My first impressions of the new expansion Legacy of the Sith for Star Wars: The Old Republic. No story spoilers from me. My favourite part has to be the ability trees for the Combat styles. You get to pick and choose between some cool abilities, and can design your own builds, depending if you want, such as single target, AOE, burst, or sustained damage. You can customise your builds and save them as loadouts, which you can switch between out of combat. So when fighting trash mobs, you may go down the AOE or burst path to clear them away more quickly. For a boss, you might pick a sustained single target build that will do more damage over a longer fight. And To be honest, I didn't miss any of the pruned abilities.
Testing Deception and Hatred on my Sith Assassin, out of the two, Hatred was a monster! That's what I thought until I tried out Vengeance on my Sith Juggernaut, and realised that the AOE potential is in credible and in the next league. In theory Hatred could pull better numbers thanks to infinite DOT spread capability, but Vengeance eats mobs with its new ability tree choices. One thing I like was the ability Shattering Burst, which causes enemies who die from your DOTs to explode and damage nearby enemies. It's great fun watching them all fall like dominos.
Okay, what was bad about the expansion? The problem with BioWare is that the stories are much shorter than they use to be. The new story was longer than a KOTFE chapter, mainly because there is a lot of running around, cut scenes, and a wall of mobs with healers to fight. Yes, after the grind fest of Spirit of Vengeance, where you had a wall of strong and elite mobs backed by healers, the developers obviously felt the need to pad everything out with mobs backed by healers yet again. It gets rather boring after a while, because the way gear stats work now, everything takes longer to kill. Yawn.
Okay, moving onto the new Flash Point. Let's put some of the bugs aside, because I've encountered quite a few in the story part and in the Flash Point that either required me to either kill my toon or port them back to my Stronghold before continuing, the Flash Point itself is sort of okay. It's a little tedious, with a lot of running back and forth in the same zones, plus a section with constant AOE attacks on a narrow stair case whilst being attacked by groups of mobs. Plus if you are stealth toon that relies on stealth to say backstab, just forget it. Mobs detect you and spawn on you at their leisure. At least this time there wasn't packs of strong and elite mobs backed by two healers, which is a relief.
My overall thought is the developers have made it tedious on purpose, to slow you down. But they didn't have to in the new Flash Point, because the zones are pretty large as it is, and most of the time you're simply walking though areas with mobs scattered rather thinly. The boss fights themselves are pretty straightforward, even the second one with its multiple adds, various traps, and AOE attacks. Although I did pop Heroic Moment at one point during this fight, mainly because my companion was about to die. (Please don't stand in the stupid red shit, thank you). The the final boss was easier than I expected, and a little anti-climatic. I was expecting <REDACTED> to put up more of a fight.
My final thought on the story portion and Flash Point for this early update in this expansion. If you're playing a tank or healer, just forget it. It will take you forever to grind through the waves of mobs. One part even has you killing mobs going in, and then you find yourself killing more mobs on the way out along the same route. My advice to players with tank and healer toons is for you to switch to a DPS build just to do the story. As a stealth toon, you will be able to skip some of the mobs, but some bonus objectives is pretty much kill everything in your path, and it gets rather boring after a while.