bioware

BioWare Writer Talks Gay Romances and Sexual Diversity in Gaming

BioWare’s lead writer and developer for Mass Effect and Dragon Age, David Gaider, has decided to address the popular topic of sexual diversity in video games. Gaider is a 16-year veteran of the RPG studio and he recently wrote for Dragon Age: Inquisition. He began his interview by going over his reaction after he learned that BioWare’s 2005 RPG Jade Empire would allow gamers to have gay romances. “I remember hearing about when they made that decision to put it in and I was floored,” Gaider told Video Game Sophistry. “I mean, I’m gay myself, so I felt it kind of odd when I heard about it, how shocked I was because I just never thought that part of my life had a role to play in work. Like I said, it just wasn’t done. I didn’t even really consider the idea, so when they made that decision it was…

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BioWare celebrates its 20th anniversary

BioWare celebrated its 20th birthday on Friday. Many fans were thanked via Twitter but I think we should be thanking them for making some of the best RPG’s in history. Can you believe it’s already been twenty years since BioWare began? Time definitely does fly by and we are looking forward to more of their amazing talents in the Star Wars gaming realm. What are some of your favorite BioWare games and memories from playing them?

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IGN Slams the Haters

“Yes, there’s no space battles, no prequel content, and no single-player campaign, but we’re not worried yet.” Fans are pretty upset that IGN seems to be backing Star Wars Battlefront and they slam the haters in this video, giving their opinions and stating they they are not worried about the game. They read some “demands” from fans who are already expecting specific things from the game and complaining about things that have not happened yet. Of course, some fans don’t side with IGN on this one and claim that IGN is just being paid off by EA/DICE. Paid to have an opinion? Hmm… unheard of in journalism! *sarcasm* That said, it doesn’t mean they are paid fanboys. Maybe they just like the idea of the game. They do have some good points, even if you don’t agree with the overall positivity. For example, they talk about the difference in games…

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Harassment of SWTOR Developers

Stop. Just stop for a minute. We like to have fun here. Sometimes we even like to push the boundaries. We are not strangers to controversy. That said, I read something incredibly disturbing today and we need to take some time to discuss it. This isn’t something that is entirely new. It’s a topic we’ve talked about before. It’s related to another topic I’ve talked about on a gamer podcast in recent months: swatting. It’s something we (the SWTOR community) need to talk about. This post on the SWTOR forums talks about recent harassment of SWTOR developers: Hey folks, I feel the need to make this post after some things happened yesterday. Yesterday, John made some posts communicating our views, and looking for feedback, around the state of Sentinels and Marauders. We knew going in that some of what we were going to say might not be what players wanted…

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How BioWare Built Enough Content to Fill The Old Republic

We know it’s not easy creating and operating a massively multiplayer online game like SWTOR. That said, it can be equally as difficult to keep it filled with enough content on a regular basis so that players do not get bored. Have you ever wondered how BioWare built enough content to fill The Old Republic and how they continue to give us great content again and again. Some of you might remember back in 2011 when BioWare designer Georg Zoeller did a talk at GDC Online about Star Wars: The Old Republic and explained how spatial analysis can be used to support a rapid content iteration process during the late stages of MMO development. For those of you who heard the talk, he goes on to explain how BioWare’s homegrown ‘HoloProjector’ spatial visualization toolkit was used in the day to day development of the game. It also helped the BioWare devs with decision making, content validation and…

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New member of the Austin Community team: Nick Avola

Meet the newest member of the Bioware Austin Community team  Nick Avola. He’s Holding a Thermal Detonator! Hey all! I wanted to take a moment to introduce myself as the newest member of the Bioware Austin Community team. My name is Nick Avola, and I have the daunting (yet exciting) task of playing third fiddle on a team directly involved in all areas of our games – from player feedback, to design considerations, to promotions, to communications, you name it. Much of my time will be spent scouring the forums, blogisphere, and social media platforms to track community sentiment on a day-to-day basis. I’ll be consolidating your comments and concerns into detailed reports, which will be disseminated regularly amongst the Community, Development, Leadership, and other key teams here at BioWare Austin. The sooner your feedback reaches the eyes and ears of senior staffers, the more accurately and effectively we can respond…

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What’s Happening to the Women of BioWare Austin?

In the past month, we have seen an exodus of SWTOR staff from Bioware Austin, much like one we saw a couple years back. Of these were Courtney Woods from the community team and Hillary “Pokket” Nicole, the Community Coordinator. While specifics were not released, we are given the impression their contracts just ended and Bioware was not interested in renewing them. As a female gamer and someone who has worked within the industry for a number of years, it’s great to see other females taking a leadership role so I am sad to see them go. That said, it has many asking the question “Are there any females left out there at Bioware Austin?” and of course, there are. It would seem that SWTOR is getting rid of their community team once again (remember when this happened last time?) and the fact that Courtney and Hillary are female was…

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Veteran BioWare Writer Moves to Secret New Project

Mr. David Gaider, veteran KOTOR writer, has announced he is making a major change. A few days ago, he announced on Twitter that he is leaving Dragon Age and the team so that he can work on a secret game from BioWare. While it’s hard to leave Dragon Age behind, 10 years is a long time to work on any one project. I decided it was time for something new. — David Gaider (@davidgaider) March 3, 2015 Mr. Gaider worked on many different BioWare games including, Knights of the Old Republic and Star Wars the old Repubublic. He also worked on Dragoan age Origins, Dragon Age II, and Dragon Age: Inquisition , as well as older games like Neverwinter Nights. Because he stated that he cannot discuss the new game this suggests to us that it’s an unannounced title. BioWare is currently working on a new IP and this could a project…

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BioWare Co-Founder Greg Zeschuk Gets Back Into Games

After Dr. Greg Zeschuk, co-founder, retired from BioWare in 2012, he made a web series based on beer called The Beer Diaries. He has now decided to get back into the gaming world, but the return may not be what everyone was expecting. GamesIndustry International reported that Zeschuk has joined the Vancouver based Biba Ventures. This startup is working on making mobile augmented reality apps that will work with playground equipment. Biba announced their deal with a playground equipment company, PlayPower, and they are to construct a collection of Biba supported playgrounds. Mr. Zeschuk will be serving as chairman for Biba. “Biba’s mobile games designed for outdoor play are just a breath of fresh air,” Zeschuk said.  “PlayPower and Biba are creating a new category, an inventive way to blend our new media habits with the health benefits and joy of active outdoor play. I am inspired by the category…

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Bioware Canceled Shadow Realms to Focus on SWTOR

Shadow Realms Cancelled

Today, GameInformer reported that Shadow Realms, a 4v1 action RPG in development at BioWare Austin, has been canceled. Shortly after this new went out, BioWare Austin GM Jeff Hickman confirmed the news himself. “We’ve made the decision to not move forward with development of Shadow Realms,” wrote Hickman in a post on the official site. He went on to explain that “right now there are other projects for the team to work on within the BioWare studios for the coming year and beyond,” citing Star Wars: The Old Republic as the biggest focus, followed by Dragon Age: Inquisition, the next Mass Effect game, and “other new IP.”” This is unfortunate news for fans who were looking forward to the game and also some may find it disappointing to see so many potential games getting the axe before they ever get to production. The downside here also is that this was to be BioWare’s first original game…

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SWTOR Producer’s Road Map 2015

SWTOR’s Senior Producer Bruce Maclean has released the teams Producer’s Road Map for 2015. If you ahve been following our blog, there ain’t much new info, as most of this stuff, as it is basically just a write down of the letter that was read at the last Cantina Event with no new details or teasers. Most of the community that is concerned about future content probably already knew all this but I guess this makes it “official”… Producer’s Road Map 2015 Hi everyone! For many, the start of the year is a time for setting goals and planning for the future. This is something we have been focused on here at BioWare Austin. 2014 was an amazing year for the team. We delivered two expansions, an overhaul to the class system, and regular story updates through Flashpoints. I’m proud of what the team has accomplished, and we would not…

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Pokket to Leave BioWare

If you missed the SWTOR stream this week, you also missed the big news that Pokket (Hillary Nicole) will be leaving Bioware. Pokket joined Bioware Austin as their new Community Coordinator. Her job was to help maintain relationships with fan sites, guilds, streamers and more. She also worked to build community relations and any other aspect of the SWTOR community. She posted this image and message to her Instagram after the stream: “Had fun on the #SWTOR stream. Thanks for the carry, y’all. Sorry for the bittersweet news. In case you missed it, next week is my last week at Bioware. /pout I’ll still be going to PAX South, though, as myself ofc ^o^ :D” While she is not saying the reason for leaving Bioware at this time, it is speculated that she was brought on for a contract job and not full-time employment so it could just be that her contract has…

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The Five People You Meet In A Bioware Game

BioWare is known for their huge open-world games with to-die-for graphics, unique characters, and long stories. The bottom line is that you go on missions, long journeys, boss fights, and then you are able to return to your spaceship, castle, or camp to talk to your recruits and friends you made along the way. Keeping this in mind, here are the top five characters that best stand for what BioWare is and shows off their games the best. Bastila Bastila is a beautiful Jedi that and she makes video game relationships seem quite real, plucking your emotional heartstrings along the way. She is the perfect example of how video games can make you feel like you’re actually falling in love. I’m not here to state that Bastila was a particularly unique character. She was, and is, some moonlit, sultry-toned lady Jedi existing solely to pluck the heartstrings of young men slowly…

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BioWare’s Shadow Realms In Flux, Possibly Rebooted

Last year BioWare Austin had a surprise announcement about Shadow Realms but there is word that it may have some large changes, possibly being completely rebooted. The Austin branch of BioWare is famously known for making Star Wars: The Old Republic had originally announced the news of Shadow Realms to be an online 4 vs. 1 action style role playing game and it was to be released in the beginning of 2015. However, this is all changing. There are two different industry sources that are stating they heard Shadow Realms would be cancelled but another third source that is familiar with news about BioWare Austin, states that the game became overhauled in the later part of October. Now the latest plans for Shadow Realms is that it’s to be released in 2017 for the Xbox One, PC, and PS4. Shadow Realms, last year’s surprise announcement from BioWare Austin, is going…

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Training cost is a thing of the past in SWToR

Bioware’s community manager Eric Musco, posted a very interesting thread at the official forums today relating to training costs. Musco, responding to a number of fan threads requesting the removal of training costs from the game, decided to take action and bring forward the suggestion to developers for consideration. After discussing the matter internally, they decided to remove training costs all together! So,when you login next week you won’t be required to pay any credits for your training! Eric’s complete post follows below: Hey folks, Let’s talk a bit about training costs for your characters abilities. One thing has become clear from the player feedback in not only this thread, but since launch: players do not like training costs. It is a situation where every level you will see your hard earned credits go to a holographic Hutt doctor in order to make yourself a bit stronger. We have been talking about…

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Game Update 3.0: Shadow of Revan Early Access

The day we were waiting is finally here! “Shadow of Revan” is now available for download for anyone who purchased the expansion before November 2, 2014. The rest will have to wait until December 9 to get full access to Bioware’s latest expansion. Some highlights: All levels can now reach Level 60 New locations added – Yavin IV and Rishi Two new level 56-60 flashpoints Two new level 60 operations Dromund Kaas and Coruscant Strongholds can now be purchased for 3 credits! New class system (disciplines) Players can now send 6 Companions on Crafting Missions at level 56 (up from 5). …and much, much more! I have to admit that the list of changes is quite extensive and it does seem that Bioware took community’s feedback to heart. A lot of the features listed on their post are things that prominent members of the community have being asking for quite some time….

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Cartel Market Black Friday deals are now live!

During a recent livestream Bioware’s Community manager Eric Musco, mentioned that in-game Cartel Market store will be receiving some discounted deals due to Black Friday. While originally there were rumors that these deals will change from hour to hour, it doesn’t seem to be the case with the offers listed below. Other than Eric’s mention during the official livestream, we haven’t heard anything else from Bioware so there could be more coming our way (Cyber Monday is just around the corner after all). Currently the following deals are offered through the in-game store: Hypercrate: Freelancer’s Bounty Pack – 5500 CC – 28% OFF Hypercrate: Enforcer’s Contraband Pack – 5500 – 20% OFF Hypercrate: Blockade Runner’s Cartel pack – 5500 – 25% OFF Hypercrate: Gatekeeper’s Stronghold Pack – 2520 – 50% OFF Black and Black Dye Module – 1500 CC – 25% OFF White and White Dye Module – 750 CC –…

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SWToR Stats: 1 million active players, 57 million characters created and that’s just the beginning!

Bioware published a very nice infographic today providing random stats about the game and to thank SWTOR fans for their support. SWToR’s anniversary is approaching fast and the Austin-based developer is definitely increasing its community presence with frequent releases about Shadow of Revan and hopefully more reflections about the three years of the game’s existence.

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Patch 3.0 commendation conversion rates announced

Community manager Eric Musco posted today some additional information relating to how Patch 3.0 is going to affect commendations. In response to his post a number of different fansites have posted online commendation calculators where you can calculate how the changes are going to affect you. The changes in detail: Here goes everyone. Here is the information on the conversion rates around Basic Comms and what will happen when 3.0 launches. Just to reiterate for those unaware, here are the basic changes coming to Commendations: All PvE Commendations will become Basic Commendations in 3.0. The Commendation types “Classic” and “Planetary” are being removed from the game. The types “Elite” and “Ultimate” will remain but the current Comms you have will become Basic. Warzone and Ranked Warzone Commendations remain untouched. Here are the conversion rates for all Commendations. 2 Classic Commendations = 1 Basic Commendation 1 Basic Commendation = 1 Basic Commendation…

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Meta Preview: SWToR Shadow of Revan

With the imminent release of Shadow of Revan, Bioware’s PR department is working overtime. A number of different fansites were invited to take a look at SWToR’s upcoming expansion and write their thoughts about it. In addition, EA’s “The Beat” column also devoted a complete article on the upcoming expansion, along with well-established gaming sites that published their reviews. Below you will find links to all the before-mentioned articles Electronic Arts: Dig Into SWToR Shadow of Revan Gamefront: Shadow of Revan Puts The Old Republic’s Focus Squarely on Story IGN.com : Revan is out for blood in SWToR’s new expansion MMOBomb.com : Darth Times Ahead – our SWToR: Shadow of Revan Preview MMORPG.com: Star Wars: The Old Republic Previews: Shadow of Revan – A Look at Flashpoints ShackNews: The Old Republic – Shadow of Revan preview: sins of the past Swtorista: Shadow of Revan Developer Q&A Swtorista: Shadow of Revan Press Event Coverage at EA…

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