donniebaseball23 writes "EA's BioWare is developing its first-ever MMORPG in Star Wars: The Old Republic, and the publisher is betting big that the project will be a huge success. Wedbush analyst Michael Pachter says development alone cost an estimated $80 million, with marketing and distribution adding in another $20 million. The good news is it shouldn't take much to break even. 'We estimate that EA will cover its direct operating costs and break even at 500,000 subscribers (this is exceedingly conservative, and the actual figure is probably closer to 350,000), meaning that with 1.5 million paying subscribers, EA will have 1 million profitable subs,' Pachter noted." They're now aiming for a release late this year, but acknowledged the possibility that it could slip to January 2012. If you're curious about the current state of the gameplay, Eurogamer and Rock, Paper, Shotgun (PvE, PvP) both posted write-ups of some recent hands-on time.