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"Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it, or so they say." 

Ten years ago, most of you would have participated in making history for Star Wars-related role-playing games. With thanks to BioWare, a game developing company which focuses on story-and-character rich role-playing games, we were privileged in experiencing one of the most momentous Star Wars games created to date: Knights of the Old Republic

KOTOR told the story of Revan and Bastila—two Jedi in the struggle between good and evil—through cinematic gaming. For the first time in Star Wars gaming history, we were able to immerse ourselves into a story of a man becoming a born-again Jedi through the game's hero, Revan, where we took command of our own ship and visited a number of different worlds, all of which were full of life and character. 

James Ohlen, Studio Creative Director at BioWare, explains accurately why KOTOR was such a success:

"There are many reasons why Knights of the Old Republic resonated so much with fans. But a simple one was the fact that the Star Wars IP is a natural fit for RPGs. Since the first movie was released in 1977, fans have wanted to live in that universe."

It is no surprise that KOTOR formed the basis and foreground of today's Star Wars role-playing game, Star Wars: The Old Republic. See what James Ohlen had to say about the connection between KOTOR and SWTOR in his blog entry
Baskerville Best reveal of a surprise/character yet. Can't think of many video games that have done a better job keeping the secret ...
Reka / Nalda KOTOR was one of the best computer RPG games I have ever played. Despite the years that have passed since the publishing ...

This week we will be discussing the uplands and savannas of the wild homeworld of your favorite resident-SWTOR sentient felines in Cultural Reference: Cathar. We will also be looking at their colorful history, a couple of notable Cathar, and the devastating Mandalorian Wars. Much like their feline "cousins," of lions, cheetahs, and other African wild-cats, the Cathar homeworld is as ferocious as their history. So come on in, put your feet up, and join us with this week's entry.


Outer Rim, Quelli Sector, Cathar System
Temperate savannas, rough uplands
Rotation: 24hrs
Orbital: 259 local days
3 Seasons
28 days per month
3 Months per season
Moons: 1
Imports: Luxury goods, technology
Exports: Fabrics; Silks; Grains
Natives lived in ‘City Trees’
A clan claims several city trees into their own clan.

Game Update 2.1: Customisation is going to be jam-packed with player-character-tinkering goodies. BioWare recently announced that the cat-like species—the Cathar—which were introduced to the Star Wars universe in Knights of the Old Republic is making its way to The Old Republic in the next patch. To coincide with the Cathar purring their way into the game, players are going to finally be able to edit their characters with the Appearance Designer Kiosks and Armor Dye Modules. Have the developers finally heard our cries?

Lets be honest with one another though: no one really likes cats, do they? Dogs are the favourable choice. So where are the furry Bothans at? Or if you're like me and have an undying craving for the colour green and wavy tendrils, where are the Nautolans

Bothans may not be overtly present in The Old Republic, but there are countless other favoured species which have been established in the game but unavailable for player-character selection. Fine examples are the Nautolans (yep, I'm so totally biased towards them), Togruta, and even Wookiees. Because who wouldn't want to play a giant walking carpet, right?

In today's Force Reflection, let us know in the comments section which species you so lustfully desire to be added to the game as a playable species. 
Vón Selkath! Because they are just so friggin' awesome.... My nr 1 specie on my list. ...
Nebu'la This is a common question and we know there is only one answer.... UTINI!
Glzmo Wookiees, Aquatic Nautolans, Mon Calamari, Sullustans, Trandoshans, Selkath and more. How about Yoda's species? That wo ...

Remember Game Update 1.5? SWTOR went free-to-play, Section X was added, the Cartel Market was launched, BioWare made bank, and everyone was rushing to unlock the new HK-51 companion.

Anyone who has played Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic will instantly recognize these droids as a throwback to HK-47, one of the most memorable supporting characters in the game. If you installed the "Restored Content Mod" for Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic 2: The Sith Lords, you finally had the chance to destroy the factory churning out those pesky HK-50s that keep showing up to try and ruin your day throughout the course of the game.

But someone must have built another factory because it seems all the cool kids on the block now have their very own HK-51 to play with.

Statement: For this Force Reflection, I will request the following information. Query: Does your meatbag character possess their own HK unit? Query: If so, did they participate in the rush to acquire these units from Section X or did they use other means? Query: Which of HK-51's innumerable functions does your meatbag utilize most frequently? Query: If they have not taken possession of an HK unit, what is their reasoning for choosing less efficiency in liquidating organic troublemakers?

Shutting down...
Nebu'la Nebu'la enterprises now can supply reclaimed HK droids, in addition to their extensive Imperial and republic probes.
Rolan Storm Are you kidding? When my inquisitor learnt about capital ship crash nearby he immediately went to investigate. One thing ...
Reka / Nalda Nalda doesn't have any droids. If she finds any, she sells them in parts.

We all have enemies. Life would be kind of boring if it wasn't for a little unhealthy competition, right? Our enemies take the form of people who are awfully jealous of us but could never admit it. Because they're incapable of ever achieving your level of success or happiness, they try to lower you to their bottomless pit of self-loathing and disgust. Call is basic psychology. On the other hand, perhaps your enemy is someone who beats you at every turn, being one step ahead of you every time. Your enemies could be those close to you, without you even realising. In most cases, however, your enemies are pretty apparent, as they make your life a living hell. 

You'd have to be pretty clueless and ignorant not to spot the countless characters in Star Wars that have arch enemies. In Revenge of the Sith, Obi-Wan's best friend turned against him, and the two went from being soul mates to each other's nemesis in a heart beat. Rolling back the clock a few thousand years, Revan defeated his former partner-in-crime-turned-adversary in Knights of the Old Republic. As we move on a few hundred years to the era of The Old Republic, Satele Shan and Darth Malgus could be said to share a mutual distaste for one another. 

Today's Force Reflection is another character building exercise, something which we like to do often. It is no doubt that our characters would have enemies, whether it be someone from their past, or a current adversary who causes your character much grief. Let us know in the comments section who your character's greatest enemy is, whether it be an individual, an organisation, or an entire faction. We don't like to be haters here at SWTOR-RP, but lets be real: this is Star Wars, and as roleplayers, we thrive for conflict. 
@$ark Asark ends rivalries but if it's between Jedi and Sith, gotta flip a coin.... ...
The Thing Gra'hai doesn't have a real Arch Enemy yet. Keeping it that way as long as I can. ...
Reka / Nalda Darth Taeghen Ulkaen.

He is on every Star Wars: The Old Republic fanboi's (or fangurl's) most wanted list. He can not only silence a crowd with the wave of a Force-guided hand, but he can also goad the uproar of thousands. He is The Voice (V sign!) of BioWare. He is Lead Designer Daniel Erickson!

SWTOR-RP recently bombarded Daniel with some of roleplay's hottest topics. We discussed chat bubbles—for the... I've lost count—and why we're still left out in Hoth's blizzard-like cold; hood toggles and why implementing them is almost as difficult as rocket science; new player species; capital ships; plus more!

Continue reading below as Daniel Erickson and SWTOR-RP talk roleplay. 
Noxturna That is an awesome interview! It's too bad he isn't with Bioware anymore, as I really enjoyed what he offered to the gam ...
Necious Personally whilst togglable hoods would be great, I think there's more important RP mechanics that are missing. The abil ...
Eden Everest heh. You guys and your hood toggle.

Flip. Spin. Twirl. Sprint. Form IV: Ataru, "Way of the Hawk-Bat," or "The Aggression Form," relies heavily upon acrobatics and aggression. The name speaks for itself. Unlike Soresu, where the sole focus is on defence, this is its opposite. Ataru is one of the more aggressive forms where practitioners are always on the offensive, utilising Force-assisted spins, flips, and powerful strikes. It is most effective against single opponents. Attacks can soar in from any direction if the user of the form allows their body to open up to the Force, creating extra potency behind every move.

Unlike Soresu, where users of the defensive form can fight on for prolonged periods of time, practitioners of Ataru can tire quickly. Furthermore, unlike its defensive counterpart, Ataru does not perform well against blaster fire, especially when it pours in from multiple opponents. It is for this reason that users of the form must remain close to their opponents at all times, taking advantage of Force-induced speed, strength and acrobatics.

The opening stance for Ataru requires the user to hold the lightsaber with both hands to the side of the body [pictured above].

Practitioners of Ataru include Master Yoda who achieved a mastery of the form to the highest level. You can view his use of this form in this video [scroll through to 3:55]. You will notice the constant and speedy acrobatic movements of Yoda throughout the entire battle. He chose this form to compensate for his lack of height and reach. 

Another user of the form is Qui-Gon Jinn who fell to the blade of Darth Maul during the battle inside the Theed Palace core. The lack of room for movement, as well as Qui-Gon's age and demanding nature of Ataru on his body caused his downfall. Other users of the form include Vandar Tokare from the Knights of the Old Republic series, Zez-Kai Ell, Vrook Lamar, Kavar, Cay Qel-Droma, Kas'im, Cin Drallig, Quinlan Vos, Aayla Secura, and Ki-Adi-Mundi.
Takeshi Yamato "This is one of the deadliest Forms in existence, especially if one wields twin Lightsabers. Any Jedi or Sith who ...

Back when SWTOR-RP first launched, I was more of a front-line Reporter rather than a behind-the-scenes editor which I am now. During my time as one of SWTOR-RP's only Reporters, I wrote a number of editorials on lore surrounding The Old Republic and Star Wars. My first ever long-winded article was Form is of the Essence: an in-depth look at the different styles of lightsaber combat. After feeling somewhat nostalgic, Form is of the Essence has been reborn; it has been revamped, re-edited and re-collated into a number of parts for convenience. Read on as I take you through the forms of lightsaber combat that existed during the era of The Old Republic

Swing. Block. Spin. Parry. Counter-attack. Force leap over enemy. Swing. Block. Force push.

If you are of the dark side of the Force, perhaps some force lightning would be more fitting at the end of that combative combination. If you were a practitioner of a lightsaber form other than the acrobatic form of Ataru, then perhaps you would rather a more defensive style such as Soresu. 

During the period of the Old Republic, the time in which The Old Republic takes place, six forms of lightsaber combat existed, adopted by both the Jedi and the Sith. Each form specialises in different aspects of movement, ranging from the fundamentals of all forms and basic attacks, to lightsaber versus lightsaber focus, tight and defensive movements, and acrobatics. The Jedi and Sith decide which form to utilise for a number of reasons, ranging from personal preference, stature, emotion, and a form which will perform well against the current enemy of either side. 

Lightsaber forms are not simply a matter of choosing and practicing. Other forms of lightsaber combat were introduced over the thousands of years in which the Jedi and Sith existed. Some of these forms were merged, some were adopted by existing forms, and others became independent  Additionally, movements, or "Marks of Contact," form the basis of lightsaber combat and are utilised across the board.

The six forms of lightsaber combat which existed during The Old Republic are as follows:
Ganden a (( Juyo gets a mention in the final edition of this series. It's not in the list for a reason )) ...
Darnell ((Errr.. not to nitpick or anything but you are missing the seventh form: Juyo (the original style, not what Mace Windu ...

It's official: Game Update 1.5 is now live on the Public Test Server. There are three major updates being tested in this release, though the highlight is most definitely the ability to add HK-51 to your companions list. Fans—or fellow meatbags—will remember this outspoken assassin droid from the Knights of the Old Republic series. He is no stranger to the story from the era of The Old Republic. Question is, how will you incorporate this new addition to your fighting force in roleplay? Is it even possible to speak of him as one of your own? A sensitive subject, no doubt!

In addition to HK-51, a new daily hub is being added to Belsavis which has been dubbed Section X, and a Nightmare Mode for Explosive Conflict is now available to experience. Those of you that have copied over high level characters to the PTS will now be able to enjoy this high level content whilst it is in the testing phase. 

For more information, visit the official article from the team at BioWare, as well as the forum thread containing the release notes for Game Update 1.5

Feel free to discuss our earlier question of adding HK-51 to your roleplaying endeavours in the comments section below! 
Tenatren Is "HK-51" the model name, or the name of this specific droid?
Curtana I generally utilize droids. M1-X4 certainly. More anthropomorphic droids I'm not sure about.
Ganden a I know Glzmo. Not happy!

"The best thing about the future is that it comes one day at a time." 
 - Abraham Lincoln

The realm of Star Wars has expanded greatly over since the original trilogy. The Old Republic is a shining example of the many time periods that exist within the Star Wars mythos. Some are less than twenty years apart (the films for example) while others are separated by a few millenia. Time periods in Star Wars has become a great way to delineate between the many stories the universe has to offer, and like all things it provides the fans with something to compare and discuss. 

A hundred plus years after A New Hope, Cade Skywalker is born and is destined to save the universe from a great evil. Though the story sounds familiar, many of the subtle details and descriptions help to shape the Star Wars: Legacy comic book into a unique time period, with its own quirks and style. Thousands of years prior to that, a powerful dark lord threatened to crush both the Jedi and Republic, and one fledgling Jedi stood as the last hope for victory. Plot twists and details aside, the Knights of the Old Republic video game was Star Wars fans' first real glimpse at a galaxy far, far away from the Skywalker family. It gave fans a fresh new galaxy to explore and enjoy, with an interesting cast of races and creatures. 

The Star Wars universe has plenty of history for people to explore, but what time is your favorite? Is it because of the events, the characters, or something else entirely? How do you divide of the time periods? "Time" to let us know in the comments below!
Aphrodite - Anodyne Not counting the original trilogy.... Yuuzhan Vong Invasion to Fate of the Jedi era.
Varin Kell Yuuzhan Vong War! ... u mad bro?
Foxberry Old Republic and Before Old Republic, the Jed'aii Order times especially. ...
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