KotET Without Playing KotFE – You Can, but Should You?

SWTOR: KotET without playing KotFE - Can you - and should you?

When Arcann lies defeated, your destiny is to take the Eternal Throne. Any other path will lead only into Chaos.
– Darth Marr
You have two destinies Outlander. In one you defeat Arcann, claim the Eternal Throne and remake the galaxy. In the other you die alone, unmourned and forgotten.
– Valkorion

I recently wrote about some of my hopes for SWTOR Knights of the Eternal Throne (KotET). In it I spoke about choices really mattering as one example of what I want to see from the next sequel expansion after Fallen Empire. As a direct sequel, I am hoping that some decisions taken under KotFE have knock-on effects into KotET – as most decisions don’t seem to have mattered so far. So it was with some surprise when @Ethuiliel pointed me to a couple of forum posts where BioWare have said that players can jump straight into KotET without playing KotFE. What’s going on?

What Little We Know

As more details about Knights of the Eternal Throne are to be revealed early October, we’re still pretty much in the dark. However, the issue of running KotET without playing KotFE has arisen at least twice.

What we do know from these threads is pretty clear-cut.

  1. Yes you can jump straight into KotET without doing KotFE.
  2. If you do that, then your KotET experience will be ‘templated’ as there are no decisions to drawn on.
  3. BioWare highly recommend that you do KotFE before jumping into KotET. If you are not a subscriber and you purchased KotFE you will have access to KotET.
  4. Decisions taken in KotFE will have an impact on your KotET experience (allegedly).

KotET Without Playing KotFE Makes No Sense…to the gamer.

Although you could just jump into KotET this makes no sense for you as a gamer, nor as your character. I know those character I’ve taken through much of KotFE have developed a lot in the last year. Different allies have been recruited, their former identities questioned and your stance on Zakuul worked on. That won’t happen if you skip KotFE. As the Interlude screen on logon says you “will need to build your Alliance”, starting with few allies seems illogical.

Another reason it’s illogical as a gamer is because people often complain of waiting for more content (the “I have nothing to do” syndrome). In reality there is a lot of content in KotFE Chapters, recruitment missions, Alliance Crate Heroics and if you can manage them the Star Fortresses.

The only people I see benefitting from playing KotET without KotFE are: players who don’t want to run all KotFE Chapters yet again….and BioWare who will be able to have a group of people sat around waiting for the latest instalment to arrive. Call me cynical if you like!

Decisions you cannot control if you play KotET without KotFE

Here are a few of the decisions which I don’t believe we’ve seen real consequences of under Fallen Empire that you will have no control over if you skip is entirely.

  • Whether you Kneel to Valkorion and/or accept his power in the battles where you had that choice.
  • Whether you chose to Force Choke or threaten Tora in the Battle of Asylum (she “remembers your cruelty”)
  • Maybe even whether you chose to spare or kill Tanno Vik on Asylum.
  • How you finished Chapter 14 – Mandalore’s Revenge – what advice did you give Shae Vizla?
  • Any knock-on effects from killing or refusing potential alliance recruits (e.g. Broonmark, Xalek)
  • Whether you chose to attempt to shoot down Senya and Arcann or whether you let them go at the end of Battle of Odessen. (Which oddly was not a dark/light decision).
  • Whether you actually chose to Balance the Force during Visions in the Dark, or whether you just went for Satele Shan or Darth Marr’s influence. (This would have affected your weapon and buffs for your fight against Arcann, but this ought to have had a greater impact on your Alliance’s approach.)
  • How you chose to use the Alliance funds at the end of Profit and Plunder. (Give back to the people, keep it in the Alliance, gamble it).
  • How you chose to respond to Arcann destroying three populated planets during Anarchy in Paradise: You can choose to help the people of Zakuul, respond with Propaganda or send the Gravestone off to perform aggressive hit-and-run missions against the Eternal Empire.
  • How you responded to either Kaliyo or Jorgan if they disobeyed your command about the Hyperwave Relay Station (they “remember” your answer – if you let them live, of course).
  • The Gravestone – those that have narked Koth off during KotFE have told me he steals The Gravestone from the Alliance. If you don’t do KotFE you have no power to decide if you keep Koth and The Gravestone or not. I’m not sure I would want that decision taken from me, especially given the advantage of having The Gravestone when dealing with the Eternal Fleet.

I’m sure there are others. Although knock-on effects really haven’t been seen, these are still decisions you can take. Even if there are no decision-impacts, giving these choices over to BioWare will leave you not really understanding your character well enough when starting KotET, at least from my point of view.

NPCs Input in KotFE Is Already Invalid

As a side note, the quotes at the start of this post have already proven to be wrong. Both Darth Marr and Valkorion said you should take the Throne after defeating Arcann. Not that we had that choice of course. Even shooting Senya and Arcann down wasn’t really a decision, the same with killing Arcann. Maybe Darth Marr will be correct – if anyone is likely to be a chaotic ruler, Vaylin would fit that bill. But Valkorion was incorrect – there are more than two destinies for The Outlander.

TL;DR KotET without playing KotFE?

While you can, I tend to agree that you shouldn’t play KotET without KotFE. I may do it on one character to see what the ‘templating’ looks like. From my perspective however, it makes no sense to give players the option. It may work for SWTOR’s business model but it’s nonsensical as a gamer, or even as a character within the galaxy.

What do you think – Is this a good idea BioWare have made? Have I missed some key decisions that haven’t had obvious consequences yet? I’d love your input! Is it a good idea to start KotET without playing KotFE?


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Fibro Jedi

A 30-something Shadow Jedi, married and have a small daughter. By that I mean "young", not just "short". I have a chronic pain condition called Fibromyalgia andI play LOTRO, SWTOR and FFXIV and blog about two of them. Social Media has connected me with so many people and some of those have become amazing friends too! As a hobby I am relearning drawing, which you can see on my DeviantArt profile.

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ethuiliel
ethuiliel
26th September 2016 9:43 am

Very nice summary of why their decision to do this might be a bad idea. I don’t know, for me it’s very anticlimatic at best and very disruptive at worst. KOTFE itself is already a weird experience on a character that was created during vanilla times, so I’m pretty sure I’ll never just start KOTET with one that hasn’t done KOTFE first.

Joseph Brown
Joseph Brown
26th September 2016 3:14 pm

As I was trying to say on twitter we soon find out. I played 1-16 on both light side and dark side 4 may be more by time part 2 go’s live. Spoiler inc. companion’s how and who is in main story line. Koth and Senya and yes so far as we know SCORPIO had already stabbed us in the back out of those 3 Koth is the only one who out of the 3 LS has and ds lost all 3 and the Gravestone. So at some point Ds well have to get her back. So Bio ware going… Read more »