SWTOR Makeb, Macrobinoculars and Seeker Droids preview

A preview of the planet Makeb, Macrobinocular and Seeker Droid quests that are part of SWTOR Rise of the Hutt Cartel Digital Expansion.

Makeb

Overview

Makeb, the newly introduced planet for Rise of the Hutt Cartel, is a large planet that is 3-4 times the size of traditional planets like Corellia. Makeb’s unique geography means that regions are all segregated into small islands, which makes questing and traveling a breeze.

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Makeb has an unique environment not seen in other planets. On the surface, it looks like a peaceful tropical paradise. However, this paradise is scarred with huge industrial complexes drilling away at the planet’s resources.

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Story

Makeb has something that everyone wants – Isotope 5. Without giving away the story too much, Isotope 5 can be utilized as a powerful weapon that can change the outcome of conflicts. The Hutts know this and have invaded Makeb to mine the resources for their own use. The Hutt’s invasion was not unnoticed – both the Empire and the Republic have sent in their own troops.

The two factions have their own separate storylines that are different but interconnected with each other. It is advised to play both faction’s storyline to gain a better understanding of the conflict on Makeb. There are no separate class specific storylines here but the story it is epic enough to make up for it. It is an action packed ride that once again make you feel like the hero of the galaxy.

Makeb is also the first planet in SWTOR with same sex romance options with quest NPCs. Players can expect female to female flirt options on the Republic side and male to male flirt options on the Empire side for the Makeb storyline.. Empire players can also expect a small female to female flirt option in the Macrobinocular quest (Republic players may have a male to male to flirt option here as well).

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The main storyline cutscene is about 1 hr and 20 minutes long. Here are all the cutscenes for Makeb storyline if you like to watch (obvious spoilers). Note that only Empire version of the story is available right now but Republic version will be available soon when they get uploaded.

Empire Cutscenes

Spoiler Inside Show

Republic Cutscenes

Spoiler Inside Show

Questing

Level is a breeze in Makeb. You go from island to island with each island containing a portion of the main story mission and a [Daily] mission that you can pick up. This differs from the traditional quest hub approach where you pick up a bunch of missions and forget what they are even about. There is a sense of accomplishment as you finish one island and move on to the next. Those looking for group play can also find 3 heroics that are available as part of your leveling experience.

The main storyline alone won’t carry you to 55. Most players will be L53-54 after finishing the main story. This can be a bit problematic as you will at times fighting mobs that are 2-3 levels above you. Usage of experience boosts is strongly recommended. Players can expect to spend anywhere from 7-9 hrs to finish the Makeb content. Makeb’s content is only the tip of the iceberg as there tons of other content such as dailies, weeklies, macrobinocular and seeker droid missions to keep you occupied for days.

Makeb mob density is quite heavy so those using an AoE heavy spec may find themselves churn through the content faster than others. On my full Dread Guard geared healer (Sorcerer), I had no issues with any of the missions and chewed through mobs like butter. My other Rakata/Campaign geared healer didn’t have much of an issue either but I did find things get a bit more difficult towards the end.

Datacrons

There are two datacrons on Makeb, one relatively easy to get (+10 presence) and another (+10 endurance) as elaborate and lengthy as the datacron on the fleet. Be prepared to spend at least 1-2 hrs getting that endurance one if you are not good at jumping and have a natural fear of heights.

Macrobinocular and Seeker Droids

Macrobinoculars

Macrobinocular, as you may have guessed, is a binocular you can use to identity objects and used by a new series of missions to scan certain objectives. The usage of it is fairly straightforward as most times you are told what to scan and the objects you need to scan lit up when you hover above it. However, they can bring another dimension to the game by revealing certain hidden objects you need to interact as part of a puzzle for example.

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Macrobinocular has its own chain of missions that tasks you to travel to various planets and scan certain objects marked on your map. This may sound a bit boring but the game fresh it up by offering puzzle missions in between. You need to use your brain powers to figure out how to get past laser grids or open locked doors by using your macrobinoculars to find interactable objects that you may not have spotted otherwise.

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If puzzles isn’t your thing, you might be interested in jumping over gaps or crates to reach places that might not be reachable otherwise. There is one solo instance created with jumping in mind.

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If solo jumping and puzzles are not enough, you will be happy to know that are two Heroic 4s at the end of the mission chain. One of them involves long car chase through the sky of Nar Shadda where you must jump over moving speeders to chase down your enemy. The other involves is a series of group oriented puzzles with an interesting boss.

Seeker Droids

Seeker droid is a little droid you can use to dig up items required by another series of missions. This series goes hand in hand with the Macrobinocular as they ask you to travel through the same planets.

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The droid is simple to use. You deploy it on the ground and it will scan a circle of about 5m in radius. If it turn up something, it will lit up green and dig the object out. . If not, it will lit up red. After that, it places a little circle under your feet to tell you if you are near a buried object (post-dig sonar pulse). If there is no object under your feet, a red circle is displayed. If there is something nearby, a green half circle appears alerting you to the direction of the buried object.

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There are little consumables you get from doing the seeker droid missions or purchased from the vendors called GSI Triangulation Enhancers.. These buffs last 10 minutes and are suppose to increase the range and accuracy of the little circle under your feet. I personally did not see much of an effect, however.

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If you still have nightmares about doing the hunt for HK components, you can rest easy as the objects required by the missions are no where as hard to find. The area you need to scan is marked out for you and there seem to be a number of them buried under ground. For most missions I was able to locate the mission item within 5-10 minutes of scanning.

Certain locations on various planets contain buried objects that are not part of any quest but may yield rare components needed for certain speeders sold by GSI reputation vendors. You can see some pictures of the speeders offered here. This give an incentive for players to go out and dig up things for the chance to get one of those components. These rare component containing fields can be spotted by your macrobinocular, offering an excellent interaction between the two items.

There is also a Heroic 4 at the end of the seeker droid mission chain. This heroic 4 doesn’t have any puzzles or jumps but does contain some interesting boss mechanics. You also get to make a dark or light side choice at the end that offer you a different chestpiece based on your decision (left = darkside, right = ligthside).

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GSI dailies

GSI dailies can be picked up as soon as you start the Macrobinocular/Seeker Droid quest lines. They combine the usage of seeker droid and macrobinoculars and create daily hubs in previously under populated planets. There are GSI daily terminals located on planets such as Alderaan, Hoth, Makeb, and Tatooine. Each planet has their own unique series of solo dailies and [Heroic 2]s.

Reputation Vendors

There are two new reputation vendors introduced with Makeb. One is the Makeb Imperial Forces/Citizens of Makeb and the other is the Galactic Solutions Industries (GSI)

Galactic Solutions Industries

GSI reputation is earned by doing the GSI daily and weekly. The items sold by the vendor is already covered on this page so I won’t go too much into it here.

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Makeb Imperial Forces/Citizens of Makeb

This reputation is earn primarily by doing the dailies and weekly on Makeb.The vendor offer two sets of armor (bind on legacy) for credits and L53 purple weapons for basic commendations.The two sets of armor are different on the Republic and Empire side (even called differently) and their appearance don’t change when you mail them over. If you have characters on both factions, you are essentially getting four sets of vanity armor to boot.

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Republic vendor sets

  • Republic Protector (Friend Standing) – Left Picture
  • Confiscated Mercenary (Champion standing) – Right Picture

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Empire vendor sets

  • Core Miner(Friend Standing) – Left Picture
  • Makeb Assault (Champion standing) – Right Picture

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Guides

I will be providing guides for Makeb, Macrobinocular, and Seeker Droid missions. Some of it already written but they are not too useful at the moment as you don’t have access to the content to use them anyways. Nonetheless, you can see them here if you wish to know what to expect.

  • http://twitter.com/themetal Dave Scott

    Players can expect female to female flirt options on the Republic side and male to male flirt options on the Empire side.

    Really?! They finally add SGR and we’re limited depending on faction?! Unbelievable.

    Also, sad the the Empire Friend armor is just a re-color of the CRC Rep set. However, the Champion set is really sweet. I think I know what my Bounty Hunter will be wearing (minus the helmet).

    • Wayne W.

      yes something reps get better then imps

      • Nihgmtare70

        Hey, the imps always have much better abilities, stuff, legacy unlocks, etc.

  • Dustin Keller

    i hope they fix that core miners helmet

    • http://www.cswainart.com/ lavosslayer

      they should fix that entire outfit…even the chest piece looks completely ridiculous with that horizontal tank behind the head…

  • Shay

    So no male/male if you’re a Republic player?
    And vice versa for female/female Imperial?

    • http://dulfy.net/ Dulfy

      I can confirm no female/female for empire but I havn’t played a male republic toon to confirm/deny male/male stuff in republic. I am guessing no though.

      • Shay

        That’s pretty disappointing then. I sense fan outrage incoming :S
        Thanks for sharing the info though Dulfy :)

      • Okamakiri

        It doesn’t affect me either way, but that’s a very strange decision… Sounds like cost cutting…

      • ashlaboga

        I don’t have a high level FEMALE republic toon….

        Meh, I’ll just watch Dulfy’s guides for the lesbian romances.

        Post those when you can m’lady.

      • PurplePeople

        My chick BH got to flirt with a very attractive lady sith in one of the thingy-chains (can’t recall if it was macrobinoculars or seeker droid). It wasn’t on Makeb but it was definitely same gender.

  • Bleeters

    *Looks at Republic reputation outfits*

    …Is that a BERET? D: D: D: D:

    • http://dulfy.net/ Dulfy

      Indeed, some clipping issues with hair like all other helmets though. Hopefully they fix it before launch

      • Bleeters

        Hopefully :(

        I might’ve missed this, and I apologise if I have, but what level requirement do these reputation outfits have? Are they wearable at level 1 like the current stuff?

        • Avé

          I would really like to know this as well :)

    • Tufas

      loved the Beret!!!!

  • lazer

    When did this whole hair clipping with headgear thing come about?

    • Keltross

      Oh, that’s been a ‘feature’ since day 1.

  • Lenius @ToFN

    Awesome, just awesome. Where’d you get that information though. Makeb wasn’t on the PTS…

    • azhure

      there were some people who were in a closed beta of makeb, I think the NDA just expired.

      • Lenius @ToFN

        Aah, right. I remember reading something about a closed beta.

  • Yazka

    Amazing work as usual Dulfy, thank you! There’s a reason why you are our go-to girl for anything swtor related.

  • Selden

    Ahhh guys.

    Thanks Dulfy C:

    And thanks BIOWARE. You make a great Expansion in my opinion :333

  • kgrey38

    “Players can expect female to female flirt options on the Republic side and male to male flirt options on the Empire side.”
    …WHAT?

    As a longtime player of MMOs I can understand and sympathize with issues of limited resources, limited time, the left hand not knowing what the right hand is doing or even going against what the right hand is doing, etc.

    But this is ridiculous. This is insult upon insult upon insult upon injury.

    First, they design the game with no same-gender romance options whatsoever.
    Then, over a year after release, they’re finally implementing some same-gender romance. But this is limited in all of the following ways:
    1. It’s all behind a paywall.
    2. It only affects new, planet-bound NPCs, not proper companions preexisting or new.
    3. Lesbians for the Republic, gays for the Empire. What the actual f***? Is there some heterosexual male homophobic decision-maker somewhere in SWTOR’s development team who decided male homosexuality should be an Empire thing because they think it’s evil and female homosexuality should be a Republic thing because they think it’s hot?

    • Tyler Stewart

      1. its 10$ not a huge deal.

      2. You find a way to make companions have SGR, its not that easy, they would have to rewrite all of the story, and it wouldn’t make sense, suddenly Kira is a lesbian? No, its the fact that they can’t insert SGR in companions without HUGE plots holes/ obviously “Lets just put SGR in here, we dont have to change any thing!” Besides, they will have SGR with new companions, they already confirmed it.

      3.Yeah, i get that some will be upset with this. This was a weird choice. Probably because of how the stories play out on each side.

      • kgrey38

        1. True, but the principle is what’s at issue.
        2. There are plenty of existing companions that would make sense as bisexual, and I don’t see how making that kind of change would create plot holes.

        • Zeit

          I coulda sworn Kaliyo (first agent companion) was female. I believe she mentioned at shacking up with/having a girlfriend a few times. A big part of Kaliyo is that she’s a Pathological liar, however- it could just be her talking shit.

          • Zeit

            Grrrr… Kaliyo was bisexual*

      • Mattias Berntson

        “suddenly Kira is a lesbian?”

        No, on your pre-existing playthroughs Kira would likely still be straight. On freshly created characters, Kira could be straight, gay or bi… depending on how the player chooses to direct and interpret the story. Plot holes are a non-issue.

        Also, new companion romances are far from confirmed. Companion romances are what BioWare made us think they were working on with Makeb a year ago, and now they’ve only promised that there will be further (and more fair) content at some point in the future.

    • http://twitter.com/Drogyn1701 Drogyn

      It’s gotta make sense for whatever character and story the put the SGR options on. You’d prefer they just throw it in for the sake of throwing it in?

      • kgrey38

        You expect me to believe that all the bisexual and lesbian females on Makeb just happened to be Republic and all the bisexual and gay males just happened to be Empire?

        • http://twitter.com/Drogyn1701 Drogyn

          On this planet in this story for these character, yes. In other stories on other planets and other characters they might be the other way around or not there at all.

    • certz

      1. I think you should have stuck your first comment here, which was “First, they design the game with no SGR…” Your comment about pay, though, is a little narrow-sighted and I think based on the SGR comment versus how any expansion is doled out. It is an expansion that BW put a lot of effort and resources into and, of course, we are going to have to pay for it. Just because it contains SGR has no basis on whether or not we should pay for an expansion. Again, if SGR had been in from the beginning then you probably would not have made that comment.
      2. I would agree that I think they should have added a new companion that has a story that contains options for SGR. I also agree with another post that trying to add SGR to existing companions would be difficult and very time consuming at best. Back to statement #1, it should have been in from the beginning,
      3. This is the one that shocks me and I had the same reaction as you – female on female = good, male on male = evil. I am not sure who at BW thought about this but what a monumental blunder.

  • manco-capac

    Dulfy, is your Sorcerer in a relationship with Andronikos ? If so, that might explain the lack of female/female flirts on the Empire. Hopefuly

    • Shay

      I hope you’re right, but then if that is the case that’s disappointing. My Knight is married to Doc (purely because there were no other romance options and I wanted to see how it went) but I’d rather be able to pursue the new flirt options.

      • Barry

        Musco confirmed on forums that it is gay imps and lezy reps.

  • Sanlors

    Dulfy, is the hunky Lord Cytharat the gay love interest for male Imperial players? :O

  • Joseph Varner

    Where is cutscene 9/9?

    • http://dulfy.net/ Dulfy

      still uploading

  • g

    Opinion: BioWare has the most unskilled designer for armor models.

  • Paweł Kasperek

    makeb assault armor is nice for those who want to feel like imperial stormtroopers…

  • Blackphoenix

    “Makeb, the newly introduced planet for Rise of the Hutt Cartel, is a large planet that is 3-4 times the size of traditional planets like Corellia.” I’m scared about the load times….

    • http://dulfy.net/ Dulfy

      Load times is pretty fast :)

  • http://twitter.com/tonatoprice Thomas Wittmann

    So I understand that macrobinoculars and seeker droids are 2 new “hk47 style” quest series, but what are the rewards for them, what’s the point in doing them ?

    • http://dulfy.net/ Dulfy

      Starting their quest open up a new set of dallies called GSI dallies which give you GSI rep and basic commendations. The quests in each “chain” also reward basic commendations. For the seeker droid mission, the last heroic mission give you a new chestpiece (bound to legacy) based on your choices. Finishing their entire chain reward you macrobinoculars and seeker droid as abilities you can use. Just stuff to do I guess. There are also mounts you can dig up, achievements you can get, and armor pieces etc.

  • lineinfantry

    yay! stormtrooper armor!

  • TW Cool

    I predict that the +10 endurance datacron will result in sweaty palms while I hope to not fall to my death…

    • http://dulfy.net/ Dulfy

      Hah yes, I got really nervous doing that datacron run. It is a long trek back if you fall nd there are so many places where an extra keypress can result in your death.

  • Apatheist

    “Most players will be L53-54 after finishing the main story. This can be a bit problematic as you will at times fighting mobs that are 2-3 levels above you. Usage of experience boosts is strongly recommended.”

    Did most players become lvl 53-54 with using experience boosts or without using them? Because a 25% boost would basically mean you could very close to lvl 55 if you could get to 54 without them.

    • http://dulfy.net/ Dulfy

      character with no xp boost: 53.5 at end of storyline. character with xp boost: about 54.25

      • Apatheist

        Thanks

  • BrianDavion

    I think the night before makeb hits I’m gonna do each of the dalies and hold off turning them in until patch day, get some decent XP that way

    • TW Cool

      I was wondering if we could do that. Sounds like a good idea to try out at least.

      • http://dulfy.net/ Dulfy

        Don’t see why not

  • marco

    Hey dulfy, thanks for the great coverage and the huge amount of information!

    Although the seeker droid stuff seems to be completely copied from WoW’s archaeology I’m really looking foward to trying it myself, maybe because I also liked archaeology in WoW ;)

    Could you estimate how much time it takes to do all the new dailies? I read the guides you provieded to get an idea of the scope, but I found it hard to get an impression of the amount of time these dailies take. I’m just interested if these dailies are so short that one can do them in a row or if one would have to decide which dailies to do. Based on what I’ve read I fear that traveling around between the planets will be the most time-consuming part of the new dailies, but I would like to know if you could estimate how long it would take to do all dailies in a row.

    Thanks in advance!

    • http://dulfy.net/ Dulfy

      GSI daily, prepare to spend ~1 hr per planet. That is about 4 planets so 4 hrs. Then there is a bunch of Makeb dallies, so that is gonna take you like 1-2 hrs. so about 6 hrs on just dallies I would guess. Eventually you can probably do everything super quick and cut down to 4-5 hrs?

      • marco

        thanks for your quick reply!
        seems like I’ll have to decide which ones to do, 4-6 hours is defninitely more time than I can and want to spent every day. ;) But all the better, so the new content will finally last for more than a few weeks :) thanks again for your estimate!

  • stpfp

    In which sector is Makeb? Many people ask… :)

    • http://dulfy.net/ Dulfy

      Hutt space

  • delete

    Where does the quest line begin? Fleet?

    • http://dulfy.net/ Dulfy

      In your ship’s holoterminal

  • me

    any news about rising cap of 25 active quests in game?

    • http://dulfy.net/ Dulfy

      Don’t think so, quest cap was still 25 in beta

  • Nicholas Marsh

    will makeb be in the game update 2.0?

    • http://dulfy.net/ Dulfy

      Yes

  • Forb

    Odd question: How much do the speeder points cost? Give how many of them there are it could add up.

  • Selden

    So we can only use Seeker Droid in special area?
    Or we can find that on another planet? For example on Tython?

    • http://dulfy.net/ Dulfy

      Alot of planets have designated areas for use seeker droids that can potentially yield rare components. Not sure about Tython specifically though

  • http://twitter.com/tonatoprice Thomas Wittmann

    Hi Dulfy,

    Do you know if all old quests of the chars will be erased when 2.0 is live, or can we save up 1 week of dailies and give them back when 2.0 is live ?

    • http://dulfy.net/ Dulfy

      Pretty sure you can store up on dallies and turn them in

  • Trigon

    Since when does Republic = good and Imperial = evil?? What then is the purpose of light side and dark side points? If you look everywhere for homophobia you’re sure to find it everywhere.

    • Joseph Fibonacci

      May 25, 1977 ;)

  • ex-player-whoalreadypaidMakeb

    Even more Puzzles and Jumping? How do I get my money back?

  • Jacob

    Dulfy, is getting to lvl 54.25 with xp boosts just main quests, where binoculars and other dailies get you to lvl 55? Or is that included and I should just store up dailies? (Which a guild mate said would be about 650k xp.)

    • http://dulfy.net/ Dulfy

      I got to 54.25 with main quest and some Makeb dallies using XP boost. There are plenty of other quests to bring you up to 55 though.

  • DarthGummiBear

    If they were going to do sgr in such a half-assed fashion, they shouldn’t have bothered.

  • Jennifer

    Is there a specific level a character has to be before they can get the Macrobinoculars and Seeker Droids?

    • http://dulfy.net/ Dulfy

      52 or 53

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