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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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RE: Not a surprise
By Reclaimer77 on 5/11/2012 12:49:56 PM , Rating: 2
They were missing some truly critical features that other MMOs have had for quite a while.

Like macro's and UI mods. When my Bounty Hunter hit 50, I seriously had more specials and equipment keybinds than one could reasonably execute on a keyboard and mouse alone.

I honestly don't know what they could have been thinking. Didn't they know billions of people playing WoW were going to try their game? What did they think would happen when we all discovered there was NO WAY to customize the UI, have even basic macros, or crucial mods of any kind? These things are just essential to any WoW-style MMO. And SWtor is most certainly in the WoW-eque style, but without the basic tools to execute it properly.

RE: Not a surprise
By FITCamaro on 5/11/2012 3:16:28 PM , Rating: 2
The UI can be customized now. I fully support NO macros because it will be exploited.

RE: Not a surprise
By Reclaimer77 on 5/11/2012 3:21:19 PM , Rating: 2
There haven't been macro exploits in WoW for years now. You can design a tightly restrictive macro system no problem.

Exploits are always going to happen in MMO's, the key is how fast you identify and patch them. But judging by the snails pace that was Bioware's bug fixing and customer support, that's not very reassuring I guess.

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