EA announced today at Gamescom that it will limit the initial sales of the highly anticipated MMORPG Star Wars: The Old Republic. While the exact number of how many copies will be available at launch hasn’t been revealed, EA has said that once that supply is exhausted they will work to expand their server capacity so that players who haven’t rushed out to buy the game can be added.
Legitimate fear or a scare tactic to get people to pre-order your game? EA reasons that this will ensure that their servers are not overloaded at launch, giving the first adopters of this WOW clone will have the smoothest experience from the start.
EA’s fear of overloaded servers isn’t too unreasonable. I think it’s a legitimate fear considering how much hype Star Wars: The Old Republic is getting. Many MMOs see their peak in numbers at the initial launch simply because players want to see if it’s any good and with over 1.5 million already registered for beta, there’s obviously a lot of interest in the game. This could potentially cause lag or connection and server issues. Does anybody remember when Everquest 2 launched and their servers crashed for like 2 weeks? I bet first time MMORPG developer BioWare doesn’t want that happening.
On the other hand, I have a hard time believing that EA and BioWare won’t have adequately prepared servers for the massive amount of gamers interested in this game. I just don’t think EA will turn down money due to not enough copies being available. It’s simple supply and demand. There is going to be a lot of demand, so why not supply it? It’s not like EA is going to make any more money off the game by price gouging it and I limiting the supply is going to cause lines to wrap around streets like people are waiting for gas during WWII.
Whatever the real reasoning is behind this questionable move, there is no doubt that Star Wars: The Old Republic is one of the most hyped MMORPGs to hit the market. When it will hit store shelves is still yet to be known, but if you want to ensure that you’ll be a part of the launch I suggest you go out and pre-order it now.