Recently during a conference call to investors EA CEO John Riccitiello let it slip that The Old Republic would be in “high scale” testing at the end of June. In order to prevent the potential mob of eager beta testers from knocking down the doors of BioWare Austin to get into this high scale test, BioWare took to the forums to clarify the status of their testing and what was meant by what Riccitiello said. In the words of BioWare’s Senior Online Community Manager, Stephen Reid:
Take a deep breath, everyone…
Game Testing is currently ongoing for Star Wars: The Old Republic. This isn’t news – it’s been ongoing for quite a while. At different points in the process, we have invited a number of people to test. Some of those people tested for short periods, some for longer periods.
We’ve recently transitioned into longer-term and larger-scale testing. We have more people testing the game now than ever before. We are allowing them to play for longer than ever before. We’re also continuing to invite people to test, so if you haven’t signed up for testing yet â€“ now is a good time.
We will be allowing more and more people to test The Old Republic before launch, and that means occasionally we’ll spike in our invite numbers. It doesn’t mean everyone who’s signed up for testing is going to be invited in one block.
What we’re doing now, essentially, is similar to a â€˜Closed Betaâ€™ for other MMORPGs, but we call it Game Testing. It’s invite-only, and it’s limited in size. That gives us the most ‘bang for our buck’ in terms of getting meaningful, actionable feedback. However, we’re still ramping up, we’re getting more people in… and we’re still aiming to launch in 2011.
So there you have it. They have had limited tests for a while, and they are currently in a standard invite-only Closed Beta leading up to a launch later this year. Excited yet?