Now that I’ve done the walk of shame regarding my 2 out of 5 success rate with my 2012 SWTOR predictions, I thought it was worth drawing together some predictions for the coming year.
Aside from my handful of guesses, I’ve also got some gems from my colleague Simon, so let’s jump in.
1. A further restructure of the SWTOR team at BioWare will occur in the first six months of 2013
I don’t think the ructions are over at BioWare and I think we’ll see a bunch more changes in staffing. Not the usual churn of staff, something more formal. You never know, the F2P move may be successful enough to force the change as the team grows. Or it could be the reverse.
2. Rise of the Hutt Cartel will be critically successful and a moderate commercial success
There’s already a lot of conjecture over how substantial SWTOR’s first expansion will be, but I’m being optimistic that it warrants the cost and that Makeb as promised will be a bunch of new zones with plenty to occupy. Story-wise I’m expecting it to be seen as a success, with a bump in player numbers leading to some moderate commercial success as well.
3. There will be no guild ships during 2013
Sorry, can’t see it happening – as much as we’d all love it.
4. Loss of oceanic servers
At best I think we’ll end up with one local server but i won’t be surprised if we lose the lot. If ROTHC is successful that may prevent the closure, so here’s hoping.
5. More players than the month after launch
This time next year I think that SWTOR will still be around and will have more players than it did at its peak in the month of two after launch in December 2011. The new subscription model will have had a lot to do with it, but I’m hopeful the content updates and bug fixes will continue to be regular and establish SWTOR as a longer-term MMO in the space.
Hmm… my crystal Death Star (Mk 1) suggested the following before it blew a hole in the Alderaan poster on the opposite wall and frightened the neighbour’s cat so severely it experienced both explosive diarrhea and projectile vomiting at the same time (and you thought dianogas were bad):
1. Subscriber grumbling about having to pay anything for the Makeb expansion as soon as everyone emerges from their turkey coma.
2. Decent player retention from F2P with better than projected earnings from the Cartel Market. There will be no sub or player numbers mentioned in any future earnings call, needless to say (but that’s normal after a title goes F2P).
3. New maps for existing Warzones mid to late 2013 (just a hunch)
4. GLBT romance arcs will continue to be conveniently forgotten (ask all you like, they’ll never tell)
5. Gradual increase in quantity and quality of content within game updates as EA/BW see uptick in profitability and player-base stability, and confidence in the product’s future gradually strengthens.
6. I will have finally levelled a character up to 50 by Jan1 , 2013
Now over to you: do you agree with any of the above? Do you have your own predictions you’d like to share?