the same please, not some confused reinterpretation of the Universe we’d spent the last however many years discussing in detail.

So when the ‘trader’ ship blasts through the Imperial turbo laser, rushes through its guts, and then hits its hyperdrive, we’re cheering on the crew. When the Jedi master Force-pulls the second lightsaber to him, we’re given a moment to consider the great duel that’s about to ensue.

Even the cutting and pacing between the personal fight between Jedi and Sith and the action on the not-Millenium Falcon is so reminiscent of The Empire Strikes Back that it can’t fail to make Star Wars fans happy. The trailer even conveys emotion brilliantly – Malcus exudes rage as he stalks towards the Jedi master and bats away his defence, while you can read the thoughts of his Padawan perfectly well after his death.

So please, can we just have the cinematics to watch, and leave the MMO to WoW deserters? Please?

24 Comments

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toolio20 13th June 2011, 08:38 Quote
"So please, can we just have the cinematics to watch, and leave the MMO to WoW deserters? Please?"

No.

You will have Lucas droppings and you will be happy for it.
HerpDerp 13th June 2011, 10:14 Quote
Similar is good. Same is bad. The point many people are making is that this trailer sounds, looks, and plays similarly to many scenes from the films. So similarly that you may as well just watch the films again. The trailer is good, but the films are still better. While we have a lack of information to work with right now, if the rest of the plot in this game continues at the same level of similarity, it will be entirely boring, predictable and feel like a fat streak of dejavu.
kosch 13th June 2011, 13:31 Quote
Love this trailer!
NuTech 13th June 2011, 14:13 Quote
Credit where credit due, the guys at Blur Studios are amazing.

As mentioned in another thread, I was in contact with them a few years ago, and to call their services expensive would be the understatement of the century. But, as you can tell, worth every penny.
vdbswong 13th June 2011, 14:24 Quote
You're not the first person i've seen suggest this, there was a whole thread about it on the SWTOR forums. In fact you might even be crucified there for stating it was more similar to the original trilogy by people arguing that Jedi/Sith never pranced about with the acrobatic lightsaber moves over there :D (in fact, over there that's a debate in itself as to whether or not Lucas had meant them to be slow, mental battles or simply didn't have access to properly capture it).

I do find it a little disappointing that there's such a disparity between the game and the trailer however it's not the first time i've seen something in a cutscene and been like "Hey, I can't do that in game!" (although in this case you actually can, it just doesn't look as nice as its portrayed).

+ You're slightly off the mark with the cutscene comment i believe Clive (unless you know something i don't ? :D), the previous trailers are exactly that, simply trailers and not cutscenes within the game. The "Return" Cinematic itself is the opening movie that players will see when first loading up the game. I believe all other cutscenes in the game are rendered using the ingame engine.
triprunner 13th June 2011, 14:26 Quote
totally agree here, trailers are awesome, videos of gameplay not so...

funny thing though, if you try and point that out on the SW forums or simple comments under clips, TOR's fanboys will turn Sith on you...
Chicken76 13th June 2011, 17:16 Quote
Ehm, you mean "Malgus" not "Malcus", right?
Also, I'm sure you mean "When the Sith lord Force-pulls the second lightsaber to him", not "...Jedi master...".

All in all the trailer is pretty but like the others made by Blur Studios, is a bit shallow.
vdbswong 13th June 2011, 17:27 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chicken76
Also, I'm sure you mean "When the Sith lord Force-pulls the second lightsaber to him", not "...Jedi master...".

I assumed he meant when Satele threw her SaberStaff to her Master.
Hovis 13th June 2011, 18:34 Quote
The trailer, even as short as it is, is better than the last three Star Wars movies. Which says something about how crap the prequels were.

All things considered though I think Bioware don't need to have a good game to present their stories. I mean if you deconstruct the Mass Effect games, they do not offer much in terms of game-play. Linear 3rd person cover shooter, plus minigames. Yet Mass Effect 2 is the greatest game ever. Why? Story.

So, all things considered, don't write off Bioware. But don't presume genius either. The suspense is killing me.
sear 13th June 2011, 19:01 Quote
This is exactly why people lapped up Knights of the Old Republic - hey, it's a bad RPG with broken combat mechanics, bad dialogue, and a horrible railroaded story, but look how much **** they ripped off from the original trilogy! The Millennium, Tattooine, the Death Star, Darth Vader, Dantooine, Yoda, etc. are all in there... we just gave them different names!

I don't want more of the same old Star Wars. I want something that puts the existing canon to good use without just ripping off the old stuff, while at the same time not being absolutely ****ing terrible.
Wozzname 13th June 2011, 19:08 Quote
As much as I hate MMOs (I get lamentably addicted and then it takes ages to quit), I am now very tempted by this one, if only for the story. Would much rather have a film though.
vdbswong 13th June 2011, 19:31 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by sear
This is exactly why people lapped up Knights of the Old Republic - hey, it's a bad RPG with broken combat mechanics, bad dialogue, and a horrible railroaded story, but look how much **** they ripped off from the original trilogy! The Millennium, Tattooine, the Death Star, Darth Vader, Dantooine, Yoda, etc. are all in there... we just gave them different names!

I don't want more of the same old Star Wars. I want something that puts the existing canon to good use without just ripping off the old stuff, while at the same time not being absolutely ****ing terrible.

I'm sorry but in no way would i ever call KoTOR a bad RPG, if by broken mechanics you meant based on the well established DnD 3.0 system then you're missing something. No, dialogue wasn't the best but it was better than most of the stuff out there and the story was somewhat cliché but had an interesting twist and delivered what was expected of the IP. The fact that it's lauded as one of the best RPGs let alone Star Wars game ever created puts you in a very small minority of people.

And whereas you see rip off of various things, i see homages and numerous references to the different era (where the Jedi are prevalent and the Sith aren't simply "a group of two").

What exactly would be your definition of the same old Star Wars? No Jedi? No Lightsabers? Nothing that makes the Star Wars universe what it is?
TFSakon 13th June 2011, 20:02 Quote
Oh dear god the trailer is just sooo good, I know this isn't a complex and eloquent arguement but am I wrong?
Bloodburgers 13th June 2011, 22:38 Quote
DUUUUUUUUUUUUDE..... But what does my lightsaber say????

SAAAAAAWEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEET!!!!!!!!!

Shame i feel the game will be lacking. I know i will be shot by a salvo of laser fire but i wish they could have made an absolutely Whoresome KOTOR III.
Xir 14th June 2011, 14:53 Quote
Not a huge Starwars fan, but yes: This:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bloodburgers
...i wish they could have made an absolutely Whoresome KOTOR III.
+1

And yes, DnD rules are annoying and complicated, but they work well.:D
vdbswong 14th June 2011, 17:02 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Xir
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bloodburgers
Shame i feel the game will be lacking. I know i will be shot by a salvo of laser fire but i wish they could have made an absolutely Whoresome KOTOR III.
+1

I don't think anyone necessarily wanted a Star Wars MMO (especially after how bad Galaxies failed).

However most people put their faith in Bioware and IMO they've done it justice.

I think that it's got a nice balance of MMO features (Raids, Flashpoints etc.) but with the traditional Bioware twist of Storytelling and character development on a personal level.

The only thing i'm worried about is that it might alienate members on more extreme sides of the scale (i.e. those who don't want anything to do with MMOs at all, and those who don't care about Story/Bioware style RPGs).
erratum1 15th June 2011, 11:55 Quote
Yea it was awesome better than the prequel films.
CrazyBlade 15th June 2011, 13:11 Quote
Blur Studios are absolutely amazing, their Star Wars The Old Republic trilogy of trailers has been stunning and I wish there was some way they could get the finance and time to make a full movie like this, it would be fantastic.
Ayrto 16th June 2011, 22:06 Quote
If you like that, you may like this DC Universe Online - Cinematic Trailer. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H7Nf-m6WGl4

...again it makes the actual gameplay seem like a huge letdown
CrazyBlade 17th June 2011, 01:18 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ayrto
If you like that, you may like this DC Universe Online - Cinematic Trailer. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H7Nf-m6WGl4

...again it makes the actual gameplay seem like a huge letdown

Blur are also responsible for the cinematics from several other games, including Batman: Arkham City, Force Unleashed II and others. Check them out here:

http://vz3.blur.com/work
Ayrto 17th June 2011, 01:58 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by CrazyBlade
Blur are also responsible for the cinematics from several other games, including Batman: Arkham City, Force Unleashed II and others. Check them out here:

http://vz3.blur.com/work

Incredible stuff, goes without saying that they're extremely talented.

Wonder if they've been commissioned to make full length movie , it's a case of if not , why not?

They really show what game artists can one day aspire to, if we ever see the back of crappy console ports.
roosauce 17th June 2011, 19:56 Quote
Wow - That trailer is frickin' amazing!
Sensei 24th June 2011, 11:08 Quote
All I wanted was KOTOR 3. Not interested in playing online.
The cinematics they keep releasing are fantastic and they really need to make a fim.
Not for the kids but for us
vdbswong 24th June 2011, 19:15 Quote
Despite how amazing it was, didn't even win Gametrailers Trailer of E3... in fact it wasn't even a contender (despite them mentioning it in their Online Game Awards video)... *coughbiascough*.

In fact the Assassin's Creed: Revelations (who won the Gametrailers award) is even in the lead on Gamespot's Trailer of E3 as well.

Silly silly fans :P.
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