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BioWare confirms layoffs as Star Wars: The Old Republic moves to new developer

Updates will continue

Earlier this month EA confirmed reports that they were in talks to transfer development of long-running MMO Star Wars: The Old Republic from its creators BioWare to an external studio. Today, BioWare confirmed that Broadsword would be taking over development, and that "not every role" would move with the game.

"I’ve been working closely with Keith Kanneg, who leads the SWTOR team, to give the game and the team the best opportunity to grow and evolve. And so, while EA will remain SWTOR’s publisher, development of the game will move to our partner and friends at Broadsword, a boutique studio with expertise in managing online games," says the announcement post from BioWare general manager Gary McKay.

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"No big change comes without challenges," continues the post. "Among them is the fact that most of the current team will be invited to accompany the game on its move to Broadsword, though unfortunately not every role will make the move." BioWare did not say precisely how many roles would be eliminated, but said affected staff would "have an opportunity to find new roles within EA."

Broadsword Online Games was founded by former developers from Mythic Entertainment, another MMO studio once operated by EA. Broadsword are responsible for ongoing development of other MMOs, including Ultima Online and Mythic's own Dark Age Of Camelot. Broadsword will continue to update The Old Republic with new story content and improvements.

The Old Republic launched 12-years-ago as an awkward combination of MMO mechanics and BioWare's singleplayer storytelling ambition. It finally settled on focusing primarily on the latter, becoming an MMO that can be played solo, albeit with some grind in combat.

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