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April 19th, 2013, 17:43
I'm still playing SWTOR - and it occurred to me, that this is basically an hack & slay RPG.

Is this true for all MMORPGs out there ? Because this is only my second one.

SWTOR fulfills everything how I would define an hack & slay "Action-RPG" - which led me to a new kind of definition of this sub-genre.

My definition is relatively simple :

Short form :

It's the ratio social interaction vs. combat.

Long Form :

It's the ratio social interaction [normally with NPCs] vs. combat [normally with NPCs, too].

[Social interaction with PCs and combat with PCs would place any RPG automatically into the MMORPG sub-genre, or at least into MP-RPGs.]

Just look at it as a set of scales : The more it weighs towards one of both points, the more the game can be counted to one sub-genre or towards another.

What's this definition definitively lacking , is, that it doesn't contain RPG-sub-genres like an "Riddle-RPG", which dies not exist yet - expect for Puzzle Quest, in some sort. (Whereas I'd mean with "Riddle-RPG" a combination of an Adventure game like Indiana Joney And The Fate Of Atlantis [which are usually riddle-based] with the usual RPG thing/mechanivcs. You'd get experience points for solving a riddle, then.

Sacred 1 & Blizzard's D2 had very little social interaction. But on the other side their amount of combat is very strong.
The other extreme is The SIM's Medieval : Almost no combat (very little, in fact), but very strong social interaction.

Both represent the extreme points of the current scale of the RPG genre.
And both give out experience points for their actions, have an level-up, have perks and feats and skills and stats …

And in SWTOR, the amount of social interaction isn't that small, but it does has relatively few influence on the world, and on how NPCs react.

But, most importantly, social interaction in SWTOR isn't skill-based. There simply are no skills or feats for social interaction. And none for lore, for example, too.
The only skills and stats I see there are entirely combat-focused - either directly, or indirectly (healing).
Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction. (E.F.Schumacher, Economist, Source)
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