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Star Wars Online A Growing Force

Boot Camp feature for Tuesday, February 17, 2004

27 years after the original movie, Star Wars remains quite a force. Bloomberg Boot Camp, a report on today's technology. LucasArts…the video game arm of the George Lucas empire…has attracted more than four hundred thousand fans who pay as much as 14.95 a month….to be part of Star Wars Galaxies, An Empire Divided. The massively multiplayer game went on sale last June, and producer Haden Blackman leads a team that continually updates features keeping players glued to their PCs…

"Most players spend 10 to 15 hours a week playing the game on average. Then of course we have the really hardcore players who play thirty, forty hours a week or more. Right here, we're looking at character creation. This alone, because it's so deep and gives you so many options can consumer hours of your time if you let it."

Blackman says the subscribers numbers are still growing…and when the next Star Wars movie arrives in the summer of next year, that growth should accelerate…

"We'll probably look to leverage some of the content from the new movie. We did that with Episode II as well. So if you play Galaxies, it's set in the time from of the original trilogy, so in between Star Wars and The Empire Strikes Back. But we draw content from all of the movies. So there's a planet like Nabu which showed up in Episode I. we'll leverage Episode III as well."

Many of the players are sticklers for Star Wars detail who have grown up with the movies and books and complain if characters or story lines aren't true to the original. Bloomberg Boot Camp, I'm Fred Fishkin.