Star Wars: The Old Republic has been preparing to implement a free-to-play hybrid option for several months, and next week BioWare will finally flip the switch. The developer today announced it will activate free-to-play on its release servers on Thursday, November 15.
The MMORPG will retain paid subscriptions while letting free players move up all the way through their class stories to level 50. Free players will encounter several restrictions such as limited weekly access to PvP Warzones and PvE Flashpoints, which can be lifted either through microtransactions or by paying the typical monthly subscription.
While the game enjoyed a strong launch in December 2011, its subscriber numbers dropped quickly. The game had less than 1 million subscribers as of July, EA reported in its first quarter 2013 financial statement.