STO going free to play later this year, according to PWE CEO

#1 Posted by _k1_ (199 posts) -

Perfect World Entertainment CEO, Kelvin Lau:

And also Star Trek Online, after the acquisition, in fact Cryptic is working on the free-to-play model for Star Trek Online. This is going to be launched by the end of this year as well. So I think free-to-play model we have a bigger potential in US market and also in China market

- source via Massively

Not really a big surprise, considering what happened with Champions, and PWE's other MMOs.

#2 Posted by Nocall (353 posts) -

Yay! I welcome STOF2P (st-oh-ff-toop) with open arms. The whole sub+cash shop thing is just...dirty bad.

#3 Posted by ArbitraryWater (11731 posts) -

Hey, what a surprise. Mediocre MMO made F2P because nobody wants to pay a subscription fee for it.

On the other hand, I can't wait for this to be eventually mentioned in the Bombcast, when we'll see what Jeff's "Lifetime subscription" gets him now.

Online
#4 Posted by TotalEklypse (1000 posts) -

Hey Jeff... How's that life time pass treating you.. 
 
lol.

#5 Posted by Dany (7887 posts) -

wait? this wasn't announced already?

#6 Posted by The_Laughing_Man (13629 posts) -

Hopefulyl people who have a life time pass will get some real real nice stuff. 

#7 Posted by TotalEklypse (1000 posts) -
@The_Laughing_Man: Don't give Jeff hopes. 
 
I was trying to smash all of thems    >:(
#8 Posted by MrKlorox (11209 posts) -

Cool. I enjoyed the beta, but could never ever see myself paying a sub for it.

#9 Posted by wolf_blitzer85 (5256 posts) -

@The_Laughing_Man said:

Hopefulyl people who have a life time pass will get some real real nice stuff.

They just straight up turn you into Picard.

I'll check it out just like every other dumb free to play game, play like 20 hours of it, then never ever turn back.

#10 Posted by myketuna (1693 posts) -

@MrKlorox said:

Cool. I enjoyed the beta, but could never ever see myself paying a sub for it.

Same here. I really liked playing it just because I liked traveling to the different planets and the space combat was alright.

#11 Posted by Vager (1654 posts) -

Might give it a shot again. Space Neon Lobsters unite!

#12 Posted by Wolfenhex (22 posts) -

When Lord of the Rings Online went Free To Play, Turbine made it up to the lifetime subscribers by giving them free points every month for the micro-transaction store, so now they are able to get everything that comes out for the game for free (as long as they don't waste their points on stuff like healing potions). I'm hoping that Star Trek Online does something similar (I have a lifetime subscription there too).

#13 Posted by TheHT (11243 posts) -

I'll probably play one ship fight, say it was neat, and then uninstall.

#14 Posted by Gerhabio (1977 posts) -

MAN, THAT SUCKS FOR PEOPLE WHO PAYED HUNDREDS OF DOLLARS FOR A LIFETIME SUBSCRIPTION

Sorry, Jeff.

#15 Posted by Monk (181 posts) -

Star Trek Online has been disappointing lately, content droughts, anything and everything new is put into the C-Store(Klingon Academy uniforms, really?!?).

The C-Store is basically already constructed for a F2P system.

Love the game but they really need to pickup the pace.

#16 Posted by Rhombus_Of_Terror (2101 posts) -

I knew it would go F2P, time to re-install when it happens.

#17 Posted by Vexxan (4620 posts) -

Meh, still not interested.

#18 Edited by WinterSnowblind (7616 posts) -

I have little sympathy for the current subscribers.. Did you honestly not see this happening?

From what I played of the game in the beta, then during the demo, I wasn't exactly impressed. But as a big Star Trek fan, I'll likely give it a go now that it's free. I really wish we could see more MMO's follow Guild Wars' pricing structure though. Monthly subscriptions) are terrible (especially for games like this, where you have to buy the majority of content from the store anyway - you're literally getting nothing with your subscription and freemium games aren't much better. I'd happily pay full retail price for the main game and then big chunks of content/expansions.

Stop screwing over customers and you'd likely make a lot more money!

#19 Edited by norenewalfee (108 posts) -

Makes me so glad I didn´t try to convince my wife harder that I needed that subscription.  
 
But seriously how still play STO???

#20 Posted by Lunar_Aura (2779 posts) -

This F2P bubble is gonna burst very very soon.

#21 Posted by TehFlan (1944 posts) -

If only I had the time to invest in an MMO.

#22 Posted by AhmadMetallic (18955 posts) -

MMOs are the weirdest fuckiest most uncomfortable thing to happen in this industry.. I don't understand them, and neither do you.

#23 Posted by SeriouslyNow (8534 posts) -

@LunarAura said:

This F2P bubble is gonna burst very very soon.

I doubt that. It's making money for all involved and the low barrier to entry means that the MMO audience is expanding every day. The Pay to Play MMOs will eventually all move to F2P. Subscription costs have rarely paid back development costs within a two year window.

#24 Posted by WinterSnowblind (7616 posts) -

@LunarAura said:

This F2P bubble is gonna burst very very soon.

It's going to be the complete opposite, subscription games are about to die out. Casual gaming is becoming more and more popular, people would rather be able to quickly jump into a game, play for a bit and then move onto something else. Having to pay monthly requires too much of an investment of time and money. With games like GW2 coming out, that are higher quality than sub based games, who's going to continue paying for them?

#25 Posted by Jack268 (3387 posts) -

Oh what a surprise

#26 Posted by EchoEcho (825 posts) -

I was in the beta and played for the 30 days that came with the game, and it was ... not really very good. About the only thing I enjoyed at all was space combat, but it wasn't worth a subscription fee for that alone.
 
The game just didn't feel very much like Star Trek to me, and random character cameos (Mackenzie Calhoun!) and other winks and nods to hardcore fans weren't enough to change that. The sector space stuff was very uninspired and didn't do a good job of making me feel like I was piloting a vessel through the vast reaches of space; it just felt like I was plodding along through a 3D map display. And the ground stuff just felt like Champions Online with a sci-fi skin on it and the crazier super powers stripped out -- which is nowhere close to what I want out of a Star Trek MMO. Say what you will about EVE Online, but at least it does a great job of making you feel like you're actually in space, with no disconnect between travel, missions, and combat.
 
Recently, though, I was watching the STO Beta videos on the site, and it got me in the mood to play again, if only for the space combat. Now that it's going F2P, I guess the "space combat isn't worth a monthly fee" problem won't be an issue anymore. I just hope that "Free 2 Play" doesn't translate to "Pay 2 Win" in the cash shop or I'm not likely to have fun with it for long.

#27 Posted by Bollard (5536 posts) -
@ArbitraryWater said:

Hey, what a surprise. Mediocre MMO made F2P because nobody wants to pay a subscription fee for it.

On the other hand, I can't wait for this to be eventually mentioned in the Bombcast, when we'll see what Jeff's "Lifetime subscription" gets him now.

This is exactly what I was gunna type.
#28 Edited by Lunar_Aura (2779 posts) -

@SeriouslyNow: @WinterSnowblind: You guys are probably right but for some dumb reason I can't grasp how anybody casual enough to play for free would suddenly fork over money to offset game development. I just think the F2P market will quickly be oversaturated and people will have trouble committing to one F2P game long enough for them to wanna shell out money and they move on to the next F2P game of interest.

#29 Posted by Aranel (25 posts) -

Only for the terrible MMO's

#30 Posted by SeriouslyNow (8534 posts) -

@LunarAura: Well sure, but that's the idea if you can get lots of people who have smaller expectations to spend tiny bits of money rather than a smaller number with higher expectations to spend larger amounts of money, you actually make more money over the longer term.

#31 Posted by Lunar_Aura (2779 posts) -

@SeriouslyNow: Ah, that makes sense. I tip my hat to that logic.

#32 Posted by Ghostiet (5270 posts) -

I can't wait for the awkwardness and jokes on the Bombcast when they'll inevitably talk about it.

#33 Posted by NakAttack (1289 posts) -

to bad i already beat it.

#34 Posted by Venatio (4491 posts) -

Great! I enjoyed the beta alot but I wasn't willing to pay

#35 Posted by Falconer (1686 posts) -

Totally going to play this again.

Online
#36 Posted by Ub3rSlug (153 posts) -

I wonder what they're going to give the people who paid for lifetime subscriptions or have a significant amount of time left on their accounts...

I mean, they have to do something for those people, right?

#37 Posted by Skytylz (4033 posts) -

I had to do a double take when I saw STO, I thought it said "STD going free to play later this year," I was confused.   

#38 Posted by SlightConfuse (3963 posts) -

now everyone has a lifetime subscription

#39 Posted by project343 (2825 posts) -

They're going to oversaturate the F2P market. Just sayin'.

#40 Posted by BabyChooChoo (4497 posts) -

@Ub3rSlug said:

I wonder what they're going to give the people who paid for lifetime subscriptions or have a significant amount of time left on their accounts...

I mean, they have to do something for those people, right?

If it's anything like CO, it'll still have a subscription option because the actual f2p portion locks you out of so many aspects of the game. So I don't think the lifetimers will get anything extra except the fact they still don't have to pay for a sub.

#41 Posted by Jackel2072 (2261 posts) -

@TotalEklypse said:

Hey Jeff... How's that life time pass treating you.. lol.

first thing i thought of. oh i hope this makes it onto next weeks bombcast!

#42 Posted by Gladiator_Games (444 posts) -
@wolf_blitzer85: Picard isn't bald, he's just taller than his hair!
#43 Posted by LethalKi11ler (1407 posts) -

Jeff totally called it! To his own expense however :P

#44 Posted by kristov_romanov (459 posts) -
  • I enjoy this game
  • I've played it enough to justify my lifetime sub, to myself at least
  • I look forward to seeing what free-to-play brings
#45 Posted by WinterSnowblind (7616 posts) -

@project343 said:

They're going to oversaturate the F2P market. Just sayin'.

Again, I don't see how that makes sense. The reason we're seeing so many games go F2P is because nobody wants to pay subscriptions for so many games, it's the subscription model that's become over-saturated and will likely be the biggest problem with upcoming games like Old Republic (which at least has it's brand name to sell it).

F2P games work because they can be played much more casually along with other games, without feeling like you're wasting money by not playing something you're paying for constantly. True, most F2P games don't handle things very well, but hopefully we can see more games that do manage to strike the right balance between payed content but not having a subscription.

#46 Posted by Jimbo (9809 posts) -

I'm sure there's still a market for subscription / paid access MMOs, it's just that WoW has currently gobbled it all up. They serve slightly different needs and there's room for both I think.

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