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BioWare has announced the first expansion pack to their MMORPG Star Wars: The Old Republic. Rise of the Hutt Cartel, starring everyone's favorite crime boss slugs, will debut in Spring 2013.

In the expansion, the Hutt Cartel plan to compete with the Galactic Republic and Sith Empire for control of the galaxy. In new story-based missions, players will uncover the Hutts' plot and ultimately put a stop to it. The quest will take players to the new planet of Makeb.

Hutt Cartel is designed for high-level players. It raises the level cap from 50 to 55. Players will unlock new abilities as they progress to the new cap. Expect plenty of new loot as well.

The expansion pack is priced at $19.99. However, if you pay the monthly subscription, you can pick it up for $9.99. Either way, pre-ordering the expansion by January 7th will give you five days of early access.

Old Republic went free-to-play in November due to dwindling subscriber numbers. The game still offers an optional monthly subscription, but players can opt to play without a monthly fee as well. F2P players have the optional of buying certain game content using Cartel Coins, a currency that can be bought with real-world money.
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