EA has announced that Star Wars: The Old Republic has assembled more than a million registered players in its first week officially live, earning it the self-granted title of "fastest growing subscription MMO in history."

A million players is a solid milestone, but EA and BioWare still have some parsecs to travel to make SW:TOR a resounding success: The beta test, don't forget, was able to pick up twice as many players than are currently registered. EA's management expects at least two million players to call the game successful at all, according to previous reports.

EA says that players have logged in more than 28 million game hours (no word on how many hours spent waiting in login queues, of course), and in that time have created 3.8 million characters, split about evenly across Jedi and Sith. More than 2 billion NPCs have been killed in the eight days since launch as well, which is quite the virtual genocide. You can check out the official stats and announcement below.
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STAR WARS: THE OLD REPUBLIC JUMPS TO LIGHT SPEED



Critically Acclaimed Game from BioWare Already the Fastest Growing

Subscription MMO in History



REDWOOD CITY, Calif – December 23, 2011 – BioWare™, a Label of Electronic Arts Inc. (NASDAQ: EA), launched Star Wars™: The Old Republic™ on Tuesday, and already fan engagement is setting new standards for an MMO game launch. Star Wars: The Old Republic is the fastest-growing subscription MMO in history, with more than one million registered players since launching on December 20, 2011. BioWare and EA will continue to steadily pulse players into the game through the holiday and into 2012 by limiting supply, ensuring a smooth and enjoyable experience for all while further growing the community. Fan reaction has been extremely positive, with the first wave of players posting impressive play-time feats after having been granted Early Game Access and playing up to seven days before launch. To date, players have:



· Logged 28 million in-game hours – roughly equivalent to watching all six Star Wars movies, two million times

· Averaged well over five hours a day playing the game

· Created more than 3.8 million characters; 510,000 Jedi Knights and 550,000 Sith Warriors

· Killed more than 2 billion non-player characters in the eight days since Early Game Access began



"Already over a million players strong after our Dec 20th launch, The Old Republic has become the fastest growing subscription MMO in the history of our industry," said Dr. Ray Muzyka, General Manager of EA's BioWare label and Co-Founder of BioWare. "Everyone at BioWare, EA and LucasArts is honored - and humbled - by the stellar response from our fans. We're going to work together closely with our community in the weeks, months and years ahead, continually serving our audience with regular delivery of compelling new features and content."



The first reviews are in and critics around the world are giving the game high praise for dramatic, genre-changing innovations in the MMO category. By adding voiced characters and story, BioWare is innovating the genre and giving players a much more immersive experience. In the USA, G4 scored Star Wars: The Old Republic a perfect 5 out of 5 and PC Gamer rated the game a 93%. Australia's AUSgames.com and Germany's Games Aktuell scored the game 95%, and Sweden's GameReactor gave The Old Republic a 90%.



Star Wars: The Old Republic stands as one of the largest and most ambitious achievements in video game history. Beyond the critical and commercial success, this game represents an enormous milestone for Bioware and LucasArts teams. In 2006, Dr. Ray Muzyka, Dr. Greg Zeschuk and the talented team at BioWare began this project with a great vision and a plan to recruit an army of engineers, designers, artists, quality assurance, customer service agents, marketers, community managers, network operators, scriptwriters and voice-over talent. Five years and millions of hours of game testing later, BioWare and LucasArts have released an unparalleled artistic achievement, always putting fans and product quality first.



Star Wars: The Old Republic is a story-driven, massively multiplayer online (MMO) game from BioWare and LucasArts. Set thousands of years before the classic Star Wars movies, players will be immersed as they team up with friends online to fight in heroic battles reminiscent of the films, exploring a galaxy of vibrant planets and experiencing visceral Star Wars combat. Players join forces with either the Galactic Republic or Sith Empire and choose one of eight iconic Star Wars characters, including the Jedi Knight, Jedi Consular, Smuggler, Trooper, Sith Warrior, Sith Inquisitor, Bounty Hunter and Imperial Agent.



Included with the purchase of every copy of Star Wars: The Old Republic is 30 days of access to the game, after which players can continue to play through subscribing* at either $14.99 per month, $41.97 for 3 months ($13.99 per month), or $77.94 for six months ($12.99 per month). For more information on Star Wars: The Old Republic, please visit www.StarWarsTheOldRepublic.com, follow the game on Twitter® at http://twitter.com/swtor or "Like" Star Wars: The Old Republic on Facebook® at http://facebook.com/starwarstheoldrepublic.

This article was originally published on Joystiq.