Some Clarity Emerges: Bioware on Oceanic access

What a few days it has been. The threads continue unabated on the official forums on the staggered release issue. Until now the only response has come in intermittent tweets from Stephen Reid whilst wrangling the masses at Comic-Con.

Today, one of the other Senior Community Coordinators, Allison Berryman, has posted a response to the ongoing concerns. Although it only repeats the tweets from over the weekend, it at least puts a more official backbone behind them:

Hello everyone. We know that you have questions about this topic, and we hope to have more clarification for you all very soon. For those who may not have seen Stephen Reid’s tweets from this weekend regarding some of these subjects, I’d like to share that information here.

Regarding whether the game will block players from some regions by IP address: currently, there is no plan to block players from the game by regional IP blocking. Playing on servers physically distant from your location might mean you experience some issues with latency, but at this time we don’t plan on blocking players from a region by IP. On a similar note, anyone who pre-orders the game (and redeems their code) would receive the early access that is part of that pre-order.

We are continuing to investigate payment methods (specifically regarding credit cards billing addresses), and should have a definitive answer on the topic very soon.

I know you’ve probably seen this link a ton already, but please make sure to consult the pre-order FAQ if you have any questions related to pre-order (aside from these that we’re investigating). We really appreciate your patience as we get more information for you.

So there’s a little more clarity than 72 hours ago:

1. You can order the game from overseas.
2. You will get early access as per the conditions of the pre-order program.
3. There will be no IP blocking / regional blocking of those who order from overseas.
4. You’ll be able to pay your subscription via PayPal
5. Regional blocking of credit cards for payment remains an unknown but will be clarified in coming days.

It’s overall a small step toward setting some groundwork for the future. Hopefully the communication continues to improve – it’s hard for it to go a lot further backwards…

Over to you: what’s your thoughts?

UPDATE: Allison Berryman has clarified the credit card issue:

Hello everyone! We have some more information regarding subscription payment options.

Currently, any payment method supported by EA in a particular country will be accepted for subscription payments for Star Wars: The Old Republic. This includes major credit cards. We will provide further information as we approach launch. As we have mentioned previously, if you choose to play on a server that is physically distant from your location, you may experience latency issues that impact your gameplay experience.

Thanks again for your continued patience as we continue to answer your questions and provide clarification on these topics.


  1. PurpleCliff says

    It’s just annoying that I now won’t play with my real life friends for at least a few months. They, unlike me, aren’t ‘internet-savvy’ and ‘TOR-obsessed’ enough to purchase the game online.

  2. Good post.
    Heads up grammatical error.
    “…Until know the only response has come in intermittent …”

  3. Has PayPal been explicitly mentioned for subs? That’d be ideal for me, so I’m hoping it’s official!

    It’s still odd how they’ve chosen to block digital sales to our region. Is this really just a means of limiting sales by making it hard for overseas customers to get it? If you were willing to buy it digitally, what percentage chose not to instead order it via Amazon? It seems that EA/BioWare have lost potential profit, without actually reducing the number of players.

    This entire process could have been handled far better, by saying these are the supported regions, and the rest of you can buy the game digitally, but understand your experience won’t be ideal.

    But what we really need to know is whether SWTOR is particularly sensitive to high latency. Does it become unplayable at 200-400ms?

    Is there any reason to believe that participation in the September beta testing weekends will be extended to those outside the supported regions? I can’t see why it would be! It would seem we’re not going to know how it plays from Australia until we get our early access. The best we’ll get is feedback from testers in Europe playing on US servers, and that only if the NDA allows them to talk about it.

    • Hey Jason: I’m pretty sure the PayPal option is established yep. The playability at 200-400 is a great point. On WoW it’s certainly playable at that level – I’m working on assumption it will for SWTOR too…

      • You’re right about PayPal, it’s now in the pre-order FAQ! I must have missed it before, or they added it. Very good news. 🙂

        I play (too much) WoW and LOTRO at around 200-250ms ping, with no problems at all. It remains to be seen whether SWTOR is built such that it can deal with that; I’d assume so, too, but they’re making such a big deal about potential performance impact that I’m beginning to wonder.

        Thanks for the succinct posts keeping us up to date on the situation, David. Much appreciated!

      • I’ve had a few concerns that the dynamic fighting,,such as the clashing lightsabres, may require a lower latency that what we’ve previously experienced in MMOs.

        Time will tell.

  4. Well – I’m much relieved in some ways – assuming the game is playable and there are no significant lag issues.

    I still maintain BW should have come out with some statement like what’s Allison’s posted DAYS ago and saved a lot of people a great deal of stress and heart ache. People would have still been angry and upset, but arguably less so if we’d received some indication that we were being listened to, and our concerns looked into.

    I hope they will be offering free server transfers to those of us who want to move our characters to a different server (maybe even a local one depending on how things pan out), when the game officially launches in Australia.

    I take it most of us who have pre-ordered now will have being playing the game for some months on NA servers by the time it officially launches here in the Red Zone.

  5. VCTRSone says

    yerp new all that already but at least they made it official which is good.

    and we can play in the head start!

    also amazon has said they will email the actual game code the same night its shipped so we will be able to download enter our code and then just wait for our nice statues/boxed copys 🙂

  6. zimmozman says

    i bought mine the first day definitely not regretting it now and i dont even mind if im the only australian no one in my town will play this game ha ha

  7. Ravensbane says

    Worst case scenario and they try to block us from playing even though we have pre ordered and what not there is still ways to get around this. Proxys and VPN for IP block and Paypal or buying timecards from any number of sites that will send you the code near instantly.

  8. Darkflare says

    I use a proxy service and it lowers my wow ping from 400 to 200, basically half’s it, would recommend it to anyone

  9. fasolatha says

    Looks like we won’t have issues with CC’s:

  10. One great way to solve lag issues is to change your ADSL line profile.

    Internode and some other ISP’s have specialised gaming profiles that will reduce your latency. I’ve experienced latency reductions from around 220ms to as little as 185 ms but the results would vary on the location of the gaming server you play on and your city, (my tests from Melbourne). This is pretty much as fast as internet comes in australia for gaming, i certainly couldnt guarantee this results are depedant on a lot of things.

    Internode also has a free tunneling service that will most probably be available for SWTOR. I will offer that if you have a good gaming profile you dont need the tunneling service quite as much, depending on a range of factors it CAN help. Other good isps include IINET who has a gaming profile, you could enquire with telstra (i’ve heard mixed reports about gaming profile success)…. and soon enough our high speed internet providers will be useful, although i havnt researched them yet, I’m going to assume its going to be the same but BETTER.

    In Australia, when in doubt do your research on that site is a complete beast for info.

  11. It seems that Allison’s original post about no IP blocking has been deleted. Any idea what happened? Was the whole thread shut down?

    • Allison replied to a PM on the official forums, confirming that the old thread containing the quoted post was deleted to make way for a replacement thread, and so the post was lost. Stephen Reid’s updated post contained the latest info on no IP blocking, etc.