In Star Wars: The Old Republic there are several main types of quests and missions, and several methods for leveling your characters. It’s not entirely different from most other MMORPGs but there are some stuff that beginner players might want to know about, so hopefully you’ll find this short, basic and free SWTOR leveling guide helpful.
The current level cap is 50, and official information claims you need about 200 hours of play time in order to reach it. It’s a significant time investment so it’s no wonder everyone wants to shorten the leveling process. Below you’ll find a quick overview of the leveling methods, which will also be updated with more specific tips soon.
- PvP Combat
- How To Level Up
- Leveling Tips
There are 8 class quests in SWTOR: one for each class. While there are some shared and bonus side-quests, the story of class quests is completely unique to the class you chose to play. SWTOR is primarily a story-based PvE game and a lot of attention to detail has been given to these class quests: you’ll frequently see great cutscenes and excellent voiceovers in play.
Class quests aren’t exactly optional. You can skip them, however it’s definitely not recommended as some of them will award you with companions and even starships. These quests also have different dialogue options which can effect your character later on, so make sure you read all or most of the boring quest text and make the right choices. Class quests can entirely be finished without the help of anyone else, however you can group up with other players as well, in which case you decide the dialogue options alone.
It has been said you can level up all the way to the level cap just by doing class quests, but it’s definitely much easier to mix it up with different quest types as well.
Solo quests are not a part of your character’s storyline and they are entirely optional. They can be completed alone or with a group of players, and also often have different dialogue options. Basically, look at it like typical side quests like in any other MMO game. Some of these solo quests are available only to certain classes.
Bonus quests aren’t given to you by NPCs, but rather you get them automatically when questing. They are optional, which is great news to everyone who hates grinding. Typically they involve killing a set number of monsters, for example kill 20 critters. They are often easy to complete as well as you’ll be killing some of these mobs anyway. The best part is you don’t have to turn these quests in with any NPCs — you’ll get your rewards as soon as you finish killing the required mobs.
World quests are short quest chains that are also not linked to your character’s story but often give the world around you some context. You can easily finish them with the help of your companions, but you can also group up with other players.
World Arcs are much longer, often described as epic quest sequences, ranging anywhere from 4 to 10 quests, and spread through multiple planets on occasion. The dialogue options often have multiple choices and the content you experience will depend on which ones you choose. It’s interesting to note that you can get a pretty different experience if you plan to level up another character.
Heroic quests are also in open-world but they do require you to group up with other players, and even have a decent party roles as well (tank, healer, DPS). It may be possible to finish heroic quests with the help of your companions but it will be significantly harder. While these quests are found in open world they are typically instanced, often with a strong boss monster at the end.
Flashpoints are, in short, instances or dungeons. They are typically heavily scripted and the content inside is aimed to be done with full group of players. While it’s not currently 100% decided, you can bring companions in Flashpoints, however the number of party members including companions can’t exceed 4. Flashpoints are repeatable, and often a good source of decent gear for your level, as well as experience.
The quests you’ll find in flashpoints are usually more complex than the rest, with multiple choices given to players which then “Roll” on which course of action to take. As an example that has often been given, in Esseles flashpoint you’re given a choice whether to jettison some NPC engineers or leave them be: if you jettison them you’ll receive dark side points and clear the path forward faster, but if you leave them alive you’ll get light side points, and they will help you later on in the dungeon. Choices like this are found in every SW:TOR flashpoint and they make these repeatable instances fun to revisit.
Participating in player versus player combat — open world PvP or Warzones (SWTOR’s name for battlegrounds), gives several types of rewards, but also a decent amount of experience points required to gain levels. You can start with Warzones as soon as you reach your faction’s capital (second planet), which is about level 10. Open world PvP can be found on most planets you’ll visit in your leveling adventures: usually you’re required to control some points such as turrets or bases.
You can, if you choose to, level up to 50 entirely by doing PvP, but most players find it too repetitive and boring. Mixing a variety of different quests is what most players like most, and fortunately there’s plenty of options. Make sure you always follow your class’ main storyline missions: as explained above, you don’t want to miss out on companions or worse, your starship.
Just like you can level up with PvP entirely, you can also choose to skip it. I personally find an occasional Warzone refreshing for a change, but it’s definitely up to you whether you want to participate in any or not. Those who will play on PvP servers will undoubtedly have plenty of opportunities to try out world PvP whether they like it or not.
Flashpoints are typically a good source of experience as well but sometimes finding a group of decent players can be frustrating. If you can visit one be sure to do so, as they are really fun!
The following beginner leveling tips are compiled by SWTOR Leveling Guide!
First of all, try to hit at least level 10 on your starting planet (about 5-7 hours of gameplay). You gain access to your advanced class at that level, and it’ll be much easier later on. Also, make sure you do the flashpoint for some extra experience and potentially gear. While it’s not necessary, it is recommended to hit level 10 before doing your first flashpoint, as you will have access to new and improved abilities from your advanced class. Healing is not required, but it makes it a lot easier. Starting planets have about 60% class quests, dropping to about 40% on capital planets, and even lower later on.
If you can’t get level 10 on your starting planet, you missed out on something. Make sure to check the list of quests and complete as many as you can, and kill some mobs on the way as well. Of course you want to move on to another planet as soon as possible (mostly because you’ll be interested in your character story development), but it’ll be a lot easier if you complete everything before.
Especially make sure that you always complete ALL class quests: getting your advanced class is an exception, but most important things you get in SWTOR are via class quests. Speaking of important things, you get your ship at around level 15-17, depending on how you’re progressing with class quests.
Another important thing you get from class quests are companions. On your first world you’ll be able to “solo” most group quests with your companion, so be sure to pick them up as soon as you can so you don’t need to sit around waiting to find a group.
Class quests will always lead you to the next area you’re supposed to go to, so if you ever get lost of confused just follow them. However, do often note the levels of quests you have, as some will be above the recommended level and might be hard to complete; it’s especially true for heroic quests. Again, the more quests you complete and levels you get in one area, the easier it’ll be in the next.
Another great tip you should know about is that accepting and finishing quests in groups gives you social points, which unlock various rewards. Speaking of groups, SWTOR goes to great lengths to encourage grouping with other players. Social Points are basically free rewards you get simply by being grouped up with other players: some are cosmetic and don’t impact anything much, but they are still nice to have.
On each planet you have 6-12 group (heroic) quests which should preferably be done with other players rather than your companions. There’s many benefits to leveling in groups: obviously you gain less experience for killing mobs, but you clear them a lot faster. The heroic quests mentioned are repeatable once every 24 hours, and a great ways to boost your levels quickly, especially if you’re behind. They also give much better items, and the experience rewards are often 2-3 times higher than solo quests. Basically, if you can get a good group take advantage of it.
Another thing you should always do are flashpoints, just don’t attempt them solo or with companions alone. These instances aren’t hard, will give you great items, some experience from killing mobs and plenty of experience from related missions. Some may disagree, but I find flashpoints quite fun to do as well, and you might just like them too.
One other thing to note is that you should always do bonus quests when possible: you’ll gain them automatically after triggering something, such as killing a particular monster. Just make sure to finish bonus quests before moving on to a related main quest as the bonus one will often automatically disappear and you’ll have no way of completing it afterwards. The are usually very easy to complete and can be done along with another mission.
- Hit level 10 before moving onto second planet.
- Always do all class quests.
- Try to complete bonus quests whenever possible.
- Always do flashpoints.
- If you can find a good group, leveling will be faster and easier.
Overall, leveling in Star Wars: The Old Republic isn’t all that hard or complicated, but it does take time. I do hope the few tips I gave you above will help you gain levels faster.
If you have any of your own tips, tricks or leveling strategies post them in the comments below!