Hiya Players! Today’s post comes on the heels of Funcom announcing that The Secret World is doing away with the required subscription fee. For those of us in the gaming world this is often looked at as a good thing, until the realization that most companies and games (*cough*SWTOR*cough*) end up screwing this up in lieu of nickles and dimes. Today though we may be in luck. Let’s have a look at what Funcom is offering us.
For starters The Secret World isn’t going free to play. As we’ve talked about before free to play would mean there is no charges anywhere to play or enjoy the game. The Secret World’s business model instead most resembles the Buy To Play (B2P) model where a player buys the game, and can play as much as they’d like without any additional charges. This is similar to that which Guild Wars 2 is currently using, or the idea behind most classic console games.
That said though, subscriptions will still exist. The difference here is that it exists as a bonus to players that get it not a negative aspect on those who don’t have it. With a standard monthly subscription of $12.99 USD a player gets:
- ‘The Time Accelerator’. This clickable item increases experience gain for defeating monsters by 100% for 1 hour and has a 16 hour cool-down. This item can only be used by Members and Grand Masters.
- $10 worth of Bonus Points given out every month which can be used towards any product in the Item Store of The Secret World (bonus points are valid for 6 months).
- Membership Item-of-the-month gift (given out every month).
- 10% discount to everything in the Item Store except Content Packs or other Packs (discounts to the Item Store do not stack with other offers).
Based on those descriptions (taken from the FAQ), there really isn’t anything that screams “OP!”. In fact most of it just looks to be cash shop stuff; None of which would make or break a players gaming experience. To be honest, I think most players will find the subscription to be underwhelming if anything at all.
[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-WDWa9Aqu-g&w=360&h=215]Now that’s all pretty awesome but the question comes down to ‘What’s the catch?’. The answer here is Issues. Issues are TSW’s DLC/mini-expansions that usually include a new zone, dungeon, or weapon. In the past since all players were paying subscribers these were included for free. Players who bought TSW before the end of the year will be rewarded with the current 4 issues, as well as Issue #5 which is scheduled for January for free. After that though each issue will be $5.
At face-value this seems like an excellent business model if the Issues end up being optional and not required to progress your character. Though the FAQ says there will still be core content released for free, the question of what that will include and if the Issues will truly be completely optional will remain to be seen. I’m hoping for the best since the core of this game and the idea behind it could show a lot of value. I fear though that due to the negative press it got when releasing, and the fact that EA is involved, that there will be bad news soon enough.
In any case, I’m downloading it again now and this is a push to give it a round two. How about you players, does this change your mind on giving it a chance? Let me know in the comments below.
More Info: The Secret World Subscription Changes – FAQ