After the disappointment of the last patch, I went into The Nathema Conspiracy with pretty low expectations. Thankfully, that allowed me to come away actually feeling pretty pleased, even though the story has its flaws.
The main problem is that the two big plot reveals/changes to come out of this are really easy to see coming (especially since one is spoiled by the rewards in the quest log) and feel like cop-outs.
But I will grant the writers’ choices aren’t entirely without merit. I went into the flashpoint full of fire and fury, but this turned out to be one of the only times in my entire history with the game I’ve genuinely regretted a dark side choice. I think that shows that the story had some real emotional weight to it.
As for the other Big News, it definitely feels, again, like a cop-out, but I can’t say I have a better idea for how to progress the story. They had kind of painted themselves into a corner. It reminds me of the ending to Dragon Soul, actually. Not an amazing ending, but perhaps the best they could have managed.
And those issues aside, Nathema Conspiracy felt like a much stronger patch than A Traitor Among the Chiss or Crisis on Umbara. It’s still a bit shallower than I’d like, but there’s definitely more and better story content here than in the earlier patches. Despite some rather thin development leading up to now, it did feel like a very epic and intense conclusion to this particular arc.
I was especially impressed by how much the graphical fidelity of this game continues to improve. There’s some beautiful lighting effects in the new environments.
I did enjoy the twist around Zildrog’s true identity, as well. That was one thing I didn’t see coming, but in retrospect, it makes perfect sense.
In terms of mechanics, it’s a standard SWTOR flashpoint. It’s too long, there’s way too much trash, and the bosses are HP sponges. But at least it’s not half as bad as Copero was.
In the end I think my favourite part of the patch may have been the quiet character moments with Lana at the end. I was definitely not expecting this to be a major patch as far as romance content goes, but I’m not complaining.
Honestly, at this point, I think Lana is the main thing that’s keeping me playing SWTOR. I don’t love the setting, and I’ve never much liked the gameplay, but as long as Lana’s there, I will be too. I’ve really come to enjoy her character.
I am having pangs of regret now that Vector’s back, though. I’m not sure I’ll ever have the courage to do his Alliance Alert. I don’t think I have it in me to break his heart like that.
Poor, poor Vector.
Lol, what is it with everyone complaining about SWTOR’s flashpoints being too long? Gameplay-wise they only take about 20-30 minutes a pop, though of course you can add additional time by admiring the scenery or wiping. What would you consider a good length for repeatable small group content?
Maybe they’re 20-30 minutes if you’re really geared and/or practiced, but for me they almost always take an hour at least. If they only took half an hour, I wouldn’t complain.
There are a few that are shorter — some of the Shadow of Revan ones are better paced — but those are definitely the exception.
Hm, are you always doing solo mode? I rarely do those but I do remember them being more tedious generally. With a full group it’s much quicker though. I did a whole levelling series about taking a new character to 70 through the random group finder, and with minimal editing most of the episodes were between 20-30 minutes.
I do mostly do solo mode, but I’ve done some flashpoints with randoms, too, and those are usually just as lengthy.