Freemium model to be offered alongside subscriptions
Star Wars: The Old Republic will get a new free-to-play option this fall, offering unlimited access for all eight classes and storylines up to level fifty.
Players will still have to pay for new content and certain features with "Cartel Coins", and a subscription option will still be available for customers who prefer monthly payments.
"Players want flexibility and choice," said Matthew Bromberg, BioWare Austin's general manager.
"The subscription-only model presented a major barrier for a lot of people who wanted to become part of The Old Republic universe."
The MMO has seen serious setbacks in recent months, with falling subscriptions and layoffs at Bioware's Austin studio.
EA hopes to reverse its fortunes, first by placing the game on sale for $14.99 to re-vamp interest, after which the free-to-play option will go live.
"Since launch, we've been listening to feedback from our fans and adding new content and refining The Old Republic at a breakneck pace," said executive producer Jeff Hickman.
"We believe we are in a position to help improve the service even more, not only by continuing to add new content, but also by expanding the game to many more Star Wars fans, increasing the populations on worlds and the vibrancy of the community."