The Old Republic: Comics vs Era – SWBTF #47


The Old Republic, The Lost Suns, Threat of Peace, Blood of the Empire and more! All on the next Star Wars Beyond the Films. YOUR Star Wars discussion podcast! YOUR ticket to the EU!

This week true believers, Beyonders, Fanboys, Fangirls, respected aliens around the galaxy, The Defender of the EU; Mark Hurliman, and your EU Guru; Nathan P. Butler, sit down to discuss The Old Republic comic series. Strap in and tighten your crash webbing, Star Wars Beyond the Films is setting off on another rapid-fire trip into the galaxy far, far away!

Six new episodes of From the Star Wars Library have been released.

Mark talks about his latest studio developments and his potential video additions to the show.

The guys lay out the releasing of not only the comic story, but the game, and the novels and how they all tied into the era. Which leads Nathan into laying out the chronological issues that arose.

Like say Satele Shan’s mysterious ever-morphing look.

So much to discuss that these shownotes couldn’t contain all the epic Star Wars Expanded Universe action!

Star Wars Annihilation Contest continues!

Once again, your dynamic duo cover entirely too much Old Republic action in their ONE hour, but don’t worry, give it a go; you’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you might even get a little education on the EU while you’re at it. But no matter how you slice it and dice it, you’ll be having another adventure Beyond the Films. So sit back, hang on, enjoy the show, and may the Force be with you!


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  • Andy Ksiezopolski

    Hey guys!

    I love the podcast, you all do a bang up job and your knowledge of the EU is very impressive. I just started following you guys October 30th and I never knew there was an EU podcast. I wish I knew about this earlier. 😉

    Now, there seemed to be quite some frustration in pinning down The Old Republic in the timeline of Star Wars EU. As a faithful follower of many MMORPG’s I can tell you that this is part of the nature of the beast. From the ranting in the episode, you came across as not really understanding the unique nature of MMO’s and how a set timeline (even of a few years) can totally cripple the game from a story perspective. Let me explain (and I apologise for the essay):

    Standard media like movies, comic books, novels, or video games have a concise beginning, middle and end. This makes it very easy to drop it in a timeline: “Novel A, will happen between events x and y.”. This gives us an established amount of time for “Novel A” to occur in.

    However, the nature of the MMORPG’s and The Old Republic specifically is vastly different. Because the medium asks us to directly influence events and story, every players choice will be different and thus the outcome of events will be different. Not to spoil anything, but the fate of some major players in the Old Republic universe have a vastly different outcome depending on the class you play and the choices you make. That makes timelines absolutly hellish.

    You need to keep in mind that an MMORPG has a story that is ever expanding. The games and story will continuously grow, so dropping in a novel “After The Old Republic Game” really doesn’t work. When you write novel that occurs after the events in The Old Republic you would have to base that novel on the current state of the game, not events that may occur seven years from now. Heck, a major expansion for the game could jump events in the game by 5 years or so. You can have old advasaries die and new ones rise up before the game runs its course. That can totally screw up EU cannon.

    **** SPOILERS AHEAD ****

    For example:

    Let’s say there is a novel that occurs after The Old Republic runs its course, that was released a few weeks before launch. This creates hype for the release of the game, so from a business perspecive it makes sense. Well, in the novel they may talk about Darth Malgus, or he may even be a major character in the book, after all everyone and their mother was obsessed with Malgus before Old Republic came out. Now lets fast foward ten months or so, Star Wars: The Old Republic releases a new operation, and in playing it one specific event occurs: Darth Malgus dies. Your Old Republic novel that came out before launch that was supposed to occur after the game concludes is now crippled with major continuity errors.

    If this was a standard video game with a linear storyline, this type of continuity error wouldn’t occur. But because The Old Republic is ever shifting, this kind of thing can easily happen.

    **** END SPOILER ****

    I believe this was the reason that Bioware was very cagey on when the game takes place in the overall timeline. Pinning themselves down to a span of a few years is suicide from a story perspective, which is the one thing that all the hype and advertising for the game was focused on: story.

    I totally respect wanting to pin down when events occur in the timeline, and what nature those events may be, but with multiple possibilities happening simeotaniously, the only way to have ALL those events occur is multiple timelines.

    Of course that’s just my two cents, but I hope it gleams a little bit of understanding of the medium of MMO’s.