After quite a wait, Star Wars: The Old Republic is finally free to play. Game update 1.5 adds the option to hop in without an active subscription, along with some other content for the community to look into, including a new squadmate and new explorable areas.
- HK-51, an assassin droid abandoned on a derelict ship, can now be recruited from a wreck on Belsavis. No, he's not quite HK-47, but the droid is supposed to come pretty close.
- Belsavis also has the explorable "Section X" area now, a formerly untouched part of the prison planet. The Dread Masters are now searching for a "powerful and ancient weapon (Aren't they always?), and it's your job to fly in and secure the quarry.
- Operation: Explosive Conflict on Denova how has a Nightmare Mode. Beating it will earn players the final piece of the Dread Guard gear, plus a whole new mount.
Not all the content is available to free players, unfortunately. As previously noted, for instance, Operations (read: raids) are off limits to the free crowd. Other activities like Space Missions, dungeons, and PVP are also restricted. Free players can, however, get to level 50 without paying and check out all eight class storylines.