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Subscriber loss surprised some

There a lot of people in the gaming and Star Wars communities, and they were really excited when EA announced about a year ago that it was investing $80 million into a Star Wars themed MMORPG. That game launched as Star Wars: The Old Republic and racked up a large number of users very quickly. It appears that the popularity of the game may be cooling.
According to EA, the game had 1.3 million subscribers at the end of April. At the end of February, the game had 1.7 million subscribers. The reduction coincides with the game's launch in the Asia-Pacific region. Star Wars: TOR comes with a free month subscription so some subscriber fall off was expected shortly after the launch, but the number of losses has surprised many.
EA maintains that the subscriber drop-off is consistent with its projections. Subscriber losses being consistent still didn't prevent EA's shares from dropping as much as 10% in after-hours trading. According to EA interim CFO Peter Moore, "a substantial portion of the decrease [was] due to casual and trial players cycling out of the subscriber base, driving up the overall percentage of paying subscribers."
Casual gamers tend to drop out and stop playing when their free month subscription is over. EA is talking about plans to keep paying customers paying with character expansions and more. EA CEO John Riccitiello counters that the MMORPG is one of the company's top 10 profitable titles. 
"It's a business contributor, while important, is not as important as Medal of Honour or Battlefield or FIFA or Madden or The Sims or SimCity," he said.
Many think competition in the MMORPG sector will only get more intense with the announcement that The Elder Scrolls Online is coming next year. 

Source: BBC

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EA has Borged Bioware
By LBID on 5/11/2012 11:03:53 AM , Rating: 5
I've been a patron of Bioware games for about twelve years now, and had come to expect such greatness from them that I would plunk money down, sight unseen, for any of their games. They were that good.

This last year has been an unmitigated disaster for them. Dragon Age 2 had so few areas as to be claustrophobic. Mass Effect 3 had the worst ending in the history of video games (no exaggeration). Star Wars TOR has suffered from a plethora of bugs that never seem to get fixed, plus absolutely the worst customer service I've seen in many years.

I honestly don't know if this is Bioware's fault, EA's fault, or what have you. Point is though, Bioware's people chose to sell their soul to the Devil, and it's obviously taken its toll on their quality. Twelve years of accumulated good will have quickly evaporated, and I don't know if anything could ever restore my faith in the company. I'm not encouraged when I'm told that the ME3 ending didn't suck, I simply "didn't understand their artistic vision". Hm....

RE: EA has Borged Bioware
By tamalero on 5/11/2012 12:05:41 PM , Rating: 2
Fully agree in most of your points, specially in the support.

Ea as to have the WORST SUPPORT EVER.
having all their crew chinese and asian.. these people BARELY speak English..
And you cannot call that support! they only read from a goddamn recipe list answer book!.
If they do not have the answer (which is MOST of the time) they will hang out.. and send you to the forums to ask TO THE OTHER PLAYERS.. which is completely utter retarded.

let's not forget their constant server crashes in both BF3 and ME3.. that affects the DLCs (you cannot play offline) and other glitches...
EA is seriously being scrooge McDuck in therms of support and reliability on the ORIGIN side.

RE: EA has Borged Bioware
By FITCamaro on 5/12/2012 12:47:25 AM , Rating: 2
I've seen support in TOR to be hit and miss. A buddy in my guild put in a ticket because he bought the wrong thing with his commendations. They refunded them to him and took away the wrong item. Pretty great service.

Same guy though said he sent me something and I never got it. Put in a ticket and it ended with them saying they couldn't verify it. Now maybe he sent it to the wrong guy. I dunno.

But so far I haven't heard too many complaints from the people I play with.

"What would I do? I'd shut it down and give the money back to the shareholders." -- Michael Dell, after being asked what to do with Apple Computer in 1997
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