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Reader Comments (57)

Posted: Mar 20th 2010 8:13AM Renko said

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If EA leave BioWare alone to get on with it then SWTOR will be a real contender. If on the other hand EA start interfering...

Posted: Mar 20th 2010 1:25PM (Unverified) said

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Well, it's easy - if you look at every game that BioWare has released, they've all been hits worldwide. I think their last 6 or 8 games have dominated the gaming market so if you use common sense, it's safe to assume that SW:TOR will be a huge hit as well.

Yes, it's a different genre (MMO) but it's still a game and they've already proved that they know the MMO genre with Dragon Age (which is really an offline version of an MMO).
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Posted: Mar 21st 2010 7:28PM (Unverified) said

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Dragon age is just a bad LOL SO EDGY version of Baldurs gate
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Posted: Mar 20th 2010 8:13AM phobic99 said

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It'll do well initially but as with any other MMO, long term success will depend on whatever happens post-launch.

Personally, I'm trying not to fall for any more pre-launch MMO hype because I've been nothing but disappointed with pretty much every release over the past few years. Obviously my fault there.

Posted: Mar 20th 2010 12:40PM (Unverified) said

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Seems nowadays there is no "long term success" in an MMO. The companies should know that they might be the shiny new thing, but eventually something better will come along. At the break-neck rate of new releases currently, along with a ridiculous amount of F2P model games, you have to bring something absolutely phenomenal to hope to meet goals like "2 million subs".

I hope TOR is great. I want to love it, and I really need something to stop me from wanting to play a different MMO every week. Nothing has been able to hold my attention for more than a few weeks for the past year, except Warhammer, and that's only because I was in an active and great guild that was there every time I logged in. "Always something fun to do with other people" is something all these new MMO's should be focused on first. That's how they would keep me coming back, at least.

I cross my fingers that by 2011, I'll be alternating between two active sub games; TOR and FF14.

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Posted: Mar 21st 2010 1:19PM (Unverified) said

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dito
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Posted: Mar 20th 2010 8:17AM archipelagos said

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I think it's probably going to have phenomenal box/initial sales that will more than likely set some new records. Subscription numbers a few months down the line won't look as rosy but will remain fairly healthy; the drop-off will probably be as a result of expectations versus outcome.

Posted: Mar 20th 2010 8:26AM Archebus said

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I think a lot of it depends on information that gets released down the road - what kind of crafting and customization systems they have, how well they balanced the single versus group play, etc. Assuming Bioware is doing their usual excellent job, a million subscribers isn't asking a lot. Two million might be stretching it.

Posted: Mar 20th 2010 8:28AM shinkie said

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I'm sure there would be great sales at the beginning but I definitely won't be basing my decisions off a beta or launch gameplay like I did with Champions Online and then Cryptic changing what I liked about CO for the official release.

Posted: Mar 20th 2010 8:41AM Valdamar said

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I suspect TOR will break 1 million subscribers in the West very soon after launch, and hold there for years, but beyond that I don't know. If they did get to 2 million with a monthly subscription model then they would have a right to be very happy, but I don't think they could go much higher.

I can't see TOR getting more subscribers than WoW - certainly not in total and probably not in the West alone. Blizzard had/has a fanatical following in South East Asia (especially Korea) and over half of their reported "subs" are from that region (and not with the Western monthly subs model either), while both Bioware and the Star Wars IP are only really popular in the West. Also WoW arrived when there weren't tons of MMOs on the market which additionally helped it to become a cultural phenomenon, while TOR is entering a very crowded (glutted!) market. So TOR is only really competing with the 4-5 million or so WoW subscribers in the US and Europe and I doubt it will get that high.

Then I can't help thinking that EA will get greedy (like Atari/Cryptic) and go for a subs+microtransactions model - we all know how that would work out - it would severely impact initial growth - they'd be lucky to reach half a million subs with that model in the West atm.

Posted: Mar 20th 2010 9:18AM (Unverified) said

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Re: Valdamar
South Korea is far from South-east Asia. It is more like North-east Asia
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Posted: Mar 20th 2010 3:13PM Seare said

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When you say the "West", are you referring to USA only? Star Wars is extremely popular in Europe and Japan.
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Posted: Mar 21st 2010 10:29AM Valdamar said

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When I say the West I mean the countries usually considered as western, i.e. USA, most of Northern and Western Europe, and yeah Japan/Australia/NZ too.

And Bob, yeah I should probably have said South and Eastern Asia.
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Posted: Mar 20th 2010 8:48AM Gemi said

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To be honest I'm quite sure a huge number of people are now so hyped and so excited about a "genre breaking MMO" that the expectations can't be met by any company on the face of earth. This will lead into major disappointments regardless of how good the game is and thus a lot of people leaving because the game wasn't as godly as they hoped. I'm sure it will be a very good game, but to me it seems like people are just expecting more than any game could offer.

Posted: Mar 20th 2010 3:34PM Seare said

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I agree with you 100%. People's expectations are unrealistic.
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Posted: Mar 20th 2010 8:52AM SgtBaker said

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Huh? Didn't we just discuss TOR sub numbers two posts down?

Posted: Mar 20th 2010 9:07AM (Unverified) said

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It will do very well. Last night I heard the latest Darth Hater podcast, and one there said Old Mantell was "at least half the size of Kalimdor". That was what she could tell from the world map.

Just imagine 500 quests on every single planet. You have at least 12 planets, and most likely 16. These are all large planets, of which Ord Mantell is one of the smaller (since its only a starter planet) planets. In addition you'll have space stations, and perhaps even smaller asteroids or moons too. Not to mention caves and dungeons. It wouldn't surprise me if the number of quests in this game at launch exceeds 8500.

Now who would complete that in 6 months except for the very most hardcore gamer out there. Its like maxing all the WoW achievements.

Before I started reading up on this, and listening to certain podcasts, I thought most would leave before reaching the end game. But now, I am not so sure. It will more be like DA: "ORIGINS". With even more emphasis on alts than WoW. Add to this the fact that their also going to have some sort of end game. We know it will have raiding. We don't yet know how that will turn out. But from what I can tell, they will have quite some time to iron that out, while we're having fun doing what may turn out to be an eternity of quests. Fun quests.

There is a reason why they require 2 mill subs. It means they have moved up in scale from every other mmo. "Perhaps the largest production in entertainment. Period" remember? I doubt this is only marketing. They can't lie about stuff like that.

Posted: Mar 20th 2010 9:23AM (Unverified) said

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Well, I can understand why some are reluctant to think they will reach 2 million subs.

But look at blockbuster movies. Avatar cost 500 million usd according to some. When the news got out, who believed it would make that much money? It was the most expensive production in movie history. How much has it made now from the box office only? Soon 2.7 billion!

Bet high, and you earn high. It is as simple as that. Now, when did Bioware not meet target expectations in the past?

Posted: Mar 20th 2010 10:29AM (Unverified) said

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Around $69-$93million estimated development costs for TOR. Thats more than any console game , the record for that is grand tursimo 5 at $60million
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Posted: Mar 20th 2010 11:17AM Halldorr said

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At $69-$93 million in development costs it still doesn't reach Grand Theft Auto IV's estimated costs of $100 million.

http://www.nydailynews.com/money/galleries/most_expensive_video_games_ever/most_expensive_video_games_ever.html
http://kotaku.com/5479819/report-the-ten-most-expensive-video-game-budgets-apparently-are

I'm glad they are throwing a huge budget at this and I hope they do it right as opposed to just throwing their money away.
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