Star Wars: The Old Republic will expand end game, add "organic" PvP and same sex romance

In a " State of the Game " address, SW:TOR's Jeff Hickman outlined Bioware's plans for the new year. As well as teasing the upcoming 1.7 update - "look forward to some interesting changes to a special PvP area" - and the previously announced Rise of the Hutt Cartel expansion, he's addressed some of the pressing concerns of the community. That includes an increased focus on providing end game (or "elder") content, experiments with open world PvP and a reaffirming of the company's commitment to adding same sex romance.

For level 50 characters, Hickman assured that, "introducing new content and activities for the elder game is a top priority in the coming year," teasing new Operations, Flashpoints, difficulty modes and PvP areas. "Overall, we're aiming to introduce a more diverse array of activities – more stuff to do with your Companion, more challenges to tackle with groups, and more reasons for guilds to recruit."

Hickman admits that open world PvP isn't the best fit for the game - stating the team is more focused on providing new Warzones and Seasons. The team do have plans, with Hickman saying, "We will be experimenting with a different approach to Open World PvP, something that encourages organic PvP in contested areas in a new and interesting way." Despite this, he admits that these plans are taking a back seat to the more traditional PvP avenues.

Finally, Hickman apologised for the delay in getting same sex romance into the game, which was first announced as a post-launch feature. "I realize that we promised SGR [Same Gender Romance] to you guys and that many of you believed that this would be with a companion character. Unfortunately, this will take a lot more work than we realized at the time and it (like some other pieces of content we talked about earlier in the year) has been delayed as we focused on the changes required to take the game Free-to-Play. As we have said in the past, allowing same gender romance is something we are very supportive of."

"Secondly," he wrote, "I want to reveal today that we are adding SGR with some NPCs on Makeb and do intend on pursuing more SGR options in the future." Makeb is a new planet that will be added with the RotHC expansion, due in Spring.

Phil Savage

Phil has been writing for PC Gamer for nearly a decade, starting out as a freelance writer covering everything from free games to MMOs. He eventually joined full-time as a news writer, before moving to the magazine to review immersive sims, RPGs and Hitman games. Now he leads PC Gamer's UK team, but still sometimes finds the time to write about his ongoing obsessions with Destiny 2, GTA Online and Apex Legends. When he's not levelling up battle passes, he's checking out the latest tactics game or dipping back into Guild Wars 2. He's largely responsible for the whole Tub Geralt thing, but still isn't sorry.