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SWTOR Developer Update Introduction to Galactic Strongholds

Bioware Lead Designer Jesse Sjy goes into detail on various aspects of Galactic Strongholds, including decoration placements and much more.

PREAMBLE

Have you ever dreamed of having a home in the Star Wars™ galaxy? I mean a real home – a place you can look forward to returning to after a long journey through the cold depths of space. A place that you can retreat to in times of darkness, to meditate on your next move or to plot your revenge. A place you can share with your closest friends or flaunt to your rivals. Above all, a place of power and significance that you can customize and call your own.

We share that dream, and we intend to make it a reality with our next free digital expansion: GALACTIC STRONGHOLDS.

INTRODUCTION TO STRONGHOLDS

As you reach level 15 and wrap up your mission on Coruscant or Dromund Kaas, it’s clear you have become an important player on the galactic stage – notable enough to attract powerful friends… and dangerous enemies. You need a fortified location to consolidate your power base – a platform from which to expand the influence of your legacy. What you need is a Stronghold – a customizable bastion of military might and personal luxury.

You will encounter a holo-projected advertisement on the Fleet (and on the capital worlds) which extolls the virtues of Stronghold ownership. This will begin an introductory mission which leads you to a Stronghold Directory, which is a terminal that allows you to view other players’ strongholds or purchase your own. For example, Coruscant Stronghold Directory is where you can purchase the Coruscant Apartment.

You can purchase a Stronghold with credits or Cartel Coins, and the Stronghold will be unlocked for your entire Legacy. For example, once you purchase the Coruscant Apartment, all of your Republic characters will have access to it. You can travel to and manage your Strongholds from the Stronghold Management window, which is a new tab in the main interface.

Each Stronghold has a unique floor plan which is composed of 8 to 12 rooms – for example: large living spaces, small rooms, a garage, a balcony, and so on. By purchasing a Stronghold, you will automatically have access to the first room. You can expand your Stronghold by clicking on locked doors, which will prompt you to unlock the attached room using credits or Cartel Coins.

UNLOCKING DECORATIONS

Completing the introductory mission will reward you with a small set of starter decorations for your Stronghold – a few simple chairs, tables, and a pair of Republic or Imperial Guards. Once you claim your mission rewards and unlock the items, you should have some basic decorations to work with.

Many more decorations will be available on existing vendors throughout the game, as new rewards for Reputations, PvP, Crew Skills, and more. Crafters of all levels will provide the components required to obtain these decorations. Decorations can also be obtained as loot drops from Flashpoints and Operations. Finally, a variety of unique decorations can be purchased with Cartel Coins on the Cartel Market.

Unlike other unlocks such as mounts and minipets, decorations are unlocked across your entire Legacy by default. Decorations also have an unlock count – so for example, if you want to place 4 chairs of the same type, you must have unlocked that chair 4 times.

DECORATING YOUR STRONGHOLD

Decorations can be placed by entering Edit Mode and selecting one of the many decoration hooks located throughout the Stronghold. This will open a list of all of the decorations you own that can fit into that hook, sorted by category. Once you’ve selected the decoration you want, you can click Place to put the decoration in the hook. This will pop up a few addition controls which allow you tonudge, rotate, and pick up the furniture.

The UI pictured above is not final. It is a placeholder for Alpha.

Hooks are defined primarily by surface type and size – for example, a medium floor hook fits any medium-sized furniture that belongs on the floor, such as tables, beds, shelves, computers, etc. Banners, placards, and structural pieces might fit into a medium wall hook.When you first enter your Stronghold, you should find a variety of hook options laid out in such a way that you can immediately start decorating in an intuitive way.

The UI pictured above is not final. It is a placeholder for Alpha.

If the placement of a hook is not to your liking, there’s a good chance you’ll have the choice to swap it out for a different layout of hooks. For example, a large wall hook can almost always be replaced with arrangements of smaller hooks. The combination of nudge/rotate controls and customizable hook layouts will provide a great deal of flexibility, while also ensuring that placing decorations is intuitive and fun for all players.

SHARING YOUR STRONGHOLD

Once you’ve decorated your Stronghold to your liking, you’ll probably want to share it with others. Fortunately, there are many ways to do this. You can send a temporary invitation to a player in much the same way that you might send a group invite, or you can send a more permanent invitation in the form of a key. Players with a key to your Stronghold can access it even when you’re not online, and if you decide to upgrade their key, they can also send invitations or kick players out.

If you’re quite proud of your Stronghold, you can share it with everyone by adding it to the Public Listing. Players of the appropriate faction will be able to enter your Stronghold by visiting the planet’s Stronghold Directory and finding you on the public listing tab. Strongholds are default sorted by their Prestige score.

Every unique decoration you unlock will increase your Legacy’s Prestige by 100, and subsequent unlocks of the same decoration will increase your Prestige by 2. Each of your Strongholds is scored by multiplying its completion percentage by your Legacy’s Prestige score. You can increase your Stronghold’s completion percentage by unlocking rooms and placing decorations. Strongholds that top the Public Listing will therefore be the ones that are the most ‘complete’ that are owned by players who have the largest variety of decorations.

LEGACY STORAGE

Legacy Storage is a new type of utility object similar to the Cargo Bay with one difference – the items stored in it are accessible to characters across your entire Legacy, even across factions. Legacy Storage is only available if your Legacy owns a Stronghold (you need somewhere to put all that stuff!).

To unlock access to Legacy Storage, you simply need to obtain the Legacy Storage utility decoration from a crafter or the Cartel Market and place it in your Stronghold.

MORE TO COME

Stay tuned for more details about crafting decorations, Guild Flagships, and more!

Jesse Sky
Lead Designer

Source: http://www.swtor.com/info/news/blog/20140702

By Dulfy

MMO guide writer and blogger. Currently playing and covering SWTOR, GW2, and TSW.

31 replies on “SWTOR Developer Update Introduction to Galactic Strongholds”

This is much better than I was hoping for, as far as freedom to decorate my stronghold, good job Bioware! I feel most people will be pleased with this. And as a Master Crafter, I’m looking forward to crafting the legacy

You hit the nail right on the head. Hopefully, there will be plenty of crafting recipies (some findable), so that crafters can make some cash outside of stims.

Yep, this is gonna be pretty great. Glad they’re revealing some of the details. Finally feel like it’s going to be worth the wait.

I’m personally a little disappointed. Still holding out hope that neighborhoods will be added and shown later, and that this won’t be a skill/item-use zone in only type of instance. I would also like to find out that they plan to allow customization of the home instead of just hanging or placing decorations everywhere; paints, wall textures, architecture, things of that nature. Even the sliding camera view showing three different homes just looks like three different areas showcased at an IKEA. Sure, I’d like my furniture to fit my home, but if it’s still in the same IKEA as everyone else, how unique is it really?
I’m glad others are excited, but I honestly have to ask, about what? I’ll admit I’m excited about the legacy storage, and having another place to go will be nice, but it seems to be falling well short of what it could be with their budget and resources. When I first heard the announcement for Galactic Strongholds, I was expecting something better, to be on par with their competition, not something that looks like it could of been released a decade ago(barring obvious graphical upgrades).
I also hope they’re planning some way to accommodate for different characters living in the same home, for RP purposes. Some sort of preset decoration group you could save for each of your alts would be a serious quality-of-life issue that would arise for anyone with many characters who wants a home unique to them.
So far I guess I just feel everything they’ve shown is nothing more glorified money-market bragging rights. If the homes aren’t going to have quality immersion or accommodate serious RP, and they’re just designed for people to show off how big their epeen is with “Prestige”, then it seems like a true waste. It will keep the people buying CCs though, I’m sure, at least for a couple of months until everyone is bored of cloned homes stuffed with every easily attainable decoration.

Sorry but the concept of neighborhoods is highly unlikely. I know SWG had them however SWG also had pretty subpair graphics and lag up the arse. The fact is coding so many structures and allowing so many players crammed together would likely lead to some serious issues, especially with lagtime. I could see something along that line happening down the line, maybe with guilds and guild-owned colony settlements on other worlds, but the strongholds as they are seem pretty impressive. I mean, looking at housing in other games, like WS, this seems far more expansive in terms of allowing the public to enter your stronghold, even if you’re offline. This is just the beginning, and it’s a damn good one imo. I know it won’t be for everyone, but it’s most definitely an amazing addition to the game, and no doubt it will be expanded upon in the future.

My experiences with housing are tied to FFXI and FFXIV, and so far, this seems to more closely resemble a FFXI Mog House(free “rented room” that you could decorate and invite people into) than FFXIV housing. And considering FFXI was released for PlayStation 2 in 2002, that really isn’t saying much about what they’re offering. I mean, yes, having people able to enter your home even if you’re offline seems like a good thing, it gives the home more feeling of reality and improves immersion, but the lack of neighborhoods(which FFXIV does have), seems to be a bit absurd; and it servers the exact same function. If an unpopular MMO from Japan can accomplish it, why can’t a subsidiary of the third-largest video game publisher in the world?
It looks pretty, sure, but the substance seems completely lacking. See those columns built into the walls all along the home, with the accent lighting? I hate the color yellow, can I make it purple? I hope so, because if BioWare is going to tell me that I can own a mansion on multiple worlds and defeat some of the strongest beings in the galaxy single-handed, but I can’t change a light bulb, I’m going to be -incredibly- disappointed.

This looks amazing, beats the hell out of Rift housing by far. I love that you can make your stronghold publicly accesible, I’m sure plenty of social/party guilds will be able to put that to good use! Overall, this is looking to be a fantastic expansion.

I haven’t played Rift before. Could you explain to me the differences, and why this version appears to be better?

With Rift you have a plot of land of varying sizes, the first being extremely small. You then construct the home from the ground up, spending tons of gold just to complete the shell. You can model it how you like but the overall cost is sometimes nonsense. Also, it is instanced like Strongholds, but only people in your party may enter it, so allowing the public to enter your stronghold is a big step-up in comparison in terms of social flexibility.

It seems like the only improvement there is allowing the public to enter. Everything else you just mentioned makes Rift some considerably better, so I don’t see why they didn’t take that core idea and expand it by increasing the social aspect?
We also don’t have all of the prices yet for SWTOR housing, but we do know already that a Nar Shadda sky palace with five rooms will cost 4,000,000 credits. Not sure how expensive that is in comparison to Rift, but most of my friends and guild members don’t even have half that much.

I have, and have plenty of credits, but thank you. I simply meant, if the reason this game’s housing function is better than Rift is due to cost, a comparative example of prices would have to be readily available. And given the little information we have, I already know many people who wouldn’t consider this game’s housing to be affordable.

Rifts Dimensions are actually open to all, you have to chose to make it open or not, I dont think my Dimension is open atm, mostly because i suck at housing lol.

Incorrect. Dimensions can be set to public, with dozens of people in it, without you even present.

Thank god we can slide/”nudge” things around!! I was SOOOOO worried that it would just be a “You can only place it the way we want you to” system.

Not gonna lie – I’m not excited about this. It seems to be a distraction and not really along the “story” stuff that they so religiously sold at the beginning of the game. Wasn’t our ship supposed to be our home? Where is Han Solo’s home? Luke? Leia? Boba Fett? The only characters that really had homes were Obiwan and Yoda… and they didn’t really want visitors. I like practical things like legacy storage and guild ships (assuming we get an extra summons-type ability with it). I guess my input would have been to enhance the “ship-is-your-home” idea and add ways to decorate it instead of some apartment on a world I never go to. Just my two credits.

Can’t do that, player ships have way too many story triggers in there. Adding customization could likely break them.

Yea I honestly would have liked something like a big yacht instead of a palace similar to G0-T0’s yacht from kotor 2, it had a docking hook for the ebon hawk too ..I guess this wouldn’t have been as exciting for people

I like this feature because even fluff content adds immersion in this universe. That said, I’m not sure how much time I will invest into it personally, but I hope everybody who wanted it enjoys it.

I’m very interested to find out if bound armor shells, bound operation unassembled armor drops, etc, can be shared in the legacy storage.

That right there would make it all worthwhile.

But, then again – This is EA/Bioware we are talking about.

Well.. they haven’t said no?
Seriously they still haven’t elaborated on legacy storage? -.-
And what’s with the ‘guild purchase’ thing?

Why would you be able to store character bound items in a bank accessible to multiple characters? As awesome as it would be, it doesn’t make much sense.

Don’t think so but it will save so much hassle to be able to just have the legacy gear in there and not having to mail it through and then mats. Having so many toons that share mats for different crafts really will make my life so much easier already.

So long as these Strongholds are not linked to Imp Fleet chat. I will be a happy bear!

Got a question gents, if you have an item that is 1/1 so you can only put 1 of those items in a strong house, if you already have that up in one stronghold, can it still be out up in another house. Or does it count as 1/1 for all strongholds or just 1/1 for each stronghold?

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