Star Wars: The Old Republic is a massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) based in the Star Wars universe. Developed by BioWare Austin and a supplemental team at BioWare Edmonton, the game was first announced on October 21, 2008, at an invitation-only press event. The video game was released for the Microsoft Windows platform on December 20, 2011 in North America and part of Europe. Early access to the game began one week before release, on December 13, 2011, for those who had pre-ordered the game online; access opened in "waves" based on pre-order date.
Although BioWare has not disclosed development costs, industry leaders and financial analysts have estimated it to be between $150 million and $200 million. If accurate, this would make it the most expensive video game ever developed. The game had 1 million subscribers within three days of its launch, making it the world's "fastest-growing MMO ever". However, in the following months the game lost a fair share of its subscriptions, but has remained profitable. The game has since adopted the hybrid free-to-play business model with remaining subscription option.
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