Viva Nar Shaddaa

This year continues to kick my shebs, but this blog does have an informal tradition of taking a close look at some of Nar Shaddaa’s colorful holographic signs while the Nightlife event is active, and I didn’t want the event to pass without taking a moment to recreate one of the most distinctive examples of neon Aurebesh in all of Star Wars: The Old Republic.

There is a fair amount going on with this graphic, but first and foremost it clearly draws inspiration from the famous “Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas” sign that has greeted visitors to the city for more than six decades and has become as a distinctive landmark of the city as any hotel on the Strip.

The parallels between Sin City and the Smuggler’s Moon are obvious and intentional across Star Wars lore, so SWTOR’s homage to the sign is a natural fit. Strict traditionalists might be confused and vexed by this sign for both its use of two distinct forms of Aurebesh as well as its disregard for the canonical spelling of Nar Shaddaa. In both cases, I can’t possibly imagine the Hutt crimelords who commissioned this sign caring at all.

“Welcome to” is written using a freehand Aurebesh font which pops up occasionally in other SWTOR signage, but “Nar Shadda” is written using Erik Schroeder’s “Galactic Basic” font, whose usage is a not uncommon sight in SWTOR. This font is more accurate to the alien text seen in Return of the Jedi, but different enough to not actually be Aurebesh, which was itself based on that same text.

The challenge and fun of my recreation was both in duplicating the neon glow and colors of the original, but also replicating its somewhat jagged low resolution. It is my suspicion that this graphic was created early in SWTOR’s development, since other signs and displays tend to have sharper details. Finally, as always, I preserved the spelling “mistake” in my recreation as reminder of the dangers of writing in alien languages.

One Click Bandits Crashin’

Speaking of the Nightlife Event, I thought I’d also touch on this year’s updates. In addition to a somewhat new way to win prizes, three adorable pets, a mount and a complete panoply of weapons were added as jackpot prizes from the Emperor’s Slot Machines.

I admit that my dice were once again hot, and before the event has finished I’ve come away with every prize I wanted, which was honestly mainly the three new pets. I did also collect several of the High Roller weapons, all of which are pretty darn neat. Interestingly this group of weapons are Bind-on-Equip meaning players can trade them with each other in person or through the Galactic Trade Network.

If you’re reading this while the event is active, and you’d like one of the High Roller weapons, I actually recommend buying them directly from the GTN instead of buying Emperor’s chips. The prices will never be lower than they are now while the supply is still strong.

Once again, this year I haven’t needed to purchase chips for the various machines. My leftover stash from previous years is considerable, and simply being active in the game has resulted in a steady supply of Emperor’s tokens allowing me enough chances to get the jackpots I want.

Other new addition to the event have been the “Max Bet” machines available only in the VIP section of both the Republic and Imperial Fleet hubs. As someone who has had access since launch, it’s been neat to see the VIP lounge the most active it’s ever been. Before the addition of Strongholds, it was the location with the most convenient access to our Cargo Hold, a mailbox and the Galactic Trade Network, and I’m glad to again have an excuse to flash my wrist band again and slip behind the velvet rope upstairs.

Max Bet chips can be purchased with either credits or their corresponding chips from your Currency wallet, and have a higher chance to yield a prize result from their respective machines. However even though you might win a prize, you’re still not guaranteed to win the prize you actually want, or even a jackpot. I have not tried a Max Bet Emperor’s machine, but I’m confident I’d get better results from 20 spins of a regular Emperor’s machine than one of the Max Bet machines. Likewise, I see almost no point to bothering with the green Max Bet Smuggler’s machines.

That said, I have taken advantage of the Max Bet Kingpin machines. As a veteran of the event over the years, my stash of blue chips numbers in the thousands and turning a few hundred of them into Max Bet Kingpin chips has allowed me (when used with the Lucky buff from the Smuggler’s machines) to convert them into some extra Emperor’s tokens at a far faster pace that I would otherwise. I don’t doubt that the rate of return would be higher with the regular chips and Kingpin machines, but I simply don’t have the time or interest in the effort it would take to do so.

And I continue to accrue piles of Golden Certificates and Cartel Market Certificates. I’d definitely like something new to buy with them, but it’s nice that if there is a mount, a weapon, a dye, a decoration, or anything at all I want from the Cartel reputation vendors or Golden Certificate vendors, I don’t need to hesitate at all to indulge myself.

Clearly part of the goal of the changes to the Nightlife event was to act as something of a money sink, but I wonder if its having a big effect on the economy. Certainly, you can drop 7.5 million credits on a spin of the Emperor’s machine, but you could also run a flashpoint or play some PVP to earn the chips too. Bioware has done of good job of making the Nightlife event much more player friendly since its debut eight years ago, and I’m glad we can continue to participate by playing SWTOR and not just burning credits.

I’m in favor of credit sinks, but I’d hope for ones that make me want to spend credits rather than making me feel forced to. That cannot be an easy balance to strike.

Opal Vulptilla Pup Raffle!

Finally, I am lucky enough to be able to share with members of my community an opportunity to win an Opal Vulptilla Pup pet. To enter this raffle, all you need to do is leave a comment below this post. How has your luck been at the slot machines this year? What’s your favorite jackpot? Have you run out of alts to give Vectron Wraiths to? Do you prefer the Gamorrean or the Rodian companion? Let me know what SWTOR thoughts are on your mind!

To enter, leave a comment below with the following information:

  • Your character name (be mindful of spaces and special symbols!)
  • Your faction
  • Your server

That’s it! For every ten entries, I will draw one winner up to a maximum of 5 winners. I will accept entries for two weeks from this posting and will randomly select winners on September 12 at 12 PM ET.

If you prefer not to comment publicly, I will also accept entries via email at or through twitter.

There are no country or server restrictions on any of the prizes that will be awarded.

This giveaway is not sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with LucasFilm Ltd, BioWare or Electronic Arts Inc.

We’re on the honor system here, so one entry per person, please.

Please only enter for yourself!

Good luck, and may the Force (or the luck of the Hutts) be with you!

If you’re new here, I hope you’ll take a look around. I’ve been translating SWTOR’s alien languages for more than five years now and sharing commentary about the state of the game as I see it.



Filed under Aurebesh to English, General SWTOR

40 Responses to Viva Nar Shaddaa

  1. I love Nar Shaddaa… it is a focal point of my d20 Star Wars game. I was tickled when I learned that NS was going to be a major part of SWTOR. The Neon Lights make for really nice screenshots.

    re: Max Bet
    A Max Bet token costs 20x the price of a regular token, and you only potentially earn one of the same prize. I think you’re better off pulling the regular machine 20 times instead… at least on the Emperor Machines.

    So far during this Night Life event, I’ve earned one Rodian, a Light Saber, an Assault Cannon, a Blaster Pistol, Two Blaster Rifles, some Pets, some Speeders, one fancy Animal Mount, and enough Certificates to get a few Gamorean Guard Companions… still no Sun Glasses…

    Server: Star Forge
    Faction: Republic
    Character: SexyLekku
    Hail NOR !!!

  2. Mie-go

    Unpopular opinion about max bet slots
    It’s really good we have those as an easy way to get rid off tones of blue chips. For example I’ve huntig gucci glasses hard, roll about ~250 emperor tokens and now have 7k blues to spend. And kingpin max bet just saves my time with the approximately same profit of certificates so Im glad we have this. However emperor’s max bet still not worth it 🙂


  3. Anurzin

    Decent luck at the slots actually, I got the glasses and 2/3 Pets!! The Ginx is the last one I want. I like the Rodian comp more, and have lucked out getting that a few times as well. SOOOOOOOOOO many Wraiths. Too many. They need to stop. I wish there was an exchange option for them lol

    Max bet is a fabulous way to get rid of the access blue tokens for sure, I like that addition. I don’t like that if you win tokens on max bet, they are regular tokens and not max bet tokens. Seems silly to me.

    I will keep hitting those slots so I can buy more decos though <3 MOAR DECOS!

    Character name: Anur'zin
    Faction: Republic
    Server: Star Forge

  4. Alyxavior

    Character name: Kyno Nan
    Faction: Republic
    Server: Star Forge

  5. Anonymous

    Think I won most of the stuff last year 😅

    Star forge

  6. I’ve had decent luck with Max Bet Smuggler’s, while I don’t recommend it if you just want the Lucky Buff. It’s better to get the regular Smuggler’s.

    But, with what I’ve seen with the Max bet Smuggler’s, you get a larger array of awards that include Kingpin Tokens. So, one Max Bet Smuggler’s Token = 1 Kingpin Token. While, playing Max Bet Smuggler’s Tokens, I’ve noticed rewards such as: 15 Smuggler’s (less that vendor value), but also: 1 Kingpin Token, 5 Kingpin Tokens, either 10 or 15 Kingpin Tokens, & 1 Max Bet Kingpin Token.

    I also did end up getting several Vectrons and Phrojos that day. So I can say that the ‘special’ prizes really weren’t any better than Smuggler’s Tokens it was the KINGPIN TOKENS I won play Max Bet Smuggler’s that ended up being worth it from a cost perspective. I came out with more Kingpin Tokens playing the Max Bet Smuggler’s than I did if I had just purchased them directly from the Vendor, and in a shorter amount of time than playing regular Smuggler’s Tokens.

    You definitely need to stop when you’re ahead, the moment you start to have diminishing returns or outright losses.

    So rather than buying Kingpins, I hit up the Max Bet Smugglers to get a few dozen Kingpins, and then use regular Smuggler’s for the luck buff on the Regular Kingpin slots.

    This is more of a credit / time saver to acquiring Kingpin Tokens via slots, rather than High Roller Rewards.

    I agree w/ everything else in terms of Max Bet… Never tried Emperor’s Max, and the Kingpin Max didn’t seem to be more than a slower attrition game that exchanged Max Bet Kingpins for regular Kingpins (5 – 15 per Max Bet Token).

    For about 80 mil I plunked down over a few weeks, I have gotten about 5 Phrojos and 7 Vectrons. One High Roller Weapons, the High Roller Shades, The Kingpin’s Mount, and so many Certs of both types I lost track on the Cert spending spree days that doubled my Nightlife Deco collection, 2 Gamorean Guard Companions, a Kingin Rancor, a few Kingpin Weapons, and a full Nightlife Socialite Costume Set.


    Character Name: Xodlak’ar’nurudo
    Faction: Imperial
    Server: Star Forge

  7. Slyfox Martin

    I spent some credits on nightlife this time. Wanted that claw pet and glasses last nightlife but never got. I got them this time and happy! Was only about 1B credits lol. Think I got most items except weapons. Have gotten a few with the credits I spent on tokens and tokens I got from gameplay.
    I think this is the funniest question, “Have you run out of alts to give Vectron Wraiths to?” Answer, yes!!!! I still have quite a few in my bank for new alts that “might” be made lol.
    Character name- Vixen’fox
    Faction- Imperial
    Server- Star Forge

  8. Me

    Wilson Etrigan
    Darth Malgus

  9. Anonymous

    Wilson Etrigan
    Darth Malgus

  10. Stacey

    To enter this raffle, all you need to do is leave a comment below this post. How has your luck been at the slot machines this year? What’s your favorite jackpot? Have you run out of alts to give Vectron Wraiths to? Do you prefer the Gamorrean or the Rodian companion? Let me know what SWTOR thoughts are on your mind!
    My luck so far has been decent! I’ve gotten most of the weapons and the pets, as well as the glasses. I was trying hard to get the sniper rifle, and someone just gave me one because they had three!
    I won Phrojo a few times last year and this year, but never the Gamorrean. I prefer Phrojo over the Gammorean just because he’s named and has a little history. I have a Ton of Wraiths but at least they can be exchanged for credits. I actually really like the Max Bet option just because I’ve gotten so many chips from different activities that I could never spend them all. My favorite jackpot might be Claw but I do love the High Roller weapons. I still want the blaster pistol and the grifna chick, I haven’t come across either of those yet.

    Ayasi K’nara
    Star Forge

  11. Simeaz

    Character name: Meaz
    Faction: Republic
    Server: Star Forge

  12. Jessica

    I just got the blaster from the casino! But I still want the glasses!! I’m hoping for those one day 🙂 I have so many Vectron Wraiths and not enough characters to give them to either! lol

    Character Name: Jess’Kidding
    Faction: Republic
    Server: Star Forge

  13. obiwanomalley

    I went pretty hard the first couple of days and picked up at least one of the High Roller weapons, so now I’m just trying to get a weapon for each of my alts. I got all the Achievements for the event last year so I’m trying to be chill about it. It’s a fun event but kinda wish there were some new prizes from the vendor. Oh well, i still enjoy it.

    Star Forge

  14. So far I’ve gotten 2 pets, 1 mount, a spreadsheet of data, and carpal tunnel. Still, it is fun playing the slot machines while you’re in between queues or doing crew skill stuff. Good advice on the high roller weapons, thanks!

    Déus (Alt 0233)
    Star Forge

  15. Wilmer Saldivia

    This year is better than previous one. I am getting more drops of Emperor chips, in one day got ten. Last year I didn’t get the glasses, this year was the second jackpot! So this is my favorite. I do the same as you, use the max bet only with Kingpin coins.. And if I got a jackpot, I stop playing. So far, the glasses, the 3 new pets, the new mount, a lot of vectron, and a high roller blaster rifle. Still have some Emperor coins, will see what else I get this year.
    About the companions. I prefer the gamorrean, just because I can customize his gear.

    Republic Faction
    Satele Shan

  16. Still no luck with the shades, and all those new prizes don’t make it easier to win them! The money sink aspect is definitely working for me though, and I do like the new max bet chips for the Kingpin machines, just to get rid of them more quickly.

    Shintar/Republic/Darth Malgus

  17. Chiana

    Wouldn’t it be nice if the nightlife event was permanent? It would make sense to have a full time casino on Nar Shaddaa. Besides that would make a good credit sink.

    Chiana Nebari
    Darth Malgus

  18. Ravmali

    Satele Shan

  19. Ji'ati

    I was lucky to have won all the new prizes about one week in to this year’s night life event. I think the new weapons being tradeable/sellable is a step in the right direction. I’m convinced the max bet machines don’t give any more wins than the regular machines. There is nothing more disappointing than winning 2 certificates on a max bet emperor machine. But that’s gambling for you.

    Star Forge

  20. Anonymous

    Luck has been much better , gotten all 3 pets , most weapons and the x2 new Mount ( I still don’t have the blue one). Still trying to get blue 1 + need the 2 sabers left. Probably spent over 2B so far 😛

    Darth Malgus

  21. RaneTheExile

    Character Name – Rane Blackguard
    Faction – Republic
    Server – Star Forge

  22. Gonzo

    I have enjoyed the night life event since I started playing Swtor. This year has been pretty stingy for upper end rewards for me. I finally won a set of the shades last night, but have seen no weapons at all. It has been interesting though. I loved the artwork for your recreation of the Nar Shaddaa sign!! Also the amount of detail in this article was great and I did not get the correlation between Vegas’ sign and SWTORS sign until now, that is super cool!!
    Gonzo Katarn
    Star forge

  23. Christy

    I’ve really enjoyed the nightlife event and have been somewhat lucky with a couple of mounts, a claw pet, and a few of the new weapons! My favorite pet is by far the claw replica lol! Very interesting blog about the signage!

    Mystriel Nocturi
    Satele Shan

  24. Akis

    Good luck to everybody and cheers! 😀

    Character Name: Dha’nkmiimr
    Faction; Imperial
    Server: Star Forge

  25. Trix

    Toon: Trick Astley
    Faction: Republic
    Server: Star Forge

  26. Danuvius

    Character Name – Danuvius
    Faction – Empire
    Server – Darth Malgus

    • Xozhana

      Character Name – Xozhana
      Faction – Imperial
      Server – Star Forge

      Night life event is always a good time! Still need a few of the new weapons, got plenty of mounts, but hey, it’s a gamble! Like how the max bet slots speed things up. Rhodian commentary when sent on crew skills always make me laugh.

  27. Rye

    Rye’s Medicus
    Star Forge

  28. Atria Sol

    I went into this year with a ton of emperor tokens as I won everything I wanted quickly last year. My first day of play was great expending all the tokens I had I came away with nearly everything I wanted….but the pritarr pup has eluded me all season long. I NEED IT! I’m a pet collector so it’s hard not winning it still. As for favs…all 3 pets are adorable. I loved that the weapons were tradable. I wish they did that with pets and mounts too.

    Atria Sol
    Republic Side
    Star Forge

  29. CT-7056

    Server: Darth Malgus
    Faction: Galactic Republic
    Character name: Cetea Sofs

  30. Ro

    Still trying for those shades but with zero luck! Meanwhile my friend has four pairs…

    Server: Darth Malgus
    Faction: Empire
    Character name: Ev’aari

  31. I have managed to get just about everything from the machines that I wanted. At least one of each weapon (which I am so glad was made BOE btw) and each pet, too! I absolutely love the pets! The Night Life is perhaps my favorite event!

    Character Name: Gabriel Duncan
    Faction: Republic
    Server: Star Forge

  32. Paul

    Name; Bubby Newport
    Faction; Pub
    Server; SF

  33. Nanawatzin

    Your character name: Cinahr Mhum
    Your faction: Republic
    Your server: Darth Malgus

  34. Beaktooth

    I spent a lot of time last year trying to get the shades but failed. This year I started early and spent about 300m credits and finally got them. Anything else I’ve been getting since then is just a bonus.

    Name: Sinfoni
    Faction: Empire
    Server: Satele Shan

  35. Anonymous

    Jade rand
    Star forge

  36. Hey it’s my first time playing this casino event! It was fun rolling the first hour or so, then it starts feeling sooo grindy. Only won the Vectron mount so far, it’s cool I guess. Maybe I’ll roll more once I feel like grinding for the prizes again, like for the Kingpin lightsaber?

    Name – Codename Cypher
    Faction – Imperial
    Server- Star Forge

  37. Anonymous

    Great article!!!

    Satele Shan

  38. Ryomen-sukuna

    This casino event is the best one ever! I have played every one every year and gotten almost every single prize available, bar a few harder-to-get ones that just keeps eluding me. For some ironic reason, the Vectron BWL Wraith is one of these prizes that I just couldn’t get, despite everyone else getting it by the dozens! XD Anyways, I really do appreciate the SWTOR devs to add the Max Bet Smuggler, Kingpin and Emperor machines as they really save so much time of me slowly spinning thousands of tokens that just sucks my soul away… Gotten most of the prizes for this event in record time compared to my previous years of playing, Viva Nar Shaddaa indeed!

    Name: Ryomen-sukuna Faction: Imperial Server: Star Forge