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  • Galaxy of Heroes News & Dev Tracker

  • Update on Recent Characters

    Apr 30, 2019, 10:04 p.m. · CG_Carrie - EA Forums

    Hello Holotable Heroes,

    As we near on May the 4th, and our Clone Wars arc is swinging into full effect, I wanted to follow up on some of the month’s events in an effort to continue all the different channels of communication in between big Road Ahead beats.

    To begin with, it’s been a busy few weeks with the release of Darth Malak and Jedi Knight Anakin. Darth Malak was, and remains, a very difficult event. The intention was to create a longer-term chase character outside of fixed-rate events like raids and territory battles. Many people went after Darth Malak right away and 882 players got Darth Malak on his first go around who have never spent a single cent in this game. It was, I imagine, significantly more challenging for them than those who had, but as we were told by many players at Star Wars Celebration, they read the tea leaves, anticipated what was coming, and made specific choices about how to invest their resources. That represents a balance in this game that we want to continue to facilitate.

    Jedi Knight Anakin, and the tune-ups of General Kenobi and Ahsoka Tano, reflected a different type of release, where old characters were updated to the current state of the game. Finding where Anakin sits both with the tune-ups and where he will sit with the release of Padmé and his zeta ability, is an ongoing balancing act that we will monitor over time. As Erik mentioned in his post last week, we are constantly evaluating these releases both from a data and sentiment perspective and will make changes as needed, doing everything we can to respect investments (time and money) and maintain game health. So our monitoring of JKA is ongoing (as with all characters)and is dependent on the numerous behaviors that come from millions of hours of playtime from millions of players. Based on our findings, he is going to be even more powerful with Padmé, so we have restricted some of Anakin’s power to work only with Galactic Republic characters. You can read these specifics with his updated kit reveal which we’ll post shortly.

    Based off the back of those releases, there are some things we are going to endeavor to do to rectify some recent issues we have had. We’re going to try a few things and see how they work out before we adopt them permanently, but our interest is in sharing how we are responding to feedback.

    1. Testing: We’ve always utilized player feedback and testing on top of our internal testing groups, but as the game gets older and exceedingly more complicated, the methods that worked before don’t seem to be holding up. To that end, with Padmé, we did a slightly larger character playtest, consisting of a group of about 35 members of the community to hammer on different permutations of the character and squads and where she sits. This group provided a lot of helpful bugs and feedback, and we intend to use testing groups like this in the future, with an end goal of a public test server.
    2. Notice: While we don’t intend to pre-release info about all characters far in advance, we’d like to dial back on the feeling that you have no idea what’s coming. To that end, we wanted to let you know that later in May, we are going to be releasing reworks of Count Dooku and Nute Gunray as a part of the lead up to the Dark Side Geonosian Territory Battle. These characters are meant to fit into the Territory Battle, specifically, and Nute Gunray is getting a significant rework that we will share closer to his rework and may result in some manner of refund for current investments.
      While we won’t be able to reveal every character well in advance, we’ll endeavor to do it when we can, which will hopefully give you all some understanding of expectations. I’ll note that there was a new marquee/galactic chase character planned for May, which will likely get moved out, so at the moment absent of that single marquee/chase, there are no other characters planned in May, so you can use that time to focus on gearing up the characters that you have acquired recently and planning your next in-game moves.
    3. Response: As may be apparent with Jedi Knight Anakin (and many other releases), there can often be strong and extreme responses both at the time of the kit reveal and the launch of the character. With JKA, we wanted to let you know that we are actively investigating a character’s power, and while that is always the case, we will try to do a better job of communicating when it’s happening with hot topics, so that you know. Often as the dust settles (as has with JKA), we find that the character is performing near where expected, and changes if needed, are minor. What we ask of you is some consideration of that when evaluating new characters, and when in doubt, don’t get them until you’re confident and sure you want them.

    We hope you enjoy the May the 4th gifts which we will be announcing tomorrow. Also, starting with the Padme event we are going to be trying an experiment where we’ll be moving character releases to the following morning PST, instead of midnight PST releases. This is to ensure we’re in the office if any issues arise. The duration of the event will remain the same length.

    Keep the feedback coming, preferably productively, and we’ll do the same as much and as often as we can. And as always, we’ll see you on the holotables,

    -Carrie

    <<MEGATHREAD>>

  • It’s been brought to our attention that Hoth Rebel Soldier is in Phase 2 Platoons. This is unintentional and will be changed in future runs of the Rebel Assault Territory Battle. Unfortunately, we cannot change it for the currently active Territory Battle. We apologize for the inconvenience.

  • It appears that the Territory War ability, Unstable Batteries, is using a very old ability description and the revised text/localization did not get picked up for release. The ability should read:

    Unstable Batteries:
    Granted to: Droids

    Droids deal 100% more damage with attacks not based on Health, but have a 15% chance to be destroyed when damaged by an attack. Droids destroyed this way can't be revived.

    Whenever a Droid is destroyed by Unstable Batteries, they deal damage to each enemy equal to 80% of that enemy's Max Health and inflict Burning for 1 turn, which can't be evaded or resisted. This damage can't defeat enemies.

    B1 Battle Droid can’t be destroyed by Unstable Batteries, but can still trigger the Max Health damage and inflict Burning for 1 turn when it is damaged by an attack.

    We've had a number of issues with the text/localization in this recent release (getting the right Bastila text description out for example) and we're sorry for the confusion that it's caused. We'll be evaluating our processes around text/localization on Monday. Again, our apologies.

  • The Road Ahead: 4/10/19

    Apr 11, 2019, 03:04 a.m. · CG_Carrie - EA Forums

    Hello Holotable Heroes!

    Hot off the presses and just before we kick off our booth at Celebration, it's the Road Ahead! It’s been just over a year since I started writing the Road Ahead more formally and in commemoration of this, I wanted to talk about some of the topics from that blog to reflect on changes we’ve made in the past year, additional things we are going to be doing, and as always, the exciting things we have planned for the near future.

    Intro and Communication Updates
    One year ago we committed to a format of the Road Ahead that was based on a few different criteria including some requirements inside of EA that as of this month have been changed, and we have also received feedback from you as well, which has allowed us to reflect on the structure in its entirety. While we will continue to strive to post the Road Ahead inside of the first few weeks of a quarter, and we may for some time, you will likely also see changes to the format. The goal would be to tell you things more frequently instead of big chunks of news and then relative silence for weeks or months. As we work toward that cadence, we will continue to do big beats of information as needed, and we will also explore other types of communication. We know that information is valued and we also know that somewhere right now, someone is reading this message aloud on a podcast or YouTube video and poring over every single choice of word. Things like whether “very difficult” means the same thing as “quite challenging”. We try to think about those things and explain our intentionality, and we will continue to search for opportunities to clarify our perspective.

    Something in particular we've been exploring is showing you behind the development curtain and provide some insight into how we operate. We’ve been thrilled to be able to partner with Lucasfilm to bring you some “behind the scenes” work on both Jedi Knight Revan and Darth Revan, as well as reveal Developer Insights on how we think about characters and we are going to continue down this path, trying to provide as much of our perspective as possible, when it comes to how and why we do or build things. We will also be doing another Developer Q&A in our official forums inside the next month, so keep an eye out for info on that here.

    Character Cadence Update
    Another topic that we know is near and dear to everyone is the Character Release Cadence. At its core, Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes is a game about collecting characters and how and when they are released is always a topic of much conversation. However, as the game evolves, so must the way in which we release characters. You’ve already seen a couple Galactic Chase events, for both the Ebon Hawk and Emperor’s Shuttle, and some changes to how we are merchandising Marquees with Droideka.

    One of the core ways in which we release characters is Marquee Events, and while we will still be doing Marquees, there are going to be a lot fewer Marquees the first half of this year than there were in the same time period last year, and instead, you’re going to see more and more reworks visiting the Holotable. The reason for this is pretty straightforward – there are a number of characters that, by nature of a deep and ever evolving game, did not perform as well as they should. We’re going to be tackling a number of these characters head on. With all reworks, our aim is make them undoubtedly perform better. However in some cases, like in the case of the recently reworked HK-47, we changed his core identity as a Droid leader by giving him a new role in the Sith Empire team which, in giving him power and synergy with his master Darth Revan, resulted in us nerfing his leader ability. Overall, we feel he is a more interesting and balanced character than before the rework but he’s fits into a substantially different team and role. For that reason, we decided to refund investment in that leader ability, and every time we make a significant change, we will attempt to make that calculation.

    However, the time that the design, balance, QA and other teams spend on these reworks is sometimes more significant than it would be to make a new character from scratch. Since many people already own these characters and have invested in teams to use them, it’s critical we get the balance right and do our best to respect players’ previous investment in any characters we change. I say this to highlight that we try to think about all these things in a balance - Marquees and Reworks - with our eye toward different goals for the playerbase. For example, we just revealed a new kind of release that is “very very very significantly difficult and quite challenging” called Mythic Battles. It's not like the other types of releases we've had until this point, but we think that the theory-crafting and sharing of strategies is going to be at another level. You’ve been warned.

    And a quick note on character power. We’re aware, as it is an age-old quandary in games like this, of the issues of dominance for certain characters in the meta. There will always be some pretty dominant characters, but our hope is that a variety of competitive teams filter into the community over time, and that the primary “meta” of the game becomes a little bit more balanced in the future. While it may not be a true rock-paper-scissors meta, and while it will take some time to execute, this is the targeted end state - this end state is a reflection on some of the competitive gameplay changes we’ve slowly been making as well.

    And now, the actual Road Ahead…

    Hello There!
    When we originally planned the last year of content, we found a chunk of time for us to explore content that the studio is very passionate about in the Star Wars universe (Knights of the Old Republic) between two important moments for the franchise (Solo and Episode IX). And while there are many more characters we want to bring from the Old Republic era (I’m the reason you see Khem Val on every consumer survey), we are starting to shift our focus to a different era that we are going to spend some time on. This doesn’t mean every release from now until Episode IX will be from this era, it just means that it provides a structure for the content and some of the features we’re doing. And that era, whether the inspiration comes from the prequels or animated series, is the Clone Wars.

    Starting off, we’re going to be doing reworks of the trio of master duelists from the Jedi Order, Anakin Skywalker, General Kenobi, and Ahsoka Tano. General Kenobi, for example, is already one the most used characters in our game and so we will most likely focus on changes related to synergies with the other two rather than pure power, as we did with the recent changes to Bastila Shan (Fallen), but the intent is for the three characters together to synergize and elevate the value of each other. We will have more to share with their kit reveals in the upcoming weeks. We’re going to be playing around in this era for quite awhile so expect to see more old and new characters from this era to come front and center.

    Territory Battle on Geonosis
    With our eyes on Clone Wars, we are thrilled to announce that around the time of the next big feature update (TU16), which will land inside of the next three months, we will be launching the first map of a brand new Territory Battle located on Geonosis. In anticipation of the launch of a brand new map, we recently streamlined the Hoth map platoons so players can more efficiently clear Hoth. The new Geonosis map will have new characters along with special events, and we are eager to share more details as we get closer to release.

    cso9tep1gkzd.png

    Grand Arena Championships
    In that update we are also going to be releasing an extension to Grand Arena, called the Grand Arena Championships. A Championship is a multi-week series of Grand Arena events and competitive challenges, where players can fight their way into more and more exclusive leagues for higher rewards and ultimate bragging rights. This next update is intended to be the start of a new era of competitive play in Galaxy of Heroes, and over time there will be more and more ways to demonstrate that you are among the very best SWGoH players in the world.

    We have solicited some players for feedback on the initial designs of the Grand Arena Championship and will begin a restricted beta in the upcoming weeks.

    Star Wars: Celebration!
    Stop by our booth and talk with any of our team members in attendance about the upcoming new Clone Wars content or watch the Star Wars’ shows coverage of the event on April 11th. If you are attending, swing by early and drop off your ally code to get some swag.

    There’s been a lot of excitement and passion from the players throughout our entire development cycle, and we always endeavor to be worthy of your time and attention. We are so happy to continue to play in this sandbox and provide new challenges. And as always, we’ll see you on the holotables… and at Celebration!

    -Carrie Gouskos
    Senior Producer

  • When is Darth Revan coming?

    Mar 21, 2019, 10:03 p.m. · CG_Carrie - EA Forums

    Hello Holotable Heroes,

    I know there is a lot of anticipation around Darth Revan’s arrival, and while we are normally quite circumspect around dates (for one of the reasons of which I’m about to illustrate), we know that there is a lot of excitement around this particular release, and we want to communicate as much clarity as we can.
    We were initially hoping to release Darth Revan this week. However, this event is of a scope and scale that is among the largest of the “journey” events we have done in the past. For this reason, I made the call late last night to delay until early next week. This gives us an extra few days of testing (and, pending on what we find, two weekend days to fix those issues). While normally we push a build up and schedule the event for 24 hours+ later, we will be pushing up the build and turning on the event almost immediately, meaning that when we decide it’s ready to go, we’ll be unleashing it all in one go. We will be aiming for as early in the week as possible, pending any issues we need to find and fix.
    As a reminder, the development team works on the PDT schedule, so while most of the team does work additional hours, the dates and times we give in these communications are reflective of US Pacific Daylight Time (Currently UTC -7). We will update you on Monday with any additional details.

    Have a great weekend, and as always…
    Antiquated Signoff: We will see you on the Holotables.
    -Carrie

  • Hello Holotable Heroes,

    There's a scheduling issue from last week's Grand Arena (2/24) affecting the Grand Arena that starts tomorrow (3/3). If a player participated in last week's Grand Arena, the review period is currently preventing a player from seeing the join period of the Grand Arena that kicks off tomorrow. It appears that the join window will be from 2 PM PST to 3 PM PST on 3/3. This is not intended, nor is it a great experience. We're going to tackle this on Monday, but we're likely going to cancel the GA that starts on 3/3 and move the start time to some time later this next week. Apologies for the confusion. Have a great weekend. Stay tuned for more updates on this issue.

  • Known issues: Revan and B1

    Feb 21, 2019, 04:02 a.m. · CG_TopHat - EA Forums

    Hey Holotable Heroes,

    We’re aware of reports of some issues with B1 and Revan and will investigate these first thing in the morning.

    Thanks for your patience!

  • TL;DR - To address the Finn/Threepio infinite loop we’ve reworked Finn. We’ve updated Finn’s leader ability, added ramping damage to his kit, and given him a new unique buff, Determination. Please read on for the specifics.

    In December we announced our intention to act upon an unintended interaction involving zFinn and C-3PO that allowed players to auto Phase 3 of the Heroic Sith Triumvirate raid (along with phases in other raids) by leveraging what is functionally an infinite loop. As has been a long-standing policy of ours, when we discover infinite loops we take action on them. Unlike some of our previous instances, where we maybe acted too quickly, we really wanted to continue to iterate until we found something that would stop the interaction and also improve the character(s) affected.

    Finn was released over three years ago along with the release of The Force Awakens. Finn was also one of our earliest characters to receive a zeta, approximately two years ago. After the addition of his zeta, Finn has been a prolific presence within the HAAT raid thanks to his Leader ability, which reduced the cooldowns of all Resistance allies and grants them 35% Turn Meter whenever an enemy takes damage from an Expose. C-3PO brought this to a head with his Cyborg Relations Unique, which allowed for Rebels and Ewoks to inflict an Expose with their basic abilities. This in addition to C-3PO's ability to call his team members to assist with his special ability "Oh My Goodness" meant that the team was able to apply Expose at an extremely high frequency, and thus reap the benefits of Finn's leader ability to stay at 100% Turn Meter while preventing their opponents from taking a turn.

    As a result of this loop, we’ve made some changes to Finn and only Finn. The detailed kit changes are found below but functionally what we’ve done is changed the amount of turn meter he is accruing for the team, given him some more regular team sustain, and a lot more damage output in PvE/Raids.

    How He’s Changed
    Below is the revised ability kit for Finn. We’ve made no changes to his core stats.
    Changes are highlighted in Green.


    Basic - Crack Shot
    Description: Deal Physical damage to target enemy. This attack deals 5% more damage for each time the target has been struck by it.
    • Upgrade 1: +5% Damage
    • Upgrade 2: +15% Damage
    • Upgrade 3: +5% Damage
    • Upgrade 4: +5% More Damage
    • Upgrade 5: +5% Damage
    • Upgrade 6: +5% Damage
    • Upgrade 7: +15% Damage and +10% More Damage

    Final Text: Deal Physical damage to target enemy. This attack deals 20% more damage for each time the target has been struck by it.
    Special 1 - Hold the Line
    (Cooldown Change to 3 turns at Base)
    Description: All Resistance allies recover 5% Health and Protection. Finn gains Advantage, Defense Up, and Taunt for 2 turns, and dispels all debuffs from all allies.
    • Upgrade 1: +1% Health and Protection recovery
    • Upgrade 2: +2% Health and Protection recovery
    • Upgrade 3: +2% Health and Protection recovery
    • Upgrade 4: +2% Health and Protection recovery
    • Upgrade 5: +3% Health and Protection recovery
    • Upgrade 6: +5% Health and Protection recovery
    • Upgrade 7: Finn gains Determination for 2 turns
    Final Text: All Resistance allies recover 20% Health and Protection. Finn gains Advantage, Defense Up, Taunt, and Determination for 2 turns, and dispels all debuffs from all allies.

    Determination: Whenever any other Resistance ally falls below 50% Health, Determination expires and Finn Taunts for 2 turns. If that ally was Taunting, it is dispelled. When Determination expires, Finn gains Retribution for 2 turns.


    Special 2 - Takedown
    (Cooldown Change to 2 turns at Base)
    Description: Deal Physical damage to target enemy with a 70% chance to Expose them for 2 turns and a 70% chance to Stun them for 1 turn.
    • Upgrade 1: +5% Damage
    • Upgrade 2: +15% Expose and Stun Chance
    • Upgrade 3: +5% Damage
    • Upgrade 4: +5% Damage
    • Upgrade 5: +15% Expose and Stun Chance
    • Upgrade 6: +20% Damage
    • Upgrade 7: This attack deals 60% more damage for each time the target has been struck by it (doubled against Raid Bosses)
    Final Text: Deal Physical damage to target enemy, Expose them for 2 turns, and Stun them for 1 turn. This attack deals 60% more damage for each time the target has been struck by it (doubled against Raid Bosses).

    Leader - Balanced Tactics
    Description: Resistance allies have +30% Defense, Offense, and Potency, and other allies have half that amount.
    Upgrade 1: +5% Defense, Offense, and Potency
    Upgrade 2: +5% Defense, Offense, and Potency
    Upgrade 3: +5% Defense, Offense, and Potency
    Upgrade 4: +5% Defense, Offense, and Potency
    Upgrade 5: +5% Defense, Offense, and Potency
    Upgrade 6: +5% Defense, Offense, and Potency
    Upgrade 7: Each time they damage an Exposed enemy, all Resistance allies gain 3% Turn Meter and the target enemy loses 5% Turn Meter for each Resistance ally; damaging an Exposed enemy also reduces Resistance allies' cooldowns by 1.

    Final Text: Resistance allies have +60% Defense, Offense, and Potency, and other allies have half that amount. Each time they damage an Exposed enemy, all Resistance allies gain 3% Turn Meter and the target enemy loses 5% Turn Meter for each Resistance ally. Damaging an Exposed enemy also reduces Resistance allies' cooldowns by 1.

    Commentary on Changes
    Players will immediately notice that we’ve made some significant changes to Finn’s leader ability. We've reduced the amount of Turn Meter that he and his allies gain from activating Exposes, but now given them the ability to reduce the Exposed enemy's Turn Meter as well. Additionally, the Leader ability scales based on the number of Resistance allies and Resistance allies are the only ones that can activate turn meter gain/loss from exposes. We've also boosted the stat bonuses granted by the Leader ability. Finally we’ve removed Finn’s ability to grant Advantage to Resistance members that have lost Foresight. Thematically we didn’t think this made a lot of sense and practically it didn’t help the Resistance too much.

    In order to help maintain Finn's identity as a powerful character within our raid encounters, we've changed his basic attack and "Takedown" special ability so that they now each deal more damage based on the number of times they've each been used against an enemy. So, while looping the turns may be a bit more difficult, Finn-led Resistance teams in general will take more turns. Consequently, Finn will have significant scaling damage the longer the encounter goes on.

    We've also revisited his "Hold the Line" special, which now recovers Health and Protection for all Resistance allies instead of granting Heal Over Time, and grants him the new "Determination" effect. Determination is a new effect exclusive to Finn, where when another Resistance ally falls below 50% health, and the effect is active, that ally loses Taunt if they have it, and Finn gains Taunt for two turns while dropping the Determination effect. When Finn loses Determination, whether it expires naturally or if an ally triggers its effects, Finn gains Retribution. These changes should allow Finn to provide a much more significant portion of his team's damage and act as the driving force between taking the enemy down faster, rather than extending the battle infinitely.

    PvP Experience Changes
    These changes do not drastically alter the performance of the Finn-led Resistance squad in PvP, but his changes do offer the team some additional utility and a slight improvement in their PvP presence. With ramping damage now present on Finn’s basic ability and his 2nd special ability, the longer he can stay alive and the more turns he can take, the more potent he becomes. Determination goes a long way in making this a reality, as it provides not only an additional means of spreading damage around the team by providing Finn with the ability to Taunt, but also grants him Retribution which can give him a few free hits to ramp up damage on his basic ability. While these changes haven’t brought the Resistance squad into the current competitive meta, they can more handily dispose of teams such as Kylo Ren (Unmasked)-led First Order and General Kenobi-led Jedi.

    PvE Experience Changes
    Finn remains one of the best leaders for PvE and Raid content. Internal testing still has him performing as a top tier performer in the AAT (Phases 2, 3, and 4) and the Pit (Phases 1-4). We have internal testing figures that place this new Finn team able to do about 20% of Phase 3 of the Heroic Sith Triumvirate. That’s under our internal testing regime, which means mileage will vary (and our suspicion is it’s probably higher out in the wild of the live game with all the crafty theorycrafters out there). Overall, his ramping damage, team heal/sustain, and turn meter manipulation make him a potent weapon in the war on rampaging raid monsters.



    We think this should resolve the Finn-Threepio interaction moving forward. As our internal testing has shown that Finn matches or exceeds where he was prior to C-3PO's launch and we expect the community to push him even further, we have no intention of refunding the zeta associated with him. We look forward to your feedback on this proposed change.

    <<MEGATHREAD>>

  • Marquee Merchandising Changes

    Feb 09, 2019, 12:02 a.m. · CG_TopHat - EA Forums

    Hello Holotable Heroes,

    Over the past 2 years, we have released many Marquee Characters without re-evaluating the way shards are acquired via the pack and bundle.

    As we discussed in the Road Ahead blog, we have been evaluating the release method of these characters, starting with the Emperor’s Shuttle that launched this week. And now starting with the launch of the Droideka, while we are launching it in the classic Marquee style, we are changing the traditional bundle to include crystals and adding a new mega pack that will allow players to increase Droideka’s star rarity with fewer crystals compared to the standard marquee, akin to other mega packs. Below are the changes:

    Marquee Bundle

    • Bundle price will be changed from $9.99 to $19.99 (USD)
    • All Marquee Bundle items/currencies remain the same
    • 1350 Crystals will be added to the bundle
      • This is the number of crystals yielded from the $9.99 (USD) Box of Crystals (plus 10 crystals to offset the additional penny)

    Standard Marquee Pack
    • No change

    New Marquee Mega Pack
    • Crystal cost is 2599
    • Shards range from 15-330
    • Odds will be disclosed on the website and called out in the patch notes at the time of release

    Although these changes will be for Droideka, we may continue to make more changes or no changes for subsequent Marquee events. Per the character cadence, we will communicate any changes ~2 weeks prior to the event.

    << MEGATHEAD >>

  • Road Ahead: 1/31/2019

    Jan 31, 2019, 10:01 p.m. · CG_Carrie - EA Forums

    Hello Holotable Heroes!

    After an exciting end of the year with the release of Grand Arena, C3PO, and Han’s Millennium Falcon, the Capital Games offices are bustling again with plans for the upcoming quarters. We’ve spent much of the past few months focusing on the roadmap, including a bold and somewhat audacious five-year vision, but as always, I’m here to talk a little bit about the next couple of months.
    When we sit down to plan the next year’s roadmap, one of the key things that we focus on is learnings from the previous one. Since so much of the core of the game is collecting and strategizing with the iconic characters and ships from the Star Wars universe, we are constantly learning and, when necessary, adjusting the way we release them - especially the types of events we run and their cadence. To ensure that we bring you awesome new Star Wars content in a way that feels balanced, fair, and allows you to really dig in and enjoy each moment, we’re continuing to work on the balance between Marquees, reworks, “achievement characters” (more on that in a moment), and Legendaries/Hero’s Journey/Ancient Journeys.
    While we are finessing the delivery systems, we also want to try a couple of different formats. To that end, we will be releasing the Emperor’s Command Shuttle in a new event called the Galactic Chase. This event will take place on one of the Cantina holotables, as the Command Shuttle will be immediately released to specific nodes there. This will allow you to earn shards of the ship while accruing other resources and completing daily activities that you would already be doing anyway on these nodes. We hope that you enjoy the way this celebrates the arrival of a new ship - without requiring a separate energy grind.
    Alongside this and the more traditional events, we will be introducing more achievement-based characters this year. They may show up as actual achievement rewards or in currency shops (such as Wampa and Hermit Yoda). We’ll be able to talk about that more in-depth in coming months.

    Quality of Life
    As always, we begin the year with a Quality of Life update. Many of the items that have populated our Quality of Life list comes from things we’ve seen you talk about on the forums, feedback we’ve received from customer satisfaction surveys, and the actual play patterns and feedback we see reflected in how you play the game. We also always look for time saving opportunities as we recognize that subsequent updates often require an increased amount of time spent in the game.

    To that end, one of our big QOL features this year is going to be raid simming. If a guild has beaten the Heroic Rancor raid a certain number of times and a (to be determined) number of guild members have Han Solo at 7*, the guild will be able to sim completion of the Rancor Raid and all guild members will receive equal rewards. While we are still tuning the exact rewards, the intention is to keep the inflow of rewards but allow guilds to enjoy the rewards and spend their time on new content without having to repeat the version of an event they’ve mastered. At this time, we are only activating raid simming on the Rancor, but will be able to explore adding it to the other raids at a later date. We should note, that if, for any reason, you don't want to sim the Rancor, you always have the option to play through the way it is currently with the current reward distribution.

    To save players time and for convenience of squad selection and management – we will be adding the squad management button to the Character Inventory screen. This will replace the “Buy Data Cards” button that is currently there. Our data showed that was the least used button on that screen. Once on the squad select screen, more information will be surface at the top level, including the character name (in case you’re having difficulty telling your Jawas apart), Gear level, and a brand new “shared” indicator. This can be turned on from inside the character management pages, where you can indicate whether you want to be notified of any duplicate characters being used within a single tab. This will allow you to more easily use the tabs to fill out complete rosters for Territory Wars/Battles/the Raids/etc. We’ve added similar functionality for Mod Loadout management as well.

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    We are also excited to bring you changes to the in-combat buff/debuff user interface. A new button has been added to the screen to allow you to quickly turn on or off the full buff display and reveal more of the screen. With it off, a few key buffs (such as Taunt, Foresight, and unique buffs) will be visible, but after a certain number of buffs have been applied, “lower-priority” buffs will be collapsed behind an overall numeric indicator of the number of active buffs/debuffs. You can use the new toggle to expand to the full buff list, or you can keep them hidden. You can also tap to expand or collapse individual character buff/debuff lists. New buffs/debuffs will flash briefly before docking behind the minimized window. This feature is one of the items inside of our beta test that we are asking players to provide feedback on, and we will make modifications to the number of visible icons, which buffs are prioritized, and other factors based on how our beta testers respond. As always, if you’re interested in becoming a beta tester, keep an eye on the official SWGOH forums for when we look for new candidates.

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    We are also looking to improve the matchmaking of the Grand Arena. One of the clearest improvements we could make based on the data from the first few runs is that when ships are not used in the Grand Arena, ship GP will not contribute to matchmaking. While we will not reveal all the components of the matchmaking formula, we will continue to adjust certain aspects and explain them when relevant. There are a number of other quality of life polish and bug fixes going into the update, which all be revealed in the patch notes on the official forums.

    New Content
    February is going to be differently themed than the past two years, as we are VERY excited to bring you Separatist droids! We’ve given a lot of attention to various aspects of the universe in the past two years, particularly the Original Trilogy and The Old Republic. With the return of The Clone Wars animated series (#clonewarslives), we are excited to explore more content from The Clone Wars animated series.
    This includes a Marquee for the B1 Battle Droid, who will appear as a single unit on the battlefield, but whose abilities reflect the pervasiveness of the seemingly un-ending units behind it.
    Additionally we are going to be releasing the Droideka, the shielded destroyer droids, who, combined with the B1, the rework of the B2 Battle Droid, and rework of the Magnaguard all serve at the behest of one particular droid commander. *cough*

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    General Grievous is getting a rework, and we are very excited to tie that into the rest of the Clone Wars droids in a way that fulfills the fantasy of this strategic Separatist battlefield commander.
    And that’s all for now! There will be more information as always in the coming weeks if you hop on over to the official forums.
    You hear that meatbags? I will be back!

    -Carrie Gouskos, Senior Producer

    <<MEGATHREAD>>

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