I have moved my characters from Trask Ulgo to The Progenitor (Eurpean RP-PVE, English). I was very positively surprised how fast the move of ALL my characters was done — the whole process was finished by the Bioware team while I was still fiddling around with the List of Doom.
Big. Fat. Kudos!
Now, all we can do is wait and see how things pan out. I am currently optimistic that things will work out well. Consolidating servers at this point of time seems to be a good thing, and face it, the naysayers (you know the ones… SWTOR IS DEEEAAAD! DOOOM! FREEE TO PLAAAY! *insert wailing and gnashing of teeth here*) would have piped up with their prophesies of doom, no matter what. Let them choke on them, is what I say.
I also had a look at other SWTOR blogs to see what their authors had to say about the character transfers:
Alice Wilkes at TORWARS wrote:
I’ve been through directed server transfers in other games, and I always enjoy them. Deserted areas are suddenly full of people again, the trade network blossoms, and new friends (and enemies) are made. It’s a particularly busy time for guilds, as recruitment increases and the more competitive guilds size each other up.
Shintar at Going Commando:
That said, I was still very unhappy with what I saw, as it seems that my fears in regards to transfers are about to come true: the current free transfers all offer to move characters from low population realms to high population ones instead of the other way round. This means that Bioware is trying to consolidate server populations instead of balancing them. I don’t think that this is a bad idea per se, but I do think that trying to do so via free transfers is a bad move for a variety of reasons.
Even with transfers being free, it’s inevitable that a lot of people won’t use them, whether that’s because they don’t even know that the feature exists because they don’t follow the news, they are only moderately active, or they like(d) their server to begin with. However, many people will transfer, and removing some of the most active players from an already low population realm is going to have dire consequences for those that remain. Server community will fracture as familiar faces disappear without notice. Warzones might stop popping completely. Guilds will crumble under the pressure of arguments about whether to transfer or not. New or returning players will find a server that’s completely devoid of life. Do you think that they will all bother to read up on transfers or just quit because “this game is clearly dead”?
Anexxia at Inquisitor’s Roadhouse wrote last week:
Well, at first blush, I’m bummed. You see, my original character is marooned on a PvP server with all my credits. And I’ve determined that I don’t actually really dig PvP servers though I am glad I tried one out. So I am crossing my fingers that she will, in the future, have the opportunity to move elsewhere to join the rest of my characters on a PvE or RP server.
Sigh. So basically, the initial wave of character transfers will not affect my playtime for the better. For now, I’ll have to keep aligned with my other servers to make sure I am in the loop on where folks are moving to. It will be nice to move with them to a server that has more opportunities for end game content completion, but I am bummed I will not be able to reclaim Anexxia at this point. And I have to again say publicly that I am more than happy to pay to move her in the future!