Is SWTOR’s Conquest System Broken?

Conquest is an over glorified fluff achievement system in Star Wars The Old Republic which gives points for completing certain types of content and rewards you with credits and crafting material currency if you get enough points each week. If your Guild happens to come first place on the planet it invaded you get an achievement with an accompanying title and ‘bragging rights’. It is a system that has been largely ignored by Bioware since it’s inception with new objectives only recently being added in Game Update 5.1.

While I have participated in Conquest in the past with my old APAC Guild (we won 3 planets back in the day), I have never really experienced how stressful, awful and mind-numbingly tedious it can be until now.

I honestly haven’t really paid that much attention to Conquest for a long time. But more recently it’s become increasingly hard not to notice what is happening on my server and how harmful it is for our server community.

See on the Harbinger Server, Conquest is not a fair game. We have one Mega-Guild* on the server, Blood Bath and Beyond, that dominates Conquest. Each week they put each of their Guilds on each planet available for Conquest and go hard out. ~95% of the time, they will win every single planet they invade. Other big Guilds on the server are very rarely able to prevail against their sheer numbers and ability to move their characters around (unless it is a crafting week).

*A mega-Guild is a Guild comprised of multiple Guilds of the same name and run by the same hierarchy. In the Harbinger’s case, there is one Guild that has six separate Guilds, three per faction, that they use for conquest.

My new Guild decided that we were going to push conquest this past week. Because it was the rare Conquest Event Revenge of the Revanites we figured we’d have a good chance of taking one of the other planets while the Mega-Guild focused on Rishi and Yavin. Unfortunately, they decided to invade our planet as well with one of their other Imperial Guilds a day and a bit into Conquest. We maintained a ~million point lead on them until Saturday night. They moved characters from their other Guilds and absolutely decimated us with final boss lockouts on Operations. There was nothing we could do to combat the sheer number of players moving their toons into the Guild to run lockouts.

While I was not that surprised by what happened my Guildies (and myself) are a little disappointed and frustrated that this happened. They (and a continually increasing number of people on the Harbinger server) are frustrated that a Guild could become so large and dominate Conquest using exploitative tactics and not receive any repercussions for their abusive actions. Their tactics isolate the majority of the server from ever being able to effectively participate in Conquest. There is no fun, competitive Conquest environment on the Harbinger server like there used to be (to some extent). People shouldn’t be forced to move servers or put their characters into a Mega-Guild just so they can get their achievements (they kick you if you have characters in other Guilds, no seriously, they send spies into other Guilds).

I reached out to the SWTOR Twitter Community to see how Conquest is on other servers. Generally, the other populated servers will have anywhere from 2 to 5 large Guilds that actively do and dominate Conquest (pretty much how the Harbinger used to be except with more Guilds). The Ebon Hawk server was the exception to this. From what I was told, the server has around 10-15 Guilds that do Conquest and the winners each week depend mainly on the type of content being offered. Conquest on the Ebon Hawk server, it seems, works how it was intended. It certainly sounds like they have a healthy community for Conquest (and for everything really). No other server in the game (not even The Red Eclipse) has a single mega-Guild that dominates Conquest.

I also polled the SWTOR Twitter Community on how they felt about Conquest and this was the result:

The results were about what I expected. Most of the respondents (I’m obviously including those who voted the Harbinger option) feel that the Conquest System is broken. Just under a third of the respondents did not care about Conquest which isn’t all that surprising given it isn’t really proper content so to speak.

It is clear that there are serious questions that need addressing in relation to Conquest in its current state:

  • Should one Guild be able to dominate Conquest on an entire server? Is this intentional design on Bioware’s part?
  • Should players in these Guilds be able to move around characters between different Guilds so freely and still earn Conquest points for each Guild they join (Guilds currently keep the Conquest Points you earned even if you leave the Guild)? Again, is this intentional design on Bioware’s part?

Proposed Solutions:

  • Make it so that once Conquest begins, any players that join a Guild during Conquest don’t earn any Conquest Points for the Guild but can still earn their personal Conquest rewards.
  • On that same note. If you leave a Guild during Conquest, the Guild loses the points you contributed. But again you won’t lose your personal Conquest progress.

These two solutions would effectively stop a mega-Guild from being able to switch people around in an attempt to stop another Guild from taking first place so easily. They’d be forced to use what members they have to win conquest giving other Guilds a fighting chance.

Community Ideas/Solutions:

Both of these solutions would work really well. I particularly like Jessie’s idea of scaling points relative to the number of members in a Guild. Both ideas would not only address issues on the Harbinger server but also make things easier for smaller Guilds on other servers who don’t stand a chance against the bigger Guilds.

Ultimately in the Harbinger Server’s case, the question we really should be asking is: Should a Guild this large that is well known on the Harbinger Server to harass other players, use exploitative tactics and extort it’s own members be allowed to continue to exist in SWTOR?

I really do hope that Bioware takes the time to address this major issue on the Harbinger Server ASAP. Something needs to be done now.


What do you think about Conquest? Do you do conquest? Or do you not care about it? Are you on the Harbinger Server? How do you feel about our predicament?

Thank you to my amazing <Backpack> Guildies for prevailing and being so awesome and for your ideas/solutions on improving Conquest!

And thank you to the SWTOR Family Community on Twitter for their insight into what Conquest is like on other servers and for your views on Conquest! @NessTheHappy, @Vallour2, @UnhollyAlliances, @CoretDelontre, @Knight_legacy, @NifflemyNewt, @CarisaSWTOR, @JForrest2202, @petermj, @GulJarol, @celyntheraven, @opinionslikeblp, @swtorista, @FtWorthJim, @Grognard_GDG, @Kikkosoysauce.

 

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather
  • SavingPrincess

    Never, ever play EVE Online.

  • Babydoll Noises

    Name and shame? That’s big of you. You are not in our guild, so a lot of what you claim is “known” is ridiculous. You also have a slanted viewpoint at this. We did not invade to “keep you from winning”. We invaded because we had members who also needed and wanted those titles. I’m not going to apologize for how hard we work, week after week, to dominate the leader boards. This whole thread seems to be a butt hurt rant in order to try and be given a participation trophy regardless of the effort you put forth for CQ. If we are this terrible (harassing, extorting, and other ridiculous claims) how are we the largest guild on the server with the most active members in the game? Hmm? Oh, they must love being extorted… yeah… that’s it.

    Conquest is broken in many ways, and always has been… but we work within the system. You can, too. But if you fail to achieve success while working within that system, posting things like this just makes you look like a sore loser. The “predicament” you are in is easily solved: Beat us. Work harder than us. If you can’t, it’s not because we are evil, but thanks for perpetuating stereotypes about our guild. Appreciate it.

    • Andynul

      Yall refuse to allow the server to get titles. This is why the server hates yall and everyone in every guild that is not BBB knows it. BBB is the shit of the shit guild even Vice and Anarchy are better guilds than yall. Yall make getting legacy titles hard. We worked hard to get Section X and yall came took a shit on us because yall want to be assholes.

      • Babydoll Noises

        We don’t refuse. You want a title? Join BBB. The server hates us because we are successful. I’m not going to apologize for that. We had members who wanted Section X, so we conquered Section X. Your guild could do the same, and it is not our fault that you can’t manage it and would rather cry about it and blame us.

        • Andynul

          “You want a title? Join BBB. ” from you. I did join for the other two titles then you kicked me. You have other people in your guild thats apart of different guilds but you only kicked Backpack and Cyro members. That shows yall are assholes

          • Babydoll Noises

            Oh, now I see why you’re crying. You wanted to USE us to get a title and weren’t allowed to do so. Then quit the guild you spend so much time bashing with your shiny new award? Yeah, I wonder why we didn’t allow that to happen… Sorry you didn’t get the chance to use us for your own personal gain. That’s a shame.

          • Babydoll Noises

            Oh, and no. We kicked Backpack, Cryo, Hallowed, Galaxy Knights, Wild Cards, Reaper and several others. Basically any who compete against us on the leader board. You want to get titles? Earn them. Don’t use us then leave and bash us. This is exactly WHY we kick people, because we get treated like this, even when we let you get titles from us. No more. Those days are over.

          • Helix Xileh

            WOW, do you even read what you type? You want to use another guild . . . then QQ. Ok, got it . . .

          • Andynul

            yall put a spy into our guild yall used us to gain access to our teamspeak and legacy names. if yall didn’t do that there would have been no way yall learned of our legacy names. all we want is the titles. your guild makes it so fucking hard and stressful for any guild to beat you because you are assholes who refuse to allow players get achievements. this is why no one likes your guild

          • Helix Xileh

            You are the only one making it difficult. BBB makes it soooo easy. If you want a title, join BBB. It really is that easy.

          • Maddieaeaeaeaeaeaeaea

            Jebaited

        • Shaun Salisbury

          No the server hates you because your ass hats that you have to cycle people around to win because you fear losing.

          • Babydoll Noises

            See my reply to the same comment you made above.

      • Helix Xileh

        Anarchy’s mission statement (from their facebook was “To end BBB by any means” . . . Guess what, Anarchy has completely dissolved . . . it is non existent, which goes to show how you are blinded by your saltiness . . .

    • Dustballs

      For someone who saying the author is name shaming. you seem to be putting your self all high and mighty. And making you and BBB seem all nice and barbie fairy tail like. but yet you low key insult people and have to edit your messages. I mean at least make up your mind which gender you think the author is…..

      http://oi64.tinypic.com/9lcpcw.jpg

      then edit to

      http://oi63.tinypic.com/27ab.jpg

      • Babydoll Noises

        I’m not sure what you are trying to point out here… that I called this person’s salt for what it is? Yes, I assumed it was a male and changed the gender when I discovered that the person claims they are not male… but I still don’t see your point?

    • Shaun Salisbury

      How about you just don’t cycle your members around anymore and see how you do in a fair fight but of course you guys won’t because you clearly fear losing so much that shuffle people around to win.

      • Babydoll Noises

        There is no fear. There is only effort. We play within the system. You can too.

        • Shaun Salisbury

          Your response just proves me right you fear losing otherwise you would have accepted the challenge like any other confident player but nope you just hide behind excuses like a coward would.

      • Helix Xileh

        LOL, logic is not your strong suit . . .

        • Shaun Salisbury

          I love your guys responses just proving me right time and time again that you are all just a bunch of cowards who fear losing so man up and accept the challenge.

  • Ahnog

    I deny the guild harasses other players or extorts its members. The only thing it asks from its members is the command/engineering rewards which the guild sells to finance member activities like a 1.2 billion lottery it recently held. Are we to be punished because we work hard at one aspect of the game?

    • Sharktooth

      Recent threads on the SWTOR forums go against your statement. and from friends and guildies i’ve asked in game seem to back up said claims of “extortion” that BBB does. So idk it’s not just this author that is stating this happens

      • Helix Xileh

        Yes, everyone that is not good enough to be in BBB says this, it makes sense fr butthurt people to say such things. Welcome to being envious of BBB and all that they accomplish, while others only wish they could.

        • Shaun Salisbury

          Lol you mean by exploiting flaws in the system they win?

      • Babydoll Noises

        This author is pulling accusations out of thin air. The post on the forums was from someone who was removed for stealing from the guild and was asked to repay what was taken. People hate us because we are successful and want to find any reason to make us the bad guy. Looks like you are jumping on the assumption wagon yourself. Never mind that “extortion” in a game where you cannot be forced to remain in a guild or give someone credits isn’t even POSSIBLE… but don’t let that little inconvenience stop you from bashing us. It hasn’t stopped anyone else from spreading garbage, why stop now?

  • Annon

    Why does everyone assume a constructive article about a system that the majority of people all agree is broken = butt hurt? some hypocrites if you ask me

    • Helix Xileh

      It is not a constructive article, and it was not written from a neutral standpoint from obsevation. It was written only after she became butt-hurt and thought she could get away with writing a capricious “article.”

      • Shaun Salisbury

        when it is someones oiwn blog they can write whatever they like so if you want to go QQ about something go make your own blog and QQ there.

  • Helix Xileh

    I get it, you lost to BBB again, and again, and again, and you can’t figure out how to work hard and get a group of people working together to achieve a goal. So now you are butthurt and pretend to be looking out for the SWTOR community and write an article to justify your losing attitude instead of actually making an effort to make a good and efficient guild. This shows us that Backpack is just like other guilds that come and go because they just don’t have what it takes to succeed and is administered by people that become capricious and lie about other guilds that are much better then them. Backpack will become another casualty to its own vices, like many other guild that have fallen to the wayside due to internal hemorrhaging.

    This last week you got to second place on the planet you invaded. Let’s see to what number you fall this week . . . And let’s see who works hard and get’s to first place. It’s not easy getting first, it takes a LOT of effort and coordination.

    • Andynul

      BBB is a guild full of dicks and rather have a toxic community than a helpful one.

      • Maddieaeaeaeaeaeaeaea

        Better than the toxic server community that is envious of success.

        • Andynul

          being helpful grants success. being toxic grants people not wanting to be here because its a shit community.

          • Helix Xileh

            And you have been only toxic . . . Buh bye . . .

    • Shaun Salisbury

      I don’t called cycling in character from other guilds hard work I call that you can’t stand losing so you do whatever it takes to win.

  • Maddieaeaeaeaeaeaeaea

    Hey look, the typical entitled “change the roooolz” reaction that pissant guilds have to losing. Git gud

  • Azonymous

    There is no rule that will be fair to everyone. Small guild having an advantage over large, community friendly guild? You did not think of that, you seem to be desperately looking for changes that give YOU advantage. Instead of complaining about what you can’t do, concentrate on what others are doing right. It usually takes effort to be good at something.

    • Helix Xileh

      Exactly.

  • Helix Xileh

    I prefer to play the game I want, as I pay for my sub, no one else does. BBB does conquest the best (and is on topic for this article), its what it does. They are the best at it, period. Failure is probably the best at Raiding, its what they do. Backpack is currently the best at QQ, its what they do. To each there own. But no need to QQ about what others a great at. Hop on board, or move over. The QQ does nothing except show incompetence.

  • Helix Xileh

    Exactly, but there isn’t much we can do about Andynul and others like him that can’t comprehend reason.

    People get butthurt at BBB’s success all the time. Instead of learning and making an effort they QQ, which does nothing good for anyone.

  • 40 comments already? I guess you got linked on BBB’s guild forums or something? XD

    My question would be: How long has this been going on? Because from what I’ve seen on TRE, a guild may dominate Conquest for a while, but once the “core members” have all their titles, interest starts to drop off and other guilds who are interested and willing to put the effort in automatically float to the top. I mean, if these guys have six guilds where people can grab their titles and are still going strong after many months, they’ve got to be doing something right in terms of motivating people…

    • Babydoll Noises

      Almost a year since we expanded past having a single guild. And, I would reckon that 50million credits+ per guild per week in top CQ earner rewards is doing pretty well to motivate. 😉

  • The pure vitriol in the comment section says enough about the state of the conquest system. Surely this is not the community spirit and friendly competition the devs were hoping to achieve.

    For what it’s worth, I think your two proposals should be a good addition to the system. It doesn’t change anything to the fact that the system favours large guilds and therefore excludes a large part of the playerbase, but I wouldn’t know an easy solution for that particular issue either – the whole system just aims at that.

  • StephenThePenguin

    I would agree with XamXam. I was trying to kill the boss on zits for the DVL event, it was the last thing I needed to do. I was in a group wanting to do the same, but each time we pulled the boss BBB would come along and pull agro not allowing us to get the boss. They did not need it or want, they only wanted to troll others and contribute negatively to the game.

  • Natswash

    About the “exploitive tactics”
    A: We have alt characters, lots of people do (especially after the DVL event) .So while your idea of carrying points with the character is intriguing it wouldn’t address your concern about cycling people through lockouts.
    B: The idea of tying it to legacy would screw over people putting characters in multiple guilds, people like the GM and several of the Officers in Backpack that joined BBB guilds only for the titles and badmouth us all the time. It hurts people who like to be in multiple communities (Those that join a conquest guild, an RP Guild, etc.). But it would also hurt the small guilds, if there are more accounts in a bigger guild (which is much more likely) Those Guilds will still have much more earning power.
    C: Averaging the points over total members doesn’t work either, all guild fluctuate in size nearly daily. But it also devalues people working together, it means that some people who work hard for their points don’t count as much just because their guild is bigger.
    D: Lockouts, a ton of guilds do them. Reaper, Kai Sithari, Wild Cards, Galaxy Knights, even Backpack does them. So this is a situation where it’s recognized that it’s a good way to earn points. And lambasting BBB for them is hypocritical.
    E: BBB is the largest Guild, and that means that we have more members. I know that’s obvious but it means we really do have the most conquest earning power, what isn’t so obvious is it makes it a lot harder to organise. We win through a combination of superior organisation and making use of our advantages.

    • Shaun Salisbury

      And clearly you guys fear losing conquest so much you cycle players through your guild instead of playing normally because you become so spoiled like a rich kid who has to always win.

  • Robbie Martin

    Bloodbath and Beyond they’re still around? That brings back great memories. By the way former guildy of them. It must suck getting butt raped every week by them

  • Odobuzz

    What was that about crafting week?