EA: SWTOR ‘Solid And Profitable’
So, perhaps you’re a Star Wars: The Old Republic player who’s noticed a distinctly small population in the Galaxy far, far away as of late, and are wondering about the health of the game. Sure, BioWare has insisted that all is well, but Destructoid did a little digging earlier in the week, and discovered that might not be the case. Thanks to Electronic Arts’ Q1 investor report, we now know that SWTOR has apparently been bleeding subscribers in the last couple of months. They were claiming 1.7 million subs back in February, but the recent report put the number at 1.3. Oops.
No matter, because BioWare and Corporate Parent Electronic Arts are doubling down on the health of the game. EA CEO John Riccitiello, speaking to CNBC, was crowing about the 1.3 million subscribers, claiming that despite the drop the game has exceeded expectations. “When we originally started the franchise,” he said, “our plan was to break one million subscribers. Our investment case was 1.2 million. We told the street yesterday we’re at 1.3 million. We happened to have an earnings call right in the launch period, where we hit 1.7 million. We have an obligation to tell them the facts. I think it’s a solid success.”
To those saying that the drop in subscribers bodes ill for the health of the game, he said “Some people are treating it like it’s the only thing that matters. For what it’s worth, it’s a solid, successful and profitable franchise.” OK, fine, I believe him. But anecdotal evidence, by which I mean, my friends who play SWTOR, suggests otherwise. We’ll see if the drop in subscriptions continues through the current quarter, at which point I’ll start taking best as to when they’ll make the F2P switch.