The Old Republic beginner's guide

Rich McCormick at

Spend enough time with one companion and love may blossom.

  • 26 Your companion’s approval rating changes based on your decisions in conversations. Low approval won’t cause them to leave, but you won’t get access to their missions. Gift vendors sell trinkets that can save failing relationships.
  • 27 If your companion tells you they want to talk, head to a bar or rest area. You can then talk to them like any other NPC.
  • 28 At the end of your starting planet, you’ll receive a very high-quality weapon with four upgrade slots. Hold on to it, and jam it full of upgrades.
  • 29 Your first contact with players from the other starting planet will be on your faction’s fleet station. Here you can choose an advanced class and pick your Crew Skills.
  • 30 Each class has two advanced classes, and they change the way you play. The Imperial Agent, for example, can be a long-range DPS sniper or stealthy operative with the option to heal.


Player choices will permanently open or close storylines and affect NPCs.

  • 31 You’ll pick up companions along the way, characters you can call on to help you out in fights, chat with on your ship, or get busy with once the day is done. Companions have their own abilities: Crew Skills.
  • 32 Crew Skills are divided into three categories: Gathering, Mission and Crafting. Gathering allows you to harvest resources; mission lets you send your companion off in pursuit of rarer items or dark and light side boosts; crafting lets you create weapons and armour.
  • 33 These categories are further split into subcategories. Crafting Skills include Armormech, Biochem, and Cybertech; Mission skills include Diplomacy and Treasure Hunting. Each skill ties into another: Diplomacy rewards can be used for crafting Synthweaved items.
  • 34 From the fleet station, you can either travel direct to the capital planet or choose to do a Flashpoint: a faction-specific instance designed to be played in groups. These dungeons tell a selfcontained story, but can be repeated if you want to try a different approach or to score more loot.
  • 35 TOR has a greed/need system for loot snaffled during grouped play. It’s fine to take loot for your companion, but ask first: players always take priority.


Spending time with a single companion will help develop the story better.

  • 36 At the end of the first Flashpoint, you’ll have the choice to proceed to your faction’s capital planet or to return to the fleet. If you want to trade in your Flashpoint-specific commendations, go for the latter.
  • 37 The capital planet is where your personal story will really kick into gear, but pay attention: the circumstances affecting your whole faction will be described here, and will impact you and your allies later on.
  • 38 Some zones have world bosses: high-ranked enemies that can drop rare loot and commendations. Ask in general chat to see if any groups are forming to take them down – they’ll munch on your bones if you go up against them solo.
  • 39 You’ll get your very own ship at the end of the capital planet story arc. Inside you can craft, rest, and talk to your companions. Use the bridge console to travel between every planet in the game. Bring a friend back to your bedroom by grouping with them before entering your class-specific hangar.
  • 40 Your ship comes with a protocol droid. He’s useless in battle, but he can undertake missions and crafting on your behalf. Use him if you’re keen to free up your main companions for fights.


Some zones have world bosses: don't take them on alone.

  • 41 Space missions are accessed through the bridge. These are on-rails spaceflight sessions that net you XP and fleet commendations, used to buy ship upgrades. Daily missions compile several space missions into one, with greater rewards.
  • 42 key stat that affects their skills. Use the space bar to barrel roll during a dogfight, especially when flying into enemy gun batteries. Conserve your missiles for high-value targets and use blasters for everything else. Don’t get cocky, kid.
  • 43 Buy all of the ship upgrades available on your capital planet. You may have to hunt around for them, but the missile bay expansion is especially important.
  • 44 Warzones are TOR’s PVP battlegrounds. Queue using the icon on the bottom-right of the minimap. Once inside, your stats will be normalised, so the level isn’t important – but skills are, and the more advanced you are, the more you’ll have.
  • 45 Warzone commendations, earned through PVP can be traded for some powerful equipment at the fleet station. DPS characters in particular can benefit from these, and they’re some of the best-looking outfits in the game.


Space combat will be on a fixed course, like Starfox.

  • 46 Use the raid channel to co-ordinate your efforts with the rest of the team. TOR’s PVP is objective-based: make sure you know where you’re focusing your efforts and when to push.
  • 47 On Alderaan, you have to capture anti-ship gun batteries to take down an enemy cruiser. Agree with your team which of the guns you’re going to lock down and which you’re going to scrap over. Getting split up will see your flagship brought down before you can say “we can’t repel firepower of that magnitude!”.
  • 48 In one of the Warzones, Huttball, you’ll help your team deliver a ball into a scoring zone at the far end of the map. It’ll add a new ability, ‘pass’, to your action bar. Use it to throw the ball to a teammate when you get in trouble.
  • 49 The Voidstar Warzone has a long bridge with a drop on either side. It’s a bad idea to fight Force users here, as everyone enjoys punting foes into a ravine.
  • 50 Right-click your character portrait and activate your PVP flag in order to fight rival human faction members in normal levelling zones. On PVP servers, it’s always on.