BioWare: SW:TOR Will Still Be Going In 2025

By John Walker on July 25th, 2011 at 4:15 pm.

He'll be so old by then.

Every MMO developer likes to think that their game will last longer than the norm. That norm, for AAA Western MMOs, is growing increasingly brief. Which makes BioWare’s ambitions for Star Wars: The Old Republic, impressively bold. Discussing what their game will be doing in 2025 requires the sort of cajones that can only impress us into believing them. That’s what Eurogamer reported that Darth Hater reported.

The game plans to have 19 major worlds at launch, along with a bunch of minor worlds, and they plan to add to this as the game goes along. So claims senior creative director James Ohlen, who goes on to say,

“We want to add dozens of worlds. Hundreds of worlds eventually. In 2025, we’ll hopefully have 500 worlds.”

I’m just doing the maths here, hang on…

…carry the three…

…less the differential…

…adjusting for traffic…

Bollocks.

Brilliant as they may be, they’ve been making this game for at least five years and are 19 worlds in. If they maintain the dedication and narrative that defines the game, in another 14 years they’d have one hundred more at most. Unless he means the minor ones, in which case they could probably create 500 in a weekend.

Never mind that in 14 years I can’t imagine we’ll be playing games in any way that seems meaningful now. 14 years ago was 1997 – we barely had genuine 3D. On computers made of straw. By 2025 we’ll be playing games on the microprocessors in our brains, as we swoop home from spacework on our light-gliders. Should that include the same MMOs we’re playing now I’ll be extremely impressed.

So good luck to them, I say. I absolutely cannot wait to play SWTOR, craving a narrative-focused MMO as I am. I’m yet to be convinced I’ll still be playing it when I’m 47. But please get back to me then to call me an idiot.

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223 Comments »

  1. Chesterton says:

    Oh good Lord people.

    He said this during the Comic Con panel for the game, and was completely joking. It was so obvious to everyone in the room, the whole crowd laughed.

    Lighten up!

    I also played 20 minutes of the game and thoroughly enjoyed it. I’ll be picking it up.

    • Wulf says:

      ^^^

      Read my comment up there about it, search ‘Colin Johansen’. :D

      If you’re just going to sit there and say “Lulz, it was a joke. I R STILL A FAN.” then you have zero self-respect, since Bioware are having a good laugh at the expense of their fans.

    • Kaira- says:

      I have this creeping feeling that either Wulf is a madman/-woman/-thing, or he/she/it is actually a mole inside BioWare. I don’t know which one creeps me more.

    • Pointless Puppies says:

      I love how Wulf is trying incredibly hard to convince himself and others that THIS CAN’T POSSIBLY BE A JOKE. NOOO. I CAN’T BE. BIOWARE IS ASS FOR EVEN JOKING ABOUT THE SRS BSNS THAT IS VIDYA GAEMS.
      Seriously, Wulf. You’re literally twisting things completely out of context and blowing things way out of proportion to fit your ludicrous rants. And yes, we get it. You want to have sexual intercourse with a box of Guild Wars 2 as soon as it is humanly possible. We got it after the first 1000 time you “casually” mentioned the game in this thread alone.

    • Chesterton says:

      Wulf, what the blazes are you rambling on about?

      “Bioware are having a good laugh at the expense of their fans”? Any fan that was there (like yours truly) or who has watched the footage knows it was a self-deprecating joke on Bioware’s part. If you can’t see that, then I honestly don’t know what to say. Any reasonable person can see that.

      For everyone else: I was at the panel as a casual observer. I haven’t been following SWTOR’s coverage or bits of info over the years, but I decided to wait for an hour to play 20 minutes of a level 1 character on the Comic Con show floor…and I really enjoyed it. So I went to the panel, and came away very impressed. I’ll be picking it up Day One, and will have fun with it.

      I also watched a lot of people play Guild Wars 2 on the floor, but never got a chance to play it myself (35 minute demo timers! What the heck, NCSoft?)…And it looks beautiful and fun too. I’ll be picking that up Day One as well.

    • Rii says:

      “So I went to the panel, and came away very impressed.”

      Clearly a BioWare sockpuppet.

  2. db1331 says:

    14 years from now, in a galaxy
    far, far away….

    THE OLD REPUBLIC

    Episode XII

    A NEW EXPANSION

    13 years after the great shift to the free to play model, the galaxy is in turmoil. Many players have already fled. The few stragglers who remain are bored. Most spend their days cybering in the Mos Eisley cantina.

    In an effort to fortify what little interest remains, Bioware releases several new planets, each filled with fetch quests and aliens that are a palate swap of aliens found on existing planets. How long this new content can maintain player interest is uncertain.

    Meanwhile, BioWare’s ToR eShop is barely turning a profit. Sales of lightsaber gems and Wookie hairstyles are down 800%. No one knows if sales will rise again-only that they must. And soon…

    • Teddy Leach says:

      I love you.

    • Stochastic says:

      Pursued by EA’s sinister stockholders, Bioware races to change their paymodel aboard the F2P train, custodian of the stolen WoW game design documents that can save their bottom line and restore price gouging to the industry…

    • Wulf says:

      \o

      That’s all, really.

      Well played.

  3. Dana says:

    LoL, haven’t seen more pathetic marketing attempt in a while.

  4. Very Real Talker says:

    this game looks like utter shit, why would they support it until 2025?

    OH WOW, 500 SHITTY LOOKING PLANETS!

  5. Fox89 says:

    This is blatantly a get-out-of-jail card so they don’t have to make KOTOR3!

    “Hey, Bioware! Where’s KOTOR 3?”
    “Oh that. Well, we did start it but figured ‘Hey, might as well just work it into the MMO!’. I mean, nobody wants to play a Star Wars game on their own anymore. No-one but nerds anyway. And do we look like the kind of people who make games for them?

    • TariqOne says:

      And yet, this seems like it could possibly be everything I could have ever wanted from KotOR3: epic length and breadth, quality production, and COOP. Yow!

      Consider the possibility that it just might be good. Wouldn’t that be neat? Why not just wait and see? Sure, it’s probably shit, but why not try not jerking our knees about prematurely for once?

    • Fox89 says:

      Oh it might be good. I’m not saying it wont. But there are certain things a single player RPG brings that you can’t get in an MMO, however much it tries. If The Old Republic is able to give the player any kind of feeling of importance or consequence in the story, I’ll eat humble pie. But seeing as it would take some kind of design wizard to pull that off in a massive multiplayer environment, I doubt we’ll see it.

      I have nothing against TOR at all. Even though I’m not much of an MMO player I’m considering buying it. But there is a place for the single player game as well, and I want a new KOTOR :)

    • TariqOne says:

      Points all well taken. I’ve long ago stopped getting excited for MMOs.

  6. Premium User Badge shoptroll says:

    Worth noting that Ultima Online is still going strong. Or well… just going I guess.

    The problem is that they’re tied to the Star Wars license. As soon as LucasArts wants something fresher or newer, the axe will fall on them just like they did with Galaxies.

  7. TariqOne says:

    Quick! Call the BioWare Schadenfreude Patrol! Oh. They’re all here.

    Not sure why everyone is cackling with glee and salivating in hopes that BioWare and/or TOR will fail. I’ve lost hundreds of wonderful hours in BioWare titles, Star Wars stuff, MMOs, etc. So I’m hoping TOR is good. I’m hoping BioWare has many more decades ahead of producing quality games for me to waste my time in.

    You snoots need to get some perspective.

    • TillEulenspiegel says:

      Sick of lack of ambition and half-assery?

      If they’d put out some great trailers showing amazing gameplay with cinematic story whatever, I think most everyone would be looking forward to it. But they haven’t done that. Everything they’ve shown looks terrible.

      As it is, better to laugh than cry.

    • jstar says:

      Yeah but they stopped making good games a while ago. Now they make shoddy, poorly written games. To make matters worse they now have this monster turkey on their hands and are acting like Danny Bilson did before Homefront came out. I bet you two months after release EA’s share price will dive bomb.

    • Wulf says:

      @TillEulenspiegel

      EXACTLY this. Exactly.

      I mean, SWG was so much better than TOR could ever be. I watched 90 minutes of TOR just to see if it wasn’t WoW even after Bioware had unequivocally told me that it was a WoW reskin. And… they were telling the truth. It’s a WoW reskin. It’s nothing more than a WoW reskin.

      They are just milking the license.

      Please… read that sentence a few times… slowly.

      Now, think about what ArenaNet are doing with Guild Wars 2, what with its dynamic events, no subscription, anti-grind ethos, an MMORPG with real choice with consequences that you actually see both in the game and in your own chunk of an entire damn city (as opposed to choice A sends you to grinding area A and choice B sends you to grinding area B), it’s truly well written instead of going for epic bullshit and has a genuinely intelligent feel to it (probably due to the people working on the lore), and… it’s just doing everything differently. It’s a massive risk.

      Compare that with a WoW reskin.

      TOR is a WoW reskin.

      How can you expect people not to be annoyed? It’s Star Wars! It has such a rich history, so many books, so many tales, so many races, and settings, and so much depth. They could’ve picked a truly interesting setting, with compellingly strange race choices, and unusual gameplay, and it would have been this massive risk… but we’d all have been cheering them on.

      Most of us like risks, I think. We’re tired of the same old shit. And TOR is just the same old shit. T has the right of this. Believe me right now when I say that if Bioware had chosen to be as risky as ArenaNet then I’d be shouting their praises from the rooftops.

      But I have self-respect and I’m not going to just sell myself out for a WoW reskin. The games I get behind SHOULD be risky and amazing.

    • TariqOne says:

      This game I haven’t played is SO MUCH BETTER than that game I haven’t played.

      Anyway pfff. Thank heaven for low standards and high income, I guess.

      Games are fun. RPGs are fun. I’ve dumped hundreds and hundreds of hours into Warband. Hundreds into Bloodlines. Hundreds and hundreds into EVE. Thousands into WoW (sheepish grin). Hundreds each into Warhammer Online, Rift, Age of Conan, Guild Wars. Scores into the KotORs, both Mass Effects, both Dragon Ages. Scores into Eschalons. Scores into the STALKER series. Scores into DC Universe Online, ffs. Hundreds into Saints Row 2. Hundreds into the Neverwinter Nights titles. Same with the Baldur’s Gates. RPGs and RPG-alikes are fun.

      TOR is a day one purchase for me. I’m going to play a jedi. My fiancee will play a jedi. Other friends of ours will be there, and some will be jedis. We will run around for at least scores of hours thwhacking each other with laser beams in what I guarantee you will be a pretty well crafted Old Republic world. We’ll craft, run instances, PvP, explore. Whether we ragequit or just get bored after 40 hours or 4000, who knows? But it’s hard to get mad about the notion. Games are fun. Games with friends are fun. Games with friends in Star Wars universes are fun.

      I’ll also buy GW2 day one. I’ll also have a fucking blast in it. Did I mention games are fun?

      TLDR: Games are fun.

    • Maykael says:

      TariqOne is absolutely right.

      Had more, but it was rather aggressive. I decided not to publish it. Suffice it to say that I most strongly disapprove of Wulf’s behavior all throughout this comment thread. Yes people drink different brands of coffee than you. It is not a tragedy and it’s wrong to wish that a coffee-maker that you don’t like, but other enjoy should perish.

    • neolith says:

      @TariqOne:

      It’s true, we’ve played neither GW2 nor SW:TOR.
      However every time some infos about GW2 come up I think “Oh, nice, that could be a good feature. I want to try that.” and whenever I see something about TOR it’s more like “Ok, that looks really boring. Again.”. From where I stand one game looks promising and the other doesn’t. There seem to be worlds in between what both MMOs try to do.

      The question is: Why the chickens does TOR look so damn uninteresting? Aren’t these teaser trailers supposed to wow me and make me want to play the game? TOR’s trailers have the exact opposite effect.

      If there really is a good game beneath all that what we were shown about TOR, then the guy who is responsible for the videos needs to get his wiener punched. Hard. Repeatedly.

    • TariqOne says:

      @Neolith: I hear you.

      But I’m 42. I long ago stopped fretting about why John Woo isn’t Akira Kurosawa, or why Michael Bay isn’t Werner Herzog. I just like movies. I also don’t sweat it when my corner pizza joint sells greasy slices of pizza instead of delicate, artisinal sushi.

      I can totally see why TOR is playing it safe and shooting for the widest possible audience here. And honestly, as a gamer, I don’t see anything wrong with mainstream efforts, particularly with mainstream and, let’s admit, often execrable fare like Star Wars. I went to see the last three movies and really, we’re decrying TOR’s tarnishing the license? We’re complaining about milking the license? Really? That train has done left the station decades ago.

      This is a mainstream, big-budget Star Wars game worked on by a professional studio that has turned out tons of very reliably good (if not envelope-pushing) product for many years. It is set in a compelling lore era. I can play it with my friends and it will have a wide range of features. It’s pizza. It isn’t sushi.

      I don’t think buying it implicates my “self respect.” At all. And I don’t see how wishing it to fail and BioWare to go out of business and what-have-you serves any purpose at all, other than to fulfill our need to be histrionic and mad about stuff that is, at the end of the day, pretty fucking fun.

    • Chesterton says:

      Good thoughts, Tariq. You’re good people.

    • Maykael says:

      @TariqOne: I have exactly the same opinion. Why do we wish to see the creators of Baldur’s Gate II fail? Also what’s wrong with bringing a stronger narrative context to traditional MMO mechanics?

      I hate hack’n'slash games, I find even Diablo boring as fuck. I am playing through Dungeon Siege II and the albeit weak story line and universe-building with the illusion of choice is working quite well for me. For some gamers (me and, I think, you included) giving a better reason even for grinding will make it enjoyable. An MMO like TOR that will allow me to devise a stronger personality to my character through some dialogue choices seems kinda nice.

      Just to be clear to Wulf & co.: The fact that I hold this opinion does not mean that I think less of Guild Wars 2. It is a very ambitious project that is being developed by a strong team that will probably end up being the better game overall. But that does not mean that I want/think/hope that TOR fails. If it manages to make the traditional MMO better, then all the better for us all.

    • neolith says:

      Stupid reply form ate my reply. :( Let’s try again:

      @TariqOne:

      I like the food analogy. :)

      Not every game has to be sushi. I wholeheartly agree. As much as I like sushi I only eat it occasionally. And pizza… oh man, I love pizza! But for the last years I tried quite a lot of different places that serve it. Sadly I had to find out that they all kinda make the same stale pizza with very few toppings and no side dishes. Some come on blue plates, some on yellow, but they all taste exactly the same.

      Along comes Bioware, telling everyone they now serve pizza, too. They make quite a fuss about it – what they’re going to do and how their pizza will be awesome. And then they let us take a peek through their window before they open the place. Their waiters run around as Vader and Luke, the plates the pizza comes on all have the Deathstar on it and everyone can get a free lightsaber if they want to. Their prices seem quite high for their pizza but they continue to point out how great it is that all their waiters talk. All the time. Even the check won’t be written – no, they will tell you how much you have to pay.

      Then I take a first glance at the pizza itself. And it looks exactly like all the pizzas I’ve ate before. It’s the same deforsted stale stuff every other place serves these days. Yes, it comes with all the StarWars stuff and yes, the waiters can’t seem to shut up, but let’s face it: I am here for the food. All the bells and whistles are nice, but why should I come here if the food is not good? Ok, it might be fun to bring your kids here once, because they don’t care for the quality of the pizza as long as they are distracted by other stuff. But I’m to old for that shit. And I’m still hungry.

      All I want is someting proper to eat. Let it be pizza, it doesn’t have to be sushi. But dammit, make the pizza good. I don’t care if you serve it in a restaurant not as fancy as Bioware’s and I don’t care if it costs me a buck more. But make it tasty.

      As far as I can see, Bioware doesn’t do that kind of pizza… :(

  8. Johnny Law says:

    It was as clearly a joke as anything has ever been. Only the most affectless, stereotypical “WHAT IS THIS HU-MOR YOU SPEAK OF” robot-men could fail to figure this out, though I’ll cut you some slack if you’re reacting to second- or third-hand reports.

    I know that has already been pointed out in earlier comments, but it bears repeating.

  9. Teronfel says:

    2025? Sure why not

  10. Rhalle says:

    It looks awful.

    The undiscriminating 10-year-olds who think the second Star Wars trilogy is better than the first, and the retarded man-children who cosplay and love everything generally won’t keep this embarrassment alive with their subs for more than a year.

    And oh how I will laugh when those incompetent shills at Bioware who sold out to make mass-market schlock get liquidated.

  11. Grayvern says:

    If this actually happens I will eat a motherboard.

  12. endaround says:

    Yes but what about the year 2525, if man is still alive, if woman can survive?

  13. Bilbo says:

    “Barely had proper 3D in 1997″

    …What?

  14. Text_Fish says:

    The graphics already look dated. I realise graphics don’t make a game, but a lot of people don’t realise that and will be seduced away by better looking things. Graphical addons/updates can only go so far before you have to rebuild the engine from scratch and when that point comes it will make better business sense to release a fully fledged sequel to crank up the hype-o-meter.

    • Bilbo says:

      As long as you’re making that judgement based on the new shots, and not the old ones, I’m with you, although I’d politely point you to 2005 WoW and 2011 WoW and ask you to do the compare-and-contrast-shuffle thing. But no, seriously, a lot of people are tearing around the internet saying the game looks dated based on the alpha build, and that ticks me off. The newest pictures look at least passable.

  15. Spinks says:

    They were joking about 2025 :)

  16. Hoaxfish says:

    Nobody? nobody?

  17. Aska says:

    As a non-sequitur, many MUDs that started in the early nineties still support a playing population dating back to the very beginning of the game. I myself regularly log in to the same MUD to check up on people still playing since 1992 – that’s almost 20 years already. Now, graphical MMO type games are probably not the same thing – as they are most often run for profit and once profit wanes, the game gets deleted regardless of if a small dedicated population still plays it.

  18. WPUN says:

    I also hear there is a website devoted 2 the new worlds by some guy in Scottlande or someplace. They say he’s really crazy ‘cuz his wife went into labor an she wouldn’t let him go to the shoppe and place a pre-order so when they got home from th hospital he cut her up and buried her in th yard and then ate his own baby with some chips, oh delicious chips. So they caught him but he managed to get his copy of the SWKotOR soundtrack and smuggled it into prison with him and the other convicts tried to take it away from him in teh shower so he cut them up and ate them too, in fact he went on a rampage and ate all the prison guards with some chips, oh delicious chips. And then he sat down at the warden’s desk and posted about it on RPS only stopping when he had too pee in a potted plant in th corner of the room. After he finished posting he found the prison surrounded by th Army and there was a guy on a bullhorn named Dr. Quartermass who was telling him too put down the fork and come out with his hands up. But he managed to escape through teh sewers and they couldn’t catch him but they found his bag of chips, oh delicious chips. They say he’s still hiding too this day in teh mountains of Scotchland, teh Alpes, posting on RPS with a portable microwave dish and a laptop every day. They also say of your are backpacking in th Alpes that you’d better not carry any chips, oh delicious chips. They say they’ll never catch him too because there are laws that protect mountain people and the police are scared too go up there. But he has 2 come 2 a city once a month on th seventh day and he breaks into a house that has a computer and he posts on RPS and he eats anyone at home with chips, oh delicious chips. So the police are hoping to catch him when he goes to the city but so far he’s eaten over 819 people and 2,401 bags of chips, oh delicious chips so it seems like there is no stopping him. You may think I’m making all this up but it’s the truth and I know it cause I asked my friend who works at Bioware and he said it’s true so it is.

    • TariqOne says:

      My God. I can’t decide whether to call the police or offer to become your agent.

      Brilliant. Or not?

    • Gadriel says:

      I have no idea what I just read and I like it.

  19. vash47 says:

    The word is “cojones”, “cajones” means “drawers”.

  20. Berious says:

    They’ll need that long to make their money back.

  21. RenegadeRed says:

    Wow, I’m surprised RPS has suddenly turned into Fox News overnight.

    The comment in the headline is grossly taken out of context, it was clearly a joke poking fun at Bioware’s own delay in releasing this game in a timely fashion (the whole conference was full of jokes in fact). To see the context clearly go to Youtube or G4 and watch the panel.

    For instance, in answer to a question from the audience, “Will I be able to see the consequences of choice A if my pick-up group chooses B instead?” the Bioware guy says: “You can watch Youtube a week after the game is released.”

    Cue RPS headline: BIOWARE SAYS TO NOT PLAY SW:TOR, WATCH YOUTUBE FOOTAGE INSTEAD.

    Seriously, this whole RPS article is sickening and needs to be retracted immediately with a clarification.

    • Tamerlaput says:

      Well, on one hand you can make some news based on an out-of-context quote and have 4 comments pages worth of people getting awesomely trolled.

      On the other hand, you can take a minute (less than one minute actually) to verify your information. And if you did that, you’d have nothing, now, wouldn’t you?

      What’s hilarious is in the meantime the same site posted a video of the panel (there was only a transcript+audio at first) and you can actually see what must be the bioware PR guy facepalm when he hears the 2025 joke, probably already picturing headlines like: BioWare: SW:TOR Will Still Be Going In 2025.

    • Inarborat says:

      Hahaha, your panties..they are in a bunch.

    • Rii says:

      SICKENING

    • Wilson says:

      Yeah, these comments have either been misreported, or the tone of the post isn’t clear enough. Maybe John was just going for a tongue-in-cheek over criticism of a fairly throw-away comment, but it doesn’t come across like that. If you are joking, it’d be nice if it was clearer. Otherwise, this post does have a hint of tabloid reporting to it.

      Before the bit about 500 worlds in 2025, one of the guys does say that they hope the game will last for decades, but I really didn’t hear this part of the discussion as being them saying: ‘we are 100% certain our game will be here and popular in 2025 and will have 500 worlds.’

      Regardless, because I have no personal stake in the game (I’m not planning on ever getting it, but I don’t think it was designed by Satan either), the arguments have been hilarious to follow.

  22. bonds0097 says:

    I find you lack of faith disturbing.

    *sigh* Yes, I created an account just so I could say that.

    Still, I agree that it is unlikely any game made today will make it to 2025 given the pace of technology.

  23. Daiv says:

    The day before release day there will be zero players. On release day there could be hundreds of thousands of players. It is INFINITY PERCENT GROWTH!

    New players will be added at such a rate the Earth will be consumed and will be a seething, boiling mass of humanity exploding outwards at the speed of light.

  24. Rii says:

    Wulf, you are not helping your cause. It’s great that you have your convictions and all, but at this point you’re alienating even folks who actually agree with you for the most part. Like me.

    I’ve been in a similar place before, and – watch me step over the line here – I eventually came to realise that it was mentally unhealthy for me, that it was exacerbating certain issues I was and am still dealing with, and hindering my growth as a person. I think you need to step back from this and related matters and endeavour to find some peace for yourself, Wulf.

    I hope you will receive the above in the spirit in which it was intended.

  25. Strutter says:

    I doubt this game will even survive it’s first year, it’s just not anything we’ve not seen before.

  26. Eolirin says:

    Ultima Online is still running. It’s been running for 14 years. The original Everquest is *still* getting expansions.

    If SWTOR survives it’s first 5 years, it’s likely to survive until there is a conscious decision on the part of EA to shutter it for what will likely be licensing reasons. These things last forever, profitably, provided they cross a critical population threshold. They die early or never.

  27. BobsLawnService says:

    Is that how long it needsto attract subscribers to break even?

    /cynic

  28. Vile Vile Vilde says:

    I thought they said that in jest..

  29. Heijoshin says:

    If people actually watched the comic -con presentation it’s pretty evident that he was saying this in jest. The whole presentation was littered with comedic comments like this, which was great. Would help if the sites actually informed the world realistically and factually, instead of taking quotes without the relevant context. Journalism at it’s finest…. (aimed at those that actually thought it was a serious comment of course)

  30. ADVERSiTY says:

    Who knew games were such serious business…