DC Universe Online will be free to play

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The open world superhero game is the latest MMO to get in on the free to play bandwagon this year, joining other titles such as Team Fortress 2, Age of Conan and Guild Wars. Sony Entertainment has announced, that as of October, DC Universe Online will be a freemium title, with benefits for those players who actually do want to pay a monthly fee for certain in game items and features.

The PC and PS3 game will now sport a three-tiered payment system, for those who wish to play and receive more. While people can take part in current quests and activities for free, paying players will have access to extra player slots, inventory slots, bonus items and abilities, provided that they have contributed at least $5 since the game launched, making them premium customers.

Legendary players, who pay the monthly $14.99 fee, will have current and new DLC packs given to them at no charge, far more character slots, and will be able to form their own Justice Leagues, without having to worry about size limitations.

Speaking to IGN, SOE Executive Producer Lorin Jameson explained that the move to a freemium based model was not due to dwindling subscription numbers, but more because the business was leaning towards that specific.

"In terms of ‘Is it a result in a drop in subs’, absolutely not", Lorin said. "This is the right business model. If I can be honest, the game ended up costing a lot more than we thought it would, and this was our preferred business model from day one”.

Whether he speaks the truth or not, there’s no denying that a move to free to play has seen some radical business changes for MMO games as of late. Age of Conan, which was struggling to make a profit, announced that the change in tactics actually saved the game earlier this year, and has gone on to become far more successful under this new business model.

Source: Gamasutra

Last Updated: September 20, 2011

Darryn Bonthuys

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