If you're a fan of Star Wars: The Old Republic, you're probably enjoying the new free-to-play structure and making lots of new friends – and enemies – across the galaxy.  But we're willing to guess that none are as nefarious as Jabba the Hutt – and he's about to make his presence felt in the game.

BioWare has announced today that they will be releasing the new Rise of the Hutt Cartel expansion for The Old Republic in spring 2013.  The update will be available for $19.99 through digital download, or half that price if you're a subscriber.

Rise of the Hutt Cartel will feature the planet Makeb, along with a level-cap bump to 55, new story content featuring all new cinematics, and oodles of new gear, points and abilities.  And, if you pre-order the new content, you'll get access to all the stuff five days early, but you need to act fast and have it in by January 7th.

It's just a shame that Jabba didn't bring the Rancor along with him.  Because, you know, it can certainly do some damage…