During EA’s Q2 call to investors last night, games label boss Frank Gibeau assured investors that while Battlefield 3 had seen “unprecedented and historic peaks” which causes a few issues on its game servers, the same thing won’t happen when Star Wars: The Old Republic is released in December.
According to Gibeau, the MMO’s server set up is “a very different configuration” than with Battlefield.
“It’s a PC-only configuration and one that we have full control over,” he said, “and we’re very confident that Star Wars will be a solid launch.”
“Star Wars is already in beta and will be getting the amount of units we put in this channel to match our capacity,” added CEO John Riccitiello. “We take a slightly different approach with a Packaged Goods game where so much is hanging on the first week sell-through.”
As mentioned last night in the post regarding the call, Gibeau wouldn’t provide specific figures for the game, but characterized the numbers as “very, very strong.”
“They’re the highest preorders that we’ve ever had on a PC game so we’re feeling very good about the momentum and consumer demand out there,” he said. “In addition to that, we really haven’t set the expectations for what the subscriber levels are going to be. We’re very excited about the potential of the game coupled with the mass-market license like Star Wars. But as we get closer, that will be information that we can communicate further.
“We’ve taken a very detailed approach to looking at, how do we maximize the customer experience when they go online with Star Wars, to maximize the fun that they’re having online, the stability, the quality, the experience, and we’re using our beta test to inform us of what scale that we can handle.
“So our pre-order campaign is tailored towards how we’re going to do that. And we’re looking at a rollout plan that is fairly ambitious. We don’t feel like we’re going to be leading too much demand behind at launch but we definitely are going to be very cautious and thoughtful about how many people we bring on and in what order. It’s a very interesting proposition from that standpoint because you have the Star Wars brand that draws in a lot of people. And that is a good thing because we think we can sustain the business over a very long time as we grow.
“There’s going to continually be new customer segments that we can open up and bring into the service.”
EA will hopefully announce how it plans to roll out the MMO’s launch soon, and in what order early pre-order adopters will be let into the game.
SWTOR is out December 20.