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How to Choose a Class - Star Wars The Old Republic

Learn about all the classes you can play in Star Wars The Old Republic including their strengths and how they play in game.  This guide will help you decide what you really want to play before you invest valuable time in a character.

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Choosing a Class - Understand the Essentials

Welcome to Star Wars: The Old Republic! Whether you choose to join the Empire and play an evil Sith Inquisitor, or side with the Republic to play a sassy Smuggler, you’re sure to have a terrific time.

You might be asking, “What class should I choose?” Each class has a unique story and combat role. Additionally, some species are available only to certain classes. You may want to choose a class based on the storyline, faction, a particular species, or your favorite role in games. All of these reasons are valid. Let’s take a look at these options.

Faction Choice - Republic or Empire

Your first choice creating a character is to select your faction. You’ll have to choose between fighting for the Republic or the Empire. You are not locked in to playing a Light Side character if you choose the Republic faction, and you don’t have to go with the Dark Side if you play on the Imperial side.

If you want to play a Sith class, Imperial Agent, or Bounty Hunter, the Empire is for you. If you prefer the Jedi classes, Smuggler, or Trooper, then choose the Republic faction. Species and gender do not affect game play at all, so pick these based on what you like best.

Once you’ve decided on a faction, the next step is to choose your class. There are four classes in each faction. We’ll go over the different classes, including general roles, equipment, weapons, companions, and story options.

Republic Classes

If you like to role-play a Light side character, enjoy the Jedi Force powers, or want to battle against the dreaded Empire, choose one of the four classes in the Republic faction.

#1 - Jedi Knight

The Jedi Knight is one of the Force-sensitive classes. If you enjoy melee combat or being the player who is the primary damage absorbing class in a group (called ‘tanking’), then you’ll love this class. As a Knight, you can choose the Human and Zabrak species. Subscribers can also play the Miraluka, Mirialan, and Twi’lek species.  The Cathar, Chiss, Cyborg, and Sith classes are also available after being unlocked.

A high level Jedi Knight Sentinel geared for maximum damage

The two advanced classes are the Jedi Guardian and the Jedi Sentinel. Guardians can serve as either melee damage dealers (called DPS, or damage-per-second), or the main tank in a group. Players who choose this advanced class wield a single lightsaber and wear the very protective heavy armor. They use their advanced combat lightsaber skills and some Force powers to defeat enemies and protect allies.

Jedi Sentinels use two lightsabers and Force powers to do high amounts of DPS. They use medium armor, so they can't take as much damage in battle as Guardians, but their high DPS makes them devastatingly effective.

Jedi Knight character progression and advanced classes trailer

All Jedi Knights start off on the planet Tython as Padawans of the Jedi Order. They are immediately forced into battle against deadly Flesh Raiders who threaten to destroy a local village. The Knight’s first companion, a droid called T7-01, joins the fight. T7 attacks from a distance (ranged) and can take a fair amount of damage. Kira Carson, another Jedi Knight, will help with melee (close figthting) DPS. If your play style is 'jump in and mow everything down quickly', she won't disappoint you.

Doc, Sergeant Rusk, and Lord Scourge will fill out your party. Doc is a ranged healer and is probably the preferred choice for you if your character is a damage dealer. Sgt. Rusk will support your lightsaber skills with his ranged blaster cannon fire, and Lord Scourge adds another lightsaber expert to the mix as a tank. Be sure to check out their stories! The droid, C2-N2, can serve as a healer and joins the party of every Republic player.

Your task is to save the Republic from Imperial enemies and Dark Lords of the Sith. Even as a Padawan, you'll learn to lead Jedi strike teams to protect the peace. As your quests take you around the galaxy, you'll learn that only you may be able to stop Darth Malgus in his ruthless quest for control of the galaxy!

#2 - Jedi Consular

The Jedi Consular is the other Force-sensitive class. If you like to use a lot of Force powers, utilize stealth, or specialize in healing, this is the class you’ll want to pick. All players have the option to select the Human or Zabrak species. Subscribers can also select Miraluka, Twi’lek, and Mirialan. The Cathar, Chiss, Cyborg, and Sith classes are also available after being unlocked.

Level 1 Consular Ah-So will beat you with big stick (and then heal you good)

The two Jedi Consular advanced classes are the Jedi Shadow and the Jedi Sage. Both advanced classes need to remain very flexible in combat, so they wear light armor. The Jedi Shadow is a melee DPS class, using a double-bladed lightsaber, stealth, and Force powers to do high damage. The Jedi Sage can use Force powers to do damage from a distance. The Sage advanced class is also one of the best for healing allies. Sages use a single lightsaber to defeat enemies who come too close.

Official video gives you an idea of what the Consular is all about and the advanced classes available

Like the Jedi Knight, Consulars begin their story on Tython as a Padawan. Your goal will be to find the Fount of Rajivari before your enemy does. Qyzen Fess, a Trandoshan, will become your first companion. He is a melee specialist who can take a beating and keep going and is especially helpful tanking (going first into battle to absorb damage) for Sages. Tharan Cedrax, who is perfect as a healer for Jedi Shadows, will join forces with you as you try to save Jedi Masters under attack by an unknown foe.

Companions Zenith and Lieutenant Felix Iresso both provide ranged rifle support, and Nadia Grell contributes lightsaber skills as your new Padawan. Will you be able to guide her in the ways of the Force? Can you stop the Empire from breaking apart the Rift Alliance? Do you have the Force skills needed to find and defeat the Children of the Emperor before they destroy the Republic? Only you can make the choices that will save the Jedi Order and the Republic--or contribute to their fall to Darth Malgus.

#3 - Smuggler

Do you want to play a smart-aleck character who isn’t a Jedi? You’ll love the Smuggler. This class is made for people who prefer ranged DPS or the option to use stealth and healing. All Smugglers have to stay mobile in a gunfight, so they use medium armor. Players can choose Humans, Cyborgs, and Zabraks for their characters. Subscribers can choose Twi’lek or Mirialan as well.

There are two Smuggler advanced classes, and they perform different roles in the game. Gunslingers are the ideal choice for those who like to do a lot of ranged DPS. This advanced class dual-wields two blaster pistols. Scoundrels attack at a closer range with a single blaster pistol and a scattergun, but they have the advantage of stealth to avoid detection while going in for the kill. Scoundrels can also specialize in healing. While Jedi Sages are the primary healers in the group, Scoundrels are great secondary healers.

Smuggler character progression and advanced classes trailer

Smugglers start out on the planet Ord Mantell dealing with Skavak and the Separatists. Corso Riggs, who despises the Separatists, is the first companion you’ll meet. If you prefer a companion who is a melee tank, the Wookiee, Bowdarr, will be a great companion. Risha and Akaavi Spar will join as ranged combatants, and Guss Tuno rounds out your group as a Force-sensitive healer.

From your epic landing seen on Ord Mantell to you search for the fabled treasure of Nok Drayan to your scraps with Skavak, you'll be one busy Smuggler. Will you have enough luck and skill to escape the clutches of Rogan the Butcher and prevent the Republic from deadly plots? Your adventures might take you to the doorstep of Sith Lords and perhaps even the Emperor.

#4 - Trooper

Troopers are the front-line fighters. For those who enjoy heavy ranged weapons for tanking or doing damage, this is a great class. All Troopers wear heavy armor and train in blaster rifles.

Starting out as the newest member of Havoc Squad, your Trooper will be assigned to Ord Mantell to battle the Separatists. You’ll continue honing your elite fighting skills so that you can defend the Republic from Imperial forces. Everyone can choose Human, Cyborg, or Zabrak as the species for their Trooper. Subscribers can choose Mirialans in addition.

A Level 55 Republic Trooper in PvP gear with high damage stats

Vanguard and Commando are the two Trooper advanced classes. Commandos serve in the tank or DPS role. You’ll be trained in advanced blaster rifle skills and use shield generators to stay at peak health, all while doing tons of damage. If you love the look and damage of the assault cannon, or you want to be a combat medic and heal, check out the Commando advanced class. You’ll be a great addition to any party as group healer or ranged DPS player.

Trooper character progression and advanced classes trailer

Lieutenant Aric Jorgan joins you as a fellow Trooper and companion in your battle against the Separatists. Elara Dorne is a top-notch combat medic and great for a Vanguard. M1-4X, the tanking droid built just for Havoc Squad, and Tanno Vik, a melee tank, will support all Troopers, especially Commandos.

As a Trooper, you'll be the first to enter combat and the last one to leave the battlefield. Will you be the one to rescue your Havoc Squad teammates? Whether you destroy the Gauntlet 'superweapon' or secure it for Imperial use can mean the difference between the Republic surviving or falling to the Empire.

Empire Classes

The Dark side is strong in SWTOR, and you may find you prefer the Empire to the Republic. You’ll have four classes from which to choose.

#1 - Sith Warrior

The Sith Warrior is ideal for those who enjoy the melee tank or DPS roles. This class is a terrific mix of a tanking lightsaber fighter who also has the benefit of some Force powers. All players can choose Human, Cyborg or Zabrak for the species. Subscribers can also choose Sith Pureblood.

Sith Warriors can specialize into either Sith Juggernauts or Sith Marauders. If you love being the main tank in a group, the Juggernaut advanced class is tailored to you. Juggernauts wear heavy armor for the best protection, and use a single lightsaber, advanced melee skills, and defensive Force powers to crush enemies.

Level 10 Sith Marauder Daarthstinky hasn't made much of a name for himself yet...and probably never will

Marauders wear medium armor to allow the use of more Force powers. They can use two lightsabers to deal massive melee DPS whether in a group or not.

Sith Warrior character progression and advanced classes trailer

Your story starts on Korriban as one of the newest acolytes. Will you survive the Trials and prove yourself worthy of the title of Sith? The pirate, Vette, and Lieutenant Pierce will enter your service and both provide ranged support. Malavai Quinn will join your party. He is a tremendous asset as a healer. Jaesa Willsaam lends her lightsaber to your group. The droid, 2V-R8, joins all Imperial players. Will you serve your new master, Darth Baras, or betray him? Can you stop Republic incursions and Jedi attacks? You'll find yourself on a dark path that leads to Darth Malgus and the Emperor.

#2 - Sith Inquisitor

Players who love Force powers should look at the Sith Inquisitor. These Sith use lightsabers, but they focus more on Dark side Force powers to damage enemies and heal allies. All players can choose the Human and Zabrak species, and subscribers can select Twi’lek, Sith Pureblood, and Rattataki species in addition. Since you need to be free to use Force powers, you’ll wear light armor like all other Sith Inquisitors.

There are two advanced classes for Sith Inquisitors. The Sith Assassin focuses on stealth and melee DPS. This class is ideal for those who love sneaking behind enemies to deal extra damage. You’ll use a double-bladed lightsaber to do heavy damage and even some tanking.

This Sith Sorcerer has oddly decided to pursue the Light Side of the Force (just to make his superiors mad)

Sith Sorcerers use their Force powers to do a lot of ranged DPS, reserving their single lightsaber for the few times when enemies are able to get close to them. If you enjoy the healing role, you can specialize in healing powers to keep your allies alive in tough fights.

Sith Inquisitor character progression and advanced classes trailer

Your story begins as a slave who has been sent to Korriban to train as a Sith after being discovered as Force-sensitive. Your choice: become a Sith or die. Khem Val, your first companion, and Ashara Zavros, a fallen Padawan, are terrific melee fighters, especially for Sorcerers. Talos Drellik is a healer who is especially helpful for some Assassins. Andronikus Revel and Xalek serve the Empire with guns and sheer grit. Your quests will take you all over the galaxy defying other Sith Lords, defeating Jedi Masters, and searching for an artifact of immense Dark side power. Are you going to use it for the Empire? Will you turn on your master to become a Sith Lord yourself? Only time will tell.

#3 - Imperial Agent

If you prefer not to be a Sith, you can serve the Empire as an Imperial Agent. Agents are part of the Intelligence arm of the Empire, and they can do a lot of ranged damage with their rifles. Agents need good protection and flexibility, so they use medium armor.

Imperial Agents have two advanced classes: Sniper and Operative. Snipers are pure damage dealers and are a good choice for anyone who likes doing ranged DPS or using sniper rifles. This class has some close-range skills to use when enemies are near.

This corpulent Chiss Agent plans to be a big hit with the ladies

Operatives work from a closer range with their blaster rifles, but they are able to use stealth to get into position for a good backstab with their shivs. They can also choose the healing tree. Inquisitors may be the primary healers in the game, but Operatives can still contribute as a strong secondary healer.

Imperial Agent character progression and advanced classes trailer

Your first assignment when you arrive on Hutta is to convince Nem’ro the Hutt to ally with the Empire. Kaliyo Djannis, the first companion you gain, decides to leave Nem’ro and work with you. She'll provide ranged tank assistance. Vector Hyllis and the droid, SCORPIO, add in melee fighting options. Doctor Lokin will keep you alive with healing skills. As an Agent, you'll infiltrate enemy networks to ferret out enemies of the Empire. Will you succeed as an undercover agent in the Republic Intelligence service? Your skill will mean the difference between the survival or demise of the Empire.

#4 - Bounty Hunter

The Bounty Hunter class is an excellent choice for anyone who loves dealing damage or tanking with ranged heavy weapons. All Bounty Hunters wear heavy armor for top defense. You’ll use a variety of weapons to stalk your prey, like blaster pistols, flamethrowers, and rockets. You can choose Human, Cyborg, or Zabrak as your species. If you’re a subscriber, you can also choose Chiss and Rattataki.

This Bounty Hunter Mercenary takes out his prey with twin blasters (pew pew!)

You can choose either Powertech or Mercenary as your advanced class. The Powertech, who can serve as a tank on the team, uses the flamethrower and blaster pistol to dish out massive damage while using skills to stop incoming damage. The Mercenary uses two blasters and rockets to do a lot of ranged DPS. This advanced class can also pick up a lot of healing skills, so Mercenaries can serve a solid healing role in the group.

Bounty Hunter character progression and advanced classes trailer

'Job One' for your Bounty Hunter: enter Nem’ro’s ‘Great Hunt’ to capture a bounty. When things go awry, Mako joins you on Hutta. She's a terrific healer. Gault and the Jawa, Blizz, add their ranged damage services as your hired guns. The companions Torian Cadera and Skadge will slice through any enemy with melee weapons. As you gain notoriety, you'll gain some highly-placed Imperial clients. You'll also gain powerful enemies in both the Empire and the Republic. You'll need every bit of firepower and a sharp eye to keep you alive long enough to collect on your bounties.


Have you found the most exciting class for your own epic story? Grab a lightsaber or a gun, and have fun getting started!

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