Tobold's Blog
Wednesday, June 10, 2009
DDO goes Free2Play

The news fit the discussion subject of the day: Turbine announced that starting this summer Dungeons & Dragons Online would be changing its business model to Free2Play. Further explanation in this Warcry interview. There will be the whole gammut of choices, from playing for absolutely nothing, to an item store, to a $15 per month VIP subscription plan.

I think this is good news, because DDO isn't really a bad game. It just wasn't quite as good in comparison with the other games you can get for the same $15 monthly subscription. Which brings us to one additional benefit of pricing segmentation: It gives the smaller games a better chance to survive.
Free is always good. I might try it out at that price. But it depends on how the microtransactions will work.
Oooo, nice. Think I may download that next time I get the urge to try a new game.

Always been quite interested in DDO, never tried it.

What an interesting way to re-invigorate an aging title!
I really liked DDO when it first came out, but as many have said did not think it was enough for a 15 dollar a month price tag. Given this news I will probably re-install the game and possible let it be my first experiment with microtransactions. I've been looking for a second game and a F2P/microtransaction model fits my budget for a second title.

Turbine is a game company I really like, so I wish them the best with this decision.
At this time Codemasters does not intend to import the Free-to-play option to its European users. I imagine that this will change as we get closer to the actual launch of the new service.
Really? Man, aren't 1 euro = 1 dollar exchange rates bad enough? I find "this game is free to play in the USA, but costs 15 Euro per month in Europe" totally unacceptable. Even if we all know that free2play isn't really free.
I like this business model. It gives me a chance to play as much of the game as I want without limiting me to a level cap or a time period. I hate 10 day trials because I either never have time to actually use most of it because of work and my personal life or the level cap is so low that it takes me a few hours to get to it and the rest of the 10 days are wasted.

If more of the small games I am interested in gave F2P trials instead of limited, full-access trials, I would likely have more MMOs under my belt regularly.
Err... Looking at the comparison between the free players and the VIP players (those with subscriptions), it hardly looks like Free to me. You're limited to a small fraction of the area with a small fraction of the content.
If you're limited to certain areas, levels or content they'd probably better name it a free trial version.
@Carra: The difference comes in that it is not limited by a trial-period. Players are allowed indefinite access to the restricted content, thus making it more than a trial.
If you guys love free MMO's (this is not an advertisement although it sounds alot like one) you should check out Maple Story. It's cutesy, but it's really fun. I blog about it frequently at, if you are interested.
After a long pause of D&D in general, I have just ordered 300$ worth of D&D 4th edition books to start a pen and paper rpg campaign. Why? Because of the changes for better or worse, at least it's new.

When I saw the announcement about DDO I was all excited. To my surprise the online version is still the old 3,5 edition which is pretty different. There's no chance even for free that I'm going back there. Too bad cause the buisiness model would have been nice to try.
As I noted over at my place, this might just make DDO one of the few MMOs I've actually spent money on. I'm very serious about voting with my wallet.
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