SWTOR’s local launch: your questions answered

What a day – after such a long wait for the details, we pretty much know most things about what life will be like post March 1 as SWTOR players. Although there’s no shortage of information around, I thought it might be worth rounding up the key facts:

1. March 1st is launch day – 12.01am to be exact.

2. Oceanic servers, located in Australia, go live at exactly the same time.

3. There’ll be optional free transfers to the new servers for anyone meeting these criteria:

To qualify for free character transfers, players must meet the following requirements by Tuesday, February 28, 2012, 5:01PM EDT, 7:01PM NZDT, 2:01PM HKT, 2:01PM SGT:

You specified that your country is Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong, or Singapore during your account registration process.

Redeemed an Official Game Production Registration Code on www.StarWarsTheOldRepublic.com Code Redemption Center.

Have had or currently have entered a valid recurring payment method or redeemed a Pre-Paid Game Time Code.

Only characters created on The Old Republic servers by February 28, 2012, 5:01PM EDT, 7:01PM NZDT, 2:01PM HKT, 2:01PM SGT qualify for transfers.

4. Whole guilds can’t transfer: each person needs to do it individually and then re-form the guild after the transfer. Some people are talking about getting their guildies to change their account details to show Australia as their country of origin in order to allow international guilds to transfer. I’d be surprised if that works really.

5. The game will have a recommended retail of AU $79.99 or NZ $89.99. Yes, that’s a bit more expensive than buying from overseas and yes it’s more expensive than a lot of the copies currently in store locally – which is why any recommended price can be taken with a grain of salt. Expect easy local availability for cheaper prices than the RRP. The digital deluxe edition will cost you an extra $10. There’s no local Collector’s Edition available unfortunately.

6. Monthly subscriptions can be paid with Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Paypal. The same goes if you buy the digital edition. Subs are billed in US dollars and will cost:

1 Month Subscription (automatically billed every 30 days): $14.99 USD per month
3 Month Subscription (automatically billed every 90 days): $13.99 USD per month (one-time charge of $41.97 USD)
6 Month Subscription (automatically billed every 180 days): $12.99 USD per month (one-time charge of $77.94 USD)

7. There will be PvE, PvP and RP-PvE local servers – no RP-PvP at this stage.

You can of course read the full FAQ here

For what it’s worth, I think it’s a pretty comprehensive set up for local players. Sure, we weren’t part of the initially launch (officially at least), but having local servers is a pretty good indication of the future of the game locally. At least we hope so.