Stephen Reid, BioWare's senior online community manager for Star Wars: The Old Republic, recently stated that "same gender romances with companion characters" will be added after the MMOG launches at the end of the year.
That's a seemingly 180-degree turn after the MMO's producer Cory Butler previously confirmed that the relationships will not be available to players. Even community manager Sean Dahlberg said that the terms "gay" and "lesbian" do not exist in the Star Wars universe. "As I have stated before, these are terms that do not exist in Star Wars. Thread closed," Dahlberg stated.
But according to Reid, same gender romances with companion characters in Star Wars: The Old Republic will be a post-launch feature.
"Due to the design constraints of a fully voiced MMO of this scale and size, many choices had to be made as to the launch and post-launch feature set," he said on the official SW:TOR forum. "Because The Old Republic is an MMO, the game will live on through content expansions which allow us to include content and features that could not be included at launch, including the addition of more companion characters who will have additional romance options."
BioWare is still shooting to get the Star Wars MMO out the door by the end of the year, but there's talk that the game won't be done until early 2012. Electronic Arts CFO Eric Brown made this revelation at this year's Citi Tech Conference, echoing familiar words that PC gamers have grown accustomed to hearing since the early days of id Software's Quake: we're not done until it's done.
"We have a date set internally [for calendar Q4], with a lot of assumptions around it," he said. "We're not done until we're done. … We're not going to know with enough certainty to publicly announce a release date."