Star Wars MMO gets its next expansion this summer -- Are you coming back?

Galactic Strongholds digital expansion allows players to live on multiple planets and customize their apartments.

Still playing Star Wars: The Old Republic? If you are, you might be happy to learn BioWare has announced Galactic Strongholds, the next expansion for the free-to-play massively multiplayer online role-playing game.

Due out this summer, Galactic Strongholds will allow players to live on multiple planets and "expand their influence" by acquiring and customizing their own Strongholds.

You'll have hundreds of "unique" decorations to use as a means to not only style your living space to your liking, but also to boost your Prestige score for the Stronghold Directory.

You can also invite other players to your Stronghold from any in-game location. In addition, when Galactic Strongholds rolls out this summer, Guilds can use a new Guild Flagships feature where they can meet and plan for their next outing.

To mark the expansion's announcement, BioWare is also handing out various in-game bonuses to paying subscribers. These are listed below.

Subscribers as of April 2 will receive:

  • 500 Bonus Cartel Coins

Subscribers as of May 4 will receive:

  • 1,000 Bonus Cartel Coins

Subscribers as of May 11 will receive:

  • Early Access to Galactic Strongholds on June 24
  • Luxurious Nar Shaddaa Stronghold with three additional rooms unlocked (Value: 1,500,000 Credits)
  • Stronghold Label: “Galactic Stronghold”
  • Character Title: “The Illustrious

Subscribers beginning June 24 will receive:

  • Early Access to Galactic Strongholds on June 24
  • Luxurious Nar Shaddaa Stronghold Unlocked (Value: 250,000 Credits)
  • Stronghold Label: “Galactic Stronghold”
  • Character Title: “The Illustrious”

Preferred Status Players beginning July 29 will receive:

  • Early Access to Galactic Strongholds on July 29
  • Stronghold Label: “Galactic Stronghold”
  • Character Title: “The Illustrious”

Galactic Strongholds is one of two new digital expansions coming to The Old Republic this year. Unfortunately, no other details are available regarding the second expansion.

The Old Republic launched in 2011 after its development reportedly cost $200 million for publisher Electronic Arts. The game failed to attract a wide enough userbase to sustain its subscription-based model and switched to free-to-play just 11 months after release.

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and you can follow him on Twitter @EddieMakuch
Got a news tip or want to contact us directly? Email news@gamespot.com

Written By

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and would like to see the Whalers return to Hartford.

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Discussion

104 comments
m1459
m1459

I love SWTOR, been playing for two years now, having a blast.

ahpuck
ahpuck

Great! that means more cinematics. I don't play the game, but I freaking love the cinematic, they better than the movies.

jedity120
jedity120

Never left, never will. There's nothing else to go too, SWTOR is a FAR batter game than people make it out to be, this coming from someone who has played the games that are so called 'better'. This is a much more enjoyable game than WoW, LoL, GW2 or any of the others (plus has a far better community). Hate me if you want, but if everyone else can express their dislike of something, I'm entitled to support it as well. Can't wait for this expansion 

MatthiasSteel
MatthiasSteel

Bioware should be spending time making a KOTOR single player sequel or a Jade Empire sequel which i want more than another KOTOR sequel.

jjleshko90
jjleshko90

A lot of people still play the game, just not the huge numbers that everyone was expecting, nor equal to the huge number that the game cost to make.


If you also revisit WoW, and then go back and revisit SWTOR (which is free to do), then you'd be amazed by the actually interesting quests and great voice acting.


Aside from the story, which languishes because of leveling and the fact it's spread across 8 classes, this game still hasn't got much. Still your basic WoW clone that infused some classes. But, the storylines are well-worth the f2p price, and they were a great step in the right direction for MMORPGs.


God, I hate reading quest text...

morten100
morten100

nop not coming back to that game

normanislost
normanislost

im assuming there's more to it than just player housing? the new WoW expansion is adding a workable player fort/house thing but its a part of an actual whole expansion

Auriken
Auriken

Bioware: Here's some IC.

Players: Don't be a jerk, give it to us for free.

Bioware: We're a company we need to make a profit.

Players: And we're entitled to everything you make.

Bioware: Fine, here's some lower quality IC for free. It's not as good as the stuff we sell but it's still IC.

Players: WTF? Why do the people who pay for it get the chocolate sprinkles?

Bioware: Because they're supporting us by paying for it.

Players: You greedy bastards! Give us sprinkles!

Bioware: Fine! Here's your damn sprinkles!

Players: About damn time! You're still jerks because you didn't offer them right from the beginning. Oh, and release some new flavors soon!

Bioware: *sigh* We do have a new flavor coming out soon.

Players: Is it free?

Bioware: No, we spent money to make it we need to make money to profit.

Players: You really do bend over for EA don't you?

Bioware: *whispers* We seem to be bending over for you more than them.

Players: What was that? Nevermind it doesn't matter. Why don't you jerks ever give us what we want?

Bioware: We gave you free IC and sprinkles and even take your advice on new flavors...

Players: That doesn't matter! The only thing that matters is right at the beginning you messed up by not giving us free IC and sprinkles! We'll hate you forever for that no matter what you do next!


I really wish I could say I made all of that up, but that actually happened. Just replace IC with games and sprinkles with subscriber benefits and flavors with DLC or expansions. Sometimes I'm ashamed to be considered a gamer with the people who keep doing this.

leikeylosh
leikeylosh

Go back to running across those endless desert corridors to complete boring fetch quests? No, thank you.

Yuusha09
Yuusha09

Pre-ordered WildStar, it's much more impressive.

Wintermist
Wintermist

They can keep their Cartel Coins, they would take them right back anyway since that is the only way to do anything in that goddamn game. I'm almost ashamed I once liked the game.

Hurvl
Hurvl

When some good non-MMO Star Wars games come along, then I'll be interested. Even though EA is the Empire when it comes to gaming, they're my only hope.

Kooken58
Kooken58

Hillarious how they are charging money for what is a housing system...when games of past often put in a housing system into their game for free.

Nightelf123
Nightelf123

bioware wants to bring The Sims in star wars world.

pelvist
pelvist

Love Star Wars and I was very excited for this game but it was an exceedingly boring experience that I dont ever want to go back to.

justinka777
justinka777

guess their still not done copying world of warcraft.

ghost59
ghost59

no because it still sucks

Flamewolf75
Flamewolf75

Drew Karpyshyn, what are you doing? Please come back to your rightful place on the Mass Effect Team.

Sohaim
Sohaim

What? adding houses to the game now count as an expansion? good lord so glad i stoped playing this game, it was getting like this, they were spliting Flashpoint into two, just to say that it was more content, but calling the house mechanic a full expansion? lolz

bruta
bruta

'expansion' lmao

not to mention that garbage is dead since 2012

nocny007
nocny007

So many haters. If I was any younger, I would play this game like crazy. Right now I don't have so much time, but I play occasionally and quite like it. I used to play with action figures from SW when I was little. Games like this make me feel like I'm 8 years old. Still playing with action figures, only in virtual world. 

TOR is quite fun even for free, but for a working man subscription isn't a big deal. Unfortunately none of my real life friends play games anymore, so my stronghold will feel kind of empty. Nonetheless I wish everyone playing a very good time.

ioshilee
ioshilee

I'd prefer a new story arks instead of this. And not just general quest line like on Makeb, but class stories.

sjansen100
sjansen100

Again with the troll bait Eddie? Every time SWTOR releases an expansion, you use your headline to ask if "You'll go back?" Why? it serves no purpose than to draw out the very people who will not go back. 


How about just reporting the news and leave the editorial for a separate article. The game was a major disappointment for a lot of people and all this does is open old wounds. 


The aggrieved players then (sometimes) feel the need to vent their anger all over again, trashing a game they haven't played in probably over a year, turning away potential new players who are curious about this news and then read all this venom in the comments.

Alecmrhand
Alecmrhand

Um, no. I dont want a house in my MMO. 


This game lost focus and lost me. Adding personal housing is the last lazy excuse for an idea of old MMO's. The fact the SWTOR is going there already shows its complete lack of vision.


Thats why i left.

Micropixel
Micropixel

BioWare/EA needs to scrap their current game model and go full sandbox with it. Look at games like EVE Online and the late Star Wars Galaxies which had a thriving player-run economy. That's the way to do it.


Personally, I'm passing on this. The reason why is because it's a SCAM. The only way to get anything for your house is to buy it off the Cartel Market (meaning, you have to subscribe for 500 coins per month OR spend real money for more coins). And if you want more housing, you'll also be getting that off the Cartel Market too.



Kinguard73
Kinguard73

Bring it to the PS4 and I'll give it another go.

xsonicchaos
xsonicchaos

Damn it, Eddie, stop asking me if I'll come back every time a new expansion pack pops up! NO! It wasn't the lack of content that pulled me out of that game.

bobbiloff
bobbiloff

@jjleshko90  Playing Imperial Agent or Sith Warrior with xp boosts completely eliminates the grind. I played with a friend as IA and SW and it was great, like a co-op KOTOR. Underrated game, at least story wise if you choose Agent or Warrior.

Auriken
Auriken

@randomkidlol Nowhere near dead. They're pumping out two or three expansions a year now. If the game had no players they wouldn't have the money to do that.

wallacom
wallacom

@Auriken  Never played the game, but your explanation deserve more likes.

Wintermist
Wintermist

@Auriken  I can tell you, I bought the game. Then I upgraded it to Deluxe. Then I bought it for a friend. Then I also bought the Collector's Edition for myself. Even when it was free to play I was subscribing. I watched the Cartel Market grow, take over, and completely eat up the whole game. THAT is what SWTOR is today; Star Wars; The Old Cartel Market

BlackBaldwin
BlackBaldwin

@Yuusha09

Your gonna be hating it later people like you always do.

Hurvl
Hurvl

@Sohaim Housing is really not what I'm looking for in an RPG. I remember when Skyrim added housing in the Hearthfire DLC and thought "huh, worthless DLC, what a surprise" but they at least had the sense to make it much cheaper than their story-focused DLC's.

Kooken58
Kooken58

@Sohaim Its pretty hillarious, I remember playing an old MMO Dark age of camelot, long ago. It had a major patch that put in a pretty expansive housing system for free.

sjansen100
sjansen100

@Micropixel  Wrong.


SWG may have had a "thriving" player economy, but it hardly had a thriving player base. Sandbox MMO's can be a lot of fun, but they are a niche product.


Also, the items for your strongholds are NOT available only on the Cartel Market. The actual press release states that most will be gathered from accomplishing stuff in game. Will there be stuff to buy on the CM? Yes. The game has to make money, but it won't be the only way (as you put it).

texasgoldrush
texasgoldrush

@bobbiloff @jjleshko90 Agent is one of the best storylines Bioware has done...it actually feels like an Obsidian style storyline. Jedi Consular is the best on the Republic side.

Auriken
Auriken

@Wintermist Really? That's weird. I've never seen a single thing on the market that's buy to win. I've never seen anything on the market that is necessary for you to play the game unless you're not a subscriber. Also, pretty much everything you buy off the Cartel Market can be bought through the GTN. It's not cheap but it's still available. And a lot of legacy upgrades can be purchased either with cartel coins or in game money, and that's mostly just filled with XP boosts or cooldown reduction on convenience skills. Things that have absolutely zero effect on any player but the person who purchases them.


So I'm really confused. How exactly did the cartel market take over the game? Because while it can in fact be used in many different ways, very few of those ways effect more than the person who used it. Which shouldn't matter to you anyway.

Yuusha09
Yuusha09

@BlackBaldwin Oh, I'm sorry. Apparently I forgot that you've known me your whole life and know my personality completely.  Oh wait, you don't.  STFU and get back under the bridge where you belong troll.

Sohaim
Sohaim

@sjansen100 @Micropixelproblem is that at some point even freaking mini quest went to the freaking cartel market, which was one of the reasons i left and everyone was fine, there ARE limits, for the devs there is none, and this crap should not be called an expansion, not even a big update, and ALL of the cool stuff is in the Cartel Market, even the Nightmare gear drops looked like crap.

Kinguard73
Kinguard73

@Micropixel @Kinguard73 I can tell you haven't played a PS system since PS2. 3 and 4 allows keyboard and Mouse; there is no need for the controller at all. Why PS4 is THE system for MMO or FtP games, I bet it run StarCraft (an RTS) great too..

Wintermist
Wintermist

@Auriken @Wintermist  I didn't say pay to win. If you can't admit that the Cartel Market goes through the whole game and is on top of that gambling, with their packs. You can't even get a haircut without using Cartel Coins. I find it ridiculous. They took it too far. You may not think so, but I do.

BlackBaldwin
BlackBaldwin

@Yuusha09

Its the internet bucko don't like what I gotta say deal with it!