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Star Wars: The Old Republic: Subscriptions Declining Says Analyst

SBFordSBFord Associate Editor - News ManagerThe Land of AZPosts: 16,588MMORPG.COM Staff Uncommon

According to a new report from Cowan and Company, subscription numbers for Star Wars: The Old Republic are in decline. According to the report, subscriptions peaked in February with 1.7 million subscribers. At the end of Q1 of fiscal year 2013, the analyst group is predicting a fall in subscriptions to 1.25 million.

"We believe that the apparent decline in subscribers is most likely due to a lack of 'end-game' content for the title, meaning that players who hit the level cap have few compelling options in terms of ongoing game play," he noted. "While the game got off to a good start, the relatively light amount of end-game content does appear to be taking a toll."

"We believe EA is attempting to address the end-game content issue, including a recent major game update, but momentum appears to have stalled and we believe it is prudent to adopt a more conservative forecast on subscribers at this time."

Source: Gamasutra

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Comments

  • DauzqulDauzqul Detroit, MIPosts: 1,402Member Uncommon

    This game will continue to lose subscriptions. It's not worth subscribing to. It's a great single player PC game with a nice co'op. However, calling it a MMORPG is simply wrong.

    This game has no player-generated content, no social realm, and absolutely no sustain.

    If this game wasn't a Star Wars title, it would've already converted over to FTP.



     

  • gaeanprayergaeanprayer Somewhere Out There, PAPosts: 2,320Member Uncommon

    we believe it is prudent to adopt a more conservative forecast on subscribers at this time."

     

    Should have done that from the beginning. Companies keep thinking it's better to boast, but it isn't. It's far better to understate and have people think you're growing, than to over-state and appear to be bleeding profit.

    "Forums aren't for intelligent discussion; they're for blow-hards with unwavering opinions."

  • Paragus1Paragus1 Philadelphia, PAPosts: 1,739Member Uncommon

    It's a shame that 1000 people are going to lose their jobs who had probably nothing to do with the poor decisions made at the drawing board for this game.  The entire concept that someone thought one-time consumable story content which can't be produced nearly as fast as it consumed would keep people paying a monthly fee over the long-term is silly.  They should have just made a single-player RPG or used the bloated budget to make a full length motion picture.

  • JeroKaneJeroKane OsloPosts: 5,353Member Uncommon

    You don't need to be an Analyst to see a decline in numbers.

    Just playing the game and see two of your servers you play on going from Very Heavy all the way down to Standard load in just two months, should give you indication enough that subscriptions are going down.

    Less than 10 servers (US and EU combined) hit Heavy / Very Heavy each day during primetime. All the rest of the servers are stuck at Light / Standard load.

     

    Lack of endgame content isn't the issue alone. All the people stuck on Light and Standard load servers (especially Light) have been screaming for server mergers / free transfers since february and have not been heard!

    Nothing is more frustrating than being stuck on a Ghost town!

    The idea of having to reroll yet again and having to start over and leveling up yet again, going through all the same content isn't appealing to many.

    So they rather just give up and quit.

    And that is exactly what is happening.

  • DenambrenDenambren Montreal, QCPosts: 320Member Uncommon

    1.25 million seems a little optimistic by 2013

     

  • ShadanwolfShadanwolf Posts: 2,114Member Uncommon

    Another companys decision makers revealed .The PETER PRINCIPAL proves itself again.

     

    (ok..you don't know what the PETER PRINCIPAL is ?  "People rise in an organization to their level of incompitance")

  • NadiaNadia Canonsburg, PAPosts: 11,866Member Common

    from article

    by the end of the current fiscal year in March 2013, the game will have around 1.25 million subscribers, based on server statistics provided on TorStatus.net

  • black_isleblack_isle IstanbulPosts: 238Member Uncommon

    Still can't believe people payed monthly for a subpar single player game with a multiplayer option.  Luckily BW didn't try to charge monthly for Mass Effect (but soon).



     

  • joocheesejoocheese San Antonio, TXPosts: 845Member

    Originally posted by Paragus1

    It's a shame that 1000 people are going to lose their jobs who had probably nothing to do with the poor decisions made at the drawing board for this game.  The entire concept that someone thought one-time consumable story content which can't be produced nearly as fast as it consumed would keep people paying a monthly fee over the long-term is silly.  They should have just made a single-player RPG or used the bloated budget to make a full length motion picture.

    Agreed. As much as I can't stand SWTOR and hate EA Games, I cannot gloat on the fact that people will lose their jobs; that is, those who were not directly responsible (leadership) for the game.

  • IllyssiaIllyssia LondonPosts: 1,524Member

    Really depends on how much content and expansions Bioware develop for the game. What you have to bear in mind is that post launch any game will have a period of bug fixing and balancing, then the development team can focus on just patching in new end-game content. I think between now and the end of the year that is what Bioware will do, and implement cross server PvP and looking for group for PvE on servers. These types of actions will probably mean that the population will stay.

  • PhryPhry HampshirePosts: 6,289Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by Illyssia

    Really depends on how much content and expansions Bioware develop for the game. What you have to bear in mind is that post launch any game will have a period of bug fixing and balancing, then the development team can focus on just patching in new end-game content. I think between now and the end of the year that is what Bioware will do, and implement cross server PvP and looking for group for PvE on servers. These types of actions will probably mean that the population will stay.

    Lets hope they implement those things sooner rather than later, but that isnt really a fix solution, its something that will hopefully stem some of the 'tide' of players leaving the game. making the game more socially accessible would be a huge step forward in terms of gameplay, its kind of hard to believe that a modern AAA rated MMO, would lack these kinds of basic features.image

  • JeroKaneJeroKane OsloPosts: 5,353Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by Illyssia

    Really depends on how much content and expansions Bioware develop for the game. What you have to bear in mind is that post launch any game will have a period of bug fixing and balancing, then the development team can focus on just patching in new end-game content. I think between now and the end of the year that is what Bioware will do, and implement cross server PvP and looking for group for PvE on servers. These types of actions will probably mean that the population will stay.

    With 1000 people going to loose their jobs, which you can bet most of them will be within the SW:TOR teams.... what you think is going to happen?

    The quality of the updates in SW:TOR haven't been that spectacularly high already.... it will only going to get worse from now on.

    Knowing EA and it's well known reputation.... the suits at EA HQ most likely have already given up on this game and gonna put it in maintenance mode.

    They will probably keep the team working on the PAID expansion intact for now, so they can push that out of the door soon enough, to milk the remaining SW:TOR playerbase one last time.

    This would be EA at it's finest.

  • crysentcrysent cedar rapids, IAPosts: 837Member Uncommon

    LoL -

     

    A 15 year old that reaches end game content coul've told you this one.  While ToR has its fun parts the end game is absolutly terrible..nothing to do but repetitivly farm warzones over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over.  They could solve this easily by overhauling Ilum, but that doesn't seem to be happening anytime soon.

  • kaworu83kaworu83 RagusaPosts: 6Member

    Originally posted by mmoDAD

    This game will continue to lose subscriptions. It's not worth subscribing to. It's a great single player PC game with a nice co'op. However, calling it a MMORPG is simply wrong.

    This game has no player-generated content, no social realm, and absolutely no sustain.

    If this game wasn't a Star Wars title, it would've already converted over to FTP.










     




     



    I totally agree with you, there`s no patch they can make to battle their declining, the only thing they can do to drastically increase player base is going F2P.

  • OpapanaxOpapanax Rochester, NYPosts: 973Member

    [mod edit]

    Now we don't have to worry about hearing the 1.7 Million number thrown in our faces constantly from any source. So now we have to take the new number 1.25 Million. Would've been alot better if it was 1.2 Million would've opened up plenty of fun banter I'm sure.

    I'm not saying Bioware / EA would patch their subscription numbers in anyway of course. I'm sure they are being outwardly honest with us and their investors. The developers have a full understanding of what needs to be changed in the game and has a good hold on implementing those things flawlessly..

    Q1 Though is 3 months. Considering the game dropped in January middle of January at that and has had a rather large content update. We'll have to give it another 3-4 months to see the numbers then. I'm guessing somewhere around 800-700k. That's including some more free weeks in there for any inconviences..

    PM before you report at least or you could just block.

  • skulldronskulldron Erie, PAPosts: 31Member

    I just hope they don't pull a NGE and make the game into another SWG. If people don't like it , screw them. problem is people jump into the game and finish the contents too fast.   Every game falls in numbers and manage to come back.  But the way I see it, its the people who cry and whine who are leaving.

    It's SWG all over again, whiners crying, people complaining instead of giving the game a chance and then when it gets dumb down for them they complain it's too easy.  Go figure today's gamers.

  • Paragus1Paragus1 Philadelphia, PAPosts: 1,739Member Uncommon



    Originally posted by Denambren

    1.25 million seems a little optimistic by 2013

    I'm going to have to say that this is probably a fair statement.   As Jero mentioned a few posts above me, consider the fact that the 1000 jobs being cut are partly responsible to TOR's bad performance, which means cut to the TOR team.   This means less content or a slowing of content most likely.   In a game where story content produced by devs is key, this is bad news.

    Also consider the game space is going to get really crowded in the next 6 months, let alone the next year.   As TOR has the staff cut, TERA will come out and lure away all the tourists who move to the newest thing because it is new.  Then we have a new WoW expansion coming out that will lure a lot of the WoW players back as they alwys do.   Then GW2 which will provide (in my opinion)  a far more compelling and complete MMO experience without a monthly fee.   We also are forgetting Diablo 3 which is a favorite franchise of a lot of gamers in this market.   This is just the next 6 months, so barring something really drastic on Bioware's end (free 2 play?), I think that estimate is too high because it isn't factoring external market factors and the fickleness of MMO gamers (something we all know very well on this site).


     

  • JediConsularJediConsular Seattle, WAPosts: 51Member

    Originally posted by gaeanprayer

    we believe it is prudent to adopt a more conservative forecast on subscribers at this time."

     

    Should have done that from the beginning. Companies keep thinking it's better to boast, but it isn't. It's far better to understate and have people think you're growing, than to over-state and appear to be bleeding profit.

    You hit the nail on the head! It's little things like this that these companies and all their money can't ever seem to get right.

    I swear I need to become an MMO consultant. Some of this isn't rocket science but based on a lot of decisions that the MMO dev companies continue to make you'd think it were.

    Another piss-poor decision was in regards to what JeroKane is talking about! Jero, it's not just the drop off in pops that you are seeing reflected in the server population count ie Heavy/Standard/Light but the fact that BioWare increased the population load on its servers a while ago. This has exacerbated things as it made the servers "look" as if they have lost a lot of subscribers. I noticed this far before it was ever transparent in-game. After first noticing this and later hearing about this, I remember thinking, 'who's the idiot that made that decision'?!

    It was just one more piss-poor decision. You don't ever want to make it seem like there are less players playing your game! You want to have players thinking that your servers are packed. It's akin to having a nightclub that's always busy as opposed to a ghost town. Where do you think most people will choose to go?

    It's little things like this that add up and these MMO dev companies need to make smarter/better decisions amongst other things.

    My text is green because my posts are created with Willpower!
  • OpapanaxOpapanax Rochester, NYPosts: 973Member

    Originally posted by skulldron

    I just hope they don't pull a NGE and make the game into another SWG. If people don't like it , screw them. problem is people jump into the game and finish the contents too fast.   Every game falls in numbers and manage to come back.  But the way I see it, its the people who cry and whine who are leaving.

    It's SWG all over again, whiners crying, people complaining instead of giving the game a chance and then when it gets dumb down for them they complain it's too easy.  Go figure today's gamers.

    LoL Don't worry that won't be happening. Not with that engine and they way their using it..

    PM before you report at least or you could just block.

  • ArkiniaArkinia Palm Harbor, FLPosts: 251Member

    don't need an analyst  to know the truth. However, I could use an analyst to help me figure out why I bought the CE version.

  • crysentcrysent cedar rapids, IAPosts: 837Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by Arkinia

    don't need an analyst  to know the truth. However, I could use an analyst to help me figure out why I bought the CE version.

    Nah, you don't need an analyst for that...Mob mentality (I'm guilty as well).  All the hype surronding the game prior to release..  It just kept snowballing...

  • ArkiniaArkinia Palm Harbor, FLPosts: 251Member

    Originally posted by crysent

    Originally posted by Arkinia

    don't need an analyst  to know the truth. However, I could use an analyst to help me figure out why I bought the CE version.

    Nah, you don't need an analyst for that...Mob mentality (I'm guilty as well).  All the hype surronding the game prior to release..  It just kept snowballing...

    at least I have a statue I can dust once in awhile! It seems more enjoyable then playing, go figure! 

  • ZhauricZhauric Houston, TXPosts: 293Member

    Originally posted by Illyssia

    Really depends on how much content and expansions Bioware develop for the game. What you have to bear in mind is that post launch any game will have a period of bug fixing and balancing, then the development team can focus on just patching in new end-game content. I think between now and the end of the year that is what Bioware will do, and implement cross server PvP and looking for group for PvE on servers. These types of actions will probably mean that the population will stay.


     

    Very true. I guess one reason I am looking at GW2 and Tera and such though is because I am losing confidence in the developing team. I never judge a game right on release because these things are never really finished. I rather wait and see how the developers do as time progresses and thus far I just haven't been impressed. In fact, I'm a bit pissed they rolled back my class quests so a sequence of quests I did already are back in my log as if not done. That's amateur hour to me.

    Hopefully things can get better but it won't be in time to prevent me from pre-purchasing GW2 and sampling the Tera beta. I like having more gaming options so not wishing ill to this title and I'm still playing it thus far.

     

  • PhryPhry HampshirePosts: 6,289Member Uncommon

    Originally posted by skulldron

    I just hope they don't pull a NGE and make the game into another SWG. If people don't like it , screw them. problem is people jump into the game and finish the contents too fast.   Every game falls in numbers and manage to come back.  But the way I see it, its the people who cry and whine who are leaving.

    It's SWG all over again, whiners crying, people complaining instead of giving the game a chance and then when it gets dumb down for them they complain it's too easy.  Go figure today's gamers.

    comparing the game to SWG shows an almost total lack of understanding of either SW;TOR and SWG,  not to mention what the NGE did to SWG, and as for players giving the game a chance, er.. isnt that what happened during the first few months of playing? but the problems with the NGE are not the same problems that plague SW;TOR,  SWG after all was a massively social gaming experience, and.. SW;TOR isnt..  perhaps you ought to try playing SW;TOR to see why players are complaining, it might help you understand MMO's a bit more, never mind players themselves image

  • PalaziousPalazious Lewiston, IDPosts: 162Member

    Originally posted by Arkinia

    don't need an analyst  to know the truth. However, I could use an analyst to help me figure out why I bought the CE version.

    For some reason I paid for 6 month sub and bored to tears in less then one.  Lessons learned I suppose but I didn't think that SWToR would be so shallow and simply a rehashed version of whats we've already done to death. 

    The naysayers were spot on with this one... I shouldn't have brushed them off so quickly.

    At least they can still count me as a subscriber for a few more months to help pad their numbers lol

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