SWTOR Game Update 7.1 Combat Balance Changes Preview


The Star Wars The Old Republic Developers have revealed some preliminary balance changes coming in Game Update 7.1. Chris Durel, a Gameplay Designer at Bioware for SWTOR, outlined some of the changes we can expect to some Combat Styles, details of new Tacticals being introduced and briefly also discussed their plans for balance going forward.

All the changes outlined will be on the Game Update 7.1 PTS for testing.

SWTOR Balance Plans

Durel revealed that their focus for Game Update 7.1 is going to be on Combat Styles they have identified as being the most in need of adjustment. Then they plan to gradually branch out to other Combat Styles for Game Updates 7.2 and 7.3. For Game Update 7.1, their focus is on the following Combat styles and their DPS Disciplines.

  • Marauders / Sentinels
  • Jugernauts / Guardians
  • Snipers / Gunslingers
  • Mercenaries / Commandos

 “The goal here is to bring these combat styles closer to their intended experiences and make disciplines more competitive with one another.

They also emphasised that balance will always be an ongoing process and that they want to take their time to do their due diligence before making any changes. This is a line they have repeated in the past.

Game Update 7.1 Combat Style Balance Changes

Here is a look at all the announced changes. The wording of the developer post indicates we might see further changes once the 7.1 PTS opens up.

Marauder / Sentinel

  • Bloodthirst / Inspiration is now granted at level 51 instead of level 60
  • The “Defensive Roll” passive mod has been redesigned to do the following:
    “Increases internal and elemental damage reduction by 3%. In addition, activating Bloodthirst reduces the damage you take from area effects by 30% for 20 seconds.”
    • This is now only available for the Carnage / Combat and Annihilation / Watchman disciplines.

Carnage / Combat

  • Increased the damage bonus from Execute given to Devastating Blast from 5% to 10%
  • The “Quickness” mod has been redesigned to the following:
    “Dealing damage with an Ataru Form strike reduces the cooldown of rage spending offensive abilities by 1 second. Ataru Form deals 3% more damage.”
  • Redesigned the “Blood Frenzy” passive to do the following:
    “When Execute is consumed by Force Scream or Devastating Blast, you build 1 rage. In addition, you are immune to interrupts and all-controlling effects for 6 seconds after activating Ferocity. The immunity effect cannot occur more than once every 30 seconds.”

Fury / Concentration

  • Reduced the critical chance and critical damage bonus received from the Dark Synergy / Zenith passive mod from 20% to 15%
  • The Gravity Vortex passive has been redesigned and is now a Level 51 mod choice for Fury / Concentration, replacing Defensive Roll, it reads:
    “Force Crush / Force Exhaustion triggers Gravity Vortex, granting immunity to interrupts and all-controlling effects and reducing damage taken from area effects by 15% for 6 seconds. This effect cannot occur more than once every 30 seconds”
  • Changed the Level 60 passive to Gravity Defiance / Gravity Manipulation, which reduces the Rage / Focus cost of Obliterate / Zealous Leap and Force Crush / Force Exhaustion by 1

Rage / Focus

  • Reduced the critical chance and critical damage bonus received from the Dark Synergy / Zenith passive mod from 20% to 15%

Arsenal / Gunnery

  • Increased the critical damage bonus given by the Target Tracking / Deadly Cannon passive from 15% up to 30%
  • Increased the critical hit chance bonus from Riddle / Rotary Cannon from 5% up to 10%
  • Blazing Bolts / Boltstorm heat cost has been reduced from 20 down to 16
  • Priming Shot / Vortex Bolt heat cost has been reduced from 12 down to 10

Innovative Ordnance / Assault Specialist

  • Increased the periodic damage of Serrated Shot / Serrated Bolt by 16%
  • Changed the functionality of the “Incendiary Ignition” mod from giving more ticks of Combustible Gas Cylinder / Plasma Cell to increasing its damage on targets affected by Incendiary Missile / Incendiary Round

Sniper / Gunslinger

  • Redesigned the Augmented Shields / Hotwired Defenses passive mod to additionally give: “When taking damage while Entrench is active the cooldown on Meticulous Preparation / Bag of Tricks is reduced by 2 seconds. This effect can only occur once every 3 seconds.”

Virulence / Dirty Fighting

  • Viral Targeting / Blood Sights no longer increases poison effect / bleed effect damage by 10%
  • Decay / Nice Try damage bonus decreased from 5% to 3%
  • Critical Grenade / Sharp Objects applied critical hit damage bonus from periodic effects is reduced to 5% down from 10%, and its effect has been fixed so it correctly applies the critical hit damage bonus

Engineering / Saboteur

  • Redesigned Custom Auto Loaders / Jury-Rigged Mods to additionally give:
    “Snipe / Charged Burst deals additional elemental damage to targets affected by Interrogation Probe / Shock Charge”
  • Increased Electrified Railgun / Blazing Speed damage by 25%

New Game Update 7.1 Tacticals

A few Tacticals were removed from the game when 7.0 launched in February 2022. In Game Update 7.1, the developers are filling in some of the gaps created by these removals for certain Disciplines.

The developers are currently not planning on introducing many more new Tacticals at this stage. Their focus is more on balancing the Tacticals available to each Discipline. We can expect further Tacticals balance in the next patch (presumably 7.2).

Carnage Marauders / Combat Sentinels

New Tactical to replace Fanged God Form.

  • Shard of Mortis – Using Massacre / Blade Rush adds Hyper stacks to you, increasing your critical chance by 25% per stack and increasing the cost of your next Massacre / Blade Rush by 1 rage / focus per stack, up to 3. When you deal damage with another ability, Hyper is removed.

Arsenal Mercenaries / Gunnery Commandos

New Tactical to replace Thermonuclear Fusion.

  • Unstable Fusion – Activating Supercharged Gas / Cell accelerates heat out from you, dealing elemental damage to up to 8 enemies within 8 meters and applying Heat Signature to them. Targets with Heat Signature are vulnerable to Rail Shot / High Impact Bolt and take additional damage from Heatseeker Missiles / Demolition Round.

Innovative Ordnance Mercenaries / Assault Specialist Commandos

New Tactical to replace Magnetized Shrapnel.

  • Magnetic Resonance – Exploding Thermal Detonator / Assault Plastique early with Mag Shot / Mag Bolt causes your next Power Shot / Charged Bolts to deal additional Elemental damage.

Bodyguard Mercenaries / Combat Medic Commandos

A new Tactical based on their old Rocket Fuel Vapors Tactical.

  • Kolto Vapors – The Kolto Pods left by Kolto Missile / Kolto Bomb last a second longer and heal for an additional 5%.
SWTOR Kolto Missile Tactical
6.0 vs. 7.1 Kolto Missile / Bomb Tactical Comparison.

We can hopefully expect the 7.1 PTS to be up soon to test all these changes.

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