SOE on Star Wars Galaxies closure: “It was time”

Sony Online Entertainment CEO John Smedley has revealed a myriad of reasons as to why the developer’s Star Wars: Galaxies MMO is going offline at the end of the year.

Speaking to The Escapist, Smedley noted that upcoming BioWare MMO, Star Wars: The Old Republic, was indeed one of the factors in making the decision. He said: “It was time to turn it off. We have a contractual relationship that’s ending in 2012, The Old Republic launching, a bunch of other business things with LucasArts. And then you look at the odds of a pretty large portion of the audience moving to TOR, which looks like a terrific game. I think that’s going to be really well-received by the population.”

He may be anticipating the game but Smedley admits that it’s tough letting go of this one. “But it hurts,” he stated. “We knew, with the checkered past [of Galaxies], that this would not be a popular decision, but it was just one that we had to make.”

The CEO later somberly stated: “I’m bummed about it.”

But he also insists that the remaining five months the game has left will be memorable: “The team is working on all of the details. Is the Death Star going to blow up again? “I don’t know about that but they’ve got something else in mind with the Galactic Civil War. I think [Star Wars Galaxies] is going to go out in a memorable way. With a bang, not a whimper, that’s for sure.”