This weeks reveal brought us even more information about the crew skills system in SW:ToR, including revealing a new crafting specialization – Armstech (correctly predicted by yours truly a few weeks ago here). However the real interesting part of this update to me was the second paragraph of the Companions and Crafting section (full article here). It reads:
”Players can issue crafting orders to up to five companions at a time, and each companion can add up to five crafting tasks to their queue. You can cancel crafting progress from anywhere if you need to, and the resources your companions were using will be returned to you. Your crafting queues will even continue to progress if you have to go offline – when you log back on, you’ll receive any items that were completed while you were gone.”
If you are a casual gamer like I am, but take progressing your character and all of his skills seriously, then this paragraph has to make you want to jump up and do a happy dance.
The real beauty of the queue though is how it can work in concert with the time factors of crafting tasks to allow even the most casual of players to be able to continue to progress without having to feel like they need to login every few hours or even every day to be able to keep up. Only able to play on the weekends? That’s cool bro, just queue up 5 day-long tasks for each of your companions Sunday night before you go to bed, then when Friday night comes go login and guess what, you have 25 more skill points and 25 nice items waiting for you. Suddenly find yourself with some free-time on a Wednesday night when you didn’t think you’d get to play? No biggie, just cancel the companion’s task WITH NO RESOURCES LOST and go adventure with them for the evening, then reset their queue when you are done. No harm, no foul.
It really is an elegant system that I see as rewarding both your hardcore players, who will be able to skill up faster due to their use of shorter length missions and ability to gather more on the go, and your more casual players who can make use of longer mission timers during their out-of-game time to still be progressing. Now we just need next spring to arrive so we can all take advantage of it.