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Star Wars: The Old Republic to be microtransaction-based [Updated]

Michael Zenke

Update: Shacknews has updated its story to state "no statements have been made about the Star Wars business model," and attributing Mr. Riccitiello's comments to a misunderstanding. For the time being, then, this appears to be unsubstantiated information.

To end a somewhat surprisingly eventful day for the RMT and microtrasaction model, EA has announced that Star Wars: The Old Republic will not be subscription-based. Instead, the title will be gain revenue from a microtransactional model. Shacknews reports this surprising tidbit from a conference call held by the mega-publisher earlier today. Said CEO John Riccitiello, "The Star Wars online MMO [is a] mid-session game, microtransaction-based. You'll be hearing more about those in the February [conference] call." According to the game news site, "Mid-session" is a term that EA uses synonymously with microtransaction-supported titles. This fits effortlessly into EA's portfolio alongside games like Warhammer Online and the DICE title Battlefield Online.

Everything we've seen regarding information on the title had it positioned as a big-budget title, leading us to wondering what kind of game we're going to be dealing with when the game finally launches. There are only a handful of AAA-funding titles based on the free-to-play business model, and none have the cachet of a Star Wars IP. We'll follow this story as it develops.

Gallery: Star Wars: The Old Republic Screenshots | 68 Photos

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