The Old Republic is, as everyone knows, an MMO by Bioware. I will be aiming to review, explore and comment on some areas of this game.

The Planets:

Like all MMOs, TOR has stages which players move between depending on level. As there are two distinct factions there are a lot of planets, some shared, some unique. Only the major planets will be listed, and only the ones I’ve experienced. I will be assessing them on two things:
Design, look and originality ?/5
Storyline and subquests ?/5
For story I am only covering the faction stories, not the class ones as I can’t judge them all yet.

Planet: Korriban (Sith Warrior/Inquisitor 1-10)
Design: 4/5. Korriban’s Valley of the Dark Lords undergoes another makeover. The planet itself is distinctive, with red terrain, the Sith Academy and Dark Council chambers.
Story: 3/5. The quests are of a fairly standard nature for Sith. There’s a slave rebellion, a common theme for the Sith planets, and some nice tomb raiding. The standard mobs are pretty unconvincing though.

Planet: Hutta (Imperial Agent/Bounty Hunter 1-10)
Design: 1/5. Hutta looks like it’s supposed to; a poisonous, muddy wasteland. Unfortunately it’d also the worst designed and worst looking planet in the game.
Story: 2/5. The story of competing Hutts is fine, but the other enemies are not very convincing. Overall probably the worst planet in TOR.

Planet: Tython (Jedi Knight/Consular 1-10)
Design: 5/5. Probably TOR’s best nature planet, it suits the Jedi perfectly. The design of the Jedi Temple is very nice, a pleasant contrast and mirror of the Sith Academy on Korriban. The ancient ruins are very nice as well.
Story: 3/5. The emphasis on ancient droids and Flesh Raiders means the mobs lack much flavour or interest.

Planet: Ord Mantell (Trooper/Smuggler 1-10)
Design: 3/5. As a planet at war Ord Mantell is done nicely, with warzones, craters and bomb sites. The natural areas of the planet are nice enough but rather generic.
Story: 4/5. Probably the most effective of the starting worlds, Ord Mantell is effective in portraying itself as a planet in a civil war.

Planet: Dromund Kaas (Imperial 10-16)
Design: 2/5. The design of the Citadel, Kaas City and the Dark Temple is effective. However, playing the spaceport so far from the city was a poor design choice, and the jungle looks quite generic otherwise.
Story: 3/5. The Imperials show an amazing inability to handle the simplest problems. Added to another slave revolt and some other rather contrived plots, the story for Dromund Kaas is only average.

Planet: Coruscant (Republic 10-16)
Design: 4/5. The design and imagery of the Senate Tower and other surface level areas is some of the best in the game. It looks magnificent. Unfortunately the main areas of exploration and combat are confused and generic streets or underground areas.
Story: 4/5. The revolutionary and droid enemies are quite generic, though the Justicars are a more interesting take on it. The Gree quests to restore power and services is also quite entertaining.

Planet: Taris (Republic 16-20, Imperial 32-36)
Design: 3/5. Even though it looks nothing like I expected it should, and there are some oddities like the Endar Spire being intact, Taris was decently portrayed. The shattered city in ruins is effective, though it can be hard to navigate at times.
Story: 4/5. Restoring or crushing Taris and fighting the Rakhghouls makes for a fun change. Nods to KOTOR 1 such as the promised land are also nice.

Planet: Balmorra (Imperial 16-20, Rebel 32-36)
Design: 5/5.By far the best planet showing a warzone. Balmorra looks and feels like it’s under enemy occupation. The areas flow well together and there are some strikingly effective areas such as the Arms Factory, the clifftop elevators and Bugtown.
Story: 5/5. One of the few times in TOR where the faction story flows naturally along from point to point. One really gets the feeling that they are taking part in a real campaign. The final assault on the Arms Factory is also spectacular.

Planet: Nar Shaddaa (Both 20-24)
Design: 2/5. Though the Promenade is nicely designed the rest of the moon is unduly dull. There’s very little to distinguish it from Coruscant or elsewhere. The Republic areas are especially dull.
Story: 2/5. The neutrality of the Hutts and the treaty makes for some mildly diverting spy games, but overall this is very dull.

Planet: Tatooine (Both 24-28)
Design: 5/5. Unexpectedly for a desert planet we’ve been to so many times, this is one of TOR’s triumphs. The desert landscape is beautifully rendered and the towns and farms likewise well-conceived. The planet is designed well too, and the wide open spaces are a nice change from the cluttered city scapes of the past.
Story: 4/5. The plot about uncovering the Czerka base and finding the horrific secret is extremely well done, though done better with the Empire than Republic. That final showdown is also extremely memorable.

Planet: Alderaan (Both 28-32)
Design: 5/5. Alderaan is beautiful, probably the best designed planet in TOR. The natural areas combined with the soaring buildings makes it extremely memorable.
Story: 5/5. The story of taking either House Organa or House Thul and putting your person on the throne is extremely ambitious but works really well. Overall Alderaan is probably my favourite planet.

Planet: Quesh (Both 36-38)
Design: 2/5. Quesh has the feel of a planet unfinished, or at the least the fact it’s half as long as the others shows. The muddy landscape and lack of defining features make it a grim place, but not a very nice looking one.
Story: 2/5. The plot of both sides is entirely one-dimensional. Whilst interesting it fails to hold the attention for long. Quesh was basically just not very interesting.

Planet: Hoth (Both 38-42)
Design: 4/5. Like Tatooine one would not have assumed there was much to show on an ice cube like Hoth, but the natural features make it distinctive. What’s more, the starship graveyard is of special note. However, it loses points for being extremely hard to see sometimes with all the bright white.
Story: 3/5. The Imperial story is stronger here, but the Republic is still adequate. As a series of slightly connected missions neither side gets a hugely coherent narrative.

Planet: Belsavis (Both 42-45)
Design: 5/5. As a giant prison, this planet is uniquely designed around cells and prison blocks. The Deep Prison is a rather surreal mix of alien and normal with rivers of lava mixing with snow and ice. Even if the other jungle is a little bland and the design of the planet can be difficult it’s still a pretty unique setup.
Story: 4/5. Although basic the story of escaping prisoners is entertaining enough. The later story about alien artefacts and deep prisons is quite interesting as well.

Planet: Voss (Both 44-47)
Design: 3/5. The autumn landscape and the very alien Voss structures are distinct, but overall rather bland.
Story: 4/5. The Voss are a group which have had some genuine thought put into them, and they come off as a real alien culture. With this in mind the efforts to woo them to one side or the other are quite interesting.

Planet: Corellia (Both 47-50)
Design: 4/5. The bombed out city, the rocket trams and the rubble form an impressive backdrop, but unfortunately the ruined city becomes a bit generic and boring after a while.
Story: 4/5. The only true time when Republic and Sith armies are fighting each other. The campaign progresses well and logically for both sides, culminating in your victory.