Our five favorite MMO meet-ups

Josh Augustine at

I spent hundreds of hours with my guildmates last year, chatting online while downing dragons, super-villains, and other big bads. But every now and then, it’s good for a team’s morale to drop the daggers, get out of the house, and just hang out with each other.

More and more MMOs are hosting annual conventions to help their players do just that. But it’s not just the games that make each convention different — the theme, style, and length all vary as well. We've attended and rated the biggest of them inside...

The Old Republic Patch 1.3 Class Changes Detailed, server transfers coming next week

T.J. Hafer at

Star Wars: The Old Republic's 1.3 patch, currently rolling out on the public test servers, is bringing a host of class changes. Prominently, issues of AoE threat generation are being addressed, which will make me and my fellow Jedi Guardians breathe a Force Sigh of Relief. Read on for details.

The Old Republic 1.3 "Allies" update adding Group Finder, server transfers, and more

Tyler Wilde at

One of the most noticeably absent features in The Old Republic is a proper group finding tool. The Force may be with us, but no one else is, and that makes us sad Jedi. We knew a better solution was coming, and in a new trailer detailing the contents of the 1.3 "Allies" update, Game Director James Ohlen claims that the new Group Finder tool will reduce grouping time to "just a few minutes." No more lonely Knights!

The Old Republic has 1.3 million subscribers

Josh Augustine at

During EA's quarterly phone call to investors this afternoon, Chief Executive Officer John Riccitiello announced that Star Wars: The Old Republic has seen a fairly significant drop in subscribers, but still has over a million paying customers. According to the report just released on Business Wire, TOR has 1.3 million subscribers still, which indicates a 23% drop from the 1.7 million of players at launch.

BioWare gives TOR players free game time and cuddly pets, alongside 17,000-word patch

Josh Augustine at

The Old Republic's long-awaited patch 1.2 is here, bringing with it all sorts of new in-game goodies for players to tinker with. But BioWare's taking out all the stops to make sure that gamers stick around, including giving every active account with a level 50 player 30 days of free game time and a cute tauntaun pet and offering players that've left 7 days of free game time to try out the new features in patch 1.2

PC Gamer US Podcast #308: GDC 2012 Recap

PC Gamer at

Evan, Josh, Tyler and Chris reflect on our week of coverage, talks, and appointments at the Game Developers Conference right here in our backyard of San Francisco. That includes MechWarrior Online, Valve's "History of TF2" talk, the infamous Steam Box, SimCity, PlanetSide 2, and (duh) Mass Effect 3. Josh also checks in about the SWTOR guild summit, reported on in more detail here.

PC Gamer US Podcast 308: GDC 2012 Recap

Five things you need to know about The Old Republic's future

Josh Augustine at

BioWare released a ton of information about their upcoming plans for The Old Republic at this week's Guild Summit. I tweeted a lot of the announcements as they came out, BioWare livestreamed the panels to everyone, and some of the hardcore fansites captured every tiny detail in thousands and thousands of words.

But for those of you that didn't watch the livestream or don't want to dig through piles of tiny changes to find the big ones that really matter, I’m going to tell you the five big take-aways from the Guild Summit that might change your opinion of the game.

Watch The Old Republic's Guild Summit live all day

Josh Augustine at

The giant conference room is quiet and empty as I write this, but just outside the decorated doors, 200 rabid TOR guild leaders anxiously wait to be let inside by the developer of their favorite MMO. Starting at 8 AM PST, BioWare will begin revealing their plans for TOR's future with the guild leaders, and asking for their input on how their guild members want to see the game change.

You can watch the whole thing live on this site all day, and a full schedule of events is inside.

We're attending The Old Republic's Guild Summit, what do you want to tell the devs?

Josh Augustine at

A month ago, BioWare announced they'd be holding a summit of The Old Republic guild leaders near their Austin, TX offices to gather feedback from the community and share their vision for the game's future. Well, my Jedi and Sith friends, the time is almost here.

The Summit takes place on Monday, and we're going to be there representing our official guild and PC Gamer as a whole. In addition to livestreaming some of the panels here on the site next week, we also want to pass along your feedback to the developers. So let us know what you like and don't like about TOR, and what you think BioWare should do about it.

The Old Republic chart shows you the path to 50, every planet and Flashpoint included

Josh Augustine at

Today is a day of maps, apparently. just released an awesome galaxy guide that maps out the suggested path to progress through all of The Old Republic's Flashpoints and planets.

It looks like I've already missed two Flashpoints on my new Sniper—whoops! Well, at least I shouldn't have a problem beating them now that I'm 10 levels higher than the enemies there. I'll be keeping this guide handy as I continue leveling up this weekend, and you can use it to avoid my same foolish mistakes.

The Old Republic is "the fastest growing subscription MMO in history," has 1.7 million subscribers

Josh Augustine at

EA just held their quarterly earnings call and released some juicy factoids about TOR's launch during it. Specifically, over 2 million copies of the game has been sold and 85% of players have subscribed or are still in their trial period (for a total of 1.7 million "active subscribers"). And those gamers are getting their money's worth: the average session time in the first month was FOUR HOURS, and over 1 million players were logged in simultaneously at one point.

In the Q&A portion, EA addressed concerns about the game's profitability by saying, "At 500,000 subscribers, we'd break even. At a million, we'd be making a profit but nothing worth writing home about. As it scales up from there, we're talking about a nice profit. At this point with the successful launch, we can take the worst case scenarios off the table."

You can read more long-form quotes here.

Hutts in mechs and other reasons to play The Old Republic's new Operation

Josh Augustine at

Earlier today, we showed off the new survival-horror Flashpoint being added to The Old Republic in next week's content update, but what's in that patch 1.1 goodie bundle for raiders, like the heroes of the PCG US guild running weekly raid nights? How about a revamped Rancor, an homage to Bauldur's Gate, and the best Hutt battle you've ever seen in your life? Lead Flashpoint, Operation and PvP Designer Gabe Amatangelo dished the dirt on the new raid content coming next week.

The Old Republic's Legacy system will let you pick your sister and play your father

Josh Augustine at

BioWare's been teasing details about The Old Republic's Legacy system for awhile now, but they released the first solid details about the game today in their interview with GameSpot. You'll be able to use the system to create specific relationships between all of your characters, turning the jumbled pile of characters on your login screen into an organized family tree of fathers, daughters, wives, and brothers.

You might think twice about ogling that hot new Smuggler alt running around in the skimpy Leia slave girl outfit when you know that she's the daughter of a terrible Sith Lord with a bad temper.

The Old Republic tries out survival-horror with its next endgame Flashpoint, Kaon Under Siege

Josh Augustine at

It's easy to forget that the world of Star Wars is filled with dirty, scary places--it's not all Gungan cities and Ewok campfires. BioWare's tapping into this darker side of Star Wars in the first Flashpoint added to The Old Republic after its launch, in the big Rise of the Rakghouls update coming on January 17th. It looks spooky, frantic, and - most importantly - will feature a full story with group choices and consequences, much like the game's first two Flashpoints: Black Talon and Esseles.

Day 2 - Star Wars: The Old Republic livestream

Evan Lahti at

Watch live here and click through to watch our archived livestreams.

Half leveling machine, half Sith Agent, all gentleman, Josh Augustine hit level 12 in Star Wars: The Old Republic yesterday. Tag along and see the semi-ethical adventures of his Sith Agent as we continue to livestream Josh's review progress in SWTOR today beginning at 11 AM PST. Josh will also answer your questions about the game live as he plays; join the chat!

We're livestreaming Star Wars: The Old Republic!

PC Gamer at

Watch live here.

Star Wars: The Old Republic's early-access went live today, and we'd love to show it to you. Join our very own MMO mastermind Josh Augustine as he starts from scratch, streaming character creation and gameplay on the PC Gamer's page from 2 to 5 PM PST today. Watch as he opens his corrupt heart to the powers of the Dark Side and rolls an Imperial Agent. Or, channel your inner Jar Jar and troll the stream—either way, we invite you to check out TOR's early game with us!

PC Gamer US Podcast #296: Happy Gamesgiving

PC Gamer at

Happy Gamesgiving, everyone! We celebrate the Turkeyist time of the year with another hearty podcast loaded with the usual news discussion and a heaping side of what we're thankful for this year in games. Josh fills us in on everything TOR-related now that the embargo has been lifted off his weary shoulders. Greg plays an instant classic out of the Vietnamese shooter 7554, and we all can't help ourselves from talking about the Muppets.

PC Gamer US Podcast 296: Happy Gamesgiving

PC Gamer US Podcast #291: A TORrent of Star Wars news

PC Gamer at

The embargo has (partially) lifted, and its time to open the floodgates on a ton of Star Wars: The Old Republic news. Josh and Dan share their hands-on experiences with interns Greg and Lucas, who grill them for info on lightsabers, aliens, enemies, story, and what makes this a great Star Wars game. Then we field listener questions on Battlefield and sound design, plus all the games we're playing this week.

PC Gamer US Podcast #291: A TORrent of Star Wars news