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generalmax
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# Posted: 1 Aug 2012 13:42 · Edited by: generalmax
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Electronic Arts has revealed that the number of people paying to play its online video game Star Wars: The Old Republic has dropped below one million.

The title is the US firm's biggest investment to date.

Launched in December, it initially attracted more than 1.7m subscribers.

The firm said the news was "disappointing" adding that it was switching to a new pricing plan which would allow users to access much of the content for free.

Payment turn-off

The President of EA Labels Frank Gibeau said the Star Wars game would still break even so long as it maintained 500,000 subscribers, but admitted that its current performance was "not good enough".

"The message from players exiting the game is clear, 40% say they were turned off by the monthly subscription and many indicate they would come back if we offered a free-to-play model," he told analysts, according to a transcript of the conference call provided by the Seeking Alpha financial news site.

"Our plan now is to pivot and provide a two-tiered pricing plan, which will make the game more accessible and grow the audience."

The new scheme will allow users to explore the online title's first 50 levels at no cost, although they will not have access to all its features.

Users must pay $15 (9.50) a month for full access and a monthly allowance of in-game cash to purchase items or advance their progress.

In addition the firm is cutting the price that it charges for the game pack that users must buy before being able to access the MMORPG (massively multiplayer online role-playing game).

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