While other high profile games are taking their time to deliver add-ons, BioWare is not wasting any time with Star Wars: The Old Republic, as they are preparing to release the first add-on just over a month following the game’s launch. Going under the subtitle Rise of the Rakghouls, the new add-on will finally give subscribing players some much-vaunted features, gameplay additions, and technical touch-ups that will enhance the experience of what has proven to be a very successful foray into the very unpredictable world of MMO’s.
According to an official press release, the real meat of this update comes in the form of two new campaigns; one is a multiplayer Flashpoint, the other a continuation of the game’s second Operation that began at the beginning of the game. The Flashpoint, titled Kaon Under Siege, will truly be a survival of the fittest, as access will only be granted to the players who have reached level 50. The operation, Karagga’s Palace, will allow teams of 8 or 16 to engage Karagga and his Hutt Cartel.
Looking over the story specs of these two updates, one common theme they both share is that of prior neutrality within the Star Wars universe before the events of both updates unfold. In Kaon Under Siege, what makes the situation very intriguing is that the scenario revolves around Kaon and the drive that either the Republic or the Imperials, depending on who the player chooses to represent, have in trying to acquire the planet so they can use Kaon as a tactically prime location for the first time. With Karagga’s Palace, the Hutts have forsaken their own neutrality and have severed ties with both the Republic and Imperials, which leads both parties to go out and investigate.
For die-hard Star Wars fans, this becomes an opportunity to really get the full scoop on how the universe depicted in the movies was originally. It clearly shows a universe that has substantial systems, be it planets or societies, operating freely without any centralized authority system, which is a much different situation than those who have grown up watching the movies are used to.
As if these two new campaigns were not enough, Rise of the Rakghouls will add a bevy of additional features, the biggest of which is level 50 bracketing for Player Vs. Player WarZones, which will mean a much more balanced multiplayer system. The game will also be given a technical update, as anti-aliasing will be added, making what is already a very well presented game look even better. Finally, open world multiplayer conflicts on the ice planet Ilum will finally be improved, and players can expect their Guild capabilities to be improved and to have access to the full Legacy System.
Rise of the Rakghouls will be available starting January 17th, so expect a much more pronounced level of involvement from all the players come launch time.