Now that I can actually access the forums again...now...
erithil: How item intensive will this game be? Fantasy RPG's have tons of magical items to enhance abilities, protect and aid combat. Can we expect to see those things, just in a 'tech.' sense, or will the whole idea of inventory be de-emphasized?
Casey H: You'll find a lot of items throughout the game, so that will definitely be a factor in building your characters and customizing the gameplay. Another cool thing is that you will find some items that were used by characters in the Tales Of The Jedi comic series.
Breath: Is it truth that you delayed Kotor PC version, because of SW Galaxies?
Mike G: Well, the question of timing has come up a lot! We saw a great opportunity to launch an RPG on a brand new platform with no established RPG franchise. The timing of Galaxies also played into that decision, but we promise that both versions will be worth the wait!!
Does George Lucas take personal interest in the Star Wars games u guyz churn up?
Mike G: It's quite amazing regarding KotOR. George was involved very early on when we were talking about setting this game so far in the past. He was really excited about the time period and the things that BioWare wanted to accomplish. Ultimately it was his thumbs up that got this game off the ground!
ComRaven: maybe a bit off-topic: what did you work on today?
Casey H: There are a lot of people working on different things, but for example, today we are working on getting some cool lightsaber combat interactions working, planning some cutscenes, and lots of work is being done to build the environments in the game.
jmrallen: What will you be showing of KOTOR, if anything, at E3?
Mike G: We'll have a fully playable demo that will be in the LucasArts booth and at the Xbox booth. It won't be the whole game, but everyone will be able to get a taste of what the final experience will be like.
Amir Foox: What sorts of minigames are there? Will there be many minigames to choose from? And what if we wouldn't want to play a minigame, must we play them in order to advance?
Casey H: The minigames are intended to be light and fun, and to give a snes of fast-paced action. Some of the minigames will have to be completed to proceed, but it will be carefully balanced so that those ones are fun and easy for everyone. It's our most important focus on the minigames to make sure that they're balanced and fun.
Casey H: Also, the minigames are designed to let you play parts of the story that normally you would just watch in a cutscene, so there will be a variety, and they will come up as different things happen in the adventure.
milenrmr: To what extent will you be able to use the environment? Except from destroying things, will you be able to do anything else?
Casey H: One of the great things about the environment will be the exploration factor. There is tremendous variety i the types of environments so it will be lots of fun seeing what's around the next corner. Plus, we will have the ability to animate parts of the environment, and that can be incorporated into the gameplay as far as our designers can push it.
jmrallen: loaded question, but legitimate: does the Xbox hardware allow you to create games with better graphics and more features than a PC game, which may need to meet a 'lowest common denominator'?
Mike G: Well, the power of the Xbox is considerable, but the features aren't affected too much by the platform. When looking at the PC market we obviously can't ignore the people that don't have a GF3, so in that respect some of the special graphical features may need to get turned down. Besides that, most PC's that are on the market now are really powerful and by this time next year even moreso.
erithil: Will this game's storyline be based on chapters, like we saw in BG1 and BG2? If so, how many chapters are planned?
Casey H: It's not exactly planned in chapters. Once the game really gets under way, you'll have a number of planets to travel to, each with a variety of locations and environments.
milenrmr: will you be able to feel the game, as in Jedi Knight when you look at those huge spaces and starships?
Mike G: One of the teams goals has been to make this game 'feel' like it's in the Star Wars universe. So, having immersive environments with aliens and creatures, star ships, etc, is really important.
ConRaven: Mike, you said your dream project would be Obi-Wan 2....Will that influence Knights?
Mike G: Ha! There are no plans for an Obi 2 at this time. The team has talked about it, but nothing serious, so no, it won't influence my work on KotOR for the foreseeable future.
Breath: Will we be able to play the game that Chewbacca played with C3PO and R2-D2 in the movies?
Casey H: Battle chess game? Actually, some of the guys on the team ask me about that a lot too! I'll just say that you can expect to see a number of things like that - cool little references to the movies that help the game feel like you're really in the Star Wars universe.
erithil: What is the biggest challenge that BioWare is currently working in KOTOR?
Casey H: Our biggest challenge right now is to tie together all the cool elements that are being created into something that has really fun, smooth gameplay. In a massive RPG like this, there are thousands and thousands of little game objects, rules, systems, etc. that take a lot of work to integrate seamlessly into an experience that tells a compelling story.
StormHammer: Will there be audio responses throughout the game, or will they be mostly text-based?
Mike G: The plan is to have all of the text in the game be voice. We've also got a really cool lipsynching tool, so it should look and SOUND pretty awesome!
starwarsfan1972: Is there any of the owning factor of BG2, like that you can have a castle or a thieves guild transferred to KOTOR, like you can have you're own house and a Jedi order?
Casey H: Although you won't be able to own a house, you will be able to have your own starship. The Ebon Hawk is how we're implementing the enjoyment of having your own place, but this one's mobile!
roushdawg: All this mention about Tales Of The Jedi has got me wondering will be able to ride any sort of animal in the game like the badass ones in the comic?
Mike G: That's one of the cool things that we're currently evaluating. No promises!
JediXAngel22: Will the game have 3D sound, like SoundBlaster Live EAX?
Mike G: The Xbox has some tremendous sound capabilities, and we will take advantage of those things including 3D sound. The PC will also have 3D sound.
Jatsu: A lot of the enjoyment I had with BG2 was because of the romances, will there be romances in KOTOR?
Casey H: A lot of what makes a story a Star Wars story is the action, adventure, and yes, a little romance. That kind of thing requires very careful writing so that it comes off well, but there should be a little romance in the story. Of course, it's your character we're talking about, so it will only come about it you're into it.
erithil: Let's talk continuity. If we are eventually Jedi, will we have an NPC Jedi Master instructing us? Will we return to him/her to advance and grow in the Force? Will that person judge our connection to the Force, and if we are drifting to the Dark Side?
Casey H: There is, of course, a Jedi Council at this time, and you'll be able to interact with them as part of your development as a Jedi. You will have a master to show you the ways of the Force.
roushdawg: off topic: have you played Jedi Outcast? If so, did it give you any ideas of things to incoprorate in KOTOR?
Mike G: I have played JKII quite a bit, and it's pretty cool. The team at BioWare hasn't seen it yet but they should be getting their copies any day now!
There may be some cool Force powers to look at.
more to follow...