Star Wars Knights of the Old Republic (Box Art and Screens)

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Romier S, Jan 18, 2003.

  1. Romier S

    Romier S Producer

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    Here is the box art for the game (Rather damned snazzy might I add):
    [​IMG]
    And some screenshots for you:
    KOTOR 1
    KOTOR 2
    KOTOR 3
    KOTOR 4
    Enjoy.
     
  2. Matt Birchall

    Matt Birchall Supporting Actor

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    Yeah, saw it myself earlier today, and thought the artwork was pretty classy.
    Don't know if I'll pick the game up or not, but the artwork does look nice. [​IMG]
     
  3. Camp

    Camp Cinematographer

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    Looks nice...still worried about the Star Wars game curse though. [​IMG]
     
  4. BrianB

    BrianB Producer

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    Impressed how they used the Xbox "tagline" to their advantage instead of just plastering it on top.
     
  5. Romier S

    Romier S Producer

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  6. Chris Flynn

    Chris Flynn Second Unit

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    *starts praying*

    Please dont suck... Please don't suck... PLEASE don't suck...
     
  7. Travis Kolesar

    Travis Kolesar Second Unit

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    Come on, there have been good Star Wars games. Just not many lately. [​IMG]
     
  8. Rob Lutter

    Rob Lutter Producer

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    I am also praying [​IMG]
    CMON! You can do it BioWare! [​IMG]
     
  9. Kelley_B

    Kelley_B Cinematographer

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    I have complete faith in BioWare.
     
  10. JohnE

    JohnE Supporting Actor

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    Yeah, I totally can't wait for this game. One of my most anticipated Xbox purchases this year. Do you guys think it will make it out next month?
     
  11. Tim Hoover

    Tim Hoover Screenwriter

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    "Your lack of faith is disturbing..."

    I've already planned-out my semi-evil, loose cannon Jedi asskicker!
     
  12. Romier S

    Romier S Producer

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    Faq, answered by Bioware:

    LIGHTSABERS - COLOURS
    (Derrick Collins)
    Hmm... I'm not promising a rainbow here, but don't be surprised if you end up seeing at least a couple of colors besides the basic Red, Green, and Blue...

    LIGHTSABERS - STYLES
    See for yourself...(shows screens of double bladed, single bladed lightsabers)

    MULTIPLAYER
    (Bob McCabe)
    Star Wars Knights of the Old Republic is a single player game.

    TURN BASED OR REALTIME?
    (Erithil)
    At the heart of it, "real-time" combat describes a system where there is direct action and reaction...input and output. You click on a target, your avatar swings at said target. There are, of course, many variations on this. It can be as simple as a game like Diablo, where you click on a monster and your avatar attacks it until it is dead or you are. You have no physical control over what type of attacks to make, but once initiated, combat happens as time passes, with or without your input. It can also be more complex, like in Jedi Knight II: Jedi Outcast, where you control the attack strokes, your relative position to your opponent, and how you move. It models what a real life dual would be like...if you step back too far, your swing will miss your opponent. If you strafe into his attack, he'll automatically hit you.

    You can jump, twist, crouch, and run, all the while controlling when you swing your lightsaber...it can be very fun mainly because it gives you the feeling that you are actually in the fight. And all the while, your opponent is doing the same to you...if you just stop moving the mouse and clicking, your opponent will eventually hack you to bits as the whole fight is happening as seconds tick by..."real-time". Some hybrid systems give you more or less control, but I think Diablo and JK2 are pretty much the extremes of "real-time" combat control.

    That is contrasted with turn-based combat, where each side gets a turn to act without the nuisance of reaction from the enemy. Games like Fallout and the original D&D gold box series (Pool of Radiance, Curse of the Azure Bonds), as well as war games like Warlords and Fantasy General are played in a turn-based system. Each side gets a turn...hence the name. In the old days, this was about the only way to run multiple party member CRPG's, because the processors couldn't crank through logic algorithims in an acceptible amount of time otherwise. The highest initiative combatant gets to act, moves, attacks, etc., and then when his turn is up, the next highest initiative combatant gets a turn, and so on, all down the line until everyone acts and you start it all over again. This is the method of pencil and paper RPG's, because for a combat to run properly, there has to be order and control.

    Many games use a hybrid of the two methods, and KotOR will not be an exception. All of the initiative, attack rolling, who acts first, how far you can move, etc. stuff that typically drives a turn-based system will be "under the hood" of the combat engine, happening so fast that you will never know it's there. The result will be that combats will run as fast as you want to issue commands (or pause the game to take a breath and calmly issue different commands to different party members). A turn-based system is running, but so quickly that it appears real-time, since it's just you and all of those computer-controlled bad-guys! Baldur's Gate was like this, as well as Neverwinter Nights.

    Hope that was what you were looking for by way of description.


    RELEASE DATE
    (Press Release)
    Knights of the Old Republic is due out in Spring 2003 for Xbox and Summer 2003 for PC (Autumn 2003 for Xbox and Winter 2003 for PC in the southern hemisphere).

    CONTROL SYSTEM
    (Marc Audy)

    You will be able to directly control each of the members of the party and queue their combat actions should you choose to. Otherwise AI scripts will determine their behavior (you may be able to specify the type of AI to exhibit - defensive, aggressive, support, etc.)

    You can switch between party members and queue actions while combat continues, or if things get too hairy, you can pause the game, queue up some actions, and then unpause and continue the combat.

    GAME RULES
    (James Ohlen - Lead Designer)

    After deciding to implement the Star Wars d20 rule set, we started thinking about what kinds of adaptations we would have to make so that the rules would work within the framework of a console game. The Star Wars pen and paper rules are very familiar to fans of Dungeons and Dragons. There is strength, dexterity, intelligence, and classes, races, skills, vitality points (hit points) and a defense rating (armor class). The rules are so similar that you could pit a 15th level half-orc barbarian up against a 15th level human Jedi guardian with hardly any conversion to the rules.

    Looking at the rules, we decided that some changes had to be made. The Force power system in the pen and paper rule set was not suited for a CRPG. Force powers were classified as Force skills and Force feats. Each of these Force feats and skills had a cost in vitality points (hit points). This vitality point cost made using Force powers a very risky business. If a character was in a close fight and decided to use a Force power, it would often weaken the character to the point that the next blow by the enemy would be fatal. We decided that having a 'mana' system was preferable. In Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic a Jedi character chooses new Force powers as he levels up. Each of these powers uses Force points whenever they are used. A Jedi's Force points regenerate over time.

    Other changes were made, but none as dramatic as the change to the Force system. A fan of the Wizards of the Coast, Star Wars RPG or even a fan of Dungeons and Dragons, should be able to pick up Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic and feel very comfortable with the rules. Star Wars fans don't have to worry about the game being Dungeons and Dragons in space; it has a much different feel than that.


    GAMEPLAY EXAMPLE
    (Casey Hudson)

    I was playing the game today, and I came into a room where two Dark Jedi were waiting. Upon seeing them, I did a Force choke on both of them, causing them to stumble around holding their necks. Then, I threw my lightsaber across the room at the one closest to me, injuring him severely. Meanwhile, a female Jedi in my party ran ahead and started attacking one of the choking enemies, and a third party member was shooting the same guy with two blasters! As one of the Dark Jedi recovered and ran towards me, I did a combat feat where my character flipped through the air and came down with a chopping swing that took him out. This all happens in realtime, with no pausing and no turn-taking - just like in the movies.

    In such a situation, you can switch characters, change their targets, and cue up a sequence of feats and Force powers for them to do while you return to controlling a different character. If you really want to micromanage what your party is doing, you can even pause the game and do those same things while you have more time to think.

    This all adds up to a very strategic but intense form of gameplay, which plays out smoothly and keeps you busy on the controls.

    PARTY MANAGEMENT
    (David Gaider)

    Sometimes when you encounter a new NPC the plot is such that they need to join your party right away. In such a case if your group were full, you would have to choose one member of the party that would go back to the ship and wait for you there. With those cases as the exception, you can normally only switch out your party members at the Ebon Hawk... as often as you wish, really.


    LIGHTSABER - CONSTRUCTION
    (James Ohlen)

    You can customize your lightsaber on the Ebon Hawk. There are three crystal slots in the lightsaber, there are many different crystals that you can fit into those three slots. The crystals determine the color and attributes of the lightsaber


    THE FORCE - TURNING TO THE DARK SIDE
    (James Ohlen, Casey Hudson)

    Several things happen as you turn to the dark side. As a Force user, you gain access to dark side powers such as choke, force lightning and other new force powers. Your character sheet avatar also changes as you become more evil. It's actually quite cool - the background lighting becomes red and your character's pose becomes more sinsister. Your romances take a different road as you walk down the dark path.

    NPCs do comment on your actions in the game. At certain points during the story your actions can cause party members to leave or even attack you.
     
  13. Romier S

    Romier S Producer

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    THE FORCE - POWERS
    (Casey Hudson)

    It's hard to say right now what the coolest Force power is. In fact, I'll bet that we won't be able to do that until very late in the development. As we work on the game, the visual effects really start to improve. By the end, many of them will be more visually impressive than we can imagine now. So far though, Knight Speed is the coolest. The screen stretches out and blurs as you run at incredible speed.

    LIGHTSABERS - COLOURS
    (Peter Thomas)

    Lightsabers can be modified by altering the crystals used in their construction. By putting in more powerful crystals you can change the properties of your lightsaber, as well as alter the color. The basic colors are Blue, Gold, Green and Red. There is also the possibility of one or more additional 'secret' colors you can find in the game.

    THE FORCE - SEDUCTION BY THE DARK SIDE
    (Bob McCabe)

    I generally tend to play the good guy. I don't necessarily play the virtuous, innocent good guy, but when it comes down to it, I like to make sure that no one dies, no one gets too upset, and every thing ends as it began.

    Playing through Star Wars the first few times was an interesting experience. You keep wanting to be the good guy, but being a good guy is a little difficult. I mean, sometimes the choices are subtle, and you start rolling down that evil path - and suddenly, you're not helping old ladies to cross the street, you're pushing them into the street. It's hard to put a finger on when this change happens, but it generally goes. The thing that I enjoy about this so much is that, really, I don't believe we've ever had a game with such strong, separate good/evil storylines before. I'm not even sure we've had a game with such a fun, strong story before, period. So when you drift from good-to-evil, and you realize you're getting caught up in something bigger than you expected, well, it's a nice treat.

    MINIGAMES - SWOOP RACING
    (Casey Hudson)

    Imagine going to the local drag strip and watching the best hot-rods from around town blast down the track with an ear-shattering roar. Every once in a while, one of the fastest guys pulls up to the line, and the whole crowd watches in awe as he takes off, knowing that he could very well set the track record. If you're up to it, you hang around, talk to some of the racers, and then go out on the track yourself to see if you can beat the fastest time yourself.

    That's essentially the spirit of the race minigame, except that in this case you're piloting a modified swoop racer against ruthless gangsters on an alien world, at speeds that approach the sound barrier. Oh, and there are obstacles that you need to avoid as well.

    You won't be forced to do the race minigame (except for the first one), and they will start out easy. Later on, you can do them for fun, and to win some extra cash.


    COMBAT - DYNAMICS
    (Casey Hudson)

    The Obi-Wan and Darth Maul fight was the inspiration for the combat system. Our challenge was to create a combat system that plays that smoothly and quickly, with the player having the ability to control their character's moves. At the same time, the combat system must use your character's stats to determine how successful each move will be. We've been very excited to see that this is in fact how the combat system is shaping up.

    So, you'll definitely see smoothly animating lightsaber fights. Even though the fights are based on combat rounds as in D20, your character will be doing aggressive Jedi movements even while not attacking.

    CHARACTER CREATION
    (David Gaider)

    Your first choice has you selecting one of six base class and gender templates. You can choose to be a male or female Soldier, Scout or Scoundrel. These are classes straight from the d20 Star Wars rules, making your character more combat-oriented (the Soldier), more stealth- and skills-oriented (the Scoundrel) or a mix of the two (the Scout). The story requires that you start your character progression in one of these three classes, and later have the opportunity to multi-class into one of three Jedi classes, the Jedi Guardian, Jedi Sentinel or Jedi Consular. Each provides its own variation on the types of feats and skills provided, your strength and resistances, your combat utility and best of all your Force powers (which also break down into the light and dark variety... but that's something you'll learn and deal with later).

    Your character does have to be human, but fortunately there is a nice selection of portraits available. Choosing your portrait automatically changes your character model to look exactly like your portrait, which is nice. Both genders have selections that cover multiple racial types, and all of the resulting models look suitably handsome and heroic, in my estimation.

    COMBAT - CONTROL
    (Bob McCabe)

    You see a hostile. He runs at you. You select him and tell your PC to attack. Your PC then enters into a cinematic battle where he attacks each round.

    While your PC is not attacking, your round is filled up with feints and parries and dodges and swings, so it is almost as if there are no rounds at all; your player is always engaged in that combat, and never stops to wait for his next attack.

    At any time, you can bring up the combat menus and pick from a list of feats, or Force powers, or choose to use an item. You will use that feat or Force power or item once, and then return to attacking normally.

    However, you may enter actions in repeatedly, and those actions will queue - with you performing one each time you get a round to attack in. So you might enter three actions during one round. The first action would take place during that round, while the other two would queue up for the next two rounds, respectively.

    You may also do all of the above by pausing the game first, making your choices, and then unpausing the game to enjoy the beauty of combat.

    As well, when a menu is opened up, the game slows down, as has been mentioned in other posts. I greatly enjoy watching the battles in slow-motion to take that cinematic experience one step further.

    And, in addition to all of the above, there are multiple party members that you may control - to further enhance the strategy aspects. Switching between party members requires the press of a single button, and may be done while paused.

    SKILLS
    (Drew Karpyshyn)

    In Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, players can choose to gain ranks in any number of eight different skills - Awareness, Computer Programming, Demolitions, Persuasion, Repair, Security, Stealth and Treat Injury.

    Awareness: Ranks in this skill increase your character's perception of the environment around them. It allows you to detect enemies who may be in stealth mode (keeps you from walking into a nasty ambush), as well as enabling you to detect traps such as mines before you set them off.

    Computer Programming: Imagine slicing into the computer bank of an enemy base and shutting down their "impenetrable" security systems. Or better yet, how about overloading a power conduit in the soldier barracks so that it explodes in an electrical storm of arcing lightning, frying everyone in the room! (Say... doesn't electrocuted Sith smell like burnt toast? Or is just me?)

    Demolitions: Hey, what can I say? Disarming explosive mines blocking your path is handy, but we all know the real fun comes when you set up a little surprise to reduce that platoon of enemy assault droids into pocket sized bits of shrapnel.

    Persuasion: Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic is a role-playing game, so of course, blasters aren't the only way to solve your problems. A high Persuasion skill and some fast talking can often be just as effective as heavy firepower... and financially gratifying when it comes time to collect the rewards for all your hard work.

    Repair: Remember when Luke was working on R2-D2 in Episode IV? You think anybody can just start tinkering with a droid and get it working again? Hey, that takes skill. The Repair skill, in fact. And if you know how to fix your own droids, it's a simple matter to make a few modifications to that disabled security droid in the enemy base...

    Security: See that reinforced weapons locker in the corner? You just know there's some premium equipment inside. Heavy blasters, repeating carbines, rifles, fragmentation grenades... the real serious stuff. Too bad it'll take you until next week to get through that armor plating. If only you knew some trick to get it open.

    Stealth: How many Sith soldiers does it take to capture one Republic spy? Depends if they can see him or not. They can't get you if they don't even know you're there. At least, they won't know until it's too late.

    Treat Injury: Okay, let's be honest here - you play with blasters and someone's going to get hurt. Hurt bad. And often. Sure, you can always whip out a med pack if you're hit. But when you're wounded and you've got half a dozen war droids firing in your direction, a med pack just isn't going to cut it. Not unless you know how to use it.
     
  14. Romier S

    Romier S Producer

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    CUTSCENES
    (Casey Hudson)

    There will be more cutscenes in Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic than in any previous BioWare game, by a huge factor. This is because we want the game to be a very cinematic experience, where you feel like you're inside a Star Wars movie, but you're in complete control of what happens.

    There are many different types of cutscenes in the game too, but it will be difficult to tell them apart. They all flow quite seamlessly from one type to the next. For example, all the dialog in the game is experienced through a cutscene system, which looks like a letterboxed movie. During those dialog scenes, characters animate, speak, and even lip-synch their words. There is also a large number of cutscenes that involve things in the game world such as scripted events or dramatic scenes that are happening elsewhere in the galaxy.

    Some of the most jaw-dropping cutscenes though, are the ones of the colossal war going on in space. Combined with Jeremy Soule's musical score and sound effects from LucasArts, I think the cutscenes will be an extremely compelling part of the game.
     
  15. Chris Bardon

    Chris Bardon Cinematographer

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    I like the sound of this one-especially the being evil part. Only problem is that the last date I saw for it was late march, which would put it right next to Zelda.

    It's going to be an expensive (and time consuming) month...
     
  16. Jeff Kleist

    Jeff Kleist Executive Producer

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    A turn based system happening quickly......

    What's the point? WHy not just use the JK2 fighting system?

    That's the only thing that has me wary about this game. Sure it's gorgeous, but turn based lightsabers aren't that fun

    I'll wait for the reviews before buying
     
  17. Mark Evans

    Mark Evans Supporting Actor

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  18. Romier S

    Romier S Producer

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  19. Jeff Kleist

    Jeff Kleist Executive Producer

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  20. Mark Evans

    Mark Evans Supporting Actor

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    Like Romier said, download the BG2 demo [​IMG]. That's not a bad idea even if you don't want KotOR frankly, but you'll get the gist of it quite quickly. You can definitely pause the game to issue your commands in all Bioware titles at present, and I wouldn't think that'll be changing [​IMG].
     

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