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.

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4 Comments on Star Wars: The Old Republic Might Be Bleeding Subscribers

Mr Flibble

On April 21, 2012 at 9:24 am

For me it wasn’t just a lack of endgame content, but the general uselessness of the professions that boggled my mind. For example I took slicing to get some extra credits. I maxed it out, then realized I had been making more credits per minute at skill 200 than I was at skill 400. Simple design things like this seemed to be found in most of the crew skills, if what I’ve read online can be trusted.

They either need to reduce the monthly fee or just go F2P to get me to come back in. A recently released game of that quality (or lack thereof) just isn’t going to hold paying subscribers when there’s so many other, more polished games out there vying for our time and/or money.

Games without a monthly fee are even better, because you can not play them for a while and not feel like you need to cancel your account to justify the amount of time you aren’t playing the game. You can drop in, drop out, whenever you want to without thinking about it. You can just enjoy the game.


On April 21, 2012 at 5:52 pm

Developers and publishers have a single panacea for low retention numbers: dumb the game down further, make leveling even faster and add more PVP zones. There are no “MMORPGs” any more..their all just 10-hr theme park rides to the MOBA/shopping mall that passes for “endgame”.


On April 21, 2012 at 10:21 pm

”Might be”?

It for sure it last i heard all but a single server hade s*** population and with 1.2 adding next to NOTHING to PvP or PvE (oh yeah a singe warzone and an instance thats gonna keep people playing for years surely!)

Bioware did poorly with SWTOR both at launch and later, the game lacks fundamental features (group finder, addons, macros) hade a VERY hostile community of know it alls that are anti-wow trolls to the point where they’d rather see this game go down in flames then admit that wow did SOME things right and that it should be done in SWTOR aswell.

Then they gamble with a legacy system that adds NOTHING to the game (oh yeah you get a new race and some new emotes and some useless spells that doesnt even matter in the end)

GG bioware, i wish your community was not a bunch of anti-wow trolls maybe then you’d actully have a fair chance.


On April 22, 2012 at 5:27 pm

They are probably having a hard time rubbing together 1.7 subscribers now.