Bigpoint boss says big budget and reliance on subscriptions spells bad news for Star Wars MMO

LGC 2010: Old Republic profit ‘unfeasible’ – Hubertz

Speaking to the audience at last night London Games Conference, Bigpoint CEO Heiko Hubertz has warned that upcoming high-profile MMO Star Wars: The Old Republic will never produce a profit for either publisher EA or developer BioWare.

“If you look at Star Wars from EA and BioWare, they estimated a development budget of over $100m,” he explained.

“This is an online game for many million of subscribers, so the publisher does not understand that a subscription model is not the future.

“With micro-transactions maybe I see the game having a chance but I don’t think that EA or BioWare will ever be profitable with this game.”

High-profile MMO rivals such as Codemasters’ Lord of the Rings: Online and Atari’s Champions Online have both announced their intention to ditch subscriptions in favour of free-to-play models.

The comments echo those made by an anonymous BioWare dev last month who claimed that: “The rest of the game is a joke. EA knows it and so does George Lucas. They’re panicking. Old Republic will be one of the greatest failures in the history of MMOs from EA. Probably at the level of the Sims Online. We all know it too.”

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