Welcome, Rebelscum readers! This week on the site we’re focusing on one of the most exciting (and rapidly growing) projects within the Star Wars universe. We’re covering The Old Republic, the expansive MMORPG that covers the era of ancient Sith Lords and Jedi Knights. Unlike some of the other Legends projects we’ve discussed, this is one that you can still get involved with - The Old Republic is one of the largest and most successful online multiplayer games ever made.
This week we’ll be looking back at The Old Republic in our series of articles. “Character Spotlight” will look at one of the villains in the game, “Timeline Breakdown” will explore connections to other Star Wars Expanded Universe projects, and in “Force Casting” we’ll speculate on what a future film or series involving The Old Republic would look like.
The Old Republic actually isn’t the first Star Wars multiplayer game; Star Wars Galaxies was successful from 2003 to 2007 and explored the Galactic Civil war between A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back. However, Lucasfilm was interested in developing a new game and noted the popularity of the ancient timeline thanks to the Knights of the Old Republic games, books, and comics. A new project was announced that would cover a similar point in the timeline.
Anticipation for The Old Republic was driven by the release of three epic cinematic trailers in the years before launch. If you haven’t checked out these amazing trailers (“Deceived”, “Hope”, “Return”, and this one that came after the game’s release “Sacrifice”) you’re missing out on great Star Wars action that rivals the films themselves. The game was set beginning in 3643 B.B.Y. (before the Battle of Yavin), so around 300 years after the adventures of Darth Revan and Darth Malak in Knights of the Old Republic.
“Deceived” set up the central storyline of The Old Republic, where the Sith Empire and the Galactic Republic are in a cold war following a lengthy period of conflict. The Sith have made significant gains having recaptured their home planet of Korriban, and after a deadly attack on Coruscant the Republic is forced into an uncomfortable truce. Tensions are high as Jedi and Sith battle across the galaxy.
The game first launched in 2011, and in subsequent years seven expansion packs have been added to the project, with the latest Legacy of the Sith set to debut later this year. Many tie-in projects have also been launched, including comics series (Threat of Peace, Blood of the Empire, The Lost Suns) novels (Fatal Alliance, Revan, Deceived, Annihilation), short stories, and comprehensive encyclopedia, explorer’s guide, and making of behind-the-scenes collection.
Like any multiplayer game, players determine their own destiny. Republic-aligned players can choose to be a smuggler, trooper, Jedi Knight, or Jedi Consular, and those on the dark side can be a bounty hunter, Imperial agent, Sith Warrior, or Sith Inquisitor. You’ll also get to pick a species, including humans, cyborgs, Twi’leks, Torgutans, or Zabracks; heroic players can also add either Miraluka or Mirakula, and Chiss, Rattataki and Sith Pureblood. The in-depth exploration of the Star Wars universe includes planets like Korriban, Ord Mantell, Nal Hutta, Tython, Coruscant, Balmorra, Alderaan, Tatooine, Dromund Kaas, Taris, Belsavis, Voss, Hoth, Corellia, Ilum and Quesh, and Nar Shaddaa.
Right now the game requires a monthly subscription, but there are free-to-play options if you’re just looking to test it out. Between combat missions, exploratory quests, advanced navigation tools, and an interactive community of fans, The Old Republic remains one of the biggest hives for creative Star Wars storytelling out there.
Collectors need not worry if they want to add The Old Republic and Knights of the Old Republic crossover characters to their stash. Darth Malgus, the Mandalorian Shae Vizla, Darth Revan, Bastila Shan, a Republic Trooper, Darth Nihilus, Zaalbar, Darth Malak, HK-50, and HK-47 were included within The Vintage Collection, Black Series, and Legacy Collection lines. LEGO fans will also want to check out the line of sets that include a Fury Class Interceptor, Republic Striker Starfighter, Jedi Defender-Class Cruiser, and a Republic vs Sith Troopers battle pack.
That’s all without mentioning the Funko Pops, Mighty Muggs, and miniatures launched with the line - look for Bobby’s video later this week breaking down all the coolest merchandising options. The fact that it’s continuing makes it a great investment for collectors, as the game has spiked to get over 400,000 users per day.
Now celebrating ten years on the market, there’s no question that The Old Republic will continue to grow. The expansion packs have continued the story and brought in popular characters like Revan, and rumors persist that Lucasfilm is interested in an Old Republic-era film trilogy or Disney+ series. The Old Republic is among the most popular Star Wars projects ever, and one that opened up a new unexplored side of the universe.
What do you all think? Are you a The Old Republic player? Did you ever read any of the tie-in books or projects? What do you like about this era? Let us know below, and as always, may the Force be with you!