Star Wars The Old Republic Now Free to Play!

The much hyped, long in production MMO Star Wars The Old Republic has been struggling to find a firm footing in the world of online multiplayer gaming.  The solution? Well, for Bioware, EA and Lucasarts (insert Disney joke here), they are hoping the answer is making the game free to play starting right now, November 15.  Seems like an odd solution, but that trio is clearly hoping that getting gamers a taste – and a big one at that – of the action will entice them into the world.

Here’s the skinny: The game will be free to play all the way up to the level cap of 50, all of the story content will be available, and there will be limited access to other areas of the game such as Warzones (PvP), Operations and Flashpoints (Group PvE), and other side goodies like Crew Skills (crafting), inventory slots and space missions.  Getting a full subscription to the game will give gamers full access to all of the content. Those already with a subscription will see some bonuses showing up in their account in the next few days, and those who had subscriptions but let them lapse will get similar bonuses if they renew their subscription now.

The team is introducing Cartel Coins. It will be a way to pay for different features for all players and increased play time in Warzones, Operations and Flashpoints, as well as being able to equip higher level items for the free-to-play players.  And this is where the strategy for Bioware and the other involved parties comes into play.  Additional Cartel Coins will be available for purchase within the game, offering players access to special items, along with the additional play abilities.  How this works out remains to be seen, but the dedicated group will doubtlessly be all in on the Cartel Coins.  Who else joins in is something to keep an eye on.

So is it worth it? For those who haven’t played The Old Republic yet, this is a great chance to check out the game free of charge (Free, people. It’s Free!), and not having to deal with free trial/cancellation stuff that can sometimes be a hassle.  The main story arcs for the game are pretty engaging and well told and are contrasted very well between the light and dark sides as well as classes.  The gameplay isn’t anything we haven’t seen before, but the class abilities are relatively varied and tend to fit the characters. The controls are also pretty tight.  For MMO vets, the learning curve will be virtually null.

Not having full access to PvP, Operations and Flashpoints, and crafting could be a drawback to some (or many), but if you just want to get out there and quest and grind, you’ve got a big chunk of the full content already available to you.  For those who really want to craft or spend your time in PvP, there probably isn’t a whole lot to get excited about as a full subscription really becomes almost necessary at that point.

So will you jump in? Comment and let us know.


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Author: Scott Fitton View all posts by
Scott is a featured writer for God Mode Magazine. He started gaming back when the NES was still a young, growing system, is a tech nerd, sports nut (Yes, both.) and has an unhealthy number of DVDs and Blu-rays.

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