SWtOR, as a part of the old EU is automatically non-canon. However, more to the point, that doesn't actually matter at all.
Says who? I'm not trying to be argumentative, but that's a pretty definite statement to be making given the absolute lack of evidence I've seen one way or the other.
I'm really trying to sort out the fact from the speculation when I hear statements like this, and its difficult, because everyone seems to state things they've simply speculated based on the initial, vague statement as though they're definitive facts.
Also... the story is a minor concern? The story is literally the only reason I, and most people I know played TOR. It sure as hell wasn't the gameplay, which was fairly standard MMO trite. The only real draw TOR had was the story and the classic Bioware dialogue system. The combat, crafting and whatnot was all fairly standard for an MMO.
Okay, I'll grant that the space combat is unique and cool, but that was only added by an expansion... what... couldn't be even a year ago, because I remember distinctly playing it the very first day it launched. (The old space combat system was... unique, but not THAT exciting.)
Also, I already said many people probably won't leave. But when you see someone new coming in, it sort of de-insentives people to go in, as the whole story, which.. again, I have to disagree about not being important, is not longer even part of the Star Wars story. WoW can get away with being nothing but gameplay, but if anyone is playing TOR for the gameplay, in my opinion, there's a TON of better games they could be playing. I'm not saying it WILL bomb if its declared non-canon, but given that there's pretty much no reason TO declare it non-canon, then what's the point? If they can't write a good story without contradicting a game set eons and eons prior to their movies, they're just straight up BAD writers.
If they are really that incapable of writing a good story within the confines of an existing universe, they need to leave Star Wars alone and go write their own sci-fi universe. I mean, what are they going to do? Completely reset the canon every time they write a new movie, just to give themselves more freedom? There's a nice strategy for a lasting fanbase.
Novelists and comic writers have been finding ways to write new and exciting stories in the Star Wars universe for decades, I struggle to accept that Hollywood's finest are somehow incapable of that same feat.
What it boils down to is risk vs gain? What do they hope to gain by rendering TOR noncanon? Virtually nothing. Maybe an insignificant additional degree of freedom to write in. What do they risk by doing that? Pissing off hardcore fans, long time players and fans of that era, by throwing away a very interesting era of Star Wars history.
And on the note of Clone Wars... what? It didn't eliminate "Traviss-style Mandalorians", it just altered exactly what they were doing during the Clone Wars. Yes it fucked with the lore she'd established, but nothing about it retconned the entire Mandalorian lore away. In fact, the Death Watch began in the EU, as a group opposed to Jaster Mereel new guidelines for Mandalorian behavior, being lead by Tor Vizla. During the Clone Wars, they're lead by Pre Vizla and fight against Satine's new pacifist movement.
AND... Asajj Ventress' race change from Ratattaki to Dathomirian did not mean that the Ratattaki ceased to exist. In fact, in the story for her that has been accepted as canon up to now, the Ratattaki still very explicity DO exist, as she was taken as a slave BY them. The guy who's job it's been to keep the canon relatively straight has suggested that she shaved her head to intentionally fit in better with the local population.
Again... I'm not really sure why the idea of using Jaina... and creating NEW stories for her is such a difficult one? If the entire post-RotJ EU doesn't exist any more, there's no constraints for what her story is any more. I don't get why you think it would be restrictive to use her character when the EU is already being wiped clean for that era. (I clarify "for that era" because best I can tell that's still the only thing they've basically said with 100% clarity. As far as I can see, most anything else is still speculation and rumor.)
There IS no accessibility issue OR existing publication history. That's the entire thing that started this thread to begin with. That stuff never happened. Fans who are hardcore enough to know who Jaina is have already heard that the post-RotJ EU is non-canon, so they won't be confused. Anyone who doesn't know about this new EU stuff probably doesn't know who Jaina is and won't even be aware anything has ever been written about her before.
Again, I ask, risk vs gain? They can literally write Jaina into ANY story they want, and can appease at least some of the EU fans that way. By not doing so, they gain virtually nothing, and risk losing the interest of some long-time, very dedicated Star Wars fans. Sure, they might lose them anyway, but again... what have they got to lose? Using a character who is not in any way restricted by the confines of an existing story any more doesn't really limit them in any way, except by having to stay somewhat true to that character's personality. They already have to do that with the entire returning cast of Star Wars, will one more break their entire movie?
You keep making it sound like they should just kick the long term fans to the curb and go "hey, sucks to be you", which... ignoring for a moment how much of a repugnant way that is to treat the fans who have kept the franchise ALIVE for this long, just because they might not need their cash any more... its simply a bad business move to not even take the smallest, most insignificant steps to try and appease them. I mean, these are the fans who kept Star Wars alive in the time between Jedi and Phantom Menace, who didn't let the utter terribleness of the prequel trilogy deter them from loving Star Wars. These are some loyal damned fans, and Disney would be smart to at least TRY to get the best of both worlds. If they fail to appease them, oh well, they'll still get all the new fan money.
Frankly, maybe I'm wrong. Maybe they're making all the best business decisions. Regardless, if Star Wars becomes the kind of franchise that discards its die hard fans the moment they cease being the biggest possible demographic, I'm done with it. I'll stick to the old stories and make my own canon through roleplay. Even George Lucas, for the many ways he pissed off his fans to no end, at least understood the importance of having them to some degree. He elevated the 501st Legion into undeniable canon, he adopted elements and even a few characters from the EU when he could manage it. Basically, I think, for all his futile attempts to keep Star Wars 'his vision', he at least seemed to understand that the fans wanted to be more than just viewers, they wanted to be a PART of Star Wars.
I can only hope Disney will keep that in mind. As cheesy as it might sound, I've always been one of those fans who thought of Star Wars as more than just a neat little sci-fi series, it was a big, wonderful universe full of possibilities; not just some vehicle for safe and polished cinematic profit-makers, and its related spinoffs.
Yeah... I know, I'm a big dumb Star Wars nerd xD; ... but hey, I'm passionate about something, and I can be proud of that xD
Edit: Fixed a little bit up above where I forgot to finish a thought. (The part about TOR's story being non-canon would make the story less interesting to new-comers.)
Edit Edit: ... and another one in the same paragraph. God I couldn't English very well when I wrote this.