Over 5000 developers have licensed the Hero Engine, known as the engine used in Star Wars: The Old Republic.

The surge in popularity within the MMO industry is thanks to the successful launch of the game, alongside the release of Trion World's popular MMO RIFT, according to the engine's chief operating officer Neil Harris.

"In January we have been inundated with thousands of inquiries from studios, large and small, more than in any other period in the company's existence," Harris told Develop.

Its developer, Idea Fabrik, now also offers studios a hosting service for 3D online games called Hero Cloud.

Star Wars: The Old Republic launched December 20 in North America and Europe and will be out in New Zealand, Hong Kong, Singapore, and Australia March 1.