Open World PvP on Iokath – Questions and Concerns

Recently, Eric Musco announced some new Open World PvP mechanics being introduced with Game Update 5.2 The War for Iokath. The new mechanics include:

  • In open world PvP, enemies and allies will be determined by the Faction you choose to fight for, not the faction your Class is a part of.
  • You will be able to loot Iokath specific currency from other players that you kill. You will not actually be stealing that currency from them, but it will “drop” from them similar to how it works for NPCs.
  • On Iokath you can spend that currency to do special things such as piloting a walker. You will be able to pilot the walker in the same area as other players and use said walker for murderous intent against enemy players.

Musco clarified some other aspects including that the currency used to buy the walker and other ‘special things’ can be earned “from all over the planet” and that the Open World PvP stuff would only work in the PvP instance (pretty obvious).

Being a big fan of Open World PvP (despite the lag), I’m certainly intrigued by the Developers desire to make it a part of the Iokath content ‘package’ (even though it almost feels like a scapegoat to give PvPers ‘content’). I’m intrigued by the idea of having Walkers and other ‘special things’ we will be able to use on Iokath. I especially love the idea of being able to loot currency off of other players. But I do have some questions/concerns for the Developers.

  • Is switching faction a one off thing through the story or can people switch whenever they like? In my view, switching faction should be a one-off choice.
  • How much will the Walker (and other ‘special things’) cost? If the cost is too high, it introduces a grind which takes enjoyment away from the game and in turn, players will stop doing it.
  • How does the Walker (and other ‘special things’) work? Are they a temporary thing that lasts only a certain amount of time or do they have a health pool and once walker or ‘special thing’ is destroyed you need to buy another one? Or is it related to the players on health pool? If the ‘special thing’ is destroyed, does the player using/piloting it die? I prefer the health pool option personally that way perhaps the ‘special things’ can be healed. Again, hopefully, the cost of the ‘special things’ isn’t too high.
  • What kind of PvP Achievements are there? Do they involve using the ‘special things’? Are there legacy titles associated with the PvP Achievements? PvP achievements with ‘cool’ titles are an easy way to get players to organise and participate in Open World PvP. Remember the old days of massive Open World PvP events on Oricon? Fun times despite the lag.
  • Are there any dailies involving Open World PvP? For example, any PvE dailies you have to complete in the PvP instance? Or any PvP specific dailies? eg. kill 5 players. Again, another way to incentivise participation in Open World PvP. Perhaps a couple of dailies that reward Unassembled Components as well as the new Iokath currency.

Honestly, the most fun I have ever had playing SWTOR has been during Open World PvP events/encounters. I hope that the Developer’s Open World PvP experiment on Iokath will succeed. But I’m concerned that without further incentives or if the ‘special things’ are poorly designed in how they work/cost then it won’t be very successful.

Hopefully, we will hear more details about these PvP ‘additions’ to Game Update 5.2 in the upcoming Developer Livestream (date yet to be announced).


What are your thoughts on Open World PvP? Is it something you enjoy or have done in SWTOR? Do you think the Developers experiment will work?