Bioware has less than 1 million players currently playing SWTOR. I know EA currently release their quarterly report saying that they had 1.7 million player, but there information is from their 3rd quarter report. Their 3rd quarter ended on Dec 31 2011, which means that on Dec 31 2011 they had 1.7 million players. How many do they have now?
Well let check what the population of the server looked like on Dec 31. About 10-15% of them were full, 25-30% where heavy, 25-30% were light with the rest standard. Switch that to today. 0% of them are full, 5% are heavy 55-60% of them light.
Same data be easier to read
Dec 31 2011
That a huge difference, in my eye that probably a 50% drop. (You can check the x-fire data to, SWTOR has drop by about 1/2 to 2/3 the amount of hour that were played).
This leave me to believe that SWTOR has about 750,000 to 1 million people playing it. As EA has reported in the earning. 500,000 players are needed for the game to be profitable, and 1 million are needed to make an ok profit.
My prediction is if SWTOR continues in the direction it is currently heading EA going to have a bad fourth quarter, and EA will make a major changes to bioware. While i want SWTOR to succeed, this is not the game people were expecting. People are tired of the bug, tired of the bad itemization, tired of the limited end game, tired of leveling their alts through the exact same content every single time.
I believe what we are going to see is SWTOR go the way of EQ2, it won’t become the WoW killer people thought. A lot of the player base will leave (50-75%) in the first 3-4 Month, and then the game will stable it self. It will be just profitable for EA to continue to support it, but cut will have to be made. Voice acting will go away, or use less often. The Bioware team will be shrunk or moved to other projects, probably 50-60 people will be left (similar to eq2 team).