Aug. 22, 2011 at 4:28 PM ET
So you can't wait to play 'Star Wars: The Old Republic' as soon as it launches? Well then, you better pre-order your copy real quicklike ... or potentially face an extra wait for the game you've already waited so long to play.
According to Gamasutra, Electronic Arts has confirmed that it will be limiting the initial number of digital and physical copies of the highly anticipated massively multiplayer online game to make sure that over-crowded servers don't cause issues at launch.
"We are limiting launch quantities of 'Star Wars: The Old Republic' to ensure players have a smooth and high quality game experience and service at launch," a representative for EA and the game's developer BioWare told Gamasutra. "All versions of the game — physical and digital — are available for pre-order on a limited basis only. Once they are gone, they are gone."
The company has not said what the exact limit will be. But according to the rumor mill, EA is going to restrict pre-orders to 500,000, and will only guarantee the first 50,000 get immediate access to the online game.
It may sound harsh, but it also makes good sense. It's safe to say that interest in "The Old Republic" is very high. And slammed servers on day-of-launch can leave early players with a poor impression of the game. And that poor impression — well, it can spread real fast.
An EA rep told Game Informer, that when they reach their cap they will quickly work to expand the game's server capabilities and allow new players in. But the representative didn't know if that would take hours, weeks or months.
EA Games label president Frank Gibeau recently told investors that the company is aggressively preparing for multiple millions of users to jump into the game. And analysts have predicted that they could sell up to 3 million copies in the first year.
Of course, there's nothing like word of a shortage to help further drive demand.
And the question still remains: When is the game actually going to launch? EA and BioWare have said they plan to launch the game sometime later this year. Though, they have said the game could get pushed back to early next year.
(Thanks to Gamasutra for the heads up.)
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Winda Benedetti writes about games for msnbc.com. You can follow her tweets about games and other things here on Twitter or join her in the stream here on Google+.And be sure to check out the In-Game Facebook page here.