SWTOR Cartel Market Weekly Sales for the week of Sept 22-29. New Items Blademaster’s Attenuated Saberstaff — 500 CC — History of item Blademaster’s Attenuated Shoto — 500 CC — History of item Blademaster’s Attenuated Lightsaber — 500 CC — History of item Hypercrate: Space Pirate’s Cartel Pack — 5400 CC — History of item(…)
So I got home last night later than usual and forgot to ask my wife to hit the Patcher for SWTOR to download the latest patch. First off, even with my decent DL speed, it took a good 20 minutes to download. I wasn’t too frustrated about it, just was a mild surprise. So I went off and scanned about the Patch changes. Hmm…looky here! Optimization for graphics! Faster Load times! Ok that’s really all I saw pertinent. Now I own a mid grade Computer (Alienware something something. I’m at work so the specs escape me). Normally just about everything is on high settings with the exception of shadows/grass/trees and anti alias.
Supposedly, the anti alias was optimized for low to medium settings. Hmm ok, we will give it a whirl. Also the over all frame rate was to be increased. Well, I did some test runs. First out in Yavin. Why? Because there are a tone of trees everywhere and grass that really start grinding against your computer graphics to render and keep a decent frame rate. Normally I run the grass/shadow/trees on low settings. If they are on high, Yavin chugs down to about 35 FPS. Low, they tend to run around 50-60 which keeps me pretty happy. So I kept the anti alias at a medium setting and slid the grass and trees up to mid point. Not bad performance. The optimization for my system actually kept the frame rate around 50-60 on medium grass/trees. Slid it back down a little and was rocking at 90-100 FPS. So far, the test was going well. But the next chunky test for rendering was on Fleet. So I popped over to fleet to check things out. Normally on fleet because the amount of shadows and character renders, things can get a little bogged down as I’m peeling out in my speeder bike. This usally bogs down to about 40-50. On real busy nights it grinds down to 35-40 tops. Well, pleasantly surprised, I maintained a 60FPS with pretty decent rendering times. Overall, I would say BioWare’s optimizations for graphics was pretty successful. Perhaps not perfect. Of course I don’t have a high end rig either. This however, was a significant improvement and allowed the SWTOR universe to be a little more immersive with their graphics. Thumbs up for this one!
Load screens. So 3.3.2 was supposed to be able to speed up your load screens as well. I got mixed results on this. Going into War Zones was definitely improved. Going Shipboard to any of my Starships improved. Getting to Yavin had a small speed improvement (maybe 15 seconds? Ball parking of course). But I didn’t really feel as though planetary load ins were improved much. I bounced around some of my longer load screen planets (Tatooine, Hoth and Belsavis come to mind…see the pattern there?!?!). To be honest, I saw no improvement on those load screens at all. It really felt the same as normal. Now, I looked at my connectivity and it was really solid. No spikes in up/down data speed. Pretty consistent. My wife while on line was not down loading anything so I don’t believe it was an issue with my connection. Thing is, I wonder if the data pipeline is still over all bottle necked from the user to the server somewhere. I’m just not sure. While it didn’t wreck my game, the supposed enhancement failed to really impress me.
Minor Aberration: During one Warzone, a graphic error in rendering the skyline happened to the entire group I was with. The sky was black. Again, didn’t wreck the game…just an anomaly. We all mentioned it while waiting for the battle to begin. We ended up wrecking the Empire BTW (my pvp toon is on pub side, my Pve toons are Imp side).
So, overall, the graphics portion of the patch was a decent success. I won’t go far as mind blowing, but it was enough to keep me happy. There were some bug fixes as well by the way. Ones I’ve never encountered before but fixed. I’d love to hear from you readers to compare your experiences with this new patch. Tell me if the optimizations have been of help or hindrance? Did the Download go well or was it painfully long?
Ok, let’s be clear. The act of Slicing in SWTOR is a nefarious activity(no not REAL silly!) with criminal intent. It is the act of hacking into a computer system and stealing someone’s credits. That’s the point of it. But it’s also one of the fastest ways to make a TON of credits at the end game as it stands. On average I can usually make between 700k-1mil credits per hour if I am really working the circuit. This of course is widely known among players. Competition can get very tough and boy can people get mad in a hurry if they don’t make the node on time to steal virtual currency. I have seen complete nerd rages when this happens. Some of it can be attributed to lag pings when two players are vying for the same node. Some of it can be attributed to ninja hits while others are fighting off mobs from a node they picked. Then, sometimes there is just such a huge pop on a given server instance that it may seem like you are getting no where. To those that get upset over node ninjas, all I can say is that when resources are limited, all bets are off. It is indeed a den of robbery and villainy that slicers are partaking in. I have little empathy for those that try to shame others in a game of node gathering. Believe me, I have had nodes stolen right out under me for all of the above causes that I mentioned. So why don’t I get upset? Well I came up with a few strategies that help in the gain of illicit credits.(Again, this isn’t REAL illicit activity, just the “act of slicing into computer systems/safe boxes in the guise of gathering). Below of some tips to help you as a Slicer that will improve your profit significantly if you put the work into it.
Speed is EVERYTHING! Make sure your speeder/mount is on a very accessible key bind while you are node slicing. The second you have picked up your box, mount up and haul ass. If you are next to 2 nodes that are very close, tap one by yourself and the other with your companion. Two birds with one stone!
RUN THE CIRCUIT! Develop a circular pattern where you can get to nodes in a sequence. If you notice you are right behind someone else slicing, switch back in the opposite direction and retrace around OR cut across mid field. Otherwise you will continuously be a couple seconds behind the power curve at every node. Remember there are two areas for slicing: The Temple grounds and The Temple Approach. If one seems too populated, zip on back down to the other.
NODE BEFORE COMBAT! Ok a lot of people screw this up. They try to burn mobs down to get to a node. This is only useful if your instance is empty. Every second counts folks. Get the node first, take a few hits, THEN kill the mobs. This helps alleviate the ninja node tappers. You get to the node first, DO NOT engage on coming enemies, gather and then fight back. By Yavin your gear should be solid enough that you can take a few punches. CC first then burn them, but only after you have gathered, not before. The Maxim will always be: Time is Money!
HOP THAT INSTANCE! I do this frequently. Because Yavin (aside from Ziost which is useless for gathering) is so populated, chances are there are at least 3 instances going at the same time. Hop between them. You’ll run into some pretty quiet instances and then make a serious haul from your activities. At one point I literally made 1Mill in credits in an hour of grinding because the instance was empty. Pretty nice run if you ask me.
ADD BAG SPACE! Look if you aren’t rolling with at least 60 slots in your bag, you are doing it wrong. Believe me, the investment is really helpful. Keep them bags cleared too. Nothing is more frustrating than tapping a node only to find YOU are full and a ninja got your loot.
ATTACK ELITES: For about 10 seconds of your time, an Elite drops around 1k in credits. So if the nodes are exhausted, go kill shit, it’s good practice for your rotations anyhow. Additionally the occasionally blue drop will happen. So far, I got an Akk Dog Pup and some sort of bird thing. Hey it’s cool stuff dammit!
Above all, don’t get frustrated. Keep a cool head. Remember that it is in itself a competition for resources. Keep these pointers in mind the next time you are out hunting for fast credits and the wealth will flow through you like the Force! I hope these tips proved to be useful. If any of you readers have additional tips or comments, feel free to drop a line, I always love hearing from you. Till next time, may your speeders be fast and your credits flow like a river!
SWTOR servers will be down for maintenance for patch 3.2.2 on Sept 22 from 5 am PDT to 8 am PDT. Patch notes will be available Monday. Maintenance: 22 September 2015 | 09.18.2015, 02:08 PM Hey everyone, We will be bringing the servers offline on Tuesday, September 22nd in order to apply Game Update 3.3.2!(…)
Status: Imperial Intelligence Operative
Operative Voren shows the potential and skill to identify targets, dispatch them and complete missions as per Imperial Intelligence Directives.
Notes: Subject shows a high degree of initiative and resourcefulness. Missions are completed within a timely manner and all objectives handled with discretion. Subject also shows an extreme willfulness and disregard for Sith Authority. While a true patriot to the Empire, his motives are as of yet understood. Subject will submit to pain over bowing to the will of any person involved in Sith or Dark Council directives. Note, while useful, subject may require termination in order to maintain control over Sith requirements. Subject requires extensive surveillance in order to identify true motives for further exploitation. Pain will not bend subject’s will, be advised that other means will be necessary to ensure subject will comply with Sith plans.
So I am currently working an Operative and he is such a blast. I have a sniper (Mharius) but I wanted to work an operative as well for flexibility. What I have noticed is that the Operative is far more easier to adapt in fighting than it’s Republic Counterpart the Smuggler: Scoundrel. Now I don’t know why this is. It could just be personal style. But they seem to have a better feel in combat than the Scoundrel for me. Tell me readers, what is your opinion? Do you find that it is easier to deal with a Scoundrel or an Operative. Both have awesome PvP potential and certainly show themselves well in the PvE arena. Anyways, just my thoughts on this Saturday. Feedback would be most appreciated. But if not, do enjoy your Saturday as I am (Margaritas and Smoked Ribs lol).