EA says it will have spent more money on BioWare's Star Wars: The Old Republic than any game in the company's long history by the time it ships.
EA chief financial officer Eric Brown said at Janney Capital Markets' 2010 Consumer Conference recently: "It is the largest R&D project EA has ever undertaken in terms of total dollars that we expect to spend bringing the title to market."
EA seems content to give BioWare all the time it needs to take make SWTOR the best it can be, reaffirming the game won't be out before March 2011. "We're not expecting it to ship in fiscal 2010, nor have we given a specific ship date thereafter," said Brown. "We're intentionally being nonspecific on the ship date."
Brown went on to explain why EA's so confident of the game's success. "In the past, for MMOs, the type of fiction that has resonated most broadly is fiction based on swords and knights and sorcery, et cetera," he said (via Gamasutra).
"Star Wars is analogous to that -- instead of the swords, you have the lightsabers; instead of the knights you have the Jedi -- we think it's a fiction that does very well, we think it's a fiction that spans the decades."
Analysts have previously said EA and BioWare are targeting two million subscribers with the game, but says it needs to acquire at least one million subscribers to recoup hefty development costs.