Well, it must be the end of the world because The Secret World just went free to play. Buy once, play forever with no subscription. That was a shock. It’s quite possibly a good move, but f2p always makes me nervous in story-driven, content-rich games such as this one.
Unlike Star Wars, it sounds as they are going to be reasonable and ungreedy in the conversion. Joel Bylos was quoted as saying “First and foremost, I need to represent what I feel is the best route for the players, both current and future. I feel like the business model we have landed upon is a great platform for anybody even remotely interested in the game. I don’t want to treat *anybody* who plays The Secret World as a second class citizen and I think that this business model allows everyone to play the game without any sort of restriction.” Nicely said – and that should relieve many of the worries that fans of the game would have had about it going f2p (especially after all of the bad feeling towards Bioware/EA over SWTOR).
I could be wrong, but I honestly don’t get the impression that this is a panic move designed to save a failing game. It seems well-reasoned and timed with the sense of black humour that permeates the game and its marketing (“We’ll all be dead soon when the world ends on the 21st, so we’re not going to rip players off.”) Selling content packs has done well in other MMOs, and as long as Funcom doesn’t fill the cash shop with P2W items or beat f2p players into subscribing (which I don’t think they will be), they should do quite well.
So, if you haven’t yet tried The Secret World, you should. It’s a solid game with a great storyline, and also some of the best gaming moments I’ve ever had. (Black House. That’s all I’ll say. Being dead in there genuinely scared the hell out of me.)
Sub and membership information here, on the Funcom site: Subscription No Longer Required!
7 thoughts on “The Secret World Goes F2P”
Noooo, I did not need to know this. I’ve been seriously wanting to try this game but I’ve been putting it off because I know how much of my writing time it will suck up.
This looks so awesome!
Yes, MMOs are death for writers. :) It is a really, really good game though. Not entirely solo-friendly (some areas are pretty punishing for solo players) but worth looking at. I love the writing in this game, and the voice acting is high-quality. It helps to be good at solving puzzles, which I am decidedly not…so I lean on guides heavily.
Yesterday at work, we were trying to figure out how many big subscription-based MMOs were left (outside of WoW). All I can come up with are Rift and EVE. Well, Trion just went through a rough bit of restructuring, so we’ll see what happens with that.
As for EVE…CCP is always off doing their own thing anyway, so who knows what they’ll do. Whatever it is, I’m sure it’ll be interesting.
Yes, I think we might see a time when Warcraft and EVE might be the last subscription MMOs. I’d say that Rift was still going strong but as you said, Trion had a recent restructuring so perhaps not. It’s a shame, I like Rift, I like Trion as a company very much – I was surprised to hear that news.
CCP (as you say) always goes their own way…I just wish that they would spend some time on World of Darkness. :( As an old Vampire The Masquerade player, I’ve always said that I really wished someone would do an MMO based around that IP.
Huzzah! I’d been putting off playing this game because I can’t afford the subscription. I’m hoping it’ll be a similar model to Guild Wars 2 and not too limited. *keeping fingers crossed*
No, it’s actually great, not limited at all. There is fluff in the shop, of course – but I like to support really good (non-greedy) F2P games by dropping some money in the cash shop. (I really need a pair of pink bunny slippers. I would rock those LIKE A BOSS.) You’ll have to pay for content updates, but fair enough.
Fluff in the shop is perfect. They need to cover costs some way, fluff harms nobody, in fact it’s quite fun.
Huzzah! Will have to look into it after Christmas. :)