Star Wars: The Old Republic Might Be Bleeding Subscribers
Is it just me, or has Bioware been offering a lot of free goodies for Star Wars: The Old Republic. The multiple free weekends were noteworthy by themselves, but just this week they vastly expanded the Legacy Promotion. If I didn’t know better, I’d think there might be some troubled
waters er, space waters for the gigantic Star Wars MMO.
Well, now I might just know a slightly bit better. GamesIndustry is reporting that The Old Republic subscriptions may have already topped out after only 4 months since release. That’s according to industry Analyst Doug Creutz, who believes that heavy advertising by EA, not to mention the frequent promotions, is strong evidence that the game has seen a notable decline in subscriptions since the touted 1.7 million counted in February.
Said Creutz: “we believe that the apparent decline in subscribers is most likely due to a lack of ‘end-game’ content for the title, meaning that players who hit the level cap have few compelling options in terms of ongoing game play. While the game got off to a good start,” he continued, “the relatively light amount of end-game content does appear to be taking a toll.”
What else has his form noticed? “We believe EA is attempting to address the end-game content issue, including a recent major game update, but momentum appears to have stalled and we believe it is prudent to adopt a more conservative forecast on subscribers at this time.”
They offer no word on whether Bioware itself might be suffering from a backlash, but it’s telling that sales figures for Mass Effect 3 have also not been to expectation, almost certainly the result of negative word of mouth. The aforementioned free goodies for players, and the upcoming new Mass Effect 3 ending, may be evidence of some panic behind the scenes. Especially since EA is overall doing quite well and expected to end 2012 firmly in the black.
But hey, if it results in better games and a more satisfying player experience, panic away guys. No, seriously, panic. Fix your games. And maybe don’t rush them out next time.