Road Ahead: February 2023

CG_SBCrumb
685 posts EA Community Manager
Hi Holotable Heroes,

Welcome to the February 2023 Road Ahead! This month is packed with announcements including: new additions to Tusken tribe, UI Changes, a new Hero’s Journey for the highly anticipated addition of Cal Kestis from the Star Wars Jedi franchise, and a new raid!

We look forward to hearing your thoughts on these updates so without further ado, enjoy February’s Road Ahead!

New Additions to the Tusken Faction

Some may say it’s been a long time coming, but we say they’ve just been waiting in the sand dunes for the right moment. We are bringing two new Tuskens to the Holotable to finally complete your 5-Tusken Squad! The Tusken Chieftain and Tusken Warrior, along with the rest of the Tusken faction, will have great synergy in the new upcoming Raid (More information on that later in this Road Ahead), so be sure to prepare to do battle!
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Tusken Chieftain
LINK TO KIT
  • Coming to you from the Book of Boba Fett is the solemn leader who provides unique identity and that brings the whole faction together
  • Chieftain brings with him Momentum (previously only found on Boba Fett, Scion of Jango). Under his leadership, Tusken units will gain Momentum throughout the battle
  • Gain enough Momentum and your Tuskens will have a chance to inflict an unresistible Stun on opponents who attack them
  • His Omicron ability will allow you to include and synergize perfectly with Boba Fett, Scion of Jango in 3v3 Grand Arenas
Tusken Warrior
  • This fierce Tusken mentored Boba Fett in the Tusken ways after he joined the tribe
  • Her kit is built to directly synergize with the Tusken Chieftain
  • Brings her own method of getting Momentum onto Tusken allies
  • With enough Momentum her Finishing Strikes will cripple her target
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While the main attraction for this update to the Tusken faction is the upcoming Raid experience, we also want to make sure this faction has increased utility leading up to that event. The Tuskens will also find themselves particularly useful in upcoming Galactic Challenges, Conquest Feats, Assault Battles, and will be the focus of a new Datacron set. We hope sharing this news ahead of time helps to inform your decisions on the journey you want to take over the coming months.

Krayt Dragon Raid

Speaking of the new Raid, we’re excited to have players participate in the upcoming Krayt Dragon Hunt! The plans we are sharing with you are still in development, but let’s get into some details of what you might expect. First, you’ll be heading to the native home planet of the Krayt Dragon, Tatooine.

We hope your Tuskens are up for the challenge - just like our Art team will need to be up to the challenge of accurately depicting the enormous Krayt Dragon in our game. We want to make sure you feel the size of this beast as you take it on!

Experience:
Without giving too much away of what you’ll be encountering with the Krayt Dragon, we want to let you know there will be two separate challenges to consider when you approach this Raid: First, controlling the enemy monster with an array of debuffs, and second - dealing as much damage as possible during short windows of time.

In previous raids, bosses are immune to many debuff effects because they can easily disrupt and trivialize a Raid encounter. However, for this Raid we’re introducing a new mechanic called Defiance that will require players to bring these debuffs to minimize the effects of the boss’s attacks. During this time players will want to remove as many stacks of Defiance as possible before the boss takes its next turn, lest they face some dire consequences. The exact list of affected debuffs and their associated impacts is still being worked on, but players will be able to more fully utilize their characters’ abilities to find success in Raids that feature this mechanic.

The burst damage window will require players to manage big damage cooldowns to avoid devastating attacks while scoring as well as they can. Maximizing the damage potential between these windows by using some of those big cooldowns outside of the window is one avenue toward improving performance.

Balancing ability cooldowns between Damage and Debuffs windows while scoring as many points as possible outside of these moments is where we want to create a great deal of space for theorycrafting and optimization. As with all Raids, we expect this event to be a challenge at first but you will figure out the core loops of the Raid and fine tune your attempts over time.

Who can I bring to the Raid:
The new Raid structure for this event allows for an even more thematic experience and a space for several factions to gain some new utility. For this event, players will be limited to specific Factions that have fought the Krayt Dragon or have appeared primarily on Tatooine. For the Krayt Dragon Raid you will be able to bring in the following factions:
  • Hutt Cartel
  • Jawa
  • Mandalorian
  • Old Republic
  • Tusken

Note that future Raids may also thematically limit the units you can bring in by faction.

General Raid Changes Explained

Alongside the release of the Krayt Dragon Raid, there will be some fundamental changes to how Raids are handled and created. These changes are aimed at providing a clearer path of what Raid to focus on and help folks reduce the amount of time spent handling and participating in Raids that they have already mastered. Similar to the new Territory Battle experience, this new system for Raids is designed to be flexible and more expandable than Raids were previously. We also want to create a system that allows us to produce more Raids in the future faster and easier.

Point Based System
First, we wanted to change the way Raids distribute rewards to a system that promotes cooperation and not interguild competition. A guild often needs to really pull together to complete the newest tier or event that they have reached and it feels contradictory to then ask them to compete against each other simultaneously.

With that in mind, we will be moving Raids to a point based system. Players will no longer be competing against their guildmates but instead focusing on earning the most points progress through phases. This means everyone in the Guild will be earning the same rewards at the end of the event. There are some other changes to rewards as part of this release so see the section below for more details. This was also a great opportunity to update the structure of Raids for the future.
  • Raids can now have a variable number of phases.
    • Legacy raids will continue to have their 4 phases.
    • The Krayt Dragon Raid will have a single phase, and other new Raids may have a different number of phases.
  • A Raid phase will only complete after enough attempts have been submitted; players will no longer be able to transition between phases in the middle of combat.
    • Attempts will have a maximum possible score, which will scale with difficulty.
    • Once this score is reached, the attempt will successfully end and the player will be able to submit their result if desired.
  • The final phase of each Raid will stay open as long as the Raid is active. This allows guild members to submit all of their attempts to earn as many points as they can.

One Raid Only
As we mentioned above, we also want to streamline the Raid experience. We want players to focus on completing the latest experience and not juggling multiple Raids that you have already mastered. If you’ve already mastered a Raid, then you’re just regularly simming the Raid to earn your rewards crate for the event, instead of an epic battle against terrifying foes. We decided therefore to simplify the Raid system instead of building on top of each event with a new one.

One of the biggest changes with the updated Raid system is that it will only allow for Guilds to run one Raid at a time. You can still pick any of the current Raids, but your Guild no longer needs to worry about running multiple Raids concurrently. This will allow you to focus on the most challenging Raid your Guild can attempt and work on growing to complete it. Rewards will be updated to reflect this new event format.

As a side note, Raid Simming has now been removed as you will only have to focus on one raid at a time and does not make sense under the new system. Because of this new system, we did not add Simming to the Heroic Sith Raid nor redo that reward track.

In an effort to streamline inventory management, we’ve gone ahead and made Raids have a single starting ticket, which will be used to launch all Raids past and future. There will be one Raid Ticket to rule them all - Once this Raid comes out other Raid Tickets will be removed and each Guild will have the new ticket maxed so you can dive into your first Raid with the updated experience right away.

Rewards System Changes
With Krayt Dragon and future Raids, we will be adjusting how you earn rewards. We no longer wanted players to compete against their Guildmates, and instead, work together to get as far as they can to earn the most rewards. With this change there will be two different ways to earn rewards, a Guild Track and an Individual Track. You will earn rewards based on the amount of points you contribute from the Individual Track and can be claimed immediately. You will also receive rewards from your Guild’s track depending on the amount of points everyone in your Guild earned at the end of the event. You also will earn rewards even if your Guild does not complete the Raid 100%. Guilds will be rewarded based on how many points your Guild earned.

While we will reduce the amount of locations where you can earn rewards, we’ve taken this into close consideration so that actively participating in a raid, regardless of difficulty, will earn rewards from the Personal track that equal and replace the old "simmed" rewards - ensuring that all Players retain access to those goods. Playing at higher difficulties to earn more Points will steadily gain access to new, additional rewards. Guilds participating at a high level of difficulty will see more bountiful rewards than the total sum of prior raids.
  • Guild reward track
    • Guild members will receive the same rewards at the end of the event
    • One attempt must be made to be eligible for rewards
  • Individual reward track
    • Rewards earned on this track can be claimed immediately when earned.
    • If you miss claiming these rewards, they get sent in your inbox when the raid ends.
  • Rewards also include new Raid Currency that can be used to purchase items from Shipments
    • This special Raid Currency can only be earned from the Featured Raid (the latest Raid released)
  • Whenever a player joins a new guild, they are subjected to a lockout period before they can participate in a raid.
    • Players can participate in any raid that is started after their lockout period expires.

Limited Faction Use Per Raid
We will be limiting the factions you can bring into Krayt Dragon as well as potentially in future Raids. This allows us the opportunity to implement interesting Raid Mechanics without needing to account for every single character in the game. While this creates many opportunities for theorycrafting, it also means we have to add in extra boss mechanics to account for some of the unique abilities some characters have in the game. Strangely enough, a limited character pool opens up the design space here for us to do more extreme mechanics and bosses. This also helps us create a more thematic experience and create special mechanics for each of these new events. Star Wars is a beautiful universe and we want to continue to embrace how cool and extraordinary this universe is.

NOTE: Existing Raids remain open to same units as before

Raid Base Difficulty
All Raids going forward will have a base difficulty level that can be modified and adjusted for individuals to earn more points for their Guild. You can choose Difficulty Modifiers prior to each attempt and restart without any penalty if you feel the battle was too hard or too easy. This also means that current and future Raids will be available to all types of Guilds. Higher GP guilds can attempt the same Raid as lower GP Guilds but with harder modifiers to get more points and more rewards.
  • Base difficulty will be around G10/HSTR (Note: this balance is still being worked on and may change)
  • Raids have additional difficulty modifiers that increase the challenge in exchange for applying multipliers to total points earned at the end of a raid.
    • Difficulty modifiers are selected per player, per attempt. You can submit different attempts at different modifiers, so you can always set the difficulty to the optimal level for a team you are bringing in.

Limited Successful Attempts Per Player
Starting with Krayt Dragon Raid and all future Raids there will be a limit of attempts per player. This will allow players to focus on theorycrafting and building out their best attempts rather than needing to throw their entire roster against the wall. This also allows players who can’t be present at Raid launch an opportunity to attempt the Raid and not have to rush and worry about a Guildmate soloing the Raid themself. The total number of attempts may vary from Raid to Raid and you will be able to Restart an attempt and try again without any penalties.

Don’t be afraid to try a variety of modifiers. You can always rechoose the modifiers and attempt again without any penalty. Your Raid attempts will only count if you submit that attempt and are happy with your score. You can retry without submitting a score as many times as you want.

Legacy Raid Changes
With all the changes we’ll be making to the Krayt Dragon Raid, some of those adjustments will trickle down to our older Raids and hopefully make life easier for folks participating in them. While we were able to make some adjustments to older Raids, there are still some legacy aspects that we were unable to change and they will remain the same unless noted.
  • The Pit, Tank Takedown, and Sith Triumvirate will be considered “Legacy Raids” and adjusted in these ways:
    • They now use the new raid points system in battle.
    • They have guild reward tracks, with all guild members receiving the same rewards.
    • Their final phase will end once the boss has been defeated, like they currently do.
    • They won’t have individual reward tracks.
    • Non-heroic tiers now have a 3-day timer.
      • They do not end early when the raid is completed.
  • Starter Guilds now only launch tiers of The Pit raid.
  • We are removing any steps related to finishing specific legacy raids, as well as steps too closely tied to specific Territory Battles, from all Prestigious Quests.

We’ve also made strides to streamline the progression of these raids to make it better for new players and give Guilds a more direct route of advancement
  • The first 5 difficulty tiers of the Sith Triumvirate have been removed. It now only has two difficulties: Normal and Heroic.

The order of the Raids:
The Pit > Tank Takedown > The Sith Triumvirate > Krayt Dragon

We will also be removing the Challenge Rancor raid from the game as it has served its purpose in our previous Raid system. With our upgraded system and the direction we plan on taking Raids in the future, we felt its existence is now unnecessary
We are removing achievements related to completing the Challenge Rancor.

Raid Blackout Period
To facilitate the transition to the new raid system, we will disable all raid content approximately one week before this release.
  • At the start of the Blackout period, all raids in progress will be canceled and no new raids can be started.
    • These events will not payout rewards if they are canceled
  • All Guilds will be granted the maximum amount of the new Raid Currency once this blackout period is over and can start the Raid of their choice immediately.

Additional Changes
  • Raids will now run their full duration, regardless of how quickly you complete the raid
    • Raids are no longer able to be abandoned
    • This allows for the rest of the Guild to still earn points
  • We have overhauled the Events Screen to include the Raids and they are now accessible from the Events Table in the Cantina.
    • You can now not only access solo events from this screen, but your Guild’s activities such as Raids, Territory Wars, and Territory Battles will also be shown here as well.
  • You can now view the Guild info screen for your own Guild!



Hero’s Journey: Cal Kestis

Cal Kestis is coming to the Holotables! In collaboration with Respawn, we are taking the hero of STAR WARS Jedi: Fallen Order and bringing him to Galaxy of Heroes. We are excited for the continuation of Cal’s journey in STAR WARS Jedi: Survivor.

Our Jedi: Fallen Order journey starts with Cal Kestis, a rigger in the Scrapper Guild (and Unaligned Force User) trying to make his way through the galaxy. Along with several other characters from the game, these events will culminate with a Hero’s Journey for Cal Kestis (Survivor)! In addition to Cal Kestis and his Hero’s Journey version, Cere Junda and Merrin will be joining the Holotables to assist the young force user on his journey.

Cal Kestis
  • An Unaligned Force User trying to hide his past from the Empire
  • As part of his abilities, BD-1 will bring some much needed medical attention to the squad
Cere Junda
  • A Leader character for Unaligned Force Users of all types
  • Works extremely well with Cal Kestis
Merrin
  • Merrin is a Nightsister who lived on her homeworld of Dathomir during the Imperial Era.
  • Designed to lift the Nightsister squad

We are extremely excited that the Hero’s Journey will culminate with Cal Kestis (Survivor)! Needless to say, this version of Cal Kestis will be a FORCE to be reckoned with in Territory Battle and a must-have for any Holotable Hero. You can expect to use Cal Kestis (Survivor) in dedicated Territory Battle Missions and will be able to make good use of his 3 dedicated Omicrons. In addition, you can get more out of your Hero’s Journey Cal Kestis by slotting him into Jedi PvP teams, which will help complete the Jedi squads you’ve been cultivating over the years.

We will more to say about this event and future characters as we dive into the world of Jedi: Fallen Order but here are a few things you can expect:
  • 5 New Characters from the Jedi: Fallen Order universe
  • Use of these characters for Conquest Feats and Territory Battle Bonus Zones
  • New Territory Battle planet for Rise of the Empire
    • Cal Kestis mission on Bracca with Cere Junda

That’s A Wrap
Thank you for reading and we hope you are as excited as we are for the coming months. It is going to be a busy quarter as we jump from Tatooine to Bracca to Kashyyyk and many more planets, but we’ll have another installment of Road Ahead in April where we will dive deeper into the new Raid and maybe drop a few more exciting announcements… so stay tuned!

What parts of this Road Ahead are you most excited about? We’d love for you to let us know in the forums - check out the discussion link below and until next time, see you on the Holotables!

- SWGOH Development Team
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