The mythical “WoW-killer” has become so unbelievable that most people feel that the only thing that will kill World of Warcraft is World of Warcraft. But this year BioWare is releasing The Old Republic. The MMO builds on one of the most popular gaming series in history and it’s arriving at the perfect time to take a huge bite out of Azeroth. Here are some reasons why The Old Republic may just crush WoW.
BioWare is really the only game developer that stands a chance of beating Blizzard at their own game. Aside from Blizzard, no other developer has a history of quality and an equally rabid fanbase. People may point to Dragon Age II as a sign of BioWare’s slide in quality, however the explanation for that blemish is well documented (EA really wanted the game out, more focus on consoles, etc.), and even Blizzard has stumbled with the unreleased Warcraft Adventures: Lord of the Clans.
Knights of the Old Republic
Knights of the Old Republic has become something of a legend in not just Star Wars gaming circles, but in gaming in general. People waited for a sequel, and Obsidian delivered a solid (if unfinished) followup and ever since people have been begging for a KOTOR 3. BioWare isn’t making a KOTOR 3 so The Old Republic is the closest you’ll ever get to a third game in the series, with the story in the MMO picking up about 300 years after the first game.
World of Warcraft will be Seven Years Old
When World of Warcraft released in 2004, EverQuest had just celebrated its fifth anniversary and people were ready to jump to a new game. When The Old Republic releases later this year, World of Warcraft will have just celebrated its seventh year online and people are more than ready to jump ship. Recent releases such as Rift, and Blizzard’s loss of half a million subscribers, show this.
200,000 Pre-Orders in a Week
In just five days, and with no release date announced, The Old Republic has racked up more than 200,000 pre-orders. Just imagine the frenzy that will hit after the free beta weekends in September and the announcement of the actual ship date. The game is poised to truly be the one of the biggest releases of 2011.
Blizzard Can’t Counter it in 2011
Back when Warhammer Online launched, they ran into the unfortunate brick wall of the Wrath of the Lich King launch. This year, there’s nothing Blizzard has that will stop The Old Republic’s momentum. While it’s true they will be revealing details of the Diablo III beta soon, and it’s possible the beta will start the same time as The Old Republic launch, even that isn’t enough to stop the hype of a new Star Wars game set in the time of KOTOR.