Star Wars: The Old Republic Eternity Vault raid showcased at Gamescom

EA's press conference at Gamescom just ended, where after announcing Warhammer Online: Wrath of Heroes, Dr. Ray Muzyka showed The Old Republic's first "operation" - or raid, clarity fans - the Eternity Vault. It was first announced at E3 with a snazzy trailer, but this was the world's first chance to see it being played.

The Eternity Vault is an eight or sixteen player mission on an ice planet "where an enemy older than both the Republic and the Empire has been contained." It's a prison, and it must hold some real bad people inside. How bad is up to the players, who can change the difficulty of the raid before they start.

The raid begins with the players on board a crashed ship, each using their own escape pod to launch to the planet's surface. The first thing they do when there? Kill a poor, defenceless Tauntaun. I really hope there's a mission where you have to huddle inside one for warmth.

The five minutes of play I saw only showed a little of the threat on the ground below, starting with turrets. I'm assuming those aren't the ancient enemy, but it was a good way to show off the way TOR's different character classes work together.

One "Juggernaut" went in ahead to draw fire, leaving the rest of the team clear to work on taking down the threat. There were two Bounty Hunter's hitting the turrets hard with laser fire and jetpack attacks, while a healer worked on healing the juggernaut from a distance.

Moving in from the cold, the team came up against a large, AT-AT like robot, who fired multiple rockets at the team. It was hella-explosive.

The presentation ended with a trailer showing little glimpses of later segments of the raid: droids, rancor beasts, and lava caves. Yes, the raid contains a slippy-slidey ice world and a lava section.