Nar Shadaa Casino Event PTS Preview
As a local to Las Vegas, I really wanted to check out the Nar Shadaa Casino event, which is currently available on the Player Test Server (PTS), and see how it compares to IRL casinos! Here are my thoughts on what SWTOR has on the PTS so far.
When I picked up the mission on the fleet, a short commercial plays for the Star Cluster Casino. I think the most interesting part for me was the half-naked male Twi’lek dancing in the background. Unfortunately I didn’t get a screenshot of that, but there are more half-naked dancers in the casino! You complete the “Festival of Splendor” mission after talking to one of the vendors in the casino, and you also receive 5 Smuggler Casino Chips.
Of course, I wasn’t here for the scenery! I wanted to try the slots. There are two different types of chips: the Smuggler Casino Chips (SCC) that I mentioned before and the Kingpin’s Casino Chip (KCC), which are like the high-roller chips. The SCCs were 1,000 credits each, and the KCCs were 50,000 credits each. Since this is the PTS and I basically have magic credits anyway, I spent all 1.5m credits that I had on my PTS character. I bought 99,000 in SCCs (99 chips) and spent the rest on KCCs (approximately 1.4m). That was definitely my first mistake.
When I tried the slot machines, I couldn’t believe how boring they were. You just stand there and click the machine over and over, win or loss. I thought there would be at least an interesting animation, like you get three Jawas in a row for a jackpot or something like IRL slot machines, but it’s simply an arrow that spins around, and if it lands on a certain part of the outer circle, you win. It’s not skill-based, so you can’t try to control the spin, so I was just standing there, clicking over and over again. I don’t really like gambling in real life, so that may be one reason I didn’t care for the machines.
There are two types of machines to correspond with the two chips. On the Smuggler machines you use the Smuggler chips (obviously), but you can only win more SCCs or KCCs. I actually can’t remember if you can win a Golden Certificate on the Smuggler machine. On the Kingpin machines, you have a chance to win the mounts (Rancor or Vectron), a Golden Certificate, or more tokens.
The SWTOR Miner tweeted to me some useful data on the chances of a win on the Kingpin machines:
The win animation when you get a “jackpot” is pretty cool, but for me it was quite rare. 45 minutes later, I spent all my chips, and all I won were 6 Golden Certificates. This could buy me one legacy saber and the chest piece, both of which I don’t really care for. I previewed the outfit from the vendor, and it really doesn’t look good on Dianah. Will not buy. However when the event goes live, I may try to get one of the legacy sabers. So far, I haven’t really had a need for them. I also don’t care too much for mounts and speeders.
Speaking of mounts, last night when I was in the casino, there were quite a few people running around on the rancors they won. Someone with the PvP rancor taunted in chat, “I didn’t buy my rancor.” Of course I thought he was absolutely right; he earned his special rancor, whereas the other ones were pay [credits?] to win. He didn’t get a good reaction from the other rancor owners (clearly non-PvPers), which was actually a bit annoying and unfortunate.
As for the setting, there were some gambling tables in the middle that didn’t do anything, and there was some kind of alien that I didn’t recognize. There was a cocktail droid! I’m actually a bit disappointed it wasn’t a Twi’lek in a dancer’s outfit walking around with cocktails instead, but oh well.
Today I learned that I purchased my chips in the least effective way, and that it would have been better just to buy the SCCs since I could win KCCs without spending 50,000 credits on just one. When the event goes live, I really hope they kick it up a notch, but I’m guessing this is pretty much how it’s going to be. I will still participate in the event, but I won’t drain my entire SWTOR bank trying to win. I may actually have to go do Dailies or some other money-making activity, which I normally never do.