BioWare Says The Old Republic Subscription Numbers Aren't Dropping

When Star Wars: The Old Republic became available last October, the big test it faced was showing an ability to pull away players from the World of Warcraft juggernaut. Neither company wants to discuss the tug-of-war in terms of raw numbers, but Blizzard's developers have admitted to seeing a dip in subscriptions. What about BioWare, then?

The developer claims that their SWTOR subscriber base holding steady, but they've got other challenges to face down.

In an interview with PC Gamer, BioWare's Daniel Erickson says that the number of concurrent users during peak times for The Old Republic has gone down. This means that players are seeing less populated worlds while they're in game. One possible tactic for this issue is merging servers, Erickson said, but he indicated BioWare wants to purse lots of strategies to keep people playing:

"Nothing is off the table when it comes to making sure our communities are strong and active on each server."

It doesn't seem like doom and gloom yet, but rather comes across as a sign that BioWare knows they need to build a community in a landscape that that will constantly have another more populated universe to tempt them.

BioWare doing "anything and everything" to keep players logging in to SW:TOR [PC Gamer, via Gamasutra]


    Maybe if the game had content worth logging on for mor than two hours... The most fun part of the game was levelling. Endgame is seriously lacking. They should have held off release until it was ready and not the bug infested garbage they shoved out in time for Xmas.

    They have pretty bad customer service. I emailed support as I never got the option for oceanic transfers. 5 days later, 2 emails and no response. Pretty sure transfers are over now.. Oh well another lost customer.
    Bring on GW2! Beta weekend this coming one :D

      If your character was made after Feb 28 its ineligible and if your account region isn't Asia pacific your ineligible.

        Character was made at head start. And the account was US location though it is quite easy to tell its an Aus account due to the IP or the credit card used. Even so they could have emailed back saying "sorry due to you being an idiot and having US we are not going to let you". Any communication is better than none at all. Oh well just another customer gone.

    Afcourse hell say that. He knows damn well it would only attract bad press.

    Is it just me or do MMO players somehow seem to have ridiculously high expectations for everything? All I've seen on TOR so far is how a bunch of gamers are complaining how the game should change for them.

      One of the bigger reasons I avoid MMOs.

      I'm sure if you were paying $15 a month you would probably feel the same way :P

      I look at it like this. Subscription MMO players are paying for the the initial game release and an additional monthly fee for their tenure with the game. As with any ongoing service, value for money is not an unrealistic or unfair expectation. However, the problems seem to arise because MMOs generally cater to the widest possible audience.

      The more diverse a player-base, the more diverse the viewpoints are as far as what constitutes 'value for money.' As an example, Player A might only be interested in levelling content, Player B only wants PvP and Player C is only interested in roleplay. etc.

      Each of these players feels they have a voice for the area of focus for future development (and they do) but when you lump all of these players into one community, it can look like everyone wants everything. There is no 'perfect' MMO because it means something different for everyone.

      With reference to SWTOR, I immensely disliked the combat and character mobility. For instance, jumping around to reach holocrons was frustrating for me - not because it was 'difficult' but because I felt like I was fighting clunky character controls. Combat wasn't especially difficult either but I felt like I was bombarded with too many abilities and I *had* to have a rotation of abilities in battle - almost more work than fun. Eventually, I got to ~42 before I decided SWTOR just wasn't for me. Maybe something on the horizon will be.

    I've been playing since they gave early beta access to people who pre-ordered.

    I've loved it so far, I haven't really got any complaints. Sure, there are a few things that bug me, but nothing is perfect.

    I still haven't hit level 50 as I've been taking my time, and enjoying the story so far. It's been a lot of fun.

    My major concern is that the quality of content will disappear as time goes on.

      I’ve loved it so far, I haven’t really got any complaints.

      I still haven’t hit level 50

      These two statements are unfortunately related. One of the main reasons people have been giving up is the poor endgame. There's nothing to do except grind dailies for commendations to get the gear to grind heroics to get the gear to run some raids. No factions to grind reputation, not much cosmetic gear to work toward, no cool stuff. Your only other real option is to roll an alt, but about 70-80% of your experience on that alt is going to be exactly the same as the previous character you played assuming the same faction. You'll visit the same places in the same order and mainly spend your time doing the same quests.

    Really because I recently unsubbed so you are at least 1 subscription down there Mr Daniel Erickson...

    The main reason I actually gave it up because my male Consular kept looking like was dressing up in drag. Seriously, why is the end game armour for the Consulars so shite? That and I could never find a person to team up with for crap I wanted to do.

    The problems I have with the crapness of this article begins in the first line

    "When Star Wars: The Old Republic became available last October"

    Released december 20, with up to 5 days head start. Core game is awesome, and the content is plentiful and of a high quality. Yes there are problems, but I'm happy in the game, and run a high end raiding guild with awesome players from both a skill and personality standpoint. The latest content in the 1.2 patch is pleasingly challenging after the ezymode EV/KP.

    End game is absolutely mind numbing and recently my entire guild followed in cancelling sub after this freebie month. The good parts were indeed the levelling and getting to know the storyline. If this was a b2p then it'd be great but as a p2p, it's just not worth it.

    I recently bought this game after playing a 7 day trial.

    So far I'm really enjoying it. I know every nay-sayer I bump into online says that once I hit 50 it's going to become horrible. But I'm not sure that's how I want ot play this game anyway.

    I'm playing as a Jedi Knight and already I'm itching to try a Smuggler, Imperial Agent and Bounty Hunter.

    I am probably a more casual MMO player, but I think TOR is aimed towards that kind of audience. It's not the next big thing in MMO's in terms of original gameplay mechanics, but I don't think it's as bad as some people say it is.

    The way some people put this game down, you'd think it was Final Fantasy IV.

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