Sunday, 20 March 2016

Hustlin' through the Old Republic - Revan, Makeb and the new Jedi Sage

Hello, it’s time once again to get Hustlin’ or technically talk about what Hustlin’ I’ve done. It’s been a few months but as far as I can remember I had to finish the “Forged Alliances” leadup to the Shadow of Revan and I ended up doing the Depths of Manaan and Legacy of the Rakata flashpoints where you expose Dark Arkous and Colonal Darok as Revanite Traitors. I did it in "Solo Mode" where you are joined by a powerful bot companion that heals/tanks and does damage to help you so that you can complete the flashpoint to continue the story. So once that was done I was ready to start the main expansion on my Guardian.

These Czerka droids are TNT (di-no-mite!)
Not sure whether I mentioned this but I’ve joined yet another guild as the newly named Reclaimers basically just died soon after moving to the Harbinger so I eventually found a pretty active aussie guild called Eternal Oblivion and have been in it ever since, it’s been going good, they are active, have an active forum and raid regularly though I have not yet taken part unfortunately. I decked out my Valiant Jedi armor with new level 55 mods and also a new colour, I decided to have a bit of fun with new dye modules so I used some of the white and light orange dye modules Kxan had made to colour my gear giving me orange armor and a new white coat. Since the Shadow of Revan series had a distinct lack of conversations that was able to influence your companions affection, so I decided to do what I’ve been wanting to do for a while and smash it up with Lord Scourge, so I gifted him my old Remnant Arkanian Knight gear which when paired with the white and light orange dye module made us look like a pretty good team.

Lookin boss on Rishi
 So anyway, before I started the Revan first I had to pimp out my crib, yes my new Coruscant apartment which as a subscriber bonus I got for 3 credits woo, I decided on the basic 3 rooms layout as I really didn’t want to spend the heap of credits and cartel coins to get access to the rest of the house. So then I got busy decorating, as before I used the entrance room as a sort of utility hub and garage with my speeders and the three storage access machines Ship, Legacy and Guild and also a wall mounted galactic trade network kiosk though I did realise that there was also one that was able to be placed on the ground (oh well) 

Entrance room

I covered most of the floor with those merchants rugs and the walls with republic banners, jedi guardian symbols, the trophy frames and some other picture frames including one of the Jedi Temple on Tython. I went a bit more extravagant with this decoration buying a proper space lounge and gambling table for the guest bed and entertainment room and a chess table and orange sheeted bed which was quite expensive (in credits) on the GTN, I recently added a Rishi palm tree (replacing the idol) and a scary looking dread throne which I left for Lord Scourge (hopefully he likes it). Unfortunately you can't see my companions there in the pictures as I forgotten to take photos when I furnished the apartment so I took them after I had started the Fallen Empire expansion where you are separated from your companions and do not encounter them again until later in the story.

Entertainment room and crew bedroom

My Bedroom

The new storylines are now started from a console on your ship and I can confirm that it actually lists all the expansions and storylines that you’ve yet to do so you know which one to pick. After the events of the Forged Alliances questline you start the new expansion while flying through space as usual before crew member says to you that they feel something on a planet called Rishi. I can’t exactly remember what happened specifically but you land on Rishi which is basically a like some kind of Star Wars ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ style of planet, you even get a pirate themed armor set and Lightsaber, ArrrrRRrrRRrr! Unfortunately I didn't actually wear mine that much so I've only got a few shots here.

The Pirate-themed Rishi Gear set

Rishi is a tropical planet with lush jungles and its main city Raiders Cove has ramshackle buildings and walkways which still incorporate wood as a building material which was very weird to see in SWTOR, this is partially due to  a bird-like species called the “Rishi” themselves who were the primitive natives of the planet. And then you’re mistaken for some sort of leader of a  pirate gang who are also cannibals, so you play along with that doing various missions and finding out information until you get back in contact with Lana and Theron

Raiders Cove, main city of Rishi

Qaraah, one of the Rishii primitive bird-like race native to Rishi
Who you work with continually against many pirates and Revan’s forces also recruiting Shae Vizla in the Blood Hunt flashpoint which is basically on an island and is various chambers shaped in a circle with a central area designed to be a series of challenges before facing Shae (aka “Torch”). The storyline on this planet culminates with the Battle of Rishi where Revan lures both factions fleets to Rishi in the hope of letting them destroy each other, but by battling Revans forces you are able either reprogram the anti-air defense from the ground to attack the Revanite ships (Light side choice) or the ships of the other faction (Dark Side choice). You then manage to get in contact with Satele Shan and Darth Marr and get them to stop fighting and work together, sounds like a damn Disney story doesn’t it?

Smashing it up in the Battle of Rishi
Collaboration between leaders.
So that finishes off the Rishi part of the story, you then find out Revan has gone to Yavin 4 and you follow him with the newly formed alliance between the Republic and Sith Empire forces. Yavin 4 is a jungle planet home to the Massassi and if I’m not mistaken was the site of Luke Skywalker’s new Jedi Order during the Jedi Knight series. You’re teaming up with the Empire at this point and there is lots of back and forth banter between Republic and Empire character who have been forced together. THe distant trees make an interesting view as it looks like they are an actual texture instead of individually rendered and indeed when you take a speeder off the platform it descends into the trees then the screen goes black and appears under the canopy reinforcing the fact.

The main Yavin base camp
This was taken with Uxan but I like the shot, it shows how the canopy is sort of like a texture almost.
The missions you do on Yavin 4 are basically the daily missions you do eventually with the exception of the story ones, interestingly once you get to the final mission to confront Revan you have the choice of starting the actual Temple of Sacrifice Operation or doing a very easy non-heroic mission where you join up with all the heroes from the expansion and go up against Revan. This only takes about 3-4 minutes then you’re done and you also get a level 192 mainhand for your companion. After this I found that you actually get a mission to complete all of the daily mission and then you get to choose a box that contains a set of up-to-date 192 level gear for one of your companions.

Surface of Yavin IV
So basically if you do all of the dailies 5 times you can deck out all of your companions in new gear, you can even do the Revan battle mission as many times as you like which I think is kind of silly. I mean you do have the option to defeat Revan without requiring completion of the Temple of Sacrifice raid  and seeing the proper climactic conclusion which is good, but just defeating him again and again to get weapons for all of your companions is kind of lacklustre. But oh well he’s defeated but not dead as you release the “good” side of Revan and you are treated to a rumour about the Emperor returning and a pretty cool cinematic of the Republic and Sith forces leaving the planet.

Revan is defeated!
The gang leaving the planet.
So that was the end of the Shadow of Revan expansion, after that I decked myself out in an 186 level Yavin Pummeler gear which I dyed a light brown and yellow colour which looked kind of Aussie hah well not as aussie as the green and gold but I wasn’t going that far.

My new Yavin Pummeler gear
I also joined a group and got the Fleet Datacron which wasn’t as hard as I thought just a bit of group co-ordination  needed.

I have... the power!
I joined a guild run of the Dread Fortress where we got all the way to Dread Master Brontes but weren’t able to defeat her but that’s a lot further then I had gotten before.

And that's not my guild btw it's another guild
I also managed to get the Rishi Datacrons because of a lucky glitch so I didn’t have to do the whole Grophets thing which I never would have done anyway.

Never thought I'd say this but thank god for glitches
I also got a group for the second last of the of the Macrobinocular missions but unfortunately it bugged out for me and I got stuck. Though it was pretty impressive you were jumping across fast moving speeders Nar Shadaa though obviously it was only the scenery moving.

ooh boy here we go, jumping puzzles!

Then as I like to say I was back on my ASSassin and it was time to start The Rise of the Hutt Cartel Story, so off to Makeb I went where me and Xalek met up with Darth Marr who tells us basically that the Empire is losing the war and is in the shitter so you gotta get some valuable resource called isotope-5.

Wow has no idea things were this bad
So the premise is roughly the same as the Republic story except this time you’re going in secret and trying to get the mineral for yourselves. You get a crack team to help with military and science personnel and you go at it wheeling and dealing and stealing and killing along the way. It was ok and good to see the Empire part but damn I really don’t think I’d wanna do it again with every character unless it’s required as Makeb is such a grind.

These drill site mission were a major pain even with my stealth ability
SPOILER ALERT What actually happens in the end as with the Republic story you evacuate the planet  as it’s presumably going to collapse but the Empire secretly finds a way to stabilize the planet to continue mining and leads to the bonus series being about the Regulators causing trouble with the mining operation amongst other things.

Makeb's terrain was difficult at time
I also checked our my guild sister Empire guild “Secret Squirrel’s” guild ship which was quite a sight indeed, I didn’t even know we had one, and I don’t think I’ve even looked in Eternal Oblivion's ship either.

Wow what a mess
I started the Dread Seed and Macrobinocular missions with the intention of doing them on the Empire Side, I think I’m at the final missions for both now but are unable to do it as I need a group for it.

Lazors! This was quite a fun mission in the Macrobinoculars/Shroud series

Thankfully finding the Dread seeds wasn't as hard this time due to previous experience.
I also accidentally started the Shadow of Revan expansion chapter trying to find out which level it was or something and now I can’t abandon it and start again but oh well I guess I can always watch the cinematic again on youtube. One of the last things I did was use my commendations to by myself an entire new set of Yavin Duelist gear which has a helm that makes me look a lot like a droid, I dyed it a dark red and light purple colour which makes an interesting look indeed.

My new colourful armor
I also went looking to buy a new lightsaber as the one I had was annoying me with its delayed activation time. Though the one I bought the Reckoning’s Exposed Saberstaff was quite unique with it’s well.. ‘exposed’ nature it’s looks a bit too industrial especially with the handgrip pattern looking like it’s from a modern day tool or machine and not something a Sith Lord would use though I could possibly try out it’s similar alternative the Retribution’s Exposed Saberstaff or even the Blademaster’s Saberstaff which is new on the Cartel Market.

The Reckoning’s Exposed Saberstaff looks a bit working class, but cuts just as fine.

I decided it was time to treat myself with a new character and create that Jedi Consular that I always wanted. He was to be named “Qxan” after my Druid in WoW “Qbui” as he is going to be a Sage using the Telekinetics skill tree and that’s as similar do the Druid’s Balance spec as you can get. I went with the Mirialan as I was going to go Miraluka but already used them for my Bounty Hunter, I spose I could have unlocked something else like Chiss but I just found Mirialans best for healers so I went with it, I was however an unusual coloured Mirialan being a very yellow colour instead of the usual green but this went well with the healer class type. I also chose the normal styled body as I wasn’t a  tank this time and a delightful mullet style mop of hair and as one final change I bought the extra Mirialan tattoos from the Cartel Market to make me different to everyone else. Due to me not wanted to level up too fast I bought the White Acute Module from the Gree who sells them on the fleet to bring my experience back to normal otherwise I’d level way too fast and my quests would go grey with all the new boosts involved.

My new Jedi Sage
So I went out and had great fun discovering Tython again running around and hitting things with my training saber and throwing force telekinetics around. This time for my Light/Dark side stuff I decided to just do what I want and not just be good all of the time especially when I have no companions, I especially liked the dark side options of taking revenge on the fleshbeasts when they injured a Padawan and blackmailing the two lovers into keeping their romance a secret.

Ah a moral dilemma (spoiler: i made those fleshbeass PAY with their lives)
The Story for the first chapter of the Consular revolves around a mysterious illness that affects several Jedi Masters including your own Master Yuon Par and you go around collecting several Jedi” Noeticons” (I think that’s what they are called) which contain the knowledge of previous Jedi Masters who you talk with to gain insight into the illness. I picked up the companion Qyzen Fess at the end of the Tython questline and he is a great help being a tanking Companion, in his original skin he’s missing an eye so I picked a customization where he still has one hah.

Me and Qyzen in Coruscant, yes I looks pretty ridiculous
I go my Lightsaber on Tython with a Ritual similar to the Jedi Knight, so I finished off that planet then headed off to the Fleet and got my Jedi Sage training and also picked up the gathering skill Bioanalysis, the crafting skill Biochem, and the mission skill Diplomacy, all of which I’ve never done before though it’s kinda funny when I think about it I should be doing Underworld trading again and then I could be a damn drug Kingpin with my crew being well versed in crating drugs though I suppose you could argue they have an ability to talk themselves out of trouble. 

Doing the Esseles flashpoint
I finished Coruscant without too much trouble, picking some interesting conversation options when I found Qyzen didn’t approve of some Light Side ones and having a fight with my own master before eventually sacrificing some of my power to heal her. I found Sage combat pretty good throwing force telekinetics around though I sort of wish you could do it without your lightsaber out but of course you need to be able to block too. I got the STAP Royal for my speeder as I didn’t know what else to use but it was pretty cheap on the GTN and a nice golden colour that matched my skin (sortof) and I then jumped back into the Corellian Defender-Class Light Corvette and did some space missions but it's kind of a letdown when you’re usually all pumped to see you’re new ship and then it’s just the same one for your main but meh it’s my fault for choosing a Jedi Class again instead of either Smuggler or Agent though definitely going to go Agent next as I need to make another Imperial character.

"Ahh this thing again"
So after finishing Coruscant I continued on with my Trooper.  My Trooper as far as I can see was back on Nar Shaddaa doing the bonus series and following up on my companion Aric Jorgen’s mission to find his lost Sniper Squad the “Deadeyes”. The bonus series was pretty dark with you flushing out an Imperial prison renown for interrogation and torture.

Imps be torturin,
Aric’s companion mission was basically about the SIS withholding information about his Squad from us. Though we managed to find out that the Deadeyes had been captured and went down to investigate but found they had been taken offworld so the hunt continues. I then did the Maelstorm Prison flashpoint and woke up Revan, yep that Revan, the one I was seeing a lot of on my Guardian recently though this was the first time we had met him.
Argh big monsters!
Revan is initially concerned that he lost control of the Emperor and war might break out, but calms down when told that it has already happened.
During this time I managed to get to the romance stage with Elara Dorne and managed to sex her once or twice which made a good ending to this session as my subscription was running out so I decided to leave it there and continue with my Trooper in the next session.

It's hard to be romantic when all I can see in this shot is my right ass cheek
So that’s it for now, nothing groundbreaking this time around, stay tuned for the much awaited Knights of the Fallen Empire expansion which brings with it some BIIIIIG changes so I will have something to rant on about in the coming post. Oh and one other thing, I did see a certain new Star Wars film. And it was pretty damn good, nuff’ said.


No one dies anymore

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