Patch 1.3 brings about the much anticipated group finder to Star Wars: The Old Republic. Players will no longer have to spam their way to victory in order to obtain a group and will be able to utilize this sleek new interface to automatically be matched up with their peers. The group finder is now on the PTS server and we’re here to bring you a preview of the new features.
The group finder allows you to queue up for flashpoints (both normal and hard modes), story mode operations, and planet wide questing within your level range. The main page allows you to choose your role and your destination. You can select either specific instances (skipping over the random reward bonus) or choose to take on all of them.
Once in the queue, you can relax, grab a bite to eat, and wait for the “queue to pop” at which point you’ll be teleported to your destination (if you so choose) and can bring justice to your enemies. At this point you can go and complete your instance and upon successful completion, you’ll be able to obtain your rewards (if eligible).
Another note, group finder groups are different than normal groups in that members have to be voted off the island instead of simply kicked. Rewards are also only available once per day.
The good news is that the group finder will make finding a group for content a complete and total breeze. No more begging for groups, no more trying to find healers and tanks for half an hour while your DPS decide that they left their oven on. That’s all gone, at least, that form of it.
The group finder will still need to find a healer and a tank for each group. Luckily, SWTOR is very forgiving when it comes to hybrids and produces a variety of advanced classes who can heal and tank as an offspec. Yet, without dual talents specialization, switching can be difficult and removing mods costly. Hopefully, instead of waiting inside of a group for half an hour, you won’t have to wait in queue that long.
Another issue is gearing, specializations, and talent. Not to start the whole “gear score” debate again, but random groups means random players, up to and including naked tanks who are spec’d for PvP. This creates sort of an issue where some players may think it’s smart to queue up as a tank, even if they’re DPS, to avoid a lengthy queue. However, since there will be no cross-server queuing, player reputations are up for grabs and other players can easily remember bad behavior, so it’s definitely something to keep in mind.
It is important to note that this feature will be launching without cross-server functionality. That means that players on your server will be the ones who will be joining you for the adventure. To this extent, queue times, other players, and reputation will all be affected by the random dungeon tool. It’s also important to note that one of the best things about the lack of cross-server functionality is that groups can continue long after the first random dungeon.
If your group works well together then it might be a good idea to add the players as friends and join up together at a later time to run flashpoints/operations as a group. At the end of the day, a random group finder is just that – a random group finder. It’s better to form your own groups with competent players than it is to try and risk your luck, however, it is much harder to put together a group then it is to join up with random players.
So it’s important to try and be friendly and make friends when the system launches and don’t burn too many bridges. The players you’re playing with are your “Allies” or the namesake for the patch. So be kind and rewind, and the rewards will come to you.
Well that’s our preview of the group finder. Are you excited or do you think this will ruin the community? Leave your comments in our comments section below.