The release date has been announced for (Star Wars: The Old Republic! December 20th, in the US. That’s right, people! The latest money sink is here! And the date when I’ll turn my computer back on!

The date for this has been pushed two or three times over the last year, always with Bioware citing a need to “release a good product” – a totally valid point, to be sure – with never a hint to an actual day because “We don’t want to give a heads up to the competition, allowing them to release patches or updates to their own games at the same time.” The ‘competition’ is, of course, World of Warcraft. And a big patch would be just the sort of thing Blizard would do.

The day approaches. And now, more than ever, I’m glad we’re cleaning out the office! It’ll be good to have more room to bounce excitedly around while smiting foes. It will be glorious. And epic.

And… what’s that, you say? “What the hell is The Old Republic?”

Picture the Star Wars story line. The Luke era is “now”. The Knights of the Old Republic happened 4000 years earlier. The Knights of the Old Republic II: The Sith Lords, took place less than 50 years later. The Old Republic is 300 years after that. Back in a time when the Force was something amazing. Something that could tear planets out of orbit, stand mountains on their peaks, change minds of the masses… Hmm – I’m sounding a tad Dark here. I’ll rephrase. Back in a time when the Force was something Amazing. Something that could move nations to peace in a time of war, heal multitudes of their weariness and pain, erase strife and ease darkness in the troubled about to fall to the Dark Side.

Nifty, eh? So, The Old Republic is the latest MMO to hit the scene. The wizards at Bioware have rethought MMOs and retooled the way the game genre works. If you’re REALLY curious, head on over to the SWTOR website (linked above) and watch the videos in the Media section. The Gameplay videos are the best, since they show how it will actually be in the game. It looks like it’ll be amazing.

I’ll be there. Will you?

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